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Truck driver shortage

Truck driver shortage – “The freight industry needs to take responsibility to find solutions….”

The National Road Carriers is working with a range of third parties in a bid to find solutions to the big shortage of truck drivers in the upper North Island revealed in a recent survey.

NRC chief executive David Aitken was commenting on a survey undertaken nationally by the Road Transport Forum in which 85% of respondents in the upper North Island reported a driver shortage.

It is no surprise that the biggest shortages are in the higher skilled truck driver classes 3-to-5 such as containers, line haul, logging as well as general freight, he said.

“It is understandable that transport operators need to be able to recruit fully experienced drivers, especially as the higher skilled jobs entail a range of responsibilities from managing load safety, compliance with transport authority requirements as well as driving.”

Mr Aitken said that NRC was working with driver groups to find ways to help the industry help itself. Options included how best to support businesses to provide driver training courses that get drivers from class 2 to class 5, as well as looking at a recruiting campaign to get new people into the industry, especially women.

“The size of the shortage seems to be across the board which suggests that we need a more comprehensive industry-led response than we have provided in the past.”

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