Pacific Northwest Freight

Freight rates in the pacific northwest have always been an up and down thing, mostly down. Getting a good enough rate per mile to even pay for fuel and have a little left over for the house is a good thing. I have had some trouble with this the past two weeks. I just did a round trip from Seattle area to New Mexico and back, the rates were ok, but not upper level.

The loads out of here seem to all be heavy at 47,000 to 48,000 and above. I can only scale 46,000 with full tanks. The cheap freight is not that easy to haul, less room for fuel costs on the bottom line, and you must follow routing to keep out of route miles to a bare minimum. If you have regular places that you book loads with, keep a notebook of all of your past loads, particularly in a difficult freight area such as this.

The season is coming for freight to slow down for flatbed, I hope it does not get much worse than it already is. I just took a load of lumber that was not as bad on rate as some of these types of loads, it will pay the bills and get me out of here. I see where Texas freight is holding well, we saw a downturn last winter from a normally good area.

The fuel prices in Washington state are always bad, I paid $3.66 a gallon just to get out of there. The tax rate there is ridiculous. Fuel price in Salt Lake City as of today $3.08 at Sapp Brothers truck stop there. I have been watching where I fuel and doing the best I can to save money on my fuel card, even though I get fuel tax credits that come on my settlements each week, I need the operation cash flow now. So, doing the best I can to plan my trip and where I fuel and what state I fuel in factors a lot in how my bottom line will be at the end of a run.

This past month has been bad for repair costs, I have to watch out how much I draw to eat. I end up eating from my truck stock of food more often when I run low and have to foot the $4000.00 worth of repair bills I have had in the last 30 days. It has been the same for years, most owner ops will forgo eating fancy and other things of luxury to pay for that part. If we don’t run down the road, we don’t pay the bills. It’s the bottom line for all owner ops out here.

Good luck to those of you who own your own truck and stay safe.

Jim

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