Cross-border truck traffic surged in April

Talk of a potential recession continues, and inflation has hit levels not seen since 1983, but the surge in cross-border freight continues.

Trucks moved US$35.6 billion of freight in both directions across the Canada-U.S. border this April, according to the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics. Another $44 billion was hauled by trucks across the U.S.-Mexico border. (All figures in US dollars.)

The vehicles were responsible for 58.9% of all trans-border freight by value.

cross-border truck traffic
(Illustration: U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics)

Ontario border crossings with Detroit and Port Huron, Mich., accounted for a respective $10 billion and $6.2 billion of the total. Mexico’s crossing at Laredo, Texas, remained the busiest land port overall, accounting for $19.6 billion in truck freight.

The top three commodities moved by trucks across the Canada, U.S. and Mexico borders included computers and parts ($14.9 billion), electrical machinery ($11.6 billion), and vehicles and parts ($10.8 billion).

Overall, $69.1 billion in freight traveled between Canada and the U.S. – up 31.2% over April 2021 – when including trucks, railways, aircraft, ships and pipelines. Oil and gas accounted for 99% of the goods moved by pipelines, and the value of that oil was up 64.9% over the same month last year.

Customs officials at the Canada-U.S. border processed 461,150 truck drivers in April 2022, up from 453,789 in April 2021, according to data from the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Canada and the U.S. have since January required truck drivers to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

North American cross-border freight totals April 2022
(Illustration: U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics)

John G. Smith is the editorial director of Newcom Media's trucking and supply chain publications -- including Today's Trucking, trucknews.com, TruckTech, Transport Routier, Inside Logistics, Waste & Recycling, and Road Today. The award-winning journalist has covered the trucking industry since 1995.


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