COMMON CARRIER OBLIGATIONS AND THE PROVISION OF MOTOR CARRIER SERVICE TO SMALL RURAL COMMUNITIES

The problem examined was whether the provision of freight service by motor common carriers is more consistent with profit maximizing behavior or what one would expect of firms subject to common carrier obligations and practicing cross-subsidization. While an unregulated firm is free to practice traffic selectivity, a common carrier must hold itself out to serve the general public. There are procedures for enforcing the duty to serve but whether enforcement is effective was determined by examining the behavior of the fifteen major regular route motor common carriers of general freight operating in the Inland Northwest--a region dominated by small rural communities. Time series and cross section data show that the study carriers are behaving more like profit maximizers. Community case studies revealed that, despite service failures particularly on the part of the larger study carriers, small communities are receiving adequate service. It was concluded that the common carrier system is not important to the viability of small communities in rural areas and thus the the common carrier-cross subsidy argument should not be viewed as an obstacle to trucking deregulation.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Errata sheet inserted.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Washington State University, Pullman

    Department of Economics
    Pullman, WA  United States  99163

    Department of Transportation

    Office of University Research, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • BREEN, D A
    • Allen, B J
  • Publication Date: 1979-7-15

Media Info

  • Pagination: 159 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00328373
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Technical Information Service
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Final Rpt.
  • Contract Numbers: DOT-RC-82022
  • Files: NTIS, TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Apr 15 1981 12:00AM