Professional truck drivers drive more than 400 billion miles on the road each year, according to the American Trucking Association estimates. The trucking industry transports more than 10 billion tons of freight every year, which is more than two-thirds of the total freight tonnage transported in the nation (rail transportation accounts for about 13 percent of the nation’s freight tonnage).
There are approximately 3.5 million professional truck drivers in the United States, according to estimates by the ATA. The total number of people employed in the industry surpasses 8.7 million, and about one of every 15 workers in the country is employed in the trucking business, according to the ATA. These figures clearly show that trucking is an exceptionally stable industry that is likely to continue generating jobs in the coming years.
According to the ATA, an annual shortage exists in the field. By 2016, companies in the U.S. are expected to be creating as many as 115,000 job openings for truck drivers yearly. The demand for new truck drivers is growing more quickly than the number of drivers who are entering the profession. Job growth among heavy truck drivers and tractor-trailer drivers is expected to grow by 21 percent by 2020 compared with 2010, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Department of Labor projects that truck drivers will account for 43 percent of the growth in logistics jobs in the coming years.