Driver Shortage Creates Quandary for ...

Driver Shortage Creates Quandary for Trucking

There are 167 comments on the Layover.com story from Feb 6, 2006, titled Driver Shortage Creates Quandary for Trucking. In it, Layover.com reports that:

A conspicuous shortage of truck drivers is creating a Catch-22 of sorts for the trucking industry, according to recent comments by carrier executives.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Layover.com.

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Brian

AOL

#1 Jun 19, 2006
If these mega dwellar companys would pay there drivers for what they do, drivers spend endless free hours waiting at shippers and receivers for little or no pay, then the trucking companys expect the driver to do a 500 mile ltl frozen fry load and deliver the next day.

Can anyone sit here and tell me that America goes to work for free for the first 8 hours of there day everyday? a average truck drivers day is over 14 hrs long if you are lucky,I think all of this driver shortage bullshit has to do with getting the migrants to drive our trucks, for 12 cents a mile and live full time in the truck, a carriers wet dream i would bet the farm on that.

How would you like to spend 4 weeks on the road and get 3 days off it sucks and until these carriers start treating people like human beings they will always need to fill those empty trucks sitting along the fence.
Bee

United States

#2 Jun 21, 2006
I agree, until the companies decides to pay their drivers for what they truly do, the driver shortage is just going to increase.

With the baby boomers retiring in large numbers now, I think their expected shortage of 100,000 drivers is going to be wrong as well. I think it will be -much- higher.

This is one of the few industries that pay less, in real dollars, then the did in the late 70's. Real wages have gone up every where else, except for drivers.

I don't know if they changed the immigration laws how many immigrants would drive a truck, or at least drive a truck for long. Regular laborers make more money, work 40 to 50 hours per week and go home at the end of the day.

Until the large and small trucking companies wake up, or are willing to do something about the core problems in driving, they will never have enough drivers no matter how many illegals they can hire.
Dave-in DFW area

Dallas, TX

#3 Jul 16, 2006
The driver shortage is going to continue to grow, as the industry is not truly responding to the "disease", but simply treating the symptoms. The problems at the heart of the industry remain unaddressed. Pay, Hours of service, time off, and benefits are still not in the realm of mainstream American employment. Drivers still occupy one of the least desireable niches in bussiness. We work an industry that runs 24/7, nights, days, weekends, & holidays. Any bussiness that uses trucks is very restrictive on over-time for all employees, except the drivers. People think thatwe make alot of money, but divide it out by the hours worked, the long days, the missed family time, and it's not such a sweet deal.
Sam in ftwayne

United States

#4 Jul 17, 2006
If there was a real driver shortage, there would be a serious bidding war for our services. As long as I see companies bragging about paying $50,000 a year for drivers, then I have to conclude that there is no shortage. That figures out to be about $13.50 an hour and they will allow you to pay all of your road expenses. That ain't good money, people. You can make that in any factory or construction job (with time and a half for ot) and sleep in your own bed at night.
Phil

Marysville, WA

#5 Jul 20, 2006
I'm a local driver who was recently looking at making the jump to OTR. I did alot of research on many companies. After many hours of going over all the information, and talking things over with my wife, and a nice raise at my current job. I decided that if I'm going to be sitting someplace waiting to get loaded/unloaded, I damn well want to be paid for it. If I'm gonna work 60 hours a week, I'm gonna be paid for it. In the last two days I saw two different OTR driver's pull into our warehouse, and have to sit and wait till there appointment @ 1600. They had to sit there for 9 hours. Did they get paid for those 9 hours? I doubt it very much.
If the price,and the home time was right, I might like to do OTR someday. Right now, It's so not worth it.
otr

Fort Worth, TX

#6 Jul 22, 2006
I am going to school now and will be working for PAM.Never thought I will be a truck drive.I have a masters degree that pays me nothing.
TruckingSucks

