Fuel prices top $5/gallon nationwide | Trucking groups ask for emission regs relief

Ccj Logo White Headshot

Trucking news and briefs for Wednesday, March 16, 2022:

Diesel prices surge past $5/gal nationwide

A week after diesel fuel prices shot up nearly 75 cents, the U.S.’ national average increased another 40 cents during the week ending March 14, according to the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration’s weekly update.

The national average for a gallon of on-highway diesel is now $5.25, marking the first time diesel has crossed the $5 threshold nationwide.

Prices increased in all regions across the country last week, with the most significant increase being seen in California, where prices jumped by 50.5 cents. The West Coast less California saw the second-highest increase last week with a 43.8-cent increase.

With the increase, California becomes the first state with an average above $6 per gallon at $6.264 per gallon. The Central Atlantic region holds the second-highest average at $5.474 per gallon.

The cheapest diesel can be found in the Rocky Mountain region at $4.966 per gallon, followed by the Midwest region at $5.044 per gallon.

Prices in other regions, according to EIA, are:

  • New England — $5.231
  • Lower Atlantic — $5.264
  • Gulf Coast — $5.11
  • West Coast less California — $5.416

ProMiles’ numbers during the same week saw fuel prices increase by 73.8 cents, bringing its national average to $4.935 per gallon.

According to ProMiles’ Fuel Surcharge Index, the most expensive diesel can be found in California at $5.974 per gallon, and the cheapest can be found in the Rocky Mountain region at $4.741 per gallon.

ATA, OOIDA, more trucking groups ask CARB for relief on emissions regs

With the final phase of the California Air Resources Board’s Truck and Bus regulation requiring model year 2007, 2008 and 2009 engines to upgrade to a model-year 2010 or newer engine set to take effect at the end of the year, a coalition of 26 trucking groups is asking CARB to consider delaying the requirement due to ongoing supply chain disruptions.

Groups who signed the letter include the American Trucking Associations, Truckload Carriers Association, Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, National Association of Small Trucking Companies, Western States Trucking Association and more.

“The well documented shortage of new truck availability has forced larger fleets to hold onto their older trucks for longer than is typical, which in turn has reduced the amount of used trucks in the secondary market causing prices of available trucks to skyrocket,” the groups said. “In fact, ACT Research has reported that average used truck prices are currently up 83% compared to January 2021. Complicating this issue further is the fact that major OEMs have cut new truck build allocations to their dealer partners who have subsequently closed order books and will not accept any additional orders for new heavy-duty vehicle builds at this time.”

The groups added that, if the requirement remains in place, truck owners having difficulty finding or purchasing used equipment would be forced out of the marketplace.

To help owners that still need to upgrade their equipment to comply with the regulation, the groups proposed that CARB consider the following:

  • A provision that would allow covered fleets to demonstrate intent to purchase of a used vehicle with similar compliance considerations that exist under the manufacturers delay provision in the California Code of Regulations.  
  • Provide for alternative documentation for delays in manufacturing where a dealer/manufacturer cannot provide a purchase order due to lack of build slots. 

“Providing this consideration in the final phase of the Truck and Bus Regulation will hopefully allow truck markets to return to pre-pandemic levels of availability and more importantly, affordability,” the coalition said.

A. Duie Pyle expanding into Virginia

A. Duie Pyle is opening of three new facilities to expand its services into Virginia.

With locations opening in Richmond, Roanoke and Manassas, the company is expanding its supply chain solutions to strengthen routes and transport of goods, while creating jobs and adding to Virginia’s growing economic infrastructure.

The strategic move into Virginia provides Pyle with the opportunity to offer direct trucking and warehousing services to key points along the Eastern Seaboard supply chain, the company said, while acquiring direct service to and from the ports of Virginia connecting key metropolitan areas like Washington D.C. and Baltimore.

Pyle said the expansion will add 96 service doors and 75 news jobs across the three locations.

“We’re excited to be making such a major investment in bringing our industry-leading expertise into the Commonwealth of Virginia,” said John Luciani, COO of LTL Solutions at A. Duie Pyle. “With our service-first approach, which has garnered industry recognition and awards throughout the company’s 98-year history, we have established ourselves as a leading provider of supply chain solutions. This expansion further enables us to offer exceptional service to our customers, enlarging our footprint to new regions.”