Even the slightest sign that the trucking industry's revolving door might be slowing is welcome news for shippers and carriers. The latest driver turnover statistics from the American Trucking Associations (ATA) should give them reason for optimism.
During 2007's second quarter, the line-haul driver turnover rate among large, for-hire truckload (TL) carriers (with at least $30 million in annual revenue) declined for the first time in a year, according to the ATA. Large truckload carriers experienced a turnover rate of 116 percent (on an annualized basis) during the second quarter, down 11 percentage points from the first quarter's rate. Average turnover for TL fleets with less than $30 million in annual revenue fell to 90 percent, the lowest annualized rate in two years. Soft freight volumes and looser capacity most likely accounted for the decline, said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello.
Both large TL and LTL (less-than-truckload) fleets cut back their total employment during the second quarter, while small TL carriers essentially made no change in total employment, the ATA said.