Diesel surpasses $5/gallon national average

Updated Mar 17, 2022

Trucking news and briefs for Tuesday, March 15, 2022:

Diesel’s national average surpasses $5/gal for first time ever

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 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.

[Related: 'Sticker shock' at the pump: Diesel prices hit all-time high, and Biden bans Russian oil imports]

Trucking groups petition CARB for reprieve on final phase of emissions reg

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 Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, National Association of Small Trucking Companies, American Trucking Associations, Truckload Carriers Association, 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.

Pilot raises record $1.7M for American Heart Association

Pilot Company and its customers rallied together to raise $1,773,232 for the American Heart Association's "Life Is Why" campaign in February, which was the largest donation amount in the company’s six-year history of supporting the AHA.

In total, Pilot has now raised $6.8 million for the AHA.

"What an incredible turnout we had from guests and team members donating at our stores during American Heart Month," said Brian Ferguson, chief merchant at Pilot Company. "On behalf of our entire team, thank you to everyone who participated and helped make this the best year yet. It's an honor to continue supporting great organizations like the American Heart Association."

This year's fundraising initiatives included the sale of paper hearts for $1, $3 or $5, round-up purchases to the next dollar, online donations via its website and heart-themed eGift Cards at the more than 650 participating travel centers. The company also featured exclusive offers in the myRewards Plus app on healthier food and beverage items.

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