Georgia Owner Operator Jobs
Although Georgia has 117,413 total miles of roads, only 460 miles are in the Interstate urban system. An additional 783 miles of roadways are in rural and smaller Interstates. While most freight travels on the Interstate system, the lack of multi-lane highways causes a great deal of congestion for the owner operator in Georgia as well as other truck drivers.
Most highways with at least six lanes are located in the greater Atlanta area. However, the top 12 locations in the state with the highest truck count are also in the Atlanta region. This concentration of truck traffic in Atlanta leads to difficult driving conditions and traffic delays, which costs the driver time and money. I-75, I-85 and I-20 in the Atlanta Metro are all highly congested, with sections of I-85 being the most congested roadway in the state. For the owner operator, idling in traffic burns fuel and causes delays in pickups and deliveries that can damage the driver’s reputation for reliability and punctuality.
Traffic slowdowns are at their worst during the morning and afternoon commute time. The congestion is especially bad during the afternoon commute. Unfortunately, the sites with the highest truck counts are all located along the most-congested routes.
In a report compiled by the state of Georgia, experts estimate that levels of trucking activity should be fully recovered to pre-recession levels by 2015. Modest annual growth in the industry is expected through 2050. With more stringent Hours-of-Service rules in effect, time spent stuck in traffic is a major concern.
The state is aware of the lack of multi-lane roadways and severe congestion along Atlanta interstates, and is working to address the issues. The Governor’s Road Improvement Program, first initiated in 1989, is an ongoing initiative to widen state highways to four lanes. With tight state budgets, road programs such as GRIP are not progressing as rapidly as originally hoped.
In the meantime, drivers can help themselves out by avoiding I-75 and I-85 during morning and afternoon commute times. While it is impossible to avoid central Atlanta during these times due to dispatching and scheduling, the driver can save a lot of fuel and frustration by staying off these interstates during rush hour if at all possible.