The average age right now for majority of truck drivers is 54 years old. That could change with a different strategy to recruit younger truck drivers. Traditionally, trade schools that offer truck driving help people interested to obtain their CDL in order to join the workforce however, now some high schools are offering truck driving classes to seniors before graduation to prepare them for the same field. According to an article by NPR, “trucking doesn’t have a great reputation and it comes with a lot of misconceptions about what exactly a truck driver is. Those misconceptions include that the work is dangerous, comes with low pay and that the hours are unbearable. If we don’t start promoting trucking to our youth, they only can make decisions on the information that they have.”
Starting salaries for truck drivers start at $50,000 and can quickly become $60,000 or $70,000 depending on where you live. Coming out of high school with a career as a truck driver could be more favorable for people who don’t want to add to the $1.53 trillion in U.S. student loan debt.
According to the American Trucking Association, in 2015 there was a need for 48,000 truck drivers. As of 2021 the industry is short 68,000 with 25% of the current drivers close to the age of retirement. If the industry doesn’t find more creative ways to recruit drivers, the shortage could exceed 100,000 by 2028.