Without truck drivers, the US would come to a standstill: three quarters of the US depends on the trucking industry to deliver goods to our communities. With a US driver shortage in excess of 50,000 drivers in 2017, it would do us all good to learn more about the people who keep our economy moving. How much do we really know about the men and women who make driving their daily work?
Here are some numbers that give us a glimpse into the trucking life:
Truck drivers by the numbers:
- There are 3.5 million truck drivers in the US.
- Of those, 5.8 percent (just over 200,000) are women.
- The average age of a trucker is 49.
- Truck driving is the most common job in 29 states.
- Drivers earn, on average, $41,340 per year.
- Truckers are in demand: employment is expected to grow 5% between 2014 and 2024.
Life on the road:
- In order for a trucker to stop safely, they must start slowing down approximately 360 feet in advance – about the length of a football field.
- Truckers haul 70 percent of the nation's freight—about 10.5 billion tons annually.
- Truckers in the US drive about 125,000 miles annually, and about 3 million over their careers.
- Truckers spend on average more than 240 nights away from home per year.
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Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics; FTI; American Trucking Associations; Business Insider; Trucking.org; CNBC; WIRED