DOT: Freight transportation services up

Indicators suggest transportation companies are moving more freight, meaning more businesses may need to employ the use of route optimization software to ensure they're making deliveries on schedule and with minimal miles and fuel use. Newly released data from the United States Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics' Freight Transportation Services Index (TSI) revealed freight shipments carried by the for-hire transportation industry were on the rise in February. The index takes into account month-to-month changes in freight shipments by both mode of transportation and ton-miles and compiles the data into one monthly index.

Improvement seen in many areas 
Shippers carried 1.2 percent more freight in February than they did in January, marking the fourth consecutive month of gains. February's index reached 113.9, a significant 20.1 percent gain when compared to the severe low experienced during the height of the recession in April 2009. This is the highest level the index has seen since December 2011, indicating the industry is experiencing a turnaround after the economic recession devastated many sectors and significantly slowed growth for many companies.

Year-over-year numbers were also on the rise, hinting that the industry is faring much better this year than it was in 2012. February's freight shipment numbers were up 2.7 percent when compared to those seen in February 2012, and January's year-over-year numbers were also higher. Longer-term figures indicate the industry is well on its way to a full recovery and is performing strongly; freight shipments in February were up more than 2 percent over five years and gained 10 percent when compared to the numbers seen in February 2003. 

For flexibility and the best operational deployment, transportation companies may choose to implement software to build efficient routing and scheduling processes to accommodate more freight.