Doug Robinson: Truckers are a dying breed

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  • Samson01 S. Jordan, UT
    March 18, 2014 4:41 p.m.

    Actually Roland, the laws of Supply and Demand are in full effect. You just described it! This has hit other industries as well (construction and any type of maintenance work come to mind). The influx of illegal immigrants and their subsequent status leaves them a population to exploit. Illegal immigration hurts the immigrant and the US Citizen worker.

    We blame capitalists for choosing their lowest price option but we as a people are no different. Buy anything at Harbor Freight lately?

    To Real Maverick's point...We need the government to have AND enforce common sense immigration law. I disagree with his "Too little.." list but controlling our borders is a legitimate function of our federal government that they have been sorely negligent in.

    As for truckers and unions, when the shortage starts eating into a company's bottom line...The conditions of employment will change. Until then, why should it?

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    March 18, 2014 3:42 p.m.

    This is a good example of WHY I am no longer a Republican.

    Union Busting,
    Out sourcing,
    the demise of America's Middle Class,
    and yet --

    The money IS there,
    WallStreet and it's greedy Mega-Billaires are at an all time High right now off of the sweat of the Laborers who are actually doing all the producing.

    These are the real "takers" of the our economic system.

    And it runs diametrically opposed to God's Law of the Harvest.

    Gadianton's -- every single one of them.

    Which is why I oppose them.

  • Roland Kayser Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 18, 2014 1:55 p.m.

    To Henry Drummond: I hope you are correct, but in our current economy the law of supply and demand seems to have no effect on wages for working people. They'll bring in Mexican trucks and truckers to replace our "highly paid" American workers before they'll agree to raise wages for Americans.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    March 18, 2014 1:14 p.m.

    The biggest lie being spewed on fox and am radio is that we have too much government in our lives. In reality, we have too little government in our lives.

    Too little regulation on Wall Street.
    Too little regulation on the banks.
    Too little regulation on health insurance to make sure they aren't gouging us.
    Too little regulation on industry.
    Too little regulation on commodities to make sure they aren't gouging us with high gas prices despite supply being sky high.
    Too little regulation on payday loan lenders.
    Too little assistance in protecting the American worker.

    If you let the "free market" decide then 99 percent of us turn into slaves. That's why government was created to help level the playing field. Teddy Roosevelt must be rolling in his grave seeing what the Koch bros and GOP has done to America.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    March 18, 2014 1:11 p.m.

    I think you will see the wages of truckers rise over the next ten years. This is one job you simply can't outsource. As other people have pointed out, trucking is not one of the success stories of deregulation.

  • cjmarley Mansfield, OH
    March 18, 2014 12:08 p.m.

    Drivers need to take the skin cancer problems very seriously. I lost my trucker husband to malignant melanoma. It was his second round of it having had it first in the Army (again in a profession that had him constantly exposed to sunlight. Lesson learned for me so when I started driving I kept a can of sunscreen with me. Carry sunscreen my friends! Protect your skin!

  • Steve Cottrell Centerville, UT
    March 18, 2014 11:30 a.m.

    Add Pacific Intermountain Express (PIE) to the list of trucking companies no longer in business..

  • TruckerDesiree Palm Beach Gardens, FL
    March 18, 2014 11:09 a.m.

    So true! The vital job of the truck driver means they sacrifice daily to bring comfort to everyone else. The "lifestyle" is to live in a truck, generally only get paid when the wheels are turning, have time wasted by shippers/receivers when loads are not ready, knowing the federal clock is ticking of how many hours you can drive in a day IF you are still able to and not too tired OR have your carrier tell you drive anyways in violation. Truckers are often UNwelcomed to park which severely limits exercise ability and choice of food. Current training system is poor, unsafe, wages are comparable to being a fast food worker, sometimes lower when you calculate the hours you are way from home. The public needs to see that professional drivers serve their country. They should not have to fend for themselves each day for safe parking, a decent shower, toilet facilities and healthy food. It takes a very special person to do this type of work. The public needs to become more aware that “industry” has been compared to "sweatshops on wheels" and "indentured servitude operation" at some of the big carriers who lure in new entrants.

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    March 18, 2014 11:06 a.m.

    No problem. I'm sure Google can come up with a semi that can drive itself.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    March 18, 2014 10:27 a.m.

    Deregulation destroyed the lives of truckers, and also a lot of great companies like IML.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    March 18, 2014 8:58 a.m.

    One more remark. The plight of truck drivers illustrates the fate of labor when it does not have effective representation, e.g. the Teamsters. Where the Teamsters are, there is some relief. Where they are not, especially owner-operated rigs, the working conditions are brutal. The owner-operated rig should be an ideal, you know individual owned enterprise. But it isn't because they have to contract with a big operator and that is not a equal pairing. There's a lesson here - without union representation, labor's situation deteriorates badly.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    March 18, 2014 8:43 a.m.

    Seem that value is messed up when we pay sport gladiators millions but the guys that bring food to us are treated like a dime a dozen.

  • stevo123 slc, ut
    March 18, 2014 7:41 a.m.

    A lot of tobacco use too, and that does not help.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    March 18, 2014 7:24 a.m.

    When I was a young kid I had an uncle I really looked up to. Because of him I wanted to be a Bishop and a truck driver. He was a very cool guy, and family diners at his house were awesome. All I can say in hindsight is be careful what you wish for - you might get it. Fortunately for me I didn't get all what I asked for.... but close enough...

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    March 18, 2014 12:41 a.m.

    And owner-operator truckers are treated like dirt by the trucking outfits they contract with. A few years back I was on an Amtrak train between NY and Chicago. In the diner across from me at breakfast was such an owner-operator. He described in great detail how slight his margins were and how badly guys like him were treated. Truck driver schools are always advertising, because so many can't take the abuse. They shouldn't have to.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    March 17, 2014 9:29 p.m.

    Airline pilots and Train crew workers, Do they work this many hours? And are they away from there families as long. Pilots I think work 16 days a month and Railroad Engineers and Conductors probably work similar schedules. Train crews are probably gone more than airline pilots.

  • Roland Kayser Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 17, 2014 9:12 p.m.

    Here's another fact about truckers: Following the deregulation of the trucking industry, wages for drivers fell by almost 40%. We have a shortage of truckers according to this piece. The so-called free market should have an easy solution: pay them like they used to.