NEWS & REPORTS

Report: Fleet Operating Costs hit Nearly $72 an Hour in 2018

Dec 18, 2019 | Reports, Uncategorized

HDT Staff

Operating costs were up across the board last year, costing fleets an average of $71.78 per hour to run freight, according to the American Transportation Research Institute’s latest Operational Costs of Trucking report.

The 2019 update to ATRI’s report looked at trucking industry operating costs during 2018 which saw a robust economic environment for carriers and drivers. While times were good for fleets overall, the economic boom also put upward pressure on nearly every line-item cost center experienced by carriers, according to ATRI.

ATRI found that a good economy, difficulties in finding and keeping drivers,  and increased fuel and insurance prices all contributed to year-over-year cost increases. The average marginal cost per mile, which includes costs due to fuel, equipment, maintenance, insurance, permits, licenses, tires, tolls and driver wages and benefits, increased 7.7% in 2018 to $1.82 per mile.

Costs went up in every category except tires, and fuel costs saw the largest increase at 17.7%. Not far behind fuel cost increases, were insurance costs at 12%. Driver wages and benefits continued to make up the largest portion of operating costs and 2018 was a year of substantial driver pay increases industry wide.

Driver wages and benefits increased 7.0% and 4.7% respectively as a strategic response to the severe driver shortage that existed in 2018, according to ATRI. On an hourly basis, average costs due to driver wages increased from $21.97 to $23.50 in a single year. Benefits increased from $6.78 to $7.10 per hour. Wages and benefits represented 43% of all marginal costs in 2018.

Repair and maintenance costs increased 24% since 2012 to 17.1 cents per mile on average.

These numbers represent an average of the trucking industry, however ATRI’s report also analyzes costs by sector which can have varying costs due to the type of activity. Specialized carriers have the highest cost per mile at $2.02, with additional factors such as HazMat and OS/OW permit costs, complex maintenance requirements and higher driver compensation contributing to increased costs.

Truckload carriers have the lowest operating cost per mile at $1.71, despite a 14.8% increase from the previous year, mostly attributed to driver pay increases.

About the Author

NEWS & REPORTS

All 3G ELDs Do Not Comply with FMCSA Regs by 12/31/2022

Verizon is the last network to shut down their 3G network, the sunset date is December 31, 2022.  The other major networks shut down their 3G earlier this year. If you have an ELD system that relies on 3G to operate, it will no longer be compliant.  The carrier has 8...

Preparing your Drivers for Deposition

Doug Marcello, a shareholder with the law firm of Saxton & Stump and chief legal officer of Bluewire, is a trucking defense attorney with a CDL. He had represented trucking clients across the country, having been specially admitted for cases in 35 states. Doug...

10 laws that changed how trucking works

A look back at some of the top labor issues in the freight-hauling industry since deregulation in the 1980s—and even before—as well as the notable impacts of ongoing worker and driver challenges. FleetOwner Staff Although the federal government doesn’t regulate labor...

CATEGORIES