Workers leaving jobs for trucking industry, six-figure salaries
US needs 80,000 more truck drivers to expedite labor, supply chain rebound
As everyday prices and inflation concerns continue to surge across America, the trucking industry is ramping up efforts to attract the needed 80,000 drivers that will alleviate supply chain pressures.
The trucker shortage created an opportunity for Roadmaster Drivers School to open 20 locations nationwide, telling and teaching prospective drivers about the six figure starting point.
According to Metro South Community Improvement District Vice Chair Wayne Smith, drivers can earn well over $100,000 in just a few years.
"We got two applicants applying for a driving position, both in the same week… both [with] four-year degrees," Smith told FOX Business’ Connell McShane. "I asked them, ‘Why aren't you in the field that you studied?’"
"They said, ‘Because we can't make the money we want to make,’" he continued.
TRUCKING COMPANY ENACTS LARGEST PAY INCREASE IN HISTORY
Smith’s comments come after a U.S. trucking firm enacted a major pay increase for its drivers – the largest in the decades-old company's history.
Recent Roadmaster graduate and former Amazon employee Jahmiah Smith explained she left her job and became a truck driver to complete a life goal.
"I want to travel to all 48 states," Smith said. "See it for what it is."
In a move that also aims to expedite the supply chain rebound, 18 to 20-year-old truck drivers can soon cross state lines thanks to a new federal program from the U.S. Department of Transportation and Department of Labor announced earlier this month.
The Safe Driver Apprenticeship Pilot (SDAP) program is an under-21 pilot program for truck drivers mandated in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, according to a press release, creating apprenticeships for 3,000 young drivers.
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Labor Secretary Marty Walsh previously stated it was exploring the option of lowering the driver age for interstate commerce on "Varney & Co." last month.
"One of the things we have to do is really train and prepare more truck drivers," he said.