As of 2019, there is now a great shortage of truck drivers across the USA. This means that due to the shortage, there is now an increased cost of shipping freight and it is causing trucking companies a lot of problems in recruiting new staff. Because of the inherent shortage of suitably qualified truck drivers, trucking companies have had to take drastic action by hiring drivers who don’t really have much experience at all, which is a big danger to safety, according to Greg Baumgartner, who is a Houston Truck Accident Lawyer.
Why the Shortage?
There are many reasons for this truck driver shortage. The main reason in my opinion is that the salary of a truck driver is low and many people will not be able to handle the lack of a family or social life. This subsequently means that the new generation of truck drivers are not applying, as they don’t want their social life to be interrupted or reduced.
In recent times, there has been a slight increase in pay for truck drivers, as well as bonuses, but the average salary for truck drivers is still low compared to other comparable jobs.
Recently, you may have noticed that there has been a new bill introduced to try and reduce the age of drivers being able to drive across state lines driving lorries with a CDL. Many like myself believe that this new bill is incredibly short sighted. It seems to me that it will not lead to a rise in the numbers of truck drivers being hired, but it will have a negative impact on safety.
Why Experience Matters in Trucking
There is a rule of thumb that states that as the age of the truck driver increases, the level of safety goes up to, which then results in less accidents occurring with more experienced drivers. This is the same with all methods of transport, not just trucks. There is a clear correlation between young and inexperienced drivers being behind the wheel when an accident occurs.
Because of the number of fatal 18-wheeler accidents in Texas, I believe that lowering the legal age of a long-haul driver to below 21 will have very little impact on the number of truck drivers. But, it will play a big role in reducing the safety of our highways. The only clear way to attract new trucks drivers to the profession is to pay higher wages and offer more benefits.
For more information, check out https://www.texas-truckaccidentlawyer.com/blog/why-reducing-the-age-of-cdl-drivers-is-a-bad-idea/.