Shippers and Truckers Organize Blitz on Washington
Now is the time to stand up for trucking, says the National Shippers Strategic Transportation Council (NASSTRAC), a group that advocates freight issues on behalf of shippers.
NASSTRAC has organized a one-day fly-in on Capital Hill Febuary 1 where roughly a dozen shipper and trucking organizations will voice their disagreement with regulations they say will bind the trucking industry and raise shipping costs.
Dubbed "Stand Up for Trucking," the idea for the fly-in was born out of the hours of service battle with business groups, labor unions and safety advocates. The American Trucking Association (ATA) and NASSTRAC met back in September to lay the groundwork.
And they quickly found support from other groups, including the Transportation Intermediaries Association, National Private Truck Council, Coalition for Transportation Productivity, Truckload Carriers Conference, National Industrial Transportation League, Retail Industry Leaders Association, Cleaner Safer Trucking, Forest Resources Association, and the American Movers and Storage Association.
“Never before have the advocacy interests of both motor carriers and shippers dependent upon over-the-road trucking been more closely aligned,” said Mike Regan, chairman of shipper group NASSTRAC’s advocacy committee.
NASSTRAC, ATA, and participating associations agree want Congress to stay focused on safety while stopping burdensome laws and regulations that impede productivity and increase the delivered cost of goods — like the proposed changes to HOS rules.
Those rules are set to be released tomorrow by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
In addition to shipping costs, Everett said that "companies across America will suffer from significant decreases in efficient distribution and transportation. The recession, high fuel prices, roadway congestion, and a shortage of qualified drivers all have led to reduced capacity and increased transit times for trucking.
"That's why we believe that now, more than ever, there's a significant need to stand up for trucking."