Nearly every aspect of daily life is made possible because a truck driver delivered the goods and resources needed for our daily lives. During the past few months, as COVID-19 ravaged the U.S., truck drivers took on an even more important role.
America recognizes National Truck Driver Appreciation Week during the second week in September, and it’s an opportunity to honor all professional truck drivers for their hard work in one of the nation’s most demanding and vital jobs. The American Trucking Associations estimates that there are 3.5 million truck drivers in the USA.
They not only deliver our goods safely, securely, and on time, they also keep our highways safe.
Truck drivers have been around since the end of the 19th Century. Alexander Winton invented the semi-trailer in Cleveland in 1898. He was an automobile manufacturer who developed the trailer truck as a way to deliver his cars.
Did You Know?
- Truckers deliver about 10 billion tons of freight, or about 70% of all the freight moved in the U.S.
- The average trucker will drive over 100,000 road miles per year. That works out to nearly 40 trips across the United States.
- The average age of a truck driver is 49.
- About 6% of the nation’s truck drivers are women. The number is trending upward, about 10% a year.
- 41% of the nation’s truck drivers are minorities — compared to 22% in all other jobs.
- Walmart runs one of the largest staff of truckers. The company maintains one of the largest fleets of trucks in the nation and employs 8,600 drivers who earn $88,000/year, according to a CBS News story.
- Truck drivers can have many talents. These truckers went on to be actors: Sean Connery, Elvis Presley, Charles Bronson, Viggo Mortensen, Liam Neeson, James Cameron, Chevy Chase and Rock Hudson.
- A survey by Atlas Van Lines found truck drivers are big country western music fans. Nearly half of the truckers on the road are listening to country-western music. One third listen to classic rock, and the rest listen to sports or talk radio.
- The career field remains open for heavy truck drivers and tractor-trailer drivers. The BLS estimates 108,400 more will be needed by 2026.
- The career field for light truck and delivery truck drivers is expected to grow more slowly. The BLS predicts about 55,000 light truck and delivery drivers will be needed by 2026.
The Kentucky Trucking Association