Canadian Trucking Industry Still Facing Massive Shortages

Canadian Trucking Industry Still Facing Massive Shortages

Despite ongoing efforts to attract new drivers to the industry, Canada is still facing a massive truck driver shortage of between 20,000 - 40,000 drivers per year. Industry experts have been sounding the alarm for decades, but things have seriously escalated since the pandemic, with two-thirds of carriers unable to hire all the drivers they need and hundreds of thousands of truck drivers on the verge of retirement.


Why Is The Truck Driver Shortage In Canada A Problem?

Canada moves by truck; without enough qualified drivers to satisfy the needs of industry, critical sectors of the Canadian economy are damaged. The forest products industry alone—which represents 12 percent of Canada’s manufacturing GDP and is one of our biggest employers—estimates that the truck driver shortage has cost its sector over $450 million. Failure to alleviate the crisis will likely stifle and delay our economic recovery in the wake of COVID-19.


Every single Canadian depends on the supply chain running smoothly. The food on your table doesn’t materialize out of thin air; medical supplies don’t rain down from the sky. When the flow of goods is interrupted, it affects all of us—the bigger the disruption, the more dire the consequences.


What Is Being Done To Address The Shortage?

Truck driver shortages are forcing the transportation industry to adopt changes, and fast. Efforts are underway not only to market the industry to women and young people, but to reform and evolve working conditions to fit their needs. The Women In Trucking Association (WIT), for example, works with manufacturers on design and ergonomics.


Porta-potties and security alarm systems are being incorporated into tractor-trailer designs thanks to feedback from female truck drivers, and border drop-offs are being considered as a means of breaking up weeks-long journeys—which have deterred many young people from entering the industry—into short-haul trips.


Ontario is currently fast-tracking Second Career funding applications for training in the transportation industry, which includes commercial truck driver training. Ontario’s Second Career program provides up to $28,000 in funding for training costs such as tuition, manuals and workbooks to eligible applicants. Note: Truck driver training must be completed at a Ministry of Transportation (MTO) approved truck driving school.


Why Being In An In-Demand Industry Is Good For Career Growth

Employers are struggling to find and hire great talent, particularly in high-growth sectors such as transportation and warehousing, technology, healthcare, professional services and construction. When you're in-demand in a tight labour market, you have more control and can negotiate a better salary and working conditions, as well as leverage your skills and experience for career advancement.


The Perks Of Being A Truck Driver

To anyone who knows little about the trucking industry, the perks may surprise you. Here are just a few reasons to consider a career in trucking:

  1. Job stability: Unemployment and lay-offs are not a truck driver’s concern.

  2. Low barrier to entry: As opposed to four years and tens of thousands of dollars at a university, truck driver training at an approved truck driving school takes roughly 6 weeks and is frequently eligible for training subsidies.

  3. Excellent earning potential: New truck drivers generally clear $55,000, while more experienced drivers often make more than $70,000. Earning potential can increase significantly depending on the type of truck you're driving, routes covered and the load you haul.

  4. Career growth potential: Getting your AZ licence is just the beginning. After a few years of experience, you could recruit or train at a trucking company or truck driving school, move into other areas of the industry (e.g. logistics), or become an owner/operator.

  5. Additional benefits, such as annual bonuses, health and dental benefits, RRSP matching and pre-paid vacations.

Financial benefits aside, many truck drivers love the job because of the flexibility, autonomy and adventure it offers.


Why More Canadians Choose Knowledgesurge For Truck Driver Training

KnowledgeSurge, a top-rated truck driving school in Barrie, Ontario, is the truck driving school that uses simulators—in addition to in-class and in-cab lessons—to expose future truck drivers to dangerous situations they could face on the road. Our award-winning software allows students to learn how to react to potential hazards in a safe, controlled environment.


KnowledgeSurge graduates leave our doors with the knowledge and confidence required to succeed in the industry, which is one of the reasons why we operate at a 99.9% client recommendation rating. Find out more reasons why KnowledgeSurge is your go-to truck driving school.


For more info about truck driver training, call (705) 730-1130 or email info@knowledgesurge.com.

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