Even before the pandemic hit, the trucking industry was in need of tens of thousands of drivers. Shutdowns and new regulations/precautions have disrupted supply chains, while social distancing and limited hours further inconvenience newly trained truck drivers seeking to obtain a license.
For years, there has been a growing shortage of qualified CDL-A drivers, and it has only gotten worse. According to the American Trucking Association, there’s a shortage of 60,000 truck drivers nationwide with a predicted increase of over 100,000 by 2021.
Why is this shortage happening? Baby Boomer drivers are retiring due to age, stricter DOT medical certification processes, and frustration with newly required Electronic Log Devices (ELDs) which have created tighter hours of service regulations. This technology – which is designed to enforce limits on driving time without breaks – has not only pushed many seasoned drivers to quit, but also reduces the number of trucks available overall.
Additionally, millennials are far less enthused than previous generations to join the trucking force due to the arduous duty of long cross-country trips, away for days and weeks at a time. Furthermore, the men and women completing tractor trailer schools these days are not always accepted by insurance companies, which often require at least three years of driving experience.
What does all of this mean for wood pellet stove owners? Much like so many others, this industry has suffered ongoing trucking shortage effects such as price fluctuations, inconsistent supply transportation and difficulty maintaining a full staff of qualified home delivery drivers.
Our team is working tirelessly to schedule safe, convenient home deliveries for our customers across the Northeast. If you have not yet secured your home’s wood pellet fuel for the upcoming heating season, place your order online or call 1-800-PELLETS as soon as possible to get yourself into the delivery queue!