Roads, Rail and Runways have been considered for years the top methods of shipping in America. But the fourth R has just stepped to the plate and pointed out that they want their chance to be a player too.
River transportation was the first to move large amounts of product in America. In fact just about every large and small city in America that is more than 100 years old is situated on a river or lake connected to a river.
The river transportation wants their part of the transportation funds being distributed by the FMCSA and rightly so. How does river shipping stack up to roadway transportation? Take this into consideration. To provide enough fuel to operate 2,500 automobiles for 1 year it takes 144 tanker trucks of fuel. On the river it only takes 1 barge, that's right just one.
So using the numbers just released by a NPR Radio report a riverboat pushing just 16 barges can carry the same amount of fuel as 2,304 tanker trucks. Using numbers like that it will be hard for LaHood to deny the Corp of Engineers the money they want to expand river facilities so that they too can transfer their shipments to the trucking industry for final local deliveries.
When you add rail and the river transportation together it is easy to see how the FMCSA can reach their goal of greatly reducing America's Over the Road trucking fleets to the small sizes they are predicting.