Report examines weather impacts on freight by region

Conditions causing delayed speeds cost the industry $3.8M annually

Posted July 22, 2016

A recent project by the Federal Highway Administration follows up on a study completed for the agency in 2012 that provided a national estimate of weather-related delay affecting the trucking industry. The initial estimate indicated that weather-related delay costs the industry $8 billion to $9 billion annually.

The follow up study is a more detailed assessment of the impacts of adverse weather on freight movement in 13 diverse geographic regions, including both urban and rural corridors. The analysis presented in the report indicates that, overall, weather events have a significant negative impact on traffic speeds — and, therefore, the freight industry — when analyzed at the regional level.

In the report's study area, which focuses solely on a limited set of major highways, decreased traffic speeds due to weather events are estimated to cost the freight industry $3.8 million per year. The study found that ice, snow, fog, heavy rain, wind, and extreme temperature events were the most correlated with reduced traffic speeds, with the largest decreases occurring during the first hour of storms. Adverse weather was shown to have a greater correlation with decreased traffic speeds during peak hours.


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