Trucking fleets experienced more frequent unscheduled roadside maintenance in the first quarter, leading to higher costs for many companies, according to data from the American Trucking Associations (ATA) and fleet repair and maintenance firm FleetNet, released today.
ATA’s Trucking & Maintenance Council (TMC) said its first-quarter TMC/FleetNet America Vertical Benchmarking program found an industry-wide increase in unscheduled maintenance, with fleets reporting double-digit decreases in the number of miles traveled between unscheduled repairs. Fleets averaged 29,506 miles of operation between unscheduled road repairs in the first quarter, down nearly 19% compared to the fourth quarter of 2020.
Truckload carriers averaged 21,856 miles between breakdowns, down 13% in miles from the previous quarter. LTL carriers averaged 44,380 miles in the first quarter, down from 54,556 in the final quarter of 2021. Tank trucks ran 17,420 miles between unscheduled maintenance, down from 19,905 miles in the previous quarter.
TMC/FleetNet analysts say following industry best-in-class performance can help increase the number of miles between unscheduled maintenance, which can help fleets reduce overall costs.
“The data tells us that if, for example, the truckload carriers running the average miles between breakdowns could reach best-in-class performance, they would increase their miles between breakdowns by 89%,” according to Emily Hurst, manager of data and analytics at FleetNet America. “And that would result in overall lower costs.”