Conference Board of Canada says trucker shortage could threaten economy

CALGARY – Canada is heading for a severe trucker shortage and the Conference Board of Canada says Alberta could be hit particularly hard.

A study by the board says the driver shortage will threaten the country’s supply chain and the entire economy.

David Bradley, president of the Canadian Trucking Alliance, says many current drivers are set to retire and there are not a lot of candidates waiting in the wings.

He adds a trucker shortage would be bad for consumers, considering almost all goods are shipped in Canada by big rigs.

The study says that Canada could experience a shortage of about 30,000 truck drivers by 2020.

It also says a change in policy to recognize trucking as a skilled trade could attract more domestic and immigrant entrants into the industry.

“The food we eat, the goods that we enjoy and even the homes we live in are in large part delivered by trucks,” said researcher Vijay Gill.

“The inability to meet a huge demand for drivers could be costly for the trucking industry, consumer goods and the Canadian economy.”

(CHQR, The Canadian Press)