Indiana truck companies back proposed law allowing younger drivers to cross state lines

JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (WDRB) -- A major truck driver shortage is affecting more than just trucking companies, and now an Indiana lawmaker is backing legislation aimed at allowing younger CