Haulage companies are offering six-figure salaries and $15,000 sign-on bonuses while struggling to attract 80,000 new drivers who are needed to relieve the nation's supply crisis.
But industry experts said more drivers won't alleviate the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach backlog, where an empty shipping container fiasco is preventing trucks from moving product to consumers.
Facing an exodus of 600,000 retiring truckers by 2028, the transportation industry is desperate to recruit more people and estimates that 80,000 new hires are needed this year to offset attrition and clear a backed-up supply chain.
'I can tell you that pretty much every single one of our members – no matter what part of the industry they're in – is looking for drivers,' Chris Shimoda, senior vice president of government affairs at the California Trucking Association, told DailyMail.com.
'They are raising pay across the board, introducing things like signing and retention bonuses, trying to provide more local driving opportunities so that the drivers can be home with their families at night, but it's been a real struggle for several years.'