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Trucking Operating Costs Back on Upswing: ATRI

(Aug. 18, 2012) — The average marginal cost per mile for trucking in 2011 was $1.71, the highest rate since 2008, says the American Transportation Research Institute’s Analysis of the Operational Costs of Trucking.

The study, which identifies trucking costs for U.S. carriers from 2008 to 2011, found that a sharp decline in fuel prices resulted in decreased industry costs between 2008 and 2009 but costs have steadily risen since then.

Fuel and driver wages continued to be the largest cost centers for carriers, together constituting 62 percent of the average operating cost in 2011.

“The driver shortage, increasing insurance costs and CSA impacts also put upward pressure on industry costs, as carriers increased wages to recruit and retain qualified drivers,” the study states.

The ATRI study echoes a recent  carrier survey by the Ontario Trucking Association, which found that trucking companies experienced year-over-year increases in all the major components of operating cost.

Most respondents indicated equipment (tractor and trailer) costs are up in the range of 5-10% compared to last year, while increases in driver wages and owner-operator compensation in the last few months alone is also rising.

A copy of the full  report is available from ATRI at www.atri-online.org