Trucking Growth Outlook

Trucking Growth Outlook in Maryland

DOT Exam Reisterstown MD Trucking Growth

The term trucking industry includes the use of transport such as light and heavy trucks, tractor-trailers and semi-trailers, to transport goods via roadways. The commonest cargo to be transported using trucks includes goods sent from manufacturing facilities to retail distribution points. The construction industry also employs trucks for transporting construction materials and waste.

In the United States of America, trucking industry captures the highest market for use of roadways for transportation of goods.

How is the trucking industry going to grow in future? What is the job outlook in the trucking industry? What does the future hold for freight service providers and truck drivers?

Given here are some insights into the trucking industry in Halethorpe MD, Reisterstown MD, and Rosedale MD. Aspirants looking to enter the industry can make an informed decision based on these statistics.

Trucking Industry Outlook in Maryland

Truck movement occupies a significant 70% of freight market in the U.S. Freight movement through trucks is only to set to grow through 2023. With the demand high, truck freight service providers are increasing their freight charges. The rates are currently soaring, and have been so, since 2017.

While the increase in demand is positive, experts are skeptical about the supply being equal in measure. Driver shortage and increase in fuel prices are challenges driving the supply crisis.

A deeper look into the positive and negative aspects impacting the trucking market:

Increasing Freight Charges

Growing demand for trucking freight is a reason for soaring freight service prices. But rise of Electronic Logging Devices (ELD) is also contributing to the freight rate hike. Use of ELD became a legal requirement to reduce truck accidents.

ELDs log out truckers after an 11-hour workday compared to their typical 14-hour day. The reduced workday cuts short drivers’ miles and decreases their earnings. As a result, drivers increase their wages, which reflects in increased freight charges.

Trucking Companies are Thriving

The demand for trucking freight and rising freight rates are making business and revenue great for shipping service providers. Investor interest and confidence in the trucking space has increased. The industry has been outperforming consistently for a year. The stocks in trucking space have become expensive as a result.

Investors are estimating that the profit potential of the trucking space will continue to increase. Experts are observing some promising aspects that is sustaining their confidence in the space.

Rising freight rates, increasing shipping demands, willingness of shipping customers to pay more, and the consistently increasing industry earnings, preserve investor confidence.

(Source: Nasdaq)

Driver Shortage Continues

The demand for qualified drivers is still up. Vacancies remain vacant, an aspect that surprises experts given the climate of recession and unemployment. Safety is a huge concern for truck drivers as they are vulnerable to different diseases including Covid-19. The long distance and interactions with people enroute, are major reasons for drivers’ susceptibility to diseases.

The good news is that trucking companies can reduce the shortage by attracting drivers with good working experience. Employing freight technology is a major step that trucking companies must implement to counter driver shortage.

Technology can start with choosing technology such as powertrains. Engines in powertrains are smaller and lightweight. They are capable of controlling fuel consumption and are faster on roads.

In addition, technologies that ensure better working experience and safety are important. Software applications for fleet management, route optimization and workflow streamlining, reduce driver stress immensely.

Use of autonomous technology, which is capable of tracking road conditions and suggesting fuel-optimizing journey routes are great. With such software, drivers can plan their routes more intelligently and reduce delay.

Ergonomic technologies such as seats with lesser pressure points help improve driver comfort. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) are also key to a positive job experience.

(Source: Forbes)

Ensuring safety and comfort goes a long way in improving driver experiences. It also benefits trucking companies to be mindful of wage demands of truckers.

Truck Driver Job Outlook

The need for drivers for heavy trucks and tractor-trailers is expected to show growth by 4% over the 2021-2031 period. There will be about 259, 000 driver vacancies every year, according to estimates. (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)

The demand for truck drivers is only set to increase given that trucks are the most used transport for freight movement in the U.S. The rising demand for goods and the increase in spending by businesses and households also contribute to increase in jobs.

Responsibilities of a Truck Driver

A truck driver drives a truck to transport goods from a fetching location to the intended destination.

A driver may operate heavy truck or a tractor-trailer. Typically, a truck driver hauls trucks operating on weight limits of over 26, 000 pounds. Drivers operate in intercity routes that sometimes take them to different states, to deliver goods.

Some typical job duties of a truck driver include:

  • Transport goods over long distances
  • Adhere to traffic rules
  • Ensure safety of goods by securing them with chains, ropes and covers, as applicable
  • Check their trailers for defects before and after delivery. Keep authorized personnel informed of any defects
  • Record their working hours for adherence with state and federal laws
  • Maintain trucks and other working accessories in good condition
  • Keep dispatchers informed of any mechanical defects in the vehicle as well as out-of-normal events on the road
  • Adhere to applicable laws including their own safety when moving hazardous goods, liquids, cars or oversized loads

Truck drivers are in great demand in the following industries:

  • Construction
  • Manufacturing
  • Truck transportation
  • Wholesale businesses
  • Self-employed truck operators

Risks of Being a Truck Driver

The job of a truck driver is isolating. Drivers are on the roads for days together or sometimes even weeks away from home. Driving is a physically demanding job with drivers also requiring to load and unload cargo.

Being on roads makes drivers vulnerable to road accidents. Heavy truck and truck-trailer driving is one of the most vulnerable occupations with a high rate of illness and injury. Though deaths are not common, the occupation is associated with one of the highest death rates.

Qualification and Requirements

Employers seek a high school diploma or an equivalent education. Professional training in truck driving is essential. Such training equips aspirants with the technical skills of operating a large vehicle as well as knowledge of applicable road laws. Training spanning 3 to 6 months is essential.

An aspirant must hold a CDL or Commercial Driver’s License to be able to operate as a truck driver. CDL qualification varies by state and generally requires passing a medical, driving and knowledge test. In addition, motor, visual and auditory abilities are inspected.

Presence of uncontrolled medical conditions such as heart ailments, epilepsy, blood pressure and diabetes, may disqualify aspirants, according to Federal law.

Endorsements are essential in case of drivers transporting hazardous materials. Background inspection and knowledge test completion are needed for obtaining endorsements.

As per Federal laws, truck drivers with CDL must renew their license every 2 years by completing a physical exam. CDL holders also have to undergo random drug and alcohol tests to maintain a clean record. A CDL may be suspended in case of alcohol/ drug abuse, or involvement in any motor vehicle felony.