5 Surprising Facts About the Trucking Industry You Didn’t Know

January 18, 2017

The trucking industry is the primary freight mover in North America. While large trucks are used in order to ship all manner of goods and products, many people remain relatively unaware of the size and importance of the industry as a whole. The following five facts each serve to highlight different aspects of the trucking and shipping industry that may not be commonly known.

The Trucking Industry Uses More Than 10 Percent of all Fuel Purchases in the U.S.

Fuel consumed by the trucking industry as a whole exceeded 50 billion gallons in 20111 alone. New technology, such as more efficient routing systems and electric-hybrid vehicles, has been able to increase the fuel efficiency of the entire industry. Self-driving vehicles and other innovations that may be just over the horizon may play a crucial role in improving fuel economy throughout the entire industry.

The Industry Produces More than 5 Percent of the National GDP Each Year

The trucking industry is essential to the economy as a whole. Each year, trucking produces over 650 billion in revenue, but the real economic impact the industry has is much harder to calculate. Trucking provides cost-effective shipping services that are essential when it comes to delivering products and manufactured goods to retailers and consumers.

Failure to Stay in the Lane is the Primary Cause of Trucking Accidents

Due to their larger size, accidents involving large trucks are far more likely to produce serious injury or result in mass-casualty incidents. Future industry trends like utilizing self-driving trucks and autonomous vehicles have the potential to greatly reduce instances of accidents and injuries that may occur on the job or on the road.

The Majority of Trucking Companies are Small Businesses

Given the size of the industry, it would be natural to assume that most shipping is managed by large businesses and corporations. The truth is that the majority of the industry is compromised by small businesses and even independent vehicle operators. The majority of shipping and freight handling companies are often small organizations that may only offer service to a small region or fixed delivery area.

Automated and Self-driving Vehicles Are Poised to Make Sweeping Changes to the Industry

Self-driving vehicles are poised to create nothing short of a revolution within the trucking industry. Less need for human operators is just the beginning of the changes that automated vehicles may bring. More efficient shipping processes, deliveries that may be accomplished with far greater frequency and a drastic reduction of accidents and collisions involving large trucks and delivery vehicles are changes that may be just around the corner. Automated vehicles have the potential to change the way that manufactured goods, products and raw materials are delivered and shipped.

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