Posts about trucking-industry - Page 1

State of Freight

Posted by Danielle Wentworth on Aug 11, 2021 10:34:56 AM

State of Freight Overall

  • Not enough truck drivers in the market to handle capacity
  • Until the driver market increases, we will see capacity crunch.
  • Drivers are seeking lanes where amenities are available (parking, showers, …).
  • Industries are not able to maintain adequate inventory - lots of spot orders.
  • Truck carriers are trying to give assets to their established customers, so new customers are being turned down


  • Smaller carriers are handling more loads, but it's not enough coverage to make up for larger carriers not handling amount of loads they have in the past
  • Freight has always been more difficult to secure in the Northeast, but now more than ever
  • Rates have increased substantially - customers will be paying more
  • Tolls have also increased substantially for trucks. 
  • Many accessorials have increased, along with FSC, adding to the overall rate increase. Tank cleaning, steaming and driver detention are the ones with the largest increases
  • Paying more does not guarantee capacity
  • Drivers are dictating more today where they want to go
  • Compartment trucks are extremely difficult to secure and carriers not investing in this equipment - it is expensive and has more temperature issues
  • Kosher and food grade loads are also extremely difficult to secure. Most kosher & food grade equipment is already in use
  • Dedicated is preferred by some carriers, but only if they have trailers. If too much dedicated business is serviced, it removes overall trailers for all customers
  • Carriers need to go to certain locations to keep their system in balance
  • Texas and Louisiana lanes are easier to cover rather than Georgia, North Carolina & South Carolina - drivers make more money on longer hauls
  • CSXT secured Quality, one of the largest carriers in the country, for servicing their yards and this took away capacity to companies


  • Securing available railcars for lease has been more difficult than just as little as six months ago
  • Rail rates increase each year, there is very little room for negotiation
  • Fuel surcharges (FSCs) have increased each month. CSX has gone from $0.11/mile in January 2021 to $0.33/mile in August 2021

What TRT is doing 

  • We are in the process of leasing additional railcars
  • Asking customers if they can supply their own railcars for pick-up of product
  • Identifying any customers that can take rail rather than trucks and converting when we can work it
  • Clean railcars coming back from shop are earmarked for a fleet so they are not used carelessly
  • Continuing daily Unconfirmed Loads meetings for trucks where we prioritize customers. Salesperson and customer input and cooperation is critical
  • Cold calling new carriers for any capacity
  • Customers are looking for their own trucks which is showing that customers are starting to get involved in securing their loads
  • Keeping terminals stocked with product is key
  • Investigating terminal options for lanes/products that make sense and have the biggest impact on easing capacity
  • Creating a survey for drivers to complete as they leave TRT to understand their experience and what amenities they would want
  • Distributing weekly demurrage reports for our railcars, so we can remind our customers to keep them moving
  • Carriers added additional driver training locations. They believe enrollment will increase once bonus unemployment benefits run out. Until new drivers enter the market, there will be a capacity crisis
  • Follow-up conference calls with our carriers
  • Exploring intermodal rates again for the lanes over 1,000 miles
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Topics: trucking industry, Freight Imbalance, railcars, intermodal

Are flexitanks one possible solution to the trucking industry crisis?

Posted by Danielle Wentworth on Feb 11, 2019 10:10:00 AM

As we've seen for the past several years, the shortage of drivers in the trucking industry have caused issues throughout the US, especially as the economy continues to grow.  One year ago, we posted a blog titled Trucking Industry Industry & Solutions.  The article discussed the issues surrounding the trucking industry overall, how the issues would impact TRT, and ultimately our customers, what TRT is doing to combat these issues and what our customers could do to help.  One year later, this is still a hot topic throughout our industry.  As such, we continue to look at innovative ways to deliver products to customers on today's challenging market.  An article in the Parkersburg News and Sentinel discussed many of these same issues including the fact that there is more work than available drivers and that restrictions on new drivers (age, insurance, etc) allow experienced drivers to call the shots.  As we know, fewer people are choosing truck driving as a career path.  And those that do, don't often stay with it.  According to the article, "Students who graduate from commercial driving schools often aren’t prepared for the jobs they get, and experienced truckers can easily move from one firm to another if they are dissatisfied with working conditions or pay. Turnover rate for large truckload carriers, according to a survey done by Stay Metrics, a national retention firm, hit 94 percent in the first quarter of 2018"  (

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Topics: trucking industry, transportation, flexitanks