Have you ever considered how many terms and definitions there are in the trucking industry? The fact is, there are a ton of different terms and definitions that govern the trucking industry. That’s why we wanted to take a moment in today’s blog to define them for you. And get ready, because these will be just the first among many defining blog posts that introduce you to popular and widely used trucking terms.
Today, we will examine the various trucking stakeholders in the industry. Who are those that represent trucking stakeholders? We’ll provide each category and define it. So, without further delay, let’s dive right in!
Who Are Trucking Stakeholders?
Stakeholders in the trucking industry may include trucking companies, truck drivers, asset carriers, load-tending companies, over-the-road (OTR) truckers, shippers, receivers, freight brokers, regulatory agencies, fuel providers, truck manufacturers, and insurance providers, among others.
The top tier of trucking stakeholders represents the obvious usual suspects. Let’s dive right in.
Trucking Companies: Trucking companies are businesses that provide transportation services using trucks to move goods from one location to another. They may specialize in various types of cargo, such as dry goods, refrigerated goods, hazardous materials, or oversized freight. Trucking companies may operate on a local, regional, or national level and may have a fleet of trucks of various sizes and types to meet different shipping needs.
Truck Drivers: Truck drivers are individuals who operate commercial trucks to transport goods from one location to another. They are responsible for safely driving the truck and ensuring that the cargo is delivered on time and in good condition. Truck drivers may work for a trucking company, as an independent contractors, or as owner-operator with their own truck. They must have a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and comply with various regulations, such as limitations on driving hours and safety requirements.
Asset Carrier: An asset carrier in the trucking industry is a company that owns and operates its own fleet of trucks and equipment. These companies are responsible for the maintenance, repair, and operation of their own trucks, and they typically hire their own drivers to transport goods. Asset carriers may specialize in certain types of freight, such as refrigerated or hazardous materials, or they may offer a range of transportation services. They are sometimes referred to as “for-hire carriers” or “motor carriers.” Examples of asset carriers in the trucking industry include J.B. Hunt, Schneider National, and Swift Transportation. These companies provide transportation services to shippers and may also contract with freight brokers to find additional business.
Other Common Trucking Terms
Though the above represents the trucking stakeholders within our industry, there are many other common terms truckers and transportation officials must know. They include:
Load Tender: In the trucking industry, a load tender is a document or electronic message that is sent by a shipper or freight broker to a carrier, requesting the carrier to transport a specific shipment of goods. The load tender typically includes details about the origin and destination of the shipment, the type of cargo being transported, and the pickup and delivery dates and times. The carrier can review the load tender and decide whether to accept or reject the shipment based on factors such as the availability of equipment and drivers, the rate being offered, and the suitability of the cargo for their equipment. Once the carrier accepts the load tender, they are responsible for picking up and delivering the shipment in accordance with the terms and conditions outlined in the load tender.
OTR: Over-The-Road (OTR) Trucker: An over-the-road trucker is a professional truck driver who operates heavy-duty trucks to transport goods over long distances. These drivers may work for trucking companies, and freight carriers, or may be owner-operators who own and operate their own trucking business. Over-the-road truckers spend extended periods of time away from home and travel long distances, often crossing state lines or even traveling internationally. They typically transport a variety of cargo, including raw materials, finished goods, and other products. Over-the-road truckers are subject to strict regulations, including requirements for rest periods and maximum driving times, to ensure their safety and the safety of others on the road. These drivers play a critical role in the trucking industry, transporting goods that are essential to the economy and daily life.
Shippers: Shippers in the trucking industry are individuals or businesses that have goods or products that need to be transported from one location to another. They are the party that arranges for the shipment of the goods and is responsible for ensuring that the cargo is properly packaged and labeled for transport. Shippers may work directly with a trucking company or through a freight broker to arrange for the transportation of their goods. They may have specific requirements for the transportation of their cargo, such as delivery timelines, temperature control, or special handling instructions.
Receivers: Receivers in the trucking industry are individuals or businesses that receive goods or products that have been transported by a trucking company. They are the party that is responsible for accepting and unloading the cargo and may be the intended recipient of the goods. Receivers may be in a warehouse, distribution center, retail store, or any other location where the cargo is delivered. They are typically responsible for inspecting the goods to ensure they are in good condition and notifying the shipper or carrier of any damage or discrepancies. Receivers may also be responsible for storing, distributing, or further transporting the cargo after it has been unloaded from the truck.
