Motor carriers. Motor carriers are a huge industry in the United States and many other developed countries.
In the US, about two-thirds of the freight is moved by truck, and there are over two million trucks on the road and over five million trailers. The majority of these companies are small businesses, sometimes owning just one truck. There are three basic forms of operation. The first one is truckload, or TL. And what that means is as a shipper, you rent out the whole truck whether you use it or not, and the truck goes from your origin to your destination directly. Another form is less than truckload, or LTL. In which you own a share of the truck for that shipment and you pay by weight. Now that truck will not necessarily go from origin to destination, it will go through a network of terminals. And lastly, there’s parcel freight, which is smaller shipments even than LTL, and it is much faster usually but also much more expensive. Unfortunately, trucking is not a very profitable business because the major form of competition is over price, everybody can get into the business fairly easily. Prices have come down in recent years and there’s just not that much money in it for people.