Truck driving can be unpleasant, with extensive time away from home and stress of traffic and varying demands of the shipper/receiver/carrier.
Pay is often relatively low, drivers are often paid per mile driven only, which doesn’t take into account non-driving “downtime” workers experience while on the job. Now, pay rates for drivers are being forced to go up and those costs will be passed to shippers in higher freight rates .
Government regulations, including driver hours-of-service limits, electronic monitoring of driver logs are seen by many drivers as impediments to maintaining and increasing pay.
During the economic slowdown, many drivers were forced to leave the industry and then found other professions.
Trucking companies are providing paid training and signing bonuses, but still have not been able to reduce their turnover rates. Turnover is costly and affects customer service.
Shippers are trying to find carriers to haul their loads. Carriers do not have enough drivers to haul them, and are even using 3PL freight brokers to help find anyone to haul their loads.
Service is suffering on all fronts and overall costs continue to go up.
As a consequence, many companies are turning to rail and rail intermodal and this mode is now beginning to show capacity constraints , higher prices and some service issues.
More and more shippers are now turning to dedicated contract carriage as a means to secure guaranteed capacity and service quality.