Trucking calls for plan to limit fuel costs’ effect on economy

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A top trucking official on Tuesday, Sept. 23, urged the Bush administration and Congress to implement a comprehensive energy plan that will ensure an affordable supply of oil and limit the effect of rising fuel costs on the U.S. economy.

Speaking on behalf of the American Trucking Associations before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, Barbara Windsor — president and chief executive officer of Hahn Transportation of New Market, Md. — said the United States needs a comprehensive energy plan that decreases demand for fossil fuels, increases domestic energy production and ensures transparency in the petroleum markets.

“It is clear that our energy crisis is a complex problem that requires a comprehensive solution,” Windsor said. “This dramatic year-over-year increase in the cost of diesel fuel is harmful to the trucking industry and the U.S. economy. The fuel crisis we face today is severe.”

Windsor said Hahn Transportation’s fuel costs have increased 55 percent compared with last year; Hahn Transportation purchases about 2,600 gallons of diesel fuel daily. In 2007, the company spent $1.7 million on diesel fuel, Windsor said; this year, Hahn Transportation will spend an additional $950,000 on fuel.

Windsor said the trucking industry is doing its part to reduce fuel consumption by slowing truck speeds, reducing idling and properly maintaining equipment. Such steps, however, do not begin to offset the rising cost of fuel, she said.