Diesel and Truck Driver Shortages Are Only the Latest in a “Highly Inefficient Transportation System”

The trucking industry is under consistent pressure from multiple fronts. On one end, news continues to spiral about a looming diesel shortage as prices remain high and U.S. diesel supplies reach their lowest since 2008, sparking panic and debate about when the U.S. would “run out” of diesel. On the other end, the trucking industry is still in desperate need of labor; the ATA’s most recent October report on truck driver shortages places projections at the “second highest level on record after 81,258 in 2021.”

Can these issues be viewed in a bubble, though, even just within the context of issues facing truckers? And do these issues speak to a larger deficiency that’s been plaguing the trucking industry for years? Myron Manuirirangi, the founder of Truckonomics, seems to think so. A long-time trucker himself, Manuirirangi says it’s time to give players in the larger transportation and logistics industry a wake-up call. Diesel shortages and truck driver shortages are only an update to existing problems with transportation industry operations, ones that have been on decision-makers radars for far too long.

Myron’s Thoughts

“My take on the looming diesel shortage and its compounding effect on an already worsening driver shortage and supply chain blockage? First, the diesel shortage is overstated. As I understand inventory supply is lower than normal, giving 25 days of diesel versus 35 to 40 days, which to me means there is no imminent supply threat.

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