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June 2008

The Evolution of Private Fleets

Each month NPTC President and CEO Gary Petty writes a column in Fleet Owner magazine that focuses on the individuals, companies, best practices, and resources that make private trucking the force that it is in the American economy. Reaching more than 100,000 subscribers, three-quarters of whom are private fleet professionals, this column provides an excellent forum to communicate the value of the private fleet. Click here to view the archive.

Gary Petty | | Private Fleet Editor for FleetOwner Magazine
Gary Petty has more than 30 years of experience as CEO of national trade associations in the trucking industry. He has been the president and CEO of the National Private Truck Council since 2001.

The Evolution of the Private Fleet

For the first time in more than two decades, the National Private TruckCouncil has published an up-to-date compilation of private fleets, thestory of corporate trucking's $300 billion-a-year market and thelargest sector in the trucking industry. Called America's PrivateFleets, the publication is available free as a download from theCouncil's web site at

The main topics covered are a chronology of transportationmilestones over more than a hundred years affecting, or of interest to,private fleets; an overview of government regulations, court decisions,public work projects, and trade associations which have impactedprivate fleets — especially since the advent of federal truckingregulation in the l930s; and a statistical profile of how predominantprivate fleets are in the nation's total logistics cost of $1.3trillion (as of 2007).

Also featured are chapters on the world-classservice which private fleets provide; the fundamentals of running asuccessful private fleet; and the importance of having a seasoned,well-trained professional management team in place. Additional focus isgiven to the correlation between technology and improvements.

America's Private Fleets offers a strategicperspective of corporate trucking in the United States, its story, itsnumbers, technology and people. Highlighted are success stories andexamples of best practices which typify many private fleets. Somebasics of private trucking are outlined as well as some of the moreesoteric methods used to gain optimizations, cut costs, and help runthe most efficient commercial truck fleets in the world.

Important underlying fundamentals are noted,such as sustained commitment from corporate upper management plushaving a first-class team of trained and experienced professionalmanagers. We emphasize how experience shows that virtually allsuccessful private fleets have both long-term corporate support fortheir business model and also top professionals on board — from driversto transportation directors — who consistently meet the highest, mostdemanding standards of service.

We spotlight the rising class of private fleetmanagers who are wearing more hats within the corporation than everbefore. Further noted is the critical role the NPTC plays in helpingbuild and sustain this new class of professional through its CertifiedTransportation Professional® program, its PrivateFleet Management Institute, National Safety Conference, AnnualEducation Management Conference, webcast training series, and dozens ofother Council programs designed to replenish the knowledge andinformation necessary to stay “cutting-edge.”

America's Private Fleets concludes thatregardless of the challenges confronting today's professionals, theycontinue to unleash innovative new strategies to enhance their valueproposition.

This publication is being distributed tothousands of CEOs of companies that use transportation services, tohundreds of national trade association leaders, and to all nationalmedia outlets. America's Private Fleets is published as a service toNPTC member companies in order to help reinforce the values andbenefits typically found in the modern private fleet operation.

But it also has a broader purpose, namely, totell the private fleet story to a wider audience that may not be awareof the history, importance and advantages that private fleets bring toU.S. corporations and the nation's economy in general.

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