Don’t blame truckers for rising costs - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

3/28/08 - Grain Valley, MO

Don’t blame truckers for rising costs

News Release:

The rising costs of food and other goods caused by diesel fuel price hikes should not be laid at the feet of independent truckers.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) wants to emphasize to consumers that often shippers pay higher amounts for shipping when fuel prices are high, but that money doesn't always trickle down to the person actually paying for the fuel.

"It's a stoppage in the flow of transactions creating a heart attack in the system," said Executive Vice President of OOIDA, Todd Spencer. "It's an exploitation of shippers, truckers and, ultimately, consumers."

OOIDA would like Congress to enact legislation mandating 100 percent pass through of fuel surcharges and full transparency in those transactions.

"Lawmakers need to know what's going on in trucking, how devastating this record hike in fuel prices is for 90 percent of the nation's fleet," added Spencer.

Recently, the Association has had a number of members express frustration in dealing with the volatile rises in diesel prices, some to the point of wanting to participate in rumored shut downs called for by various individual truckers.

However, OOIDA does not call upon its members to participate in shut downs or strikes because it is a trade association, not a union.

"We do not tell our members what to do, instead, they inform us of what they ARE doing and we support their decisions," said Spencer.

The association does not know how many of its members will participate.

"There is a disproportionate burden being placed on small business owners who are truck drivers because they depend upon diesel to run their businesses," said Spencer. "If diesel is the lifeblood of ground transportation, then truckers are the heart. And many are in need of life support."

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is the national trade association representing the interests of small-business trucking professionals and professional truck drivers. The Association currently has more than 161,000 members nationwide. OOIDA was established in 1973 and is headquartered in the greater Kansas City, MO, area.

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