Winter Weather and the Impact on Trucking
Whether it is a blizzard sweeping from the Rocky Mountains to the Northeast or frigid temps that are well below zero, winter weather has a huge impact on trucking. For individuals worried about their daily commute to work, winter may seem like a big deal, but in reality it is next to nothing compared to the affect weather has on trucking companies. Winter weather is first and foremost a safety concern to trucking companies, but in reality it also costs them significant time and money.
Trucking companies take safety very seriously, especially in winter weather. The American Trucking Association (ATA) always wants to ensure the roads are safe. There are several ways to stay safe on the road this winter. Along with the ATA, some of the best professional truck drivers on the road recommend these tips for safe driving:
• Map your route
• Avoid extreme weather conditions if at all possible
• Remove ice and snow from your vehicle for greater visibility
• Slow down
• Prepare an emergency kit
For more helpful advice from people who know what they’re talking about, read the entire list of winter weather driving tips.
Road closures due to weather are a common issue during winter months. If a major interstate like Interstate 80, in and out of Pennsylvania, is shut down, it can cause freight delays to the entire northeast part of the U.S. An interstate closure like that can take days for trucking companies to make up for lost time.
No matter what time of year, time and money are both crucial factors in trucking—especially with new hours of service (HOS) in place. According to the United States Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT), weather-related delays cost trucking companies and commercial vehicle companies anywhere between 2.2 billion and 3.5 billion dollars annually. Not only does it lead to added expenses, winter also costs trucking companies and other commercial vehicle companies 32.6 billion vehicle hours due to weather-related congestion in 281 of the nation’s metropolitan areas.
When you think the winter weather has you stressed because you might miss an event or be late for work, think of what trucking companies go through, especially the truck drivers. Please share how winter weather has impacted your company by leaving your story in the comment section.