Trucking industry desperate for drivers

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - As the job market steadily rebounds from the recession, the demand for truck drivers has hit an all time high. According to Travis Herbin, the jobs are everywhere.

"It's a broad base of jobs available in truck driving, and you don't have to wait around for it," said Herbin.

Herbin is not even done with his coursework at Charlotte Truck Driving School, and the jobs are looking for him. He says 3 jobs are already his for the taking.

CTDS trainer Don Crisp says the applicants just aren't there. "There's not enough drivers, there's too many open positions. They can't fill them all. I can't fill them all."

Crisp says there are hundreds of thousands of jobs available with big companies like Schneider, Swift and Werner. But too many people he says, can't meet the demands of a life on the road.

"I (they) have two small children a wife and I can't leave them for a week or two weeks at a time. That's very discouraging," said Crisp.

Crisp says many companies will adjust long haul schedules after a new driver has a few years behind the wheel. But he's concerned that's not enough.

"The coast of freight and materials is going to go up because there are not enough people to haul it."

The dollar signs point to a hard-core recruitment effort. Some companies are offering huge bonuses to lure new drivers. One company is offering a $7,500 bonus to drivers who are certified to haul certain loads.

Crisp says the Employment Securities Commission is the first place to start for those looking to work in trucking. He says some programs are available to assist in paying for driving school.