How Do You Become A Truck Driver
Although the unemployment rate is up by more than 5% and the economy is still in a slow recovery, some sectors are struggling to find employees. This is the case of road transport in the United States. It has been estimated that this particular field is lacking between 35,000 and 40,000 truckers, and the situation is getting worse, according to statistics from the American Trucking Association (ATA). This makes it the perfect opportunity to take this position into consideration. Contrary to the belief of many, it is not difficult to become a truck driver.
One of the great things about this field is that you can enter it with zero years of experience, but if this is the case, then you can expect to garner a lower pay than those drivers who have been in the field for more than five years. Even so, you can count on increments to occur in your salary every year. There are some companies that pay better than others, especially in Alaska. On average, a truck driver working in this particular state can make up to $50,050.00 every year.
There is no formal education required in order to become this type of professional, but it has been noted that a high school diploma tends to often be preferred by employers, as well as completion of a training course at a truck driving school that is accredited. A CDL (Commercial Driver License) will be required.
If someone who is 21 years of age (minimum age to work as a truck driver crossing state lines) wants to get a commercial driver’s license, the way is to go to a training school. The average truck driver training program costs between $3,000.00 and $8,000.00, according to the Commercial Vehicle Training Association (CVTA).
After about five weeks of school, one has to wait 30 to 60 days for an appointment with the Department of Motor Vehicles. This process can discourage a young person looking for work, according to a CVTA spokesman, but it is worth the wait.
Demand for Truck Drivers Has Increased
The more the economy improves, the more demand increases because there is more cargo to be transported and at the same time there are fewer truck drivers. The present issue is that older truckers are retiring at a higher rate than new ones are joining this sector. The average age of the truck drivers is 49 years. But why is it difficult to fill positions and hire more truckers as demand rises?
The reasons vary, but it seems that the main one is due to it being a profession that requires a lot of time. It requires truckers to work outside the home for a long time, and thus, they don’t see their families as they’d like, hence why it is a nicely paid profession. On average, a heavy truck driver can garner more than $40,000.00 a year.
Not Every Company Provides a Truck
Although most vehicles are owned by companies, approximately 85% of companies require truckers to rent them to be hired. It has been note that about 15% of long distance truck drivers have to rent or buy their own vehicle. This is definitely a requirement that needs to be analyzed by a future employee, as there is definitely money involved.
Companies Vary in Offers and Requirements
Although several companies have raised their salaries to attract new truckers to the industry, critics say the problem has more to do with the efficiency of the system. Last year, the West Coast port truckers went on strike against the companies where they worked at. In addition to asking for better wages, they wanted to be classified as employees instead of independent contractors to receive benefits such as health insurance and paid sick days. All the experts in the industry agree on the need for change. Of course, this issue is not affecting every truck driver in the United States. Companies vary when it comes to what they offer and their requirements.
Demand for Truck Drivers Will Continue to Augment at Rapid Pace
Over the years, the demand for commercial transportation in the country has increased at a rapid pace. At the moment, companies are reaching agreements for truckers already in the industry, definitely making it a better field for newcomers.