It’s been a busy week for David Bradley and the Ontario Trucking Association dancing to the songs played in these two articles:
Cambridge Driver Speaks Up about Safety Training
The Waterloo Region Record made some noise with an article that had Cambridge truck driver Karl Evers pushing for government –approved training to be mandatory for all new truckers. Along with that Karl stated that trucking has become a penny-pinching industry that is pushing safety to the back burner. He goes on to talk about the lack of compensation and how the quality of drivers and the industry is going downhill as a result. Karl had much more to say in this article and in his appearance on 570am radio discussing the same issues.
“We are Moving Forward with It”; The O.T.A. Call for Mandatory Entry-Level Training
The Toronto star also released an article discussing truck ‘licensing mills’ in Ontario, which are cut-rate schools producing poorly trained drivers that put the motoring public at risk. The Star’s previous investigation turned up two dozen unregulated schools in the GTA that teach students just enough to pass their test.
This is nothing new to the industry. What is new is that these issues are getting out to the general public. I will agree with Mr. Bradley’s interview on 570am radio; that reputable trucking companies will not hire under-trained non-qualified drivers. Regardless we all know that there are many shoddy carriers in the industry and these drivers do wind up entering the system.
The solution to the problem is simple, we need:
Extensive entry level training and a graduated licensing program
Extended on the job practical training programs
Skilled industry and government recognition or trade designation
And finally, the apparent unspeakable. It seems it is taboo to mention money. Well I am going to say money and certified training = a solution
My Honest Opinion:
For the amount of responsibility and time spent, company highway drivers are well under paid
For same reasons as company drivers, owner operators are also grossly under paid
Local drivers could also stand a pay raise for their job and responsibility (however they are home at night and weekends with their families), but yes, beyond the $18.00 an hour they too deserve an increase
There you go folks this would be the answer to the licensing issue and in large the answer to the driver shortage.
There are plenty of great workers in Canada but they won’t work for peanuts…