Trucker Shortage Creates Delays & Additional Costs

A few large steamship lines have warned shippers of additional delays and costs such as: storage, demurrage, waiting costs, and dry run fees as a result of the trucker shortage in the United States. The steamship lines have announced that they will not be responsible for the delays and/or additional costs associated with the drayage delays – they will pass the additional costs onto the cargo.

According to the American Trucking Association, the U.S. has 3.2 million truckers, but current demand requires an additional 38,000. The trucking industry took a large hit during the economic downturn and has struggled to draw new entrants into the job market, resulting in a trucker shortage. Currently, truckers are being selective in choosing their routings, opting for round trips that garner a larger profit. To compound the trucker shortage, new regulations were passed affecting the hours-of-service rules which also limited the number of hours truckers can work, including parameters for the hours of the night truckers are allowed to be on the road.

The steamship lines have stated, “guaranteeing door deliveries and pick-ups on a timely basis as part of a “thru-rate” is extremely difficult, if not at times impossible”. Trucking companies have begun to order new trucks to accommodate for the influx in demand in the United States. Until then, shippers and consignees will face higher trucking costs and increased transit times for inland deliveries as a result of the trucker shortage.


ACL: Truck Capacity Shortage

USA Today