Companies are on the look out for good drivers.
That is what Warren Scott, a recruiter with Maverick Transportation, in Arkansas is saying.
Scott said there is a projected shortage of 150,000 drivers this year. The number is expected to grow to 200,000 by 2017.
“A lot of the older drivers are retiring and not enough younger drivers are going into truck driving,” Scott said.
The average age of a commerical truck driver is 48 years old and industry figures show 21 percent of drivers are 55 to 65 years old.
“Absolutely there is a shortage,” said Ford Boswell, spokesman for the Alabama Trucking Association. “As the baby boomers retire, the younger generation is not as enticed to being in a truck so much and away from the comforts of home.”
“But we’re trying to show the industry in a better light and one where you can have a wonderful career.”
Boswell said new regulations have also hurt the industry, including a set number of hours drivers can be on the road.
Truck driving is big business to the U.S. and the Alabama economy. In 2012, the trucking industry in Alabama provided 104,470 jobs, or one out of 14 in the state, according to the Alabama Trucking Association. Total trucking industry wages paid in Alabama in 2012 exceeded $4.6 billion, with an average trucking industry salary of $43,924.
So it is clear that this is industry that needs to make a big push towards growth as it enters the future.
We’d like to hear from you drivers on the road right now. How long have you been driving and how much longer do you see yourself going? Have you noticed decrease in the number of drivers out on the road and what steps need to be made to help the industry grow?