Truck driver shortage. Bringing young people into the transport sector

The cases

Shortages of truck drivers have long been one of the major challenges affecting the transport sector.

Starting from the difficulties for road transport due to the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, with a reduction in transport volumes, up to the Russia-Ukraine conflict, which affected trade exchanges with the two countries. The driver shortage problem has intensified in 2021 and still persist throughout the world. 

In all the countries, the lack of qualified professional truck drivers and of new hires in the sector are the main causes of the truck drivers shortage. In Italy, road freight transport is an essential service for road haulage companies: the role of truck drivers is crucial in ensuring the supply, transport, and deliver of goods to warehouses, shops, and restaurants. Consequently, the lack of truck drivers has led to reduced vehicles availability on the roads, increased costs, and operational problems for transporters and freight forwarders. 

The President of FAI-Conftrasporto, Paolo Uggè, has sent a proposal to the European Parliament to deal with the truck driver shortage, with the aim of increasing the number of young aspiring drivers, paying attention to the following points: reduce the minimum age to 18 for professional drivers (already in force in the majority of EU countries); allow accompanied driving for professional driver candidates aged 17 for categories B, C and C1; recognition of the professional license (CPC) of some third countries. It remains essential to work on professional training courses to involve young Italians and help them to specialize in the transport sector.