The current capacity crunch has only continued into October 2020.
LTL networks are extremely stressed as carriers work to reduce daily shipment counts and manage the overwhelming demand. One of the greatest problems currently facing LTL carriers are shippers who are placing extra freight in their trailers which has not been properly dispatched to them in advance. This "extra freight" is usually a great thing for an LTL carrier, but in today's environment can cripple a carrier's pickup operation as that space was already allocated for later stops along the route, which in turn causes missed pickups for other shippers. This is a serious challenge that LTL carriers are attempting to determine how to overcome.
On the truckload side, the national average for dry van rates officially set a new record high in the month of September, hitting $2.38 per mile, which was 6 cents higher than the previous record set in June of 2018. Shippers continue to rely more and more on the spot truckload market due to continuing spike in demand, which only continues to raise overall rates.
Some of the most recent notable events in the freight industry were as follows:
Continued Freight Hotspots: Los Angeles CA & Surrounding Areas (by far the tightest market in the country), Eastern PA, Pacific Northwest, Dallas TX, Denver CO, Atlanta GA, Chicago IL
Additional Carrier Restrictions: LTL carriers continue to publish more and more restrictions about the type of freight and the lanes they are willing to handle in today's extremely tight freight market. Some recent examples of additional restrictions are:
Ward Trucking temporarily freezing their inbound capacity on General LTL Pricing programs this week into their Baltimore MD facility, due to an extreme backlog of inbound freight
Many LTL Carriers are working to shed business in the southern CA area, specifically Los Angeles and surrounding cities, due to extreme demand and backlogs of freight. This area is by far the worst area in the country for shipment delays. Several carriers have reported being 100+ trailers behind on working the freight in these terminals, where freight is sitting for multiple days to be unloaded, cross docked, and sent along within their networks. Same-day pickups in these affected areas have a much higher risk of being missed, so it is critical that all pickups are dispatched to TLI as soon as they become available, preferably a day in advance
Rail / Intermodal Delays are back: Delays on intermodal shipments have continued to worsen, as the railroads are extremely busy like all other modes of transportation providers. Transit times are being extended; often multiple days compared to the norm. To even secure intermodal capacity, shipments must be booked at least a few days in advance, as same-day intermodal bookings are simply not available in most markets currently. Missed intermodal pickups have also increased, where providers do not have the container or trailer capacity to make planned pickups on their original day and pickups must be pushed out until the following business day
Your Team at Translogistics,