Driver Shortage Still The Top Issue For Truckload Carriers - ATRI

Topic 26741 | Page 1

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Errol V.'s Comment
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This is an article in Commercial Carrier Journal Listing the results of American Transportation Research Institute, the people who brought you the Bottleneck list.

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Article: Driver shortage still the top issue for truckload carriers

Rick C.'s Comment
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I like Tim Lester's comment, how he is making an analogy so that office workers can understand OTR trucking. But I think he leaves a couple of points out. He says, "imagine if you will, having to sit at your desk for up to 14 hours every day and then sleeping on a cot in your office." That's not quite the full picture, imo. Imagine that while you're sitting there you cannot move your feet from under your desk for hours at a time, nor can you stand up; yes, you can fidget, but that's it, until your next break. Also imagine that you have to keep at least one but for safety's sake two hands on your keyboard for hours at a time, until your next break. And imagine that you must stare at your screen for hours at a time, not changing apps or websites, and that while the content does change it is largely not at your discretion.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

midnight fox's Comment
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“Take-home pay for drivers has not gone up at the same pace as their pay rates have gone up,” he said. The average length of haul has dropped from 800 miles to 503 miles since 2000. “As a result, fleets that used to get 120,000 miles per year on their trucks now struggle to get 100,000 miles.

Is it a safe bet to assume this is because of e-logs?

Rick S.'s Comment
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“Take-home pay for drivers has not gone up at the same pace as their pay rates have gone up,” he said. The average length of haul has dropped from 800 miles to 503 miles since 2000. “As a result, fleets that used to get 120,000 miles per year on their trucks now struggle to get 100,000 miles.

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Is it a safe bet to assume this is because of e-logs?

E-Log that eliminate CHEATING. Shippers/Receivers that don't care how long you sit, or if you burn up your clock (and companies that don't enforce detention pay, for fear of losing a customer).

The biggest "time burner", is usually going to be detention, next comes traffic in urban areas (think Atlanta, and the NE, and most of Cali). Harsh winters the last few years have created a lot of downtime too.

Also interesting to note, for drivers - autonomous trucks seem to be last on the list of worries...

Rick

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Errol V.'s Comment
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Tim Lester writes:

imagine if you will, having to sit at your desk for up to 14 hours every day and then sleeping on a cot in your office.

Rick is right, but his description is bleak. The view out the front window does change, but the views can be worth it. Scenes that come to my mind:

  • The fields in rural Ohio in the spring.
  • Thunderstorms out ahead of you.
  • Prickly pear cactus in bloom, South Texas
  • Early spring in Vermont

And that's not a "cot" back there, it's a real bed mattress. Your "bedroom" is better than a camping tent, but not quite a hotel room.

Old School's Comment
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fleets that used to get 120,000 miles per year on their trucks now struggle to get 100,000 miles.

I'm not having any issues putting 135,000 plus miles on my truck each year. E-logs are not keeping people from making money.

Bird-one's Comment
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100k in a year would average what, 2,000 miles a week? I don't know what the issue there would be for not getting miles but certainly not an E-log problem.

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fleets that used to get 120,000 miles per year on their trucks now struggle to get 100,000 miles.

double-quotes-end.png

I'm not having any issues putting 135,000 plus miles on my truck each year. E-logs are not keeping people from making money.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

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fleets that used to get 120,000 miles per year on their trucks now struggle to get 100,000 miles.

double-quotes-end.png

I'm not having any issues putting 135,000 plus miles on my truck each year. E-logs are not keeping people from making money.

Yeah, but you're SuperHuman though!

Grumpy Old Man's Comment
member avatar

Tim Lester writes:

double-quotes-start.png

imagine if you will, having to sit at your desk for up to 14 hours every day and then sleeping on a cot in your office.

double-quotes-end.png

Rick is right, but his description is bleak. The view out the front window does change, but the views can be worth it. Scenes that come to my mind:

  • The fields in rural Ohio in the spring.
  • Thunderstorms out ahead of you.
  • Prickly pear cactus in bloom, South Texas
  • Early spring in Vermont

And that's not a "cot" back there, it's a real bed mattress. Your "bedroom" is better than a camping tent, but not quite a hotel room.

I sleep better and am more comfortable in my truck than home.

Villain's Comment
member avatar

Grunch.

Reading the forum last year comments that stated there isn't a driver shortage so much as a shortage of quality drivers. IMO the fact that there's a shortage of qualified drivers proves that there's a driver shortage. I have never seen/experienced such uncivilized and dangerous behavior as I have in trucking.

My trips are planned at 50mph. Picked up Sep 20 in Dallas heading to Pennsylvania. Miles =1,390. Appointment is the 25th! 5 1/2 days for a 2 1/2 trip! I spent 60hrs off duty because the appointment couldn't be rescheduled!

My company seems to be happy if they get 400 miles a day from a driver. To me that's like a part time job if the majority of the loads are drop and hook.

Poor drivers affect the bottom line of companies and drivers. I don't know what the solution is, but most of the problems in trucking start and end with the driver shortage.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

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