How The Truck Driving Industry is Changing and Affecting Us All

Reading Time: 3 minutes

By USDR

The truck driving industry is a huge piece of America’s economy, and recently, there have been several factors changing the way it operates. From the extensive shortage that continues to affect the industry’s workforce, to salary increases and an overall reputation change that the industry plans to implement, one of our largest modes of transporting goods is making significant changes.

Corso Law Group works diligently with truck drivers and those in the trucking industry to help them find solutions when it comes to traffic violations, license issues and more. Our economy depends on trucks to deliver ten billion tons of essentially every commodity consumed, that’s 80 percent of all freight transported annually in the United States, according to the American Trucking Association. From a financial standpoint, $700.4 billion worth of goods are transported by truck in the U.S. alone.

Yet, truck drivers are often put in difficult situations by law enforcement. In recent years, requirements for commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) have become stricter, and truck drivers are cited more frequently.

However, it’s rare for many people outside of the trucking world to be well informed of the requirements. For example, if cited with a CDL ticket for even something minor, truckers could lose their license and job.

It’s very tough to secure a CDL and maintain ideal standing to secure the work truckers need. In addition, there are several developments being established in the industry, that current truck drivers do not agree with.

The government implemented a new rule this January which is set to change the way truck drivers record their hours. Before, all hours were recorded by hand, but a new rule announced by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration states that truck drivers must log their hours using the electronic logging device (ELD), which was recently established to help truck drivers combat fatigue.

Some truck drivers feel this device will do the opposite of what’s intended by allowing companies to force drivers to fulfill mileage requirements, even if they’re too tired.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, a group which fights for truck driver’s rights, doesn’t agree with the new rule, and is suing the Safety Administration in hopes of banning it. The association believes the rule is no more effective than recording hours manually, and the cost of the new technology to the trucking industry is not worth its service.

Truck drivers are also questioning how another new law will impact them when it comes to who else will be sharing the responsibility of operating massive machines on the roadways.

The new Transportation Bill signed into law will allow some 18 to 20 year-olds to drive big rigs across state lines. These vehicles are large and take great care to maintain and run properly, but the shortage of truck drivers has taken the industry by storm, forcing many to re-evaluate how old someone should be to become a truck driver.

With many truck drivers retiring or switching careers, the industry estimates it will hire 890,000 new drivers over the next ten years. The shortage has resulted in truck driver’s salaries increasing by approximately 12 percent due to low employment costs and an increase in demand for imported goods that must be transported by long-haul trucks.

According to Bob Costello, American Trucking Association’s Chief Economist, the expected increase in driver’s salaries will continue to rise as long as the shortage continues.  Long-haul truck driver salaries increasing by approximately 17 percent since 2013, rising to  $57,000.

Overall, the industry that keeps America moving will face significant changes this  year.
Listen to Christopher Corso’s full Price of Business segment here: https://youtu.be/sxCvz52nwwc

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.
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