ReeferpoladminJanuary 8, 20206:45 pmUS Trucking Industry Outlook for 2020: First Challenges & Bumps on the Road

From hundreds of carriers shutting down and worrying geopolitical events to decreased short-term shipping rates, record-breaking driver shortages and so much more. After two brilliant years for the US trucking industry in 2016 and 2017, it is safe to say that the year 2019 wasn’t a pretty one. What about a new year, a supposedly fresh start? It is not easy to find a positive outlook, thus it looks like it is going to be a bumpy and definitely a challenging road ahead of us. Let’s stroll through a quick outlook for the start of 2020 and what US trucking news has in store for us.

National Compliance Deadline for US Trucking Industry

 

One of the biggest topics among US trucking news was without a doubt the National compliance deadline. A law that went into full effect recently and required every single truck on American roads to be equipped with an electronic logging device (ELD) is probably the finest example. It is a balance between good and bad, a benefit and a challenge.

The main purpose of the ELD is to create a safer work environment for drivers in the US trucking industry, but also to allow accurate managing, easier communication and more.

Sounds fantastic, but where’s the catch? There’s no secret that ELD adds additional costs of both time and money that can be detrimental for struggling businesses.

 

Reefer

 

Adaption Period for New Software & Laws

 

The beginning of the new year is definitely a serious adaption period for the US trucking industry. First off, the Freight Index shows us a steady decline in freight volumes and expenditures. But that is just a very tip of adaption iceberg that awaits.

Next up, the US trucking news report laws like this in California that will reclassify independent drivers and could change the whole complexity of trucking in the state.

And yes, ELD also plays a big part once again. Many say that a lot of companies could be underestimating potential costs and problems with new software. Learning how to operate smoothly alongside new software and moving freight efficiently at the same time is one of the biggest adaptions to overcome at the moment.

 

Dry van

 

Adaption Period for New Software & Laws

 

The beginning of the new year is definitely a serious adaption period for the US trucking industry. First off, the Freight Index shows us a steady decline in freight volumes and expenditures. But that is just a very tip of adaption iceberg that awaits.

Next up, the US trucking news report laws like this in California that will reclassify independent drivers and could change the whole complexity of trucking in the state.

And yes, ELD also plays a big part once again. Many say that a lot of companies could be underestimating potential costs and problems with new software. Learning how to operate smoothly alongside new software and moving freight efficiently at the same time is one of the biggest adaptions to overcome at the moment.

 

Running a Trucking Company Continues to be a Major Challenge

 

Running a trucking company is full of rewards and risks, but it is continuing to be a major challenge due to its strong dependency on many factors: economics, politics, foreign policies and the US trucking industry as a whole.

Then there are driver shortages and striking competition for them, manufacturing declines and various government regulations just like the one in California.

In addition, the unstable environment, tensions in the geopolitical arena and recession lurking around the corner raises the stakes even more. All of this presents a plethora of bumps in the road for someone who desires to become a player in the industry.

 

Dispatch

 

The Conclusion: US Trucking Industry is Concerned but Motivated

 

Who knows what the future holds for the US trucking industry. New tensions are added in the Middle East which can have an effect, but the trend of eCommerce growth continues. And while driver shorter is persistent, the economy might see growth in GDP. It’s an uncertain mix, but one thing we do know for sure – it is going to be a challenging year.

 

Paul Mark Group

Hauling heavy loudpoladminJanuary 6, 20203:34 pmELD is in Full Effect in the US Trucking Industry – What Is It Exactly?

Back in 2012, the US Congress authorized the “Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century” bill which is also known as MAP-21. Alongside the plans for highway funding included in the law, it also required to develop a rule mandating the usage of electronic logging devices (ELD). The ELD rule officially became a law on Feb. 16, 2016. For vehicles equipped with an AORBD, these had to be upgraded or replaced to meet full ELD status by Dec. 16, 2019. It has seen quite a lot of controversy over the years, but now that ELD is in full effect in the US trucking industry, let’s get to know and understand it better!

 

What is ELD Exactly?

 

ELD devices are designed to record the data that showcases a number of hours driver works and rests each day to make sure they are compliant with government regulations. The driver information that mainly concerns hours of service that commercial truckers are restricted to is placed on a permanent record of driving hours, on-duty hours and rest time, over the course of a trip.

Originally, it was the paper logbooks that were used which then got replaced by an Automatic On-Board Recording Device (AOBRD).

Today, the ELD is a replacement for both, that is now passed its deadline and is fully implemented throughout the US trucking industry.

 

Pilot Local truck

 

How Does It Work?

 

So, how does the ELD work? First, the application software is installed either on a portable device like a phone and tablet or on a hard-wired in-cab dash-mounted device.

Then, the ELD synchronizes with the engine of the vehicle which allows for an automatic recording of duty status once the ignition is turned on. The device starts recording the driving time when the truck speed goes over 5mph.

Once the vehicle stops, the status can be changed to non-driving or on-duty depending on the driver’s actions taken next, whether he is fueling, loading, unloading or taking a break and sleeping.

 

Hauling heavy loud

 

Why the US Trucking Industry Introduced ELD?

 

The introduction of ELDs into the US Trucking Industry was led by multiple reasons that raised concerns and needed solutions. When the driver becomes tired and sleepy, it causes major accidents and draws great attention from media and lawmakers.

Wanting to ensure the drivers don’t exceed restricted driving hours and questioning the accuracy of paper logs were one of the main reasons that led to introducing ELD.

In general, the safer work environment for drivers, faster and more accurate tracking, managing and shared data is the aim of ELD to excel at.

 

Dump truck

 

Common ELD Issues & Benefits

 

Rarely comes an innovation without some kind of issues and challenges. And ELD has already experienced it multiple times. From online anti-ELD petitions to being upheld in court for driver privacy concerns to software malfunction – that’s just a small part of a bigger issue picture that still goes on.

However, while the ELD still needs great improvements and solutions, the benefits of it can’t be overlooked either. Whether its more miles on the road that leads to more money, better communication with a home office or simply reduced headache from paperwork and beyond.

The US trucking industry, truck drivers and ELD still have a long way to go to form a trustworthy bond, and it all starts now!

 

Highway trucking

Paul Mark