AOL

#7 Aug 1, 2006
Trucking Career? Trucking Schools?
OOIDA
Thinking about a Trucking Career? I was a driver for 10 years and would not
recommend it. Long hours 12 to 14 hours a day ,low pay, living in a truck three to
six weeks at a time, stressful unhealthy life style. and being away from friends and
family. I created this web site to give you my experience in the trucking industry.
There is not a shortage of drivers, There is a shortage of drivers that want to drive
over the road. Why I refuse to drive today There are many reasons. Where do I
begin?
1)
They average driver donates 20 hours a week without pay. Example You get
unloaded in Houston TX It takes 6 hours. When you done unloading, You drive 50
miles to pick up your new load going to Atlanta GA. It takes 4 hours to load. You
just worked 11 hours that day and only got paid for 50 miles. This happens all the
time. Drivers do not get paid for sitting at the shippers and receivers. If you got paid
for sitting you could make an extra $10,000 a year.
2)
Most trucking companies pay drivers by using the house movers guide. These
miles are short 3% to 6% Some say up to 10%
It doesn't sound like much. If you drive 100,000 miles for the year you are driving
3,000 to 6,000 miles for free and not getting paid for all work you do.
3)
When I was driving OTR back in 1995. I averaged $100 a day after taxes and
expenses. You will make the same
Example
$1000 1 weeks pay
$200 Taxes
$100 expenses
I made $700 for the week at a hundred dollars a day. I can guarantee you will not
always make a $1,000 paycheck. I can also guarantee you will be working 12 to 14
hours a day.$100 + 12 hours a day is $8.33 hour.
4)
At the end of the year they will be allowing 100 Mexican motor carriers in to the
United States and they will be able to pull freight in the US.(Land Line magazine)
Special Report 7/2006
.
I wish I had this information back in 1995. If I did I would never have gone in to
trucking. If I was a student at a trucking school today,I would have a family
emergence and I wouldn't go back to class. Hoping that they can't bill me if I don't
have a CDL licenses. That's what I would do In closing id like to say Some drivers
love driving and love there career, most hate it. I was lucky I got out I would not
recommend trucking as a new career. Too much work and sacrifice for so little pay
Best of luck to you
Any comments or questions feel free to email me .[email protected]
LandLine
Magazine
Truckers Report
eTrucker.com
Email
reuben

Smyrna, GA

#8 Oct 16, 2006
must of the bokers are keeping a large percent of the money.to many carriers do the work for nothing
john

Tucson, AZ

#9 Oct 24, 2006
I find this interesting as I am considering a career in trucking. Can anyone tell me if you earn your cdl in one state, then move to another state, do you need to retake the test? I read "Tractor-trailer drivers must possess a CDL (commercial drivers license) from the state in which they live" from here www.truck-driver.net/jobs.html and was wondering about that as we may move if my wife gets a new job. thanks.
Bob

Pickford, MI

#10 Nov 1, 2006
I hate you
union yes

AOL

#11 Nov 8, 2006
Sounds like you guys need the Teamsters!!!
Lloyd

United States

#12 Nov 25, 2006
Drivers:

There is no shortage of CDL drivers. The driver pool is adequate to move the nationís freight. Most companies would disagree with this statement because they are only looking at their picture and not the big picture.

Many companies need more drivers to replace the oneís that have left and to build up excess drivers to increase their share of the available freight market. An empty truck (no driver) does not mean a driver shortage exist, even if every company has empty trucks. Each company simply wants a larger piece of the pie, or needs to hire replacements for the driver turnover (mostly caused by mistreating drivers.)

Would you walk by an office, see a few empty desks and declare a secretary shortage even though all the office work was being completed? Would you drive by a heavy equipment storage lot and declare a shortage of heavy equipment operators just because some equipment was sitting there idle? I would guess probably not, or not without first considering the actual supply and demand.

Then why does this misconception keep going on? Well, a projected shortage or a spot shortage definition might be a better explanation. If a driver shortage really exists, freight would start to back-up in factories and warehouses, then delivery dates would be extended and some commodities could spoil or miss sell dates. If the situation persists, freight prices would increase to reflect the heavier demand on the current supply. Then driver pay and benefits would also increase, this would bring back drivers that have left the industry for better jobs and intensify new driver efforts of schools and recruiters.

This (similar event in other occupations) happens all over America all the time. However, in most cases, a spot shortage exists and the jobs are temporarily filled with college student, retirees, illegal aliens, and an influx of legal aliens from poor countries. When these people pour in to fill a temporary or a spot shortage, they act as a buffer and cause the price of labor to stay on the floor. This situation in turn gives management a tool to manipulate the labor market, pass the cost on to the customer and pocket the results.

These cheap, quick-fix labor arrangements do not work for CDL drivers because they must pass a D.O.T. physical, drug screen, state CDL test, company driving test, and other requirements. All of this in turn takes a lot of time and all of these cost must be passed on to a customer who is not willing to pay extra.(Not willing to pay as long as the freight is being moved at the floor price.)

