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TMC/FleetNet survey reveals varied roadside maintenance intervals

April 28, 2021
Fourth-quarter 2020 results show tank vertical experienced slight increase in roadside failures compared to Q3

American Trucking Associations’ Technology & Maintenance Council recently released the results of the council’s fourth-quarter 2020 TMC/FleetNet America Vertical Benchmarking Program, finding a wide disparity in the periods between unscheduled roadside maintenance among fleet types.

“Knowledge is power, and the information in our quarterly maintenance benchmarking survey provides TMC members with an important tool to keep their fleets up and running,” said Robert Braswell, TMC executive director. “The next step is using this information to share best practices to keep trucks on the road and out of the repair bay. Part of the power of TMC is maintenance leaders working together to make our industry even more efficient.”

During the fourth quarter, the average fleet operated 36,315 miles between unscheduled road repairs, which is largely in line with previous quarters. However, the frequency of unscheduled road repairs varied widely between the three verticals. Truckload carriers saw a 14% improvement over the third quarter, running 25,599 miles between breakdowns. The tank vertical experienced a slight increase in roadside failures compared to 3Q, running 19,983 miles between breakdowns. And the LTL vertical increased from 46,525 miles between breakdowns in the third quarter to 55,823 in the fourth quarter.

The data indicates that the maintenance practices of the best-in-class fleets in each vertical resulted in lower costs for those fleets. For example, the leading fleet in the tank vertical operated nearly double the miles between roadside breakdowns than the average for the tank vertical.

“The data tells us that if, for example, the truckload carriers running the average miles between breakdowns could reach best-in-class performance, they would increase their miles between breakdowns by 55%,” said Emily Hurst, manager of data and analytics at FleetNet America, “And that would result in overall lower costs.”

Understanding the frequency of roadside failures, and how a fleet’s experience compares to similar operations, can help maintenance leaders identify opportunities to improve their operations and reduce their maintenance expense.

The TMC/FleetNet Vertical Benchmarking Program is a benefit for TMC fleet members. In addition to the executive summary, which is available to TMC members, fleets that participate by sharing their data are provided an analytic tool that allows them to drill into their data, comparing it to the industry average.

The program is a strategic collaboration between TMC/ATA and FleetNet America and is open to TMC fleet executive level members and FleetNet customers. The analytics provided via the program will be cumulative and non-fleet specific.

For information about the benchmarking program, visit

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