Drivers age 16 to 19 are three times more likely to be involved in a crash than any other group, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and Highway Loss Data Institute. The vehicle operated by the apprentice driver will be equipped with automatic manual transmission, active braking collision mitigation systems, forward facing video event capture and adaptive cruise control designed to keep the driver coasting at or below 65 mph. Even with the provisions, the Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety group opposes the bill, according to The Washington Post, but Gary Langston, president of the Indiana Motor Truck Association, assured after the June 4 news conference that young drivers unfit for the road would not make it past their required certification and apprenticeship program.
Langston supports the law because he believes it will help his hundreds of members combat their No.
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His theory is that the truck driver shortage is caused by its undesirability as a career. Since the deregulation of the trucking industry in , unions have disappeared and driver wages have suffered, he said. Now, truckers are only paid an industry standard of around 40 cents per mile — a far cry from the 60 cents per mile that Belzer has calculated would make the job worth it. Drivers also spend a considerable amount of their time working without being paid as they either load or unload their vehicles or wait to.
The problem is more fundamental. They are paying their drivers more and giving them days off rather than sending them out for weeks at a time, according to Langston. Hollingsworth also said he would be open to authoring more legislation if needed to help carriers find more workers. Belzer does sympathize with truck carriers, he said.
His solution to the shortage is for cargo owners to start paying carriers more. That might result in consumers paying higher prices, but only by a few cents, Belzer said, and it would result in a friendlier trucking environment for all.
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