The transportation industry has no clout with the government even though it is one of the most essential elements of our free enterprise system. Our politicians are for sale, but the transportation industry cannot figure out how to throw their pennys into the Washington wishing well; and instead would holler the wolf is at the door, please feel sorry for me and make this situation what I want it to be. All the while they are building new corporate headquarter buildings, new driver management terminals and buying new trucks and trailers by the thousands. Go Figure.
who me

United States

#13 Dec 1, 2006
union yes wrote:
Sounds like you guys need the Teamsters!!!
Find Jimmy Hoffa and let's get started.
Working Student

Tuscaloosa, AL

#14 Dec 7, 2006
Speaking of the transporation industry, has anyone checked out http://www.ltcquickbid.com ? It's the internet's largest commercial marketplace for corporate freight and shipping needs. It's a neat site.
Clinum

Manteca, CA

#15 Dec 11, 2006
Just got my class A today. While, now it sounds like it is going to be something other then I thought. Are you really serious about the pay and hours. This can't be right, it just your perspective...............

“Ain't That A.”

Since: Dec 06

San Marcos, Texas.

#16 Jan 16, 2007
Clinum wrote:
Just got my class A today. While, now it sounds like it is going to be something other then I thought. Are you really serious about the pay and hours. This can't be right, it just your perspective..........
Well, how is it? Does $2.00 an hour sound like a lot of money???
Matt OWNER OPS UNION

Kansas City, KS

#17 Jan 20, 2007
Teamsters wouldnt work here because aint no two truck drivers can agree on anything, shouldnt be a truck out there running under $4.00/ mile and most of them are just the driver or few owner ops will ever see it most owner ops just want to make $5-600 a week just sell your truck and become a company driver and make a real check and quit chopping rates and competing with everyone else.
Call up any of the major carriers and pretend your a customer with a load,,, and possibly up to 30 loads a week see what kind of rate they give you,, i gaurentee there wont be one come in under $3.50/ mile.
I THINK A BUNCH OF US OWNER OPS OUGHTA BAN TOGETHER AND START THE BALL ROLLING HERE AND START RECRUITING OTHER OWNER OPS,, HAVE OUR OWN UNION,, I TAKE MY CUSTOMERS AND THROW THEM IN,, NEXT DRIVER THROWS IN HIS GOOD CUSTOMERS AND SO ON AND SO ON,, BEFORE YA KNOW IT YOU HAVE YOUR OWN LITTLE ORGANIZATION AND ALWAYS HAULING GOOD FREIGHT,, EVERY OWNER OP PAYS A WEEKLY FEE TO BE NEG,, THAT MONEY IS INVESTED AND THEN REINVESTED IN TRUCK STOPS,, SHOPS ETC,, SPANNING THE NATION SOMEDAY. IF YOUR A MEMBER OF THAT ORGINIZARION YOU GET PERKS FREE SHOWERS,, FREE COFFEE. THATS YOUR TRUCK STOP AND ANY VEHICLE ENTERING THE PROPERTY MUST BE A COMMERCIAL VEHICLE. IF YOUR TRUCK BREAKS DOWN THATS YOUR SHOP NONE OF THIS $90-110 AN HOUR LABOUR,, PAY COST FOR THE PARTS AND A SMALL HOURLY FEE TO HELP PAY TO KEEP TOP QUILITY MECHANICS ON HAND, IF YOUR NOT PART OF THE GROUP THEN YA PAY LIKE YOU WOULD PAY AT A NORMAL TRUCK STOP,,
IF WE HAD 200,000 OWNER OPS JOIN TOGETHER CAN YOU IMAGINE THE POSSIBILITIES,, HOW CHEAP FUEL AND PARTS AND EVERYTHING WOULD BE. IT IS POSSIBLE IT WONT HAPPEN OVERNIGHTBUT IM SURE IT CAN,, IT WOULD TAKE 10-15 PEOPLE WHO KNOW THE INDUSTRIE TO SIT DOWN AND AGREE ON THINGS THIS WOULD BE THE BOARD OF THE ORGINIZATION IF PEOPLE ARE INTERESTED PLEASE RESPOND WITH AN EMAIL OF YOUR IDEAS,, IF YOUR GOING TO RESPOND PLEASE HAVE BEEN AN OWNER OP FOR AT LEAST 10 YEARS,, TOGETHER WE CAN MAKE THINGS HAPPEN, IF I HAVE 100,000- 150,000 NAMES AGREEING ON THINGS I AINT SCARED TO SIT DOWN WITH THE USA AND CANADIAN GOVERNMENTS AND SAYING THIS IS THE WAY ITS GONNA BE,, I WILL ARGUE FOR THE PEOPLE IF I KNOW THERE GONNA BACK ME 100% DAMN RIGHT I WILL I AM DEVOTING THE REST OF MY LIFE TO CHANGING THIS INDUSTRIE,, KICK THE GOVERNMENT OUT OF TRUCKING AND HAVE A SELF GOVERNING BODY,, THE GOVERNMENT IS THE ONES WHO GOT INVOLVED AND RUINED THIS INDUSTRY,,, NOT TO SAY DRIVERS HAVNT BROUGHT ALOT OF IT ON THEMSELVES.. ANYWAY I WOULD BE INTERESTED IN HEARING WHAT OTHERS HAVE TO SAY ABOUT THIS IDEA PLEASE READ THIS ARTICLE AND THINK OF THE POSSIBILITIES IF WE ALL STICK TOGETHER,, EVERYONE OF US WOULD HAVE A MUCH BETTER LIFE.
PLEASE EMAIL COMMENTS, OPINIONS AND IDEAS TO [email protected]

