Trucks.com (04/05/16) Dreibus, Tony
Trucking companies already face driver shortages as current drivers near retirement and unemployment remains low. The problem could be exacerbated by proposed regulations requiring extensive commercial driver training and limiting hours of operation, which will increase drivers' time away from home. One proposal would increase training hours that entry-level drivers need to obtain a commercial driver's license, which could cost up to $5.6 billion over 10 years, said the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Another requirement would require electronic systems to enter their driving activity, which could reduce productivity, and require new drivers to have 30 hours of supervised time behind the wheel, which could reduce shipping productivity. However, limiting drivers to fewer continuous hours on the road and increasing their training could make roads safer, say industry insiders. Doing so will require trucking companies to increase rates, but retailers and manufacturers will pay those increases rather than disrupt their business operations.