The ATA Reports Driver Shortage Worsens

Trucking companies have more trouble keeping long-haul drivers ~ ATA says

Turnover for long-haul drivers in large truckload fleets hit an annualized rate of 75 percent during the first three months of the year, the American Trucking Association.

That’s a leap from the low of 39 percent during the same quarter last year and up from 69 percent during the fourth quarter — the highest turnover rate for that sector since the second quarter of 2008, according to the trade organization’s Trucking Activity Report. The driver market is tightening,” ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello said in a release. “We hear nearly every day from fleets who cannot find enough drivers to meet demand.”  That suggests a tightening driver market, prompting drivers to job hop among carriers. And it’s not likely to improve anytime soon — a still-recovering economy, new regulations and more employees retiring than entering the industry probably will keep that rate rising, Costello said.

Among small truckload fleets, turnover was 50 percent in the first quarter — the highest since the third quarter of 2008. Less-than-truckload fleets have very low turnover at 8 percent, up 2 percentage points from the prior quarter. Cord Moving and Storage and the American Movers report a much lower turnover rate but continued difficulty luring qualified drivers into a very demanding industry moving household goods. That difficult along with peak season demands continues to plague the industry although Cord Moving and Storage an agent for North American Van Lines has manged to out perform the reported  national numbers as they aggressively recruit and attract drivers.

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