Transportation costs represent a relatively small part of the cost of any consumer item and that the largest contributor to variability in transportation costs is the price of diesel fuel. The cost of the rule changes to the industry is the equivalent of an increase of less than $0.03 per gallon of diesel for the long-haul segment of the industry. The U.S. Department of Agriculture indicates that transportation represents only 2 to 6 percent of each food and beverage dollar. If, as FMCSA projects, transportation costs will increase by less than 0.25 percent, the increase in the price of each food item will be a very small fraction of a penny.
Impacts on consumers of increased freight transportation costs would be small for individual households, even for a rule that imposed substantial costs, because these costs would be spread among a wide range of goods, purchased by millions of households. Each billion dollars of increased costs, passed on to U.S. consumers in the 117.5 million households estimated for the year 2010 by the U.S. Bureau of the Census, would cost an average household less than $9 per year. This hours-of-service rule, with costs of $470 million annually, would have an impact of only about $4 per household per year.