Truck Driver Pay On the Rise

Several large trucking companies continue to increase salaries in order to retain their current drivers, and hopefully recruit new younger drivers.

According to an article published by the Journal of Commerce, Averitt Express last week joined the ranks of trucking companies raising driver wages. The 23rd largest U.S. trucking operator said it would raise per mile pay for experienced drivers to between 44 and 45 cents per mile, depending on how many years they have on the road.

Averitt follows in the footsteps of Swift Transportation, the largest U.S. truckload carrier, whose wages and benefits were up 16 percent in the second quarter. There is evidence higher pay is helping keep drivers behind the wheel. Swift’s driver turnover metric improved 15 percent in the second quarter. In the first quarter, the average driver turnover rate for large truckload carriers, those with more than $30 million in revenue, dropped 12 percentage points to 84 percent, according to the American Trucking Associations. That is the first time that ATA metric has been below 90 percent since 2011.

So far in the year 2015, trucking employment has risen 2.9 percent on average.