Truckers are the backbone of America’s infrastructure.

Truckers are the backbone of Americas infrastructure.

John Brierley

American industry could easily fall apart if only this one group of workers decided that they’ve had enough of their jobs. If that doesn’t sound bad enough those same people are overworked, underpaid, and probably not too happy. 

Who’s this “all important” set of workers you ask? Well you’ve probably seen them more than you may expect. They’re truckers. Trucking is the heart of almost all American industries, without it we wouldn’t live in a world like we do currently. In only a single year all truckers deliver over 671 billion dollars worth of goods. You read that right, no need to go back, that’s a whole heck of a lot of money. For perspective you could buy you, your family, and your family friends all a private island with that kind of cash. Maybe you don’t really care about the massive heaps of money that Jeff Bezos and his other rich pals make from trucker’s work. That’s fine, because their work impacts your day to day life too. 

If all trucking were to stop in America for only 12 hours, fuel would become scarce, hospitals would start to run out of food and supplies, and packages would be delayed. If it were to stop for a day fuel would be an even bigger problem, causing prices to skyrocket, and you would have to wait for an uncomfortably long time to fill up your gas tank. After just a few days forget it, it would be like a zombie apocalypse just broke out. Police, fire, and EMTs would be unable to go anywhere since their vehicles wouldn’t have gas because, you guessed it, all the gas would be gone. There would be shortages of important goods like food, clean water, and other products that are needed for, you know, living. This would cause massive panic and probably a fun amount of rioting until the national guard or a similar force got things under control.  

Okay so truckers are just a little important, but what makes me say they are overworked or underpaid? Well, on average, a trucker earns only a little over 50k a year to sit in an uncomfortable truck for up to 11 hours a day without a break. Don’t forget that when they finally get to stop and rest they aren’t eating dinner with their family and cracking a beer to watch football or the news. They’re getting food from whatever restaurant they can find. They’re finding a safe place to park. They’re finding somewhere that they can shower. After all that work just to stop working they may end up with only a few hours left to actually sleep. Oh and they only have to do this for up to 300 days out of the whole year. Yea, that’s a lot of time away from home. 

So to summarize, the people that are solely responsible for stopping everything from going to crap are the same people that work insane hours, are uncomfortable during and after those long hours, away from their families almost all of the year, and hardly paid enough to justify any full time work let alone something like this.