Adapt or else: retiring baby boomers leaving truck driver shortfall - 660 NEWS
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Adapt or else: retiring baby boomers leaving truck driver shortfall

Retiring truck drivers are going to leave a massive shortfall of workers by 2020, according to a new report.

The study commissioned by the Canadian Trucking Alliance says tens of thousands of jobs are going to be filled by only a small number of drivers.

The study says 25 thousand to 33 thousand jobs will have to be filled in less than a decade as baby boomers retire.

If the industry can’t fill the gap, consumers could take the hit; driving up prices on store shelves.

Alberta Motor Transport Association Director Don Wilson says recruiting new people won’t be an easy task.

“Sometimes long haul truckers are gone for two, three weeks at a time. To find young people today to do that role, is not going to be easy, and may be closer to impossible, so to attract people to the industry, you’ve got to start thinking outside the box.” He explains.

Wilson says the industry will have to change.

“Some of that may be simply, by setting up switches, where you go so far and then you switch trailers with another person, and you come back to your home terminal. So you’re home every night for the most part.” He says.

Canadian Trucking Alliance president David Bradley tells 660News, provincial governments need to help work raise the reputation of the profession.

“to introduce some level of mandatory entry level training before you can try to get a truck driving license in Canada. Right now, you could walk in off the street and if you’ve worked on farm machinery or whatever the case may be, and you pass the test, you’re licensed to drive.”

Bradley says they’ll also have to raise wages to compete with other sectors, especially in a competitive place like Alberta.