“Ain't That A.”

Since: Dec 06

San Marcos, Texas.

#18 Jan 21, 2007
Well Matt, you got some strange ideas here. Let's go over a couple of them.

First of all, 3 million American truck drivers probably are not going to follow a Canadian around.

Second, Jimmy Hoffa got killed when he had similar ideas and power.

Third, these are not your good customers. You have it reversed, you are their customer by being a sub-contractor with no contractural rights to freight volume or prices.

Fourth, this is a free enterprise system and the government does not give a big rat's ass about what you and a bunch of dumb truck drivers want.

Fifth, if you could suceed you would be labeled a "cartel" and be hated by most people in the business.

The problems you complain about boil down to the fact that there are too many trucks and drivers on the market, and oversupply is driving prices down to the bottom and you don't want to work that cheap.

What you got right is that I quote, "aint no two truck drivers can agree on anything."

The rest of your post sucks hind tit in the rest of the real world.
starchild

Wilmington, NC

#19 Feb 7, 2007
Brian wrote:
If these mega dwellar companys would pay there drivers for what they do, drivers spend endless free hours waiting at shippers and receivers for little or no pay, then the trucking companys expect the driver to do a 500 mile ltl frozen fry load and deliver the next day.
Can anyone sit here and tell me that America goes to work for free for the first 8 hours of there day everyday? a average truck drivers day is over 14 hrs long if you are lucky,I think all of this driver shortage bullshit has to do with getting the migrants to drive our trucks, for 12 cents a mile and live full time in the truck, a carriers wet dream i would bet the farm on that.
How would you like to spend 4 weeks on the road and get 3 days off it sucks and until these carriers start treating people like human beings they will always need to fill those empty trucks sitting along the fence.
You are 100% correct! I would enourage drivers to detailed research on how things work in the the trucking industry today. There are stats and concrete evidence that prove that company drivers and owner operators are being used to cut the cost of operation for big companies. These companies have so many subtle methods of redirecting driver profits into their own pockets. So companies make millions of dollars with out even moving any freight. If you dont believe me, just purchase a truck and lease to one of these crooks. You will make a $1.11per mile with fuel surcharge. The going rate is $1.40 per mile. most companies will get $2.00per mile plus on a one way trip. You as the driver will b charged to use the fuel card for transactions. Hidden fees will apply. I can go on for days about how these companies do business. Dont take my word for it. Just do your financials and find out for yourself. There is truth in numbers

“Ain't That A.”

Since: Dec 06

San Marcos, Texas.

#20 Feb 12, 2007
starchild wrote:
<quoted text>You are 100% correct! I would enourage drivers to detailed research on how things work in the the trucking industry today. There are stats and concrete evidence that prove that company drivers and owner operators are being used to cut the cost of operation for big companies. These companies have so many subtle methods of redirecting driver profits into their own pockets. So companies make millions of dollars with out even moving any freight. If you dont believe me, just purchase a truck and lease to one of these crooks. You will make a $1.11per mile with fuel surcharge. The going rate is $1.40 per mile. most companies will get $2.00per mile plus on a one way trip. You as the driver will b charged to use the fuel card for transactions. Hidden fees will apply. I can go on for days about how these companies do business. Dont take my word for it. Just do your financials and find out for yourself. There is truth in numbers
Amazing huh? Budweiser pays drivers and trucks a total of $1.07 (On my last check) plus fuel s/c and they can afford a $2 and half million dollar Super Bowl commericial...and everyone in the free world already knows about the product...it's like stealing from hard working trucking and giving to easy money broadcast.

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