Freight Brokers, Regulatory Bodies, and More
There are many other players in the trucking sector, including freight brokers and the feds. What terms govern these entities? They include:
Freight Brokers: Freight brokers in the trucking industry are intermediaries between shippers and trucking companies. They help to arrange the transportation of goods by matching shippers with carriers that have available trucking capacity to move the cargo. Freight brokers typically have a network of relationships with carriers, and they use this network to negotiate rates and find the best carrier for the shipment. They are responsible for ensuring that the carrier is properly licensed and insured, and for arranging the paperwork and logistics associated with the shipment. Freight brokers may work on a commission basis, receiving a percentage of the total transportation costs for the shipment.
The trucking industry in the United States is regulated by several federal and state agencies, including:
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA): regulates commercial motor vehicles and drivers, and enforces safety regulations related to hours of service, driver qualifications, and vehicle maintenance.
- Department of Transportation (DOT): oversees the FMCSA and sets national transportation policy.
- Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): regulates emissions from trucks and other vehicles.
- Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA): enforces safety and health regulations for workers in the trucking industry.
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA): sets safety standards for vehicles and investigates safety-related defects.
- State Departments of Transportation (DOT): regulate commercial vehicle weight and size limits, issue permits for oversized loads, and enforce safety regulations.
These agencies have various responsibilities to ensure the safety, efficiency, and environmental impact of the trucking industry.
Fuel Providers: Fuel providers to the trucking industry are companies that supply diesel and gasoline fuel to commercial trucking fleets. These fuel providers may operate their own retail fuel stations or supply fuel directly to trucking companies through bulk fuel delivery. Some of the major fuel providers to the trucking industry include oil and gas companies such as ExxonMobil, Chevron, and Shell, as well as independent fuel distributors such as Pilot Flying J, Love’s Travel Stops, and TA Petro. Fuel is a major expense for trucking companies, and fuel providers play an important role in ensuring the availability and affordability of fuel for the trucking industry.
OEMs and Insurers
There would be no trucking industry without truck manufacturers and insurance providers. So, who are they? Let’s dig deeper.
Truck Manufacturers: Truck manufacturers in the trucking industry are companies that design, build, and sell commercial trucks. Some of the major truck manufacturers in the industry include:
- Daimler Trucks North America: produces Freightliner and Western Star brand trucks.
- Volvo Group: produces Volvo and Mack brand trucks.
- PACCAR: produces Kenworth and Peterbilt brand trucks.
- Navistar International: produces International brand trucks.
- Hino Trucks: produces Hino brand trucks.
- Isuzu Commercial Truck of America: produces Isuzu brand trucks.
These manufacturers offer a range of trucks, including heavy-duty, medium-duty, and light-duty models, and may also produce specialized trucks for specific industries or purposes, such as refrigerated trucks or dump trucks. Truck manufacturers play a critical role in the trucking industry by providing reliable and efficient trucks for the transportation of goods.
Insurance providers in the trucking industry are companies that offer insurance coverage to trucking companies and their drivers. Some of the major types of insurance coverage provided to the trucking industry include:
- Auto liability insurance: covers damage to property or injuries to other drivers caused by a truck driver in an accident.
- Cargo insurance: covers damage to the cargo being transported by a truck in the event of an accident or theft.
- Physical damage insurance: covers damage to the truck or trailer, including collisions, fire, and theft.
- General liability insurance: covers other liabilities, such as slip and fall accidents or damage to property at a delivery location.
- Workers’ compensation insurance: covers injuries to trucking company employees on the job.
Some of the major insurance providers in the trucking industry include Progressive Commercial, Geico Commercial, Zurich North America, and Travelers. Insurance providers play an important role in managing the financial risk of the trucking industry and ensuring that trucking companies can continue to operate in the event of an accident or loss.
Wow, those are a lot of trucking terms. And yet, those represent just a fraction of the many trucking terms that exist in the wild. Stay tuned for future QuickTSI blogs, when we introduce you to even more interesting trucking terms.