Volvo pushes for freight transportation solutions via new Web site

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Freight transportation leaders and stakeholders gathered to discuss delivering goods in a safe, efficient and environmentally friendly manner yesterday at the Moving the World conference held at the House of Sweden in Washington, D.C. The event was hosted by Volvo Trucks North America, Volvo Group North America, and the American Trucking Associations (ATA), along with the Embassy of Sweden.   

“The trucking industry faces considerable challenges as it strives to meet growing freight demand while operating on a highway system designed in the 1950s,” said Ron Huibers, senior vice-president of sales and marketing for Volvo Trucks North America. “The time is right for the US trucking industry and other stakeholders to take a critical and creative look at how we’re going to meet a growing population’s transport demands in the years and decades to come. It’s important not only to our industry, but to society as a whole, since nearly everything we touch and taste in our daily lives is at one point on a truck.”

Huibers spoke at the conference during a panel discussion on truck productivity. Also on the panel was John Woodrooffe, director of the transportation safety analysis division of the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) and John Runyan, head of the Coalition for Transportation Productivity.
“As an industry and as a country, we need to get a clear handle on the issues that affect truck productivity and get serious about possible solutions,” said Huibers.

“The Department of Transportation has estimated that the cost to the US economy from congestion alone – at seaports, airports, and on our highways – is as high as $200 billion per year.  At Volvo, we see our role as one of fostering dialogue and encouraging innovative solutions. Our sponsorship of this conference is just a beginning. The timing is particularly good as the federal government considers ways to fund our nation’s highway program, which could have a significant impact on available solutions moving forward.”
To increase awareness of the issues that affect truck productivity and explore possible solutions, Volvo Trucks North America launched a new Web site at the conference: The intended audience includes people in the transportation industry, state and federal government officials, academic researchers and the general public.  
The focal point of the new Web site is a series of videos that outline the challenges the US faces with hauling more and more freight. In the introductory video and five shorter clips, a group of experts weigh in on transportation infrastructure, highway safety, energy and the environment, public policy issues and freight transport efficiency. The site also contains links to online news, commentary, presentations and fact sheets covering a range of truck productivity topics.
“We want this new Web site to be a gathering place for people who are ready to address the challenges we face with freight transport in this country,” said Huibers. “The status quo is no longer an option – let’s get the conversation started so we can begin to implement appropriate productivity solutions.”

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