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Fuel costs top list of trucking industry concerns in new ATRI report

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Fuel costs top list of trucking industry concerns in new ATRI report
Diesel prices have fluctuated at or below $5 a gallon since early August, when average prices dipped below $5 for the first time since March.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Fuel prices rank as the top concern in the trucking industry as diesel once again exceeds $5 per gallon on average across the nation.

This is according to the American Transportation Research Institute’s (ATRI) 18th annual Top Industry Issues report.

According to the latest statistics from the Energy Information Administration, the average price for a gallon of diesel fuel is currently $5.339 per gallon, up from $5.224 on Oct. 10 and $4.836 on Oct. 3.

Diesel prices have fluctuated at or below $5 a gallon since early August, when average prices dipped below $5 for the first time since March.

Fuel price concerns replaced the driver shortage, which had been the number one industry concern for five consecutive years, at the top of ATRI’s list.

This year, the driver shortage was the second-ranked issue, followed by the lack of available truck parking.

“ATRI’s list is a true reflection of what it was like to be a trucker this year,” ATA Chairman Harold A. Sumerford Jr. said. “High fuel prices and finding drivers were two of our industry’s biggest challenges – challenges made more difficult by the economy and the continued lack of truck parking. Thankfully, ATRI doesn’t just tell us what the issues are, it provides a number of possible solutions that decision makers can use to address them.”

Rounding out the top five this year were driver compensation and the economy.

With the release earlier this year of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Notice of Intent to enter into a speed limiter rulemaking in 2023, speed limiters ranked in the top ten this year for the first time, coming in ninth overall and fifth among commercial driver respondents.

FMCSA officials announced recently that they plan to have the final proposal on the speed limiter issue ready by June 2023.

More than 47% of the survey respondents were professional truck drivers, while 39% were motor carrier executives.

Among driver respondents, truck parking, fuel prices and driver compensation were the top three concerns, while motor carriers ranked the driver shortage, driver retention and fuel prices as their top three concerns.

More than 4,200 trucking industry stakeholders participated in this year’s survey, including motor carriers, truck drivers, industry suppliers, driver trainers, law enforcement and others.

“This year’s survey had the highest number of responses to date, showing how committed our industry is to identifying the most critical concerns and more importantly, figuring out how we collectively deal with each issue,” ATRI President and COO Rebecca Brewster said.

The full report can be found at ATRI’s website by clicking here.

The Trucker News Staff

The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.

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The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.
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