November 21, 2016 4:00 PM, EST
Diesel Falls 2.2¢ to $2.421

The U.S. average retail price of diesel fell 2.2 cents to $2.421 a gallon, according to the Department of Energy, as crude oil prices crept higher.

The national diesel average is 2.4 cents less than it was a year ago, when the price was $2.445, DOE said after its Nov. 21 survey of fueling stations.

Average diesel prices were lower in all DOE regions.

Also, crude oil futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange closed Nov. 21 at $47.49 per barrel, compared with $51.60 on Oct. 19.

Also, the U.S. regular gasoline average price dropped 2.9 cents to $2.155 a gallon, 6.1 cents higher than a year ago, DOE’s Energy Information Administration said.

The average price of gasoline was down in all DOE regions except the Midwest, where it rose by 2 cents.

Even with lower diesel prices, fuel-saving strategies still make sense, Dale Newkirk, founder and vice president of operations at Troublefree Transportation, told Transport Topics.

“We always need to be conscious that what goes down always will come back up,” he said.

A key element of managing fuel costs for his Butler, Missouri-based truckload carrier, he said, is SmartTruck’s system of aerodynamic components that attach to the trailers.

“The good thing about this system is it requires no driver interaction,” Newkirk said, and it generates an 8-10% improvement in fuel mileage, which saves about 1,000 gallons of fuel per truck per year. His fleet consists of eight tractors and 15 trailers, he said.

The SmartTruck Premier Aero System components he uses capture air and direct it below the suspension, as well as down into the wake. SmartTruck is based in Greenville, South Carolina.