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An essential truckload.

Arkansas' Trucking Industry, Led by ABF And J.B. Hunt, Key Ingredient In Economy

The Arkansas trucking industry is essential to the health and well-being of the state's economy. Trucking plays a major role in supporting economic stability and growth by providing jobs, taxes and transportation services to the Arkansas business community.

How important are the 759 family-owned and corporate trucking firms in the state?

The Arkansas trucking industry employs nearly 70,000 people, generating an annual payroll of $1.7 billion.

One of every 11 Arkansas works for a trucking firm and receives employee wages that are 44 percent higher than the state average.

Arkansas truckers pay a significant share of taxes each year to maintain the roadways they use and for the development of new roads.

In 1992, the owner of a typical five-axle semi-trailer will pay $8,807 in state and federal highway user taxes. Of that total, $3,966 goes directly to the state.

State and local governments receive an additional $1,230 in sales and property taxes.

Nearly two-thirds of Arkansas' working men and women -- some 427,000 people -- are employed in truck-dependent industries.

Arkansas truckers support the agricultural, construction, manufacturing and trade industries by transporting more than 59 million tons of freight to and from markets across the nation. These shipments represent 75 percent of all goods and products moved into or out of the state.

National Highway Safety Administration statistics show that the fatal accident rate for medium and heavy trucks declined by 40 percent nationwide between 1979-89. Meanwhile, the miles traveled increased by 36 percent.

Safety improvement is primarily due to the adoption of new regulations and job requirements advocated by the American Trucking Associations and the Arkansas Motor Carriers Association.

Maverick Transportation Inc., headquartered in North Little Rock, recently won first place in the annual National Truck Safety Contest.

What is the economic condition of the Arkansas trucking industry in 1992?

Arkansas Business research revealed that the top Arkansas truckers are outperforming their national competition by two full percentage points.

The average operating ratio for the Arkansas Business Top 20 companies is 94.6 percent. The national average is 96.7 percent.

In short, there was a lot of movement on this year's list.

Only three companies stayed in the same position they held last year. ABF Freight System Inc. and J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. are Nos. 1 and 2, respectively, again this year. CCC Express Inc. remains No. 11.

Moving into the third position, Arkansas Freightways Corp. appears to be the largest revenue gainer. AF operating revenues for 1991 increased 38.9 percent from 1990.

Jones Truck Lines Inc. and Scheduled Truckways Inc. are no longer in business. Three companies are new to the rankings.
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Title Annotation:Arkansas Business Rankings; Arkansas' trucking industry
Author:Fincher, Carol
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:Sep 21, 1992
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