Fleet Management

Trucking Adds to 10.2% Gain in U.S.-NAFTA Freight Movements

August 28, 2014

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Percent change in value of U.S.-NAFTA freight flows by mode:  June 2013 - June 2014. Credit: U.S. DOT
Percent change in value of U.S.-NAFTA freight flows by mode:  June 2013 - June 2014. Credit: U.S. DOT

U.S.-NAFTA freight totaled $103 billion in June as all five major transportation modes carried more cargo by value than during June 2013, according to new U.S. Transportation Department figures.

Of the 10.2% increase, the biggest gain so far this year, truck freight contributed the most, $4.4 billion, followed by pipeline, $2.1 billion.

The trucking increase was predominately due to an increase in the value of U.S.-Mexico truck freight, which was 64.8% of the total trucking increase, according to the department.

Trucks carry three-fifths of U.S.-NAFTA freight and are the most heavily utilized mode for moving goods to and from both U.S.-NAFTA partners, Canada and Mexico. They carried 59.5% of U.S.-NAFTA freight in June 2014, accounting for $29.8 billion of imports and $31.4 billion of exports.  

Rail remained the second largest mode, moving 15% of all U.S.-NAFTA freight, followed by vessel at 8.9%, pipeline at 8%, and air at 3.8%. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 82.4% of the total U.S.-NAFTA freight flows.

U.S.-Canada Freight

During June the value of U.S.-Canada freight by pipeline increased the most of any mode, compared to the same time a year earlier, growing 35.1% Freight by vessel increased by 24.7%, air by 9.5%, truck by 5.3% and rail by 1.4%.

Trucks carried 53.7% of the $57.9 billion of freight to and from Canada, followed by rail at 15.5%, pipeline at 13.3%, vessel at 6.2% and air at 4.5%. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 82.5% of the total U.S.-Canada freight flows.

The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Canada was mineral fuels, of which, 59.8% moved by pipeline.

U.S.-Mexico Freight

The value of U.S.-Mexico freight by pipeline increased the most of any mode in June compared to the same time in 2013, growing 36.9%, due to an increase in mineral fuels exports, although pipeline remained the smallest of the major modes. Freight with Mexico by vessel rose 16.1%, followed by truck at 10.6%, rail at 9.2% and air at 1.2% 

Trucks carried 66.9% of the $45.1 billion of freight to and from Mexico, followed by rail at 14.3%, vessel at 12.3%, air at 2.9% and pipeline at 1.1%. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 82.2% of the total U.S.-Mexico freight flows.

The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Mexico in June was electrical machinery, of which, 91.5% moved by trucks.

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