IN THE US, trucks carry 10 billion tons of freight each year. That’s 70 percent of all goods shipped across the country, according to the American Trucking Association. The trouble is: we don’t have enough drivers, and their numbers are dwindling.
The American Trucking Association says the driver deficit currently stands at 48,000, and if trends continue, that could reach 175,000 by the year 2024. The average age for an American truck driver is 63, and that’s only going up. “Where is the next generation of truckers going to come from?” says Ryan Petersen, the CEO of Flexport, a company that helps businesses organize their shipping efforts through trucks as well as ships and trains.
This is why Amazon is apparently trying to Uber-ize the way it coordinates truck shipments across the country’s largest online retail service, as The Wall Street Journalreported this week.