Trucking Cargo: Facts and Figures

Mar 16, 2023Blog, Supply Chain Management

As you might have guessed after perusing the title, we’ll be diving into trucking cargo. Last year, we discussed key facts and takeaways about shipping goods via air and ocean, but with this blog, we’ll switch gears and explore the world of transporting products via truck. So, without any more delay, let’s jump right in.

Common Types of Trucking Cargo

There are many different types of cargo that can be transported by trucks, depending on the needs of shippers and carriers.

Dry Goods: This is the most common type of cargo transported by trucks and includes a wide range of products, such as packaged foods, clothing, electronics, and more.

Temperature-controlled Goods: These are products that need to be kept at a specific temperature, such as perishable foods, pharmaceuticals, and certain chemicals.

Oversized or Heavy Goods: Some cargo is too large or heavy to be transported by regular trucks, so specialized equipment such as flatbeds, lowboys, or heavy haulers may be used.

Hazardous Materials: These are materials potentially dangerous to transport, such as flammable liquids, explosives, and toxic chemicals. Special precautions and certifications are required to transport hazardous items by truck.

Livestock: Trucks are often used to transport live animals—cattle, pigs, and poultry—from farms to processing facilities or markets.

Automobiles: Trucks are also used to transport cars, trucks, and other vehicles from factories to dealerships or between other locations.

Construction Materials: This includes building supplies such as lumber, cement, steel, and roofing materials.

Household Goods: Trucks are often used to transport household items during a move, like furniture, appliances, and personal belongings.

Important Trucking Cargo Figures

The trucking industry moves over 70% of all freight in the United States.

  •   The average weight of a truckload of freight is around 40,000 pounds.
  •   The value of freight transported by trucks in the U.S. surpasses $800 billion.
  •   The average length of haul for truckload shipments in the U.S. is around 500 miles.
  •   The most common type of cargo transported by trucks is dry goods, which make up over 80% of all trucking shipments.
  •   The trucking industry employs over 7,000,000 people in the U.S.
  •   The average age of a commercial truck in the U.S. is around nine years.
  •   Post 2020, there have been over 3.5 million Class 8 trucks (the largest type of commercial truck) registered in the U.S.

Why Ship Your Cargo Via Truck?

Trucking your cargo can be a reliable, flexible, cost-effective, and secure mode of transportation for a wide variety of goods and shipping needs.

Speed: Trucking can be a relatively fast mode of transportation, especially for short to medium distances. They can travel faster than trains and ships and can take direct routes to their destination without needing to stop at multiple ports or transfer points.

Flexibility: Trucks can access almost any location with a road network, including remote or hard-to-reach areas, making them a more flexible option than other modes of transportation and can also be used for both short- and long-haul shipments.

Cost: For shipments of moderate volume and distance, trucking can often be a cost-effective option compared to other modes of transportation, such as air or rail. Additionally, trucking allows for easier and quicker loading and unloading, reducing costs associated with handling fees.

Security: Unlike other modes of transportation, trucking provides shippers with end-to-end control and visibility over their cargo. This can help reduce the risk of loss, damage, or theft.

Reliability: Trucking schedules can be more predictable than air or rail, which can be subject to delays and disruptions. In addition, with trucking, cargo is typically loaded onto the vehicle and delivered directly to its final destination, reducing the likelihood of missed connections or misrouted shipments.

Shipping today can be tough to navigate the logistics of transporting your goods. We totally get it—congestion and various limitations can make things pretty tricky. But we got you! Our team is here to help make sure your goods get to their destination on time. Whether you want to chat with your TOC Logistics rep or reach out to us directly, we’re always here to assist. Don’t stress. Let us help you stay on track!


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