MTMC STARTS AUTOMATIC FUEL ADJUSTMENT SYSTEM FOR TRUCKERS, RAILROADS
The U.S. Military Traffic Management Command, the surface transportation logistics unit of the armed forces, initiated an automatic fuel adjustment for motor carriers and railroads, starting April 1.
MTMC’s Global Freight Management system will automatically show any fuel adjustments on the bills of lading. In the past, truckers and railroads incurring high diesel costs faced long delays in receiving MTMC fuel adjustments. During the past year, overland transporters took a hit when the price per gallon of diesel fuel ranged from $1.31 to $1.67 a gallon.
The idea to create a system which properly compensates truckers and railroads during times of soaring fuel costs was initiated at the National Defense Transportation Association’s committee meeting in New Orleans last August.
The new automatic fuel adjustment policy is the result of a joint MTMC-industry fuel board, which first met last November. The board agreed to use the Energy Department’s weekly fuel price as the governing national standard for diesel prices.
“The policy establishes a baseline fuel price — with a 10-cent per gallon margin,” said Ruth Tetreault, traffic management specialist for MTMC, based in Alexandria, Va. “For example, if we establish a fuel baseline of $1.30 and the price of fuel goes above $1.40 — they will be automatically entitled to a fuel adjustment.”
Industry representatives on the board praised MTMC’s initiative to develop the fuel adjustment system. They were the Household Goods Forwarders Association of America, Landstar, American Moving & Storage Association, American Trucking Associations, and Union Pacific Railroad.
“We are lucky the need is not as great as when we started, but the policy is now in place,” said Terry Head, president of the Household Goods Forwarders Association of America. “We will need it again.”
“We want fair compensation for the drivers of military cargoes,” said Col. Clark Hall, MTMC’s chief of staff. “We want to ensure they will be here in time of an emergency.”