There are currently an estimated 28,200 freight and cargo inspectors in the United States. The freight and cargo inspector job market is expected to grow by 5.7% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are freight and cargo inspectors?

CareerExplorer rates freight and cargo inspectors with a F employability rating, meaning this career should provide poor employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 7,500 freight and cargo inspectors. That number is based on 1,600 additional freight and cargo inspectors, and the retirement of 5,900 existing freight and cargo inspectors.

Are freight and cargo inspectors in demand?

Most employment opportunities for freight and cargo inspectors will result from the need to replace retirees from the occupation. Overall, the job market is expected to be negatively impacted by continuing advances in port technology. In recent years, non-intrusive inspection of cargo containers to verify contents at shipping and customs points has emerged. Artificial vision and process control systems are able to scan containers, vehicles, and rail cars; provide underside video images; perform automatic radioactive materials detection; and verify documentation integrity. In addition, they have the capability to save complex files containing data from multiple inspections. These systems are becoming more sophisticated, less prone to defect, and less expensive. Avoiding contraband and deflecting illegal and terrorist activities will always require human involvement. Automation, however, is significantly improving efficiency, security, and safety; and will continue to exert pressure on the job market for freight and cargo inspectors. Experienced inspectors may advance to supervisory roles. Those who earn an engineering degree have potential to transition to jobs in the engineering sector.

What’s the supply of freight and cargo inspectors?

The freight and cargo inspector industry is concentrated in New York, Texas, California

Freight and Cargo Inspector job market by state

State Name Employed Freight and Cargo Inspectors
New York 4,870
Texas 4,560
California 3,370
Georgia 1,410
Florida 1,340
Illinois 860
Pennsylvania 860
Washington 850
Arizona 840
Ohio 780
New Jersey 700
Virginia 690
Massachusetts 620
Colorado 480
Missouri 440
Utah 420
Oklahoma 390
Kansas 390
Michigan 360
Arkansas 290
Maryland 290
Tennessee 270
Indiana 260
District of Columbia 260
Oregon 250
Delaware 230
Alaska 220
Connecticut 220
Kentucky 220
Mississippi 220
Minnesota 210
Wyoming 180
Montana 180
New Mexico 180
Louisiana 160
North Carolina 160
Nebraska 160
Hawaii 160
Puerto Rico 130
Wisconsin 130
Iowa 130
South Carolina 100
North Dakota 80
Rhode Island 70
South Dakota 70
Guam 50
Maine 50
Idaho 40
New Hampshire 40