Truck driving is essential to keep our country functioning. The trucking industry statistics in this article show the impact drivers have and also provide interesting information about transportation trends.
American Trucking Associations
The statistics in this section are from 2019 and the American Trucking Associations (ATA) reported them. This organization advocates for the trucking industry and collects data related to freight transport. You can find their most recent Economics and Industry Data report here.
- The industry brought in $791.7 billion in gross revenues. This total includes private shipments only and accounts for 80.4% of the freight bill for the United States.
- Semi-trucks transported 72.5% of domestic tonnage. This added up to 11.84 billion tons of freight.
- In addition to freight within the country, the trucking industry transported 67.7% of surface trade by value between the United States and Canada. Trucks also moved 83.1% of surface trade by value between the United States and Mexico.
- There were 36.9 million trucks registered and used for business purposes, which is 24.2% of all trucks in the country. 3.91 million of these are Class 8 trucks, which includes tractor-trailers and straight trucks.
- Registered trucks drove 304.9 million miles and combination trucks (including tractor-trailers) drove 184.2 miles. (These numbers are from 2018 instead of 2019.)
- 7.95 million people were employed in positions related to the trucking industry. 3.6 million of these individuals were truck drivers.
American Community Survey
The United States Census Bureau conducts the American Community Survey and this collects data about population, employment, and housing. The following statistics come from 2017 and can be found on the Census Bureau’s website.
- The median age for truck drivers is 46 years old. Comparatively, the median age for all workers is 41.
- Approximately one in ten truckers is a veteran, which is double the rate for the workforce as a whole.
- Men hold 90% of trucking jobs, but more women are entering the industry and this number is beginning to change.
- Truckers under 35 are more likely to come from urban areas.
- Truck drivers are less likely to be unemployed compared to workers in other industries.
Bureau of Transportation Statistics
The Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) collects data about transportation in the United States. They release an annual report, Freight Facts and Figures, that includes this information. The most recent statistics are from 2018 and are available here.
- 16.8% of goods in the nation (measured by the value of the products) travel more than 1,000 miles to reach their destination.
- Out of all modes of transportation, trucking contributes the most to our country’s gross domestic product (GDP).
- Tractor-trailers moved all of the top 10 types of commodities. They also transported more time-sensitive and high-value products compared to other methods of moving freight.
Truck Driving Jobs at DSW
If you would like to become part of the trucking industry, DSW is hiring qualified drivers for our fleet.