When there are too few qualified truck drivers on the roads, could that increase the risk of trucking collisions in Hollywood or your community? Some safety experts think so.
A recent New York Times article pointed out that truck driver shortages are notable. Even with an overall unemployment rate of 6 percent across all sectors, there is a qualified driver shortage of about 30,000 drivers – and the amount of drivers needed is only expected to increase. A large part of the problem, as the article points out, is because wages for truck drivers are actually lower today than they were in 2003, once we adjust for inflation.
The shortage could potentially hurt not only truck company bottom lines but also roadway safety for a number of reasons:
1) If trucking companies are unwilling to invest in workers, could they be cutting corners elsewhere?
If truck companies are not willing to pay truck drivers more, are they also taking short cuts when it comes to truck maintenance or other issues?
2) Current truck drivers may be pressured to put in longer hours and work harder to make up for the shortage.
According to trucking companies, there is still considerable demand for delivery services. With fewer drivers, truckers may be pushed to work longer and to drive further in order to meet as much customer demand as possible. That, in turn, can mean more fatigued driving in Hollywood and other communities.
3) Less selection of workers means that companies may hire less qualified drivers.
It’s basic economics: when an industry is competitive, only the best and brightest have a good chance of getting a job, and even then they may need to train or work harder to make the cut. With current conditions, truck companies may be tempted to take on drivers that they might pass over otherwise. Truck drivers themselves may also have less incentive to invest in additional training, additional experience, and other skill-building tasks that could make them more competitive on the job market.
Investing in workers and in safety could help the industry turn around and help more businesses and customers. Truck companies already make money from their customers, so investing in drivers and their training seems like a smart next step to ensuring the safer and more profitable future of the industry.
If you have been injured in a trucking collision, there may be more going on than meets the eye. How can you find out what has really caused the accident? How can you work through the claims process so that you enjoy the compensation that you deserve? If you need assistance after being injured, contact the law firm of Flaxman Law Group. One of our personal injury attorneys can review your case and you can consult with a member of our legal team at no cost and with no compensation to find out how you can pursue justice. Your consultation is your chance to get answers and address your concerns.