Truck driver shortage in Quebec
Quebec’s road transport industry is currently facing the worst crisis in its history. This delicate situation is largely due to the fact that it is struggling with an unprecedented truck driver shortage. Companies in the trucking industry will need to recruit at least 50,000 new drivers by 2020. In fact, many seem to have underestimated the impact of retirements coupled with economic growth.
While the situation isn’t great for carriers, it is also difficult for drivers.
When trucker shortages lead to lower profits
In 2015, the CEO of Camo-route, a committee that deals with truck transport labour, surveyed 195 Quebec carriers. In this sample, over half said they suffered loss of profits due to trucker shortages.
These losses can be attributed to delayed deliveries and the loss of customers who are dissatisfied with poor performance. Evidently, these problems are directly related to the lack of drivers. Personnel recruitment difficulties even force carriers to refuse contracts since they cannot meet their commitments.
In addition, between 20% and 30% of truck fleets remain immobilized because road transport companies cannot find anyone to put behind the wheel. These statistics mean huge losses for them due to their inability to render their vehicles profitable.
The likely effects of this shortage on the population
“This is the principle of supply and demand,” says Marc Cadieux, President of the Quebec Trucking Association. The bill will inevitably be absorbed by consumers.
Effects on drivers
Even though carriers are currently concerned with “pampering” their truckers, there are still more people leaving the trucking industry than entering. Difficulties in recruiting new drivers are due, among other things, to a lack of interest in a difficult profession for many reasons.
Although this isn’t a new reality, many truckers must work 70 hours or more, often divided into almost 12-hour days. Not to mention that some must leave several days at a time, making work-life balance difficult.
Salary is not always attractive, averaging around $ 42,500. However, it may be readjusted upwards in the coming years, given the scarcity of labour.
New workforce realities mean truckers are also faced with increasingly tight delivery times, resulting in more stress and speeding tickets. Unfortunately, these fines are eroding their profits.
Despite significant challenges, including truck driver scarcity, that lie ahead for road transport companies in the coming years, it worth noting that some of them manage to succeed and offer high quality services.