Nearly a dozen well-known trucking companies, including YRC Worldwide, Con-Way and UPS, have been named in a lawsuit claiming that they colluded to fix shipping rates through fuel surcharges since 2003.
The federal suit, which is seeking class-action status, was filed by Farm Water Technological Services in the U.S. District Court for Southern California.
The suit names 11 less-than-truckload carriers, including other big names such as Arkansas Best and FedEx.
According to court documents, the suit claims the carriers used fuel costs as a pretext to impose “collusive fuel surcharges.”
The suit claims that the less-than-truckload industry is a heavily consolidated one, and that when fuel prices began to rise, the companies got together and began imposing fuel surcharges.
The suit also claims that the companies themselves have acknowledged that higher fuel prices have led to increased profits on the basis of fuel surcharges.