Consumerism – The surprising reasons why truck drivers wait hours unpaid

“Truck drivers lose up to $1.3B a year in wages due to detention time” – 2018 Study

Detention time, which means waiting around without getting paid, is a strange part of being a trucker. Most people outside of trucking don’t know about this annoying waste of time. According to data from FreightWaves SONAR, truck drivers spend about 119 minutes waiting to load or unload during each pickup or drop-off. At first, they wait for free for up to two hours, and then they get paid for every extra hour they wait.

This waiting time isn’t just inefficient; it’s also unsafe. A study from the U.S. Department of Transportation found that truck drivers lose $1.1 billion to $1.3 billion in earnings because of detention time. And for every 15 minutes they wait, the chance of having an accident goes up by 6.2%. Isaias Sanchez, a truck driver, says this is a big safety problem because truckers rush to get back on the road and can cause accidents.

Why do truckers have to wait so long? It comes down to a few reasons:

  • Warehouses don’t have enough workers.
  • Many warehouses are old and need updates.
  • Big companies aren’t in a hurry to fix these problems.

Warehouses need more workers, but even though pay has gone up, it’s still hard to find enough people to work there. The work is tough, with long hours and high chances of getting hurt.

There are two main ways trucks get loaded:

  • Drop-and-hook: The driver just hooks up to a new trailer, and workers load or unload it without the driver being there. This is faster.
  • Live load: The driver waits while workers load or unload the truck, which takes longer.

Drop-and-hook is becoming more common, but it needs more space, which is a problem for older warehouses. And as the number of products and sizes grows, warehouses get overwhelmed.

How Retail is Involved

Over time, there are more and more people buying stuff in the United States. And companies are selling a ton of different products, which they keep track of with something called stock-keeping units, or SKUs. But there’s a problem: there are so many SKUs now that it’s hard to control. Companies stop selling some SKUs each year, but they keep adding new ones. Some products aren’t even that popular, but stores keep them around for certain groups of shoppers in different areas.

All this buying and selling is good news for regular shoppers, but it can mess up the way things get to stores. “Depending on how old the plants are, their facilities were designed for a very limited number of offerings,” Haddock said. “Now those facilities are just overwhelmed with the amount of complexity.”

Eventually, retailers end up paying for detention time, either by updating their warehouses or paying trucking companies more. But in the end, it’s consumers who often pay for detention time because it adds to the cost of products.

We Know The Industry

With over 20+ years in the trucking insurance industry Cook Insurance Group combines national reach with local service to address the needs of large fleet, small fleet, single owner and tow trucking operations, and to charter bus lines. We ONLY serve the Trucking industry, providing the best trucking insurance. Let our friendly, bi-lingual staff help you find the right insurance protection at the right cost.

Cook Insurance Group is dedicated to meeting the needs of both small and large fleet trucking companies. Our reps handle every aspect of your program, ensuring you have the best trucking insurance plan for your specific needs. We work closely with you to manage your plan on an ongoing basis.

At Cook Insurance Group, we provide immediate certificate and ID card insurance, including 24/7 certificate availability. We leverage our client portal which allows you to access and issue certificates, check claim status and view policies. Cook Insurance Group is prompt and reliable, including 24-hr claims reporting. (Physical Damage and Motor Truck Cargo). We also provide educational seminars for management and drivers of companies.

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Choose Cook Insurance Group for all of your trucking insurance needs whether you are located in Texas, Arizona or Arkansas.

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