Truck driver turnover spikes

ARLINGTON, Va. – Large U.S. fleets saw driver turnover jump 9% in the third quarter, setting the highest mark since 2018 at 96%. The American Trucking Associations (ATA) reported the churn at small carriers also rose 6% to 73%. “Counterintuitively, we saw turnover rise even as the freight demand was relatively soft,” said ATA chief economist Bob Costello. “While turnover rose at both small and large carriers, the reasons were quite different.

Large carriers reduced the number of drivers they employed, in keeping with lackluster freight levels, but smaller carriers added to their driver pools, increasing their number of drivers by 1.9%. “During the first two quarters of the year, larger carriers added drivers, but in the third quarter they started right-sizing their fleets. Conversely, smaller companies increased their driver pool in the third quarter for the first time this year.”

Turnover at less-than-truckload carriers dropped four points to an annualized rate of 9% – the lowest level it has been at since the final quarter of 2017.

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