Truck Driver Shortage in Texas to affect Owner Operator and Bobtail Insurance in the State
According to the American Trucking Association, the commercial truck driving industry currently has a shortage of 35,000 drivers.
By the year 2020, the situation will become dramatically worse, with a shortage of 240,000 drivers predicted. Why? Because of “flat wages,” increased government regulations on the industry, imminent retirements and changes in public opinion regarding truck driving as a profession.
When one becomes aware of the fact that 70% of freight tonnage in the United States gets transported by trucks, the dire nature of this situation becomes all the more clear. With 80% of carriers having experienced a loss in productivity recently, solutions are essential, especially with many smaller owner/operator firms going out of business because of decreased profits.
Fortunately, different fixes are already in the works. One major commercial trucking company has recently stated it will work on improving conditions for drivers, as well as wages. Another proposed solution is revising trips, or changing drivers partway, so that each owner/operator gets to spend more time at home, and less time on the road without pay because of regulated rest periods.
Yet another proposal deals with replacing drivers who retire. With less young people pursuing a career in truck driving, some have suggested applying more rigorous standards to training, so that insurance companies will be able to insure younger drivers. Currently, rates for drivers under the age of 23 are so high that companies are reluctant to hire them.
Perhaps the best way to revise public opinion would be to make the public aware of just how essential truck driving is as an occupation. An owner/operator shortage will eventually lead to higher costs, not just for stores, but for the consumers who shop at them.
As a provider of owner operator and bobtail insurance in Texas, we know how to find the best rates for drivers, regardless of the size of their operations.
For more information, contact us.