U.S. Program for Teens to Become Truck Drivers Amid Supply Chain Crisis


The shortage of truck drivers in the U.S is one of the major challenges affecting the auto transport industry. In an attempt to assist the trucking workforce, the government is considering a program that allows teen drivers to become truckers. The purpose of this is to alleviate the supply chain crisis which affects the auto transport industry.

The program, which was first introduced in 2020 by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), would allow drivers aged 18-20 years to drive commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in interstate commerce after concluding their probationary hours. However, they won’t be transporting passengers, hazardous materials or special configuration vehicles.

When the program was first proposed, the FMCSA released the eligibility requirements for young drivers to be qualified. Many states are now allowing 18 to 20-year-old CDL holders (Commercial Driver’s License to operate Commercial motor vehicles within state borders. The program is in a bid to bolster economic recovery by providing more skilled, safe, experienced drivers for employers.

Joe Biden’s Supply Chain Contribution

Last year, the Biden administration planned to strengthen the trucking workforce by creating more driving jobs that would attract a new generation of truckers while retaining the old ones. It was according to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law proposed in 2021, charging the FMCSA to launch an apprenticeship program a pilot for drivers between ages 18 and 20.

This program would allow employers to train young drivers between the ages of 18 and 20 to become experienced truckers. As a result, the trucking industry can have new generation truckers that will drive future supply chain. The purpose of the initiative is to make up for the shortage of truckers in the auto transport industry.

Amid economic recovery efforts, the Biden-Harris Administration also organized a task force in June 2020 called the Truck Action Plan to address the near-term supply chain bottleneck. The Departments of Transportation and Labor are also making efforts to increase access to commercial driver’s license (CDL). They are focused on putting more skilled and safe drivers on the road.

While the program is awaiting approval from the Office of Management and Budget, the FMCSA is seeking public opinion. According to FMCSA Deputy Administrator Wiley Deck, the essence of soliciting public opinions “is to guide their examination of the safety, feasibility and possible economic benefits of allowing 18 to 20-year old drivers to operate in interstate commerce.

Impact of the Program to Solve the Trucking Industry Bottlenecks

While some criticizes the proposal, the American Trucking Associations and the Commercial Vehicle Training Association have shown their support to FMCSA’s proposal. However, some safety organizations such as Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways expresses displeasure with the proposal. According to them, teen drivers are more distracted and have higher crash rates. They also indicate that teenagers are unable to correctly analyze dangerous situations.

In a way, the inflow of new young drivers into the trucking industry could be a short-term or even long-term fix to the current trucker’s shortage. Hence, the Safe Driver Apprenticeship pilot program by the FMCSA will train 3000 apprentices.

Supply Chain Crisis 2022

Shortage of semiconductor chips, car spare parts and automobile production were all results of the global supply chain disruption. This is due to the beginning of the pandemic when factories shut down and workers were in lockdown. Nearly everything was in shortage, including truckers, which placed more tension on the supply chain industry.

The trucking workforce plays a major role in the U.S supply chain industry. They are responsible for 72% of the goods shipped in the U.S. Amidst the supply chain crisis, a report estimate shows that long-haul full truckload drivers are currently working below their capacity – about 40% of their capacity is not being used. The factors responsible for this include the aging workforce, long wait hours at ports (often unpaid), willing retirement of truckers seeking better jobs.

In 2021, the truckers’ shortage deficit rose to a high of 80,000 drivers. The American Trucking Association believes that the deficit would grow to 160,000 drivers. This shortage has, in a way, contributed to the backlog experienced at major U.S. ports. The deficit will continue to grow without any feasible intervention. As such, the American Trucking Association (ATA), will require an influx of 1,000,000 new drivers to fix the deficit.

However, there seem to be regular issues stressing supply chain management. In a recent report, Michigan truckers states that the recent mandatory covid19 vaccination requirements for international drivers could hurt the auto transport industry even more. According to the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA), this measure will push out about 16,000 cross-border drivers. For an industry that lacks drivers, that is even terrible.

Ship Your Car with Metti International

The issue of trucker’s shortage has contributed to the skyrocketed price of car shipping. As a result, the few drivers left are saddled with more responsibility and may charge more for their services. This has also led to an increase in the costs of goods and services.

Once the proposed program is approved, it should help shrink the huge truckers’ deficit. The Department of Transportation has also nodded affirmation to the proposal by donating $32 million for states. This is to improve the commercial driving license process and ultimately the supply chain crisis. Most companies are also showing commitment to enhancing the pilot program.

At Metti International, we will always offer the best to our customers even with the ongoing shortage of drivers. We are an A+ rated business by the Better Business Bureau. Metti International is your trusted car shipping company with an extensive network of reliable auto carriers. As a licensed and bonded car shipping broker with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, we provide our customers with a seamless auto shipping experience.

In response to the supply chain issue, we always advise our customers to ship their vehicles through major routes to lower cost. At Metti International, we ensure that our customers get the best value by providing safe and timely auto shipping. We also offer competitive pricing for all our car shipping services.

Call us today on 866-620-1776 to schedule your auto transport and you will get an instant quote. You can also visit our website at www.mettiintl.com/

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Frequently Asked Questions

Most major credit cards, postal money orders and cashiers checks are acceptable forms of payment.

As with most transport services, a deposit is generally required when placing an order. Deposits range from 10-25 % of the total shipping cost. The remaining balance will be due upon delivery.

Most auto transport companies accept cash, certified checks, and postal money orders.

Coast to coast trips usually takes between 10-14 days. Shorter trips ranges from 3-7 days, depending on the actual distance. Some factors may delay a trip, including traffic, weather, and truck breakdowns.

Yes, we request you, or a designated person, be present upon pick up of your vehicle. For your safety and your vehicle’s safety, an inspection is performed and a bill of lading must be signed that serves as proof of delivery.

The easiest way to ship an inoperable vehicle is to let us know when requesting a vehicle transport quote. There will be an additional charge, plus loading and unloading charges to your quote, if we are not informed of the vehicle’s condition prior to quoting.

Auto carriers are not licensed to carry house goods or personal items, these goods and items are not covered by the carriers insurance. Any damage to your vehicle due to household goods shifting or breaking is also not covered. Personal belongings left in the vehicle, are shipped strictly at the owners risk. Carriers will not inventory any belongings left in the vehicle and will assume no responsibility.

Your car is insured for the Blue Book value the entire time it is on the truck. Clearly listed on your Shipping Order, Agreement and Bill of Lading are occurrences not covered. At the time of pick up, a condition report is filled out and signed by both the person turning the car over and the truck driver and you are given a copy.

Upon delivery of your vehicle, this same report is presented. You should compare the condition of the vehicle to the report thoroughly at that time. If you feel damage has occurred to your vehicle during delivery, you must note it on the report before you sign it and the driver leaves. Damage done in transit does not relieve the shipper of paying for transport service performed. Claims will be handled by the vehicle carrier and insurance companies.

Metti International offers door-to-door auto transport service where possible. However, there are instances that we cannot collect/deliver directly to the door due to the size of our auto carrier’s trucks. The size of your street may prohibit direct delivery to your door. Also, some towns and cities do not allow trucks on their residential streets. If the carrier cannot get to your door, he will deliver your vehicle to the next most convenient accessible location, such as the nearest major crossing street, a shopping mall or supermarket.

Please have a no more than 1/4 tank of fuel, remove all personal items from your vehicle and have it washed and cleaned so that the ensuing inspection is easily performed. If it is a convertible, T-top, sunroof, etc. make sure all openings are closed and prepared for changing weather. You can find additional tips on how to prepare your car for transport here.