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Overdrive Staff | September 01, 2011

New regs will increase truck cost

The first-ever regulation for truck fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions is expected to cut diesel use by 4 gallons per 100 miles traveled by the time 2018 models are sold.

New trucks are expected to cost $6,220 more because of the rule.

New truck fuel efficiency rules will cut fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions beginning with 2014 models.

President Obama announced the new standard would yield a total fuel savings of $73,000 over a truck’s life. Heavy-duty trucks should expect a 20 percent reduction in fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions by model year 2018 under a new Heavy-Duty National Program.

Many organizations applauded the development, but the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association criticized it, saying there are cheaper ways to achieve the same goals.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration describes the agencies’ standards for 2017 models in nine sub-categories of combination tractors based on weight, cab type and roof height. Class 7 and 8 day cabs and Class 8 sleepers should show fuel savings of between 9 percent and 23 percent more than 2010 standards.

A Class 8 sleeper with a low, medium or high roof would have a respective fuel consumption standard of 6.3, 6.8 or 7 gallons per 1,000-ton-mile.

The EPA’s final greenhouse gas emission standards under the Clean Air Act will begin with the 2014 model year. NHTSA’s final fuel consumption standards under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 will be voluntary in model years 2014 and 2015, but mandatory for most categories beginning model year 2016.

OOIDA said the new standard had “ignored input from small-business trucking (and) overlooks less expensive options to achieve” reduced emissions and will result in higher truck costs.

The priority should have been driver training, citing a National Academy of Sciences report that driver behavior can account for 35 percent of fuel economy, said Joe Rajkovacz, OOIDA director of regulatory affairs.

The American Trucking Associations said its members “have been pushing for the setting of fuel efficiency standards for some time.”

— Staff reports and Jill Dunn



Owner-operator pay expected to rise 4 to 6 cents per mile

Over the next 12 months, owner-operator pay will rise 4 to 6 cents a mile and company driver pay 3 to 5 cents a mile as carriers compete for drivers, forecast pay specialist Gordon Klemp Aug. 15 at an online seminar.

The lower end of those ranges will occur even if the national economy continues in the doldrums, while the higher numbers will be achieved if manufacturing improves, says Klemp, National Transportation Institute president.

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