The Iowa Motor Trucking Association has created a jobs website to try and help members fill some of the thousands of open positions in the industry. IMTA president, Brenda Neville, says it’s always been difficult to find drivers but now companies are seeing faster decline as drivers retire. “Frankly we have more drivers exiting the industry than we have entering the industry,” Neville says. “We have a very complex regulatory environment that is prompting some people to leave the industry. So it’s really just a supply and demand issue.”
Neville says it’s difficult to recruit young people as most trucking companies won’t hire drivers younger than 21 because insurance companies have strict parameters on age. “There are kids that are 17, 18 years old and specifically the rural parts of Iowa that have driven trucks, they’re farm boys. And what’s happening is that we lose them because between the age 18 and 21 they find another occupation or another career that is maybe a little bit more desirable,” Neville says.
She says regulations limiting how many hours someone can drive also keeps companies from hiring younger people. Neville says the average yearly salary for a truck driver in Iowa is between 45 and $50,000. IMTA launched the website www.IATruckingJobs.com on July 1st and already has more than 100 job listings.