- October saw a 9.9% rise in truck-hauled freight since 2016, marking the greatest increase since December 2013, Trucks.com reported.
- The first 10 months of 2017 show a 3.1% increase over the same period last year. Pre-holiday freight volume is up 6.7%, indicating a strong shopping spending streak through peak season.
- The American Trucking Associations reported that October's tonnage index reached 147.6, up from September's 142.9. The trucking industry handles roughly $676.2 billion in freight business, nearly 79.8% of the total revenue earned by various modes of transport.
Trucking is poised on the tipping point.
Trucking's essential role in recovery from Hurricanes Irma and Harvey seems to have spurred the industry into overdrive, as it shifted directly from disaster support to increased load movement as a result of consumer e-commerce spending. Though only moderate gains were expected, expenditures of up to 10% were reported.
The upswing in trucking comes just when industry naysayers have been predicting a slump. Whether spurred by peak season need or disaster aid, the demand for transport has rarely been higher. Buoyed by economic growth, drivers have never been in greater demand, gaining important benefits reflecting a their new value.
On the horizon, however, lurks the preliminary enforcement of the ELD mandate, which experts have long believed will raise prices and alienate drivers. Will the industry incorporate the change, motivated by the current upswing, or is the resistance to change enough to deflate drivers riding high?