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A new White House report on the effect of automation on the job market makes startling predictions for the trucking industry.
The report finds that between 80% and 100% of “heavy and tractor trailer drivers” could lose their jobs to automated technology in the coming years. In other words, the study says that between 1,342,620 – 1,678,280 of truckers could be replaced by automation.
“Light” truck drivers or delivery truck drivers, on the other hand, are looking losing between 20% and 60% of their jobs.
The White House report also has potentially grim news about how much truckers can expect to earn in the post-automation era: “CEA analysis finds that a share of workers in a few isolated occupations—truck drivers and delivery service drivers, in particular— currently enjoy a wage premium over others in the labor market with the same level of educational attainment. They may not be able to regain this wage premium if displaced without intervention to help them re-skill.”
On a brighter note, the White House report does not offer any sort of definitive time line for the changes — meaning many truck drivers currently on the road could have already retired before this massive industry disruption comes to pass.
Another positive point? The report demonstrates that the White House is aware of the threat that automation presents for professional drivers and that it is starting to explore ways to deal with the potential job losses. It looks to increased efforts to educate and train displaced workers for new careers.
— Artur Meyster (@ArturMeyster) December 22, 2016