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Truck Driver Turnover Rate Dips in 4Q

4/11/2012 1:00:00 PM
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After a year of quarterly increases, the turnover rate for truck drivers at large truckload fleets unexpectedly dipped 1% to an annualized rate of 88%, American Trucking Associations said Wednesday.

The turnover rate for less-than-truckload fleets fell to just 7%, from 10% in the third quarter, the group said.

“This reprieve, while surprising, is likely temporary,� ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello said in a statement.

“As the economy continues to recover, freight volumes should continue to grow, which along with regulatory challenges related to hours-of-service and the government’s [Compliance, Safety, Accountability] fleet oversight program, will continue to cause the driver market to tighten and the turnover rate to rise,� he said.

Turnover among large truckload fleets had risen to 89% in last year’s third quarter, after bottoming out at 39% in the first quarter of 2010.

For all of 2011, the large truckload turnover rate averaged 83% — the highest average since 2007, when driver churn averaged 117%.

At small truckload firms — those with less than $30 million in annual revenue — the turnover rate dipped to 55%, from 57% in the previous quarter, ATA said.

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Emil Estafanous, CPA, CFF, CGMA