GREENSBORO N.C. -- According to the American Trucking Associations, there is a record shortage of truck drivers nationwide, and its hitting home in the Triad.
The report says the national shortage of truck drivers could reach 50,000 this year, and the industry needs to hire roughly 90,000 drivers annually to meet the demand.
Karl Robinson, CEO of R&R transportation said the need in Guilford County and the Triad in general is high.
"Here in the triad we’re short probably in the percentage rate of about 10-20 percent every month," Robinson said. "We have companies that have 1,000 trucks and 200 trucks are sitting so that’s a very bad problem in the Triad."
A lot of the problem is the perception behind a trucking job: it's not that glamorous. But Robinson said a lot has changed over the years and wants to change that image.
"Historically truck driving hasn’t been a glamorous job but its changed dramatically over the time I started driving in the 80’s so you have more the availability of having iPads and iPhones in your trucks so you can communicate with your family over FaceTime so it’s a lot different than it was when I started trucking," Robinson said.
The salary is attractive as well. Robinson said a starting salary for a trucker at his company is $40,000 but could be more if they're willing to travel far distances.
The American Trucking Associations study on the truck driver shortage noted a potential delay in deliveries and increased prices because of it.
We checked - and that doesn't seem to be the case yet in the Triad. But it could be if more hires aren't made soon
The General Manager of Renaissance Community Cooperative, Mike Sakellaridis says the shortage hasn't been bad for business yet.
"It would be a problem if it was we are the best place for produce and meat in northeast Greensboro so if we had that problem it would hurt our business," Sakellaridis said.
"Sometimes with smaller companies when you have vendors of small things they have some struggles to get products the exact day you need it so there might be minor delays for a certain smaller vendor," he added.
Robinson said one solution would be to add a truck driving school in Guilford County. Right now the closest ones are in Davidson, Davey, and Randolph counties.
"We need a truck driving school in Guilford county to train our drivers," Robinson said. "In Davidson county they have one and we had planned to have one in Guilford county but it never came to fruition."