It’s important for every driving professional to keep up with trucking industry news. With that in mind, here are some transportation trends to keep an eye on:
- The slow but continuous economic recovery is creating greater demand for truckers than the economy has seen since at least 2008. This fact has company recruiters working double-time trying to find suitable candidates for the many positions that are available. Current forecasts call for the shortage of qualified drivers to continue into the foreseeable future, fostering long-term job security for those who wish to enter the field.
- Some have feared that so-called ‘driverless vehicles” may take the place of human beings, leading to a collapse in the demand for truckers. However, these fears are more akin to science fiction than reality. While Google, Apple, and some other high-tech companies are experimenting with self-driven cars, the technology is still in its infancy. This fact, combined with the public’s resistance to seeing robots driving 18-wheelers, will prevent advancing technology from wiping out the field for the foreseeable future.
- Unlike robot drivers, alternative fuel vehicles already exist and will become more and more a part of the trucking scene in the years ahead. Natural gas is the leading candidate for a diesel replacement, as electric motors currently lack the raw power and durability needed to power big rigs. This trend offers benefits not only for the environment but for truckers as well. Natural gas is cheaper overall than diesel and is easier on engine components, meaning more miles between overhauls. However, since natural gas refueling stations offer a number of potential risks (due to unfamiliarity with proper fueling methods), drivers will need to master the basics of using natural gas stations, to ensure both their own safety and that of the public.
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