Intermodal Better than Bigger Trucks

Intermodal Better than Bigger Trucks

Copyright 2003, Traffic World, Inc.

I liked Graves' response, poo-poo'ing the Coalition Against Bigger Trucks poll that nine out of 10 Americans don't want bigger trucks on the highway ("Anti-truck, Intensely," March 10). He must think that the pollsters got it wrong and most Americans were actually saying something like, "I sure wish those trucks ahead, alongside and in my rear view mirror were a lot bigger; I'd feel a lot safer." Wonder what Bill (or his limo driver) thinks when he is out there in the traffic? We never hear this side of these issues!

If nine out of 10 drivers don't want bigger trucks (the truck drivers themselves might be a little iffy - bigger trucks could mean fewer drivers), then who really wants them, and why? The real long-term solution (and one fraught with difficulties) is greatly increased use of intermodal instead of long-haul trucks and eventually for intermediate distances, say, the 350-to-500-mile range, particularly in the crowded East where new or expanded highway construction is becoming less and less likely.

As a note of interest, A.H. Jewell's letter on this subject in the Aug. 4, 1997, Traffic World expressed the same concerns quite eloquently!

I got one e-mail response from a guy in a trucking company when you published my last comment. He took me to task for being a lackey of the railroads, mainly because he thought we were a third party; I disabused him of this and that ended it. We do all sorts of consulting work in the intermodal industry - but not that!

Jim Dalberg


The Tioga Group