Business & Investment

Loading and rolling: Fleet availability.Autonomous truck test; driver employment data

Capacity issue: Briefing on fleet availability

(Photo: Jim Allen / FreightWaves)

The holiday season for trucking is traditionally less driver activity due to Christmas and New Year holidays. The driver’s home time and geographic location pose unique challenges for the career. This is because in large fleets, drivers live far away from the major mass contract lanes. This leads to an important topic in fleet operations. The percentage of fleet availability and how these numbers influence load reservations, denials, and revenue target determination. Tractors generate revenue miles by carrying luggage. Revenue miles are an important unit of output that the fleet uses to determine profitability.

Fleet Availability: Quick Primer

  • This represents the percentage of drivers available for work. If the fleet is 500 trucks and the expected availability for the day is 450, the fleet availability will be 90%.
  • Breakdowns, in-store trucks, unseat tractors, and home drivers are all helping to reduce this number.
  • The higher the availability of a ready tractor, the higher the revenue, miles and load capacity per track that a fleet can earn per week.

Challenge the fleet

  • Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays are both important days for drivers, and most people want to go home with friends and family.
  • The trucking network is designed to operate all year round, and the fleet coordinates load booking strategies and behaviors to bring drivers home on one or both dates.
  • Upon returning home, the driver may take more vacations or even quit his local job, forcing him to spend extra resources on the fleet to retrieve the tractor and pull it to the terminal.
  • It is difficult to get the driver back on the road after vacation. The demand for drivers is very high, and drivers naturally take advantage of this fact by spending more time.

Market impact

  • In the days leading up to Thanksgiving and Christmas, load bid rejections have increased, demonstrating the ability to leave the market and return home.
  • The vehicle will check the driver’s availability and place it to cover the committed lane, reducing bid rejection the day after the New Year.
  • Spot market rates in Texas, Georgia, Florida, California, and Pennsylvania, which have a large driver population, experience rate fluctuations before and after vacations as many carriers are routed to customers and use intermediaries in the backhaul lanes. To do.

TuSimple Completes 80 Miles Unmanned Truck Pilot in Arizona

(Photo: TuSimple)

TuSimple as a milestone in autonomous trucking Completed 80 miles of night driving Along Arizona’s Interstate Highway 10, there are no drivers. The equipped Class 8 tractor departed from Tucson’s depot on December 22 and crossed the streets and highways for 1 hour and 20 minutes before arriving at the Phoenix distribution center.

The Arizona Transport Bureau and local law enforcement agencies helped do this, but without remote control or traffic intervention. During the test, the lead investigation vehicle stayed 5 miles ahead of the autonomous truck, and the law enforcement vehicle continued 0.5 miles behind for added safety.

Important reason:

  • The pilot program took 18 months of development to create a Level 4 autonomous semi-track.
  • TuSimple continues to partner with UPS, and more recently Robot-driven miles exceed 160,000 miles Move your luggage from Arizona and Texas to the UPS Air Cargo Terminals in Orlando, Florida and Charlotte, North Carolina.
  • Autonomous trucking represents great potential for cost savings. Because driver wages account for about 40% Of the operating costs of the tractor to the fleet.

Thoughts to move forward:

I see this moment as an event for the Wright brothers. When they demonstrated the flight in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina in 1903, the first commercial flight was scheduled for 1914, and commercial aviation established standards and regulations until 1926. ..

Autonomous trucks are in a similar situation. Currently, there is a proven proof of concept, but additional testing and regulatory hurdles are required before confirming the basis of a large-scale implementation.

Market Updates: Tractor Trailer Driver Employment Data

This data helps you visualize fleet availability challenges and understand how driver density affects pre- and post-major vacation rates. Large carriers operate a nationwide freight network, but pricing strategies need to be adjusted based on where most drivers live. If the truck loading network is not adjusted to cover these changes, empty miles may increase, service may be interrupted, and turnover may increase if drivers are unable to return home in a timely manner.

FreightWaves TRAC Lane Spotlight: From Kansas City, Missouri to Cincinnati

Overview: Outbound bid rejection rates from Kansas City to Cincinnati have reached their highest levels since mid-November. In the Kansas City market, outbound bid levels remain fluctuating.


  • The Kansas City market continues to experience bid refusal volatility (from 23.5% at the end of November to 30.2% in late December).
  • Outbound denials from Kansas City to Cincinnati remain high at 28.77%, lacking the ability to facilitate denials.
  • The Freight WavesTRAC spot rate from Kansas City to Cincinnati remains rising at $ 3.64 per mile as rejected bids become a spot market opportunity.

Carrier: Market volatility and high bid rejection rates indicate that other carriers in the market are struggling to cover committed cargo. High spot rates provide an opportunity to increase revenue, but rate variability determines timing, as the key factors in negotiating rates are the day of the week and track preparation time.

Central Freightline Truck Driver: Final salary was too late for Christmas (FreightWaves)

McDonald’s rents a freighter Eliminate the shortage of french fries in Japan (FreightWaves)

Supply chain crunch It ’s like a traffic jam... (Wall Street Journal)

Investors are piled up Supply chain technology (Wall Street Journal)

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Loading and rolling: Fleet availability.Autonomous truck test; driver employment data Loading and rolling: Fleet availability.Autonomous truck test; driver employment data

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