The “Drive Smart” pillar of Team Run Smart is the one that excites me the most.  This area of focus affects fuel, truck and business directly without costing a dime and anyone can start saving immediately. I’m in the automobile transport business which doesn’t allow for all of those fancy   aerodynamics that van trailers can use.  In fact, just about every modification that’s recommended for fuel economy cannot be implemented in my operation.  Therefore, I focus on higher revenue loads and driving smarter to stay competitive.

 There was a recent study where two drivers drove their trucks for 30 days, then swapped trucks for the next 30 days.  During the period, fuel mileage data was meticulously recorded.  The trucks and loads were nearly identical as well as the routes which gives even more credibility to the study.  “Driver A” obtained superior fuel economy in both trucks over “Driver B”; in fact it was a 20% increase.  In a 125K mile a year operation, the savings would be around $16,000, just for adjusting driving habits.  The savings in fuel isn’t the only benefit.  Tire wear, brake components and I suspect everything else will have its life cycle extended when operated using the information found in the “Drive Smart” section of the website. 

Also as a student of safety, I’ve watched almost 2 million miles go past my windshield. With that in mind, I contend that most crashes are preventable. It’s imperative to safety and a successful business that we avoid all preventable crashes and reduce the risk for non-preventable.  The Team Run Smart community has ample information to equip the driver with the knowledge they need to help reduce their risk of crashes.  Some recent articles include tips on driving in fog, nighttime operation, using navigational equipment more effectively, quickly finding roadside service and even state by state crash data to let users know the likelihood of a deer strike. 

As you can see, the “Drive Smart” pillar encompasses quite a bit and can add significantly to an owner-operator’s bottom line without costing anything.  That’s the best part; there’s no expensive equipment to buy and you don’t have to drive a year before you start seeing the savings.

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Joey Slaughter

Joey Slaughter is the owner of Blue Ridge Transport, LLC. Joey has been in the trucking industry since 1992.

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One of the biggest parts of my drive smart program is avoiding rush hours.

September 05, 2013 6:52:35 AM