New training program drives work-life balance for local truck drivers
A new program is putting new truckers on the fast track to the driver's seat.
Timothy Inman recently retired from the Army after 22 years of active duty. He used the G.I. Bill to get his Commercial Driver's License. And for a few months, he took long trips over the road, but he missed his family.
“That's not too conducive to a good home life,” he said.
Tyler Harris, Safety Director at A&M Carriers, said that's one reason for a truck driver shortage.
“There is a 180,000-driver shortage in this country right now, and that's only projected to substantially grow over the next 10 years,” Harris said.
Inman was tired of being away from home, so he signed up for A&M Carrier's Driver Finishing program.
“We're a regional and local carrier, so our guys are out a couple times during the week and home every weekend,” Harris said.
Most small, local companies like A&M wouldn't hire drivers with only a few months experience. because insurance companies don't want to cover new drivers. But A&M cut a deal. It would hire a driver like Inman with a CDL and only three-to six-months experience or a military veteran with experience driving a heavy vehicle and then give that person additional training.
“Our goal is to catch them before they give up on the industry,” Harris said
The program starts in a classroom for one week, and they’re shadowed on the road for five weeks. Inman is the first graduate of A&M Carrier's program.
“I just finished my first solo run from here to Frankfort picking up a load of parts, and as soon as you're done with me, I'm going to run them to Hopkinsville and drop them off,” Inman said.
He said the training program allowed him to see his son graduate high school and follow his dream of working on the open road after two decades of serving our country.
To learn more information about the driver finishing program or to apply to A&M Carrier, call 270-763-9249 or email Harris at t.harris@AMCarriers.com.
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