WINNIPEG, MB – Fuel prices are rising, but they're rising at different rates in different parts of the country, and the Manitoba Trucking Association (MTA) wants the industry to do a better job of explaining those differences.
The MTA is urging trucking companies and the trucking industry as a whole to take the time and inform shippers about the reasons behind the price changes.
For example, it notes that prices in Western Canada were higher in recent months due to local geographic factors—specifically a Shell plant shutdown in Edmonton, Suncor equipment failure in Fort McMurray, and a power loss incident in Edmonton.
The MTA said doing a better job of educating customers is necessary since fuel surcharges often don't reflect the rates trucking companies should be receiving, especially when the surcharges are calculated using a program based on the FCA (Freight Carrier’s Association) index—a model built only on retail diesel prices drawn from Ontario and Quebec.
The association encourages its members to explain the situation to carriers as part of the process of negotiating contracts that include temporary measures to compensate for the price differences.
The MTA also suggests the industry warn its clients that fuel surcharge rates are likely to increase in the future.