It’s easy to become frustrated trying to wrap your head around the current nationwide transportation carrier capacity crunch. If you’re reading this, it’s likely that you’ve already experienced a lack of carrier availability for transporting your goods. Certain factors that led the industry to this point have been years in the making, while others occurred suddenly and unexpectedly. At Continental Logistics, we’ve enacted the following steps to insulate our current and future customers from feeling the effects of the carrier capacity constraints:
Carrier Screening and Education – While there are numerous regulations currently affecting truck drivers, the most disruptive by far has been Electronic Logging Device (ELD) Rule. Implemented on December 18th, 2017, the ELD Rule has had a major impact on the availability of transportation because it requires an hours-of-service tracking method with zero leeway. In response to this regulation, we’ve filled our network with carriers who were either already using electronic logging devices or were perceptive to our training and guidance on becoming ELD Rule compliant.
Expanded Carrier Network – The nationwide driver shortage has been brewing for many years, and the drought has hit a new peak in 2018. According to the American Trucking Association, there is currently a shortage of around 50,000 drivers, which if unaddressed, will continue to grow to over 175,000 by 2026. We’ve aggressively expanded our carrier network to ensure that our customers’ shipments are always covered whether the destination is local or national.
Cost Control – An already tight capacity situation was exacerbated by a particularly treacherous hurricane season. Harvey, Maria and Irma created havoc throughout the Southern United States, causing major delays in shipments. Combined with wildfires and mudslides in California, rough winters throughout the US, and a bomb cyclone in the Northeast, these natural disasters have led to a transportation bottleneck that hasn’t let up since. Unfortunately, carriers are cutting shipments and raising prices to meet this demand. If you want your shipment to arrive on time, you’ll need to make sure that you’re the highest bidder. Our relationships with our carriers allow us to negotiate the best rates on behalf of our customers. We also actively pursue alternative options such as consolidation and optimization opportunities to help control costs.
The current capacity crunch can be summed with one phrase: the perfect storm. The combination of circumstances has ensured that high rates and delayed shipments have become commonplace. Don’t allow these factors to harm your relationships with your customers. If you’re feeling the squeeze of transportation capacity constraints, free yourself by contacting Continental Logistics today.