Without our truckers, the wheels of the economy would stop turning. The trucking industry supports a whopping 3 million driving jobs, estimated to be over 114 billion dollars in January 2022. The importance of this industry cannot be ignored by policymakers who must balance the needs of all regions with these staggering numbers.
So how can we protect this powerful economic force? How do we protect these Americans? First, policymakers should pay attention to consumers demanding more from their shippers. Second, they should take specific steps to ensure that regulations don’t stifle free trade or discourage investment in transportation infrastructure.
The trucking industry
Trucking has the most significant impact on the economy of any transportation modes and employs more people than any other transportation industry. Truck drivers are not only the lifeblood of the economy. They enable you to shop for your favorite holiday gifts. Without trucks traveling the highways and country roads, your favorite restaurants, grocery stores, and clothing stores would be closed. Your paycheck would not get spent. You would not eat, and you certainly wouldn’t shop.
If you are considering a career as a trucker and looking for shipping work, using a load board allows you to choose the shipping jobs you want. Read on for the benefits of being a trucker.
The benefits of trucking
The vast majority of freight moves by land, and trucking is the backbone of our nation’s transportation system. Trucking provides the lowest-cost and most environmentally-friendly way to transport goods long distances. Trucking helps keep food costs down by getting products to the store quickly to get fresher, more affordable food on our tables. When truckers can pass on these savings at lower costs, families and businesses usually reap the benefits.
The challenges of trucking
A well-functioning transportation system is key to our economic success and prosperity. Trucking serves as an indicator of the health of our larger economy because its growth indicates growth in production and demand for goods. Despite this fact, the industry faces several challenges that are impeding the industry’s ability to meet customer demand.
Trucking needs infrastructure investments
Economic growth is driven by a nation’s ability to invest in infrastructure, and investing in an aging transportation system is a key component of maintaining our maximum potential for economic growth.
Truck drivers are getting older
There are currently about 1 million long-haul truck drivers at least 55 years old. They are a huge part of the trucking industry, but this aging population will burden an aging workforce. Preserving the job security that is key to trucking’s future success could help struggling families make ends meet. Losing these drivers can leave communities dependent on other modes of transportation and increase our dependence on oil.
Truckers are the underdog in Washington. Motorists’ ire toward trucks is usually directed at “big rigs,” which have been portrayed as a danger on the highway, not appreciating that these same drivers help support their communities through trucking employment.
Modernizing our transportation system and investing in jobs will ultimately mean more people can keep working, allowing them to provide for their families and feed their kids.
While Congress is currently debating tax reform, it is important to remember that there are policies that would make tax reform work better for Main Street truckers.
Trucking needs infrastructure investments because they allow truckers to transport goods more efficiently and cost-effectively.