Things might finally be returning to normal, as an event in the trucking industry was canceled for a reason other than COVID-19.
The National Trucking Equipment Association (NTEA) has decided to cancel its 2021 Truck Product Conference. Usually at these events, industry leaders show off technological upgrades such as making the truck chassis slightly more fuel-efficient. Now, a problem has arisen in the trucking industry that cannot be ignored.
The trucking industry, nation, and world as a whole is facing a supply shortage. Resources such as rubber, copper, and in some places such as California, water, are facing much larger demand than supply to go around. Trucking manufacturers are too focused on fulfilling backlogs to focus on the latest and greatest technological improvements.
“Truck Product Conference is purposefully designed to connect chassis OEMs with equipment manufacturers and distributors for important technical insights to help the upfitting process,” said NTEA Board Chair and president of work truck solutions at Douglas Dynamics Inc Jon Sievert. “We feel that at this time this goal needs to be accomplished in a way that doesn’t take us away from our businesses given the current state of the industry.”
You could make the argument that the conference was canceled indirectly by the pandemic, as stay-at-home orders have reduced production and collection of essential materials required to make finished products, but this is not a problem that can simply be resolved by moving the event to be strictly online: there is a lack of tangible goods.
If you had scheduled to attend the event, the NTEA is giving away refunds automatically. If you had travel or lodging plans, those need to be canceled separately, with the odds of refunds being higher the sooner you cancel.
Hopefully this supply shortage ends soon; we are as excited to see the next generation of trucks as you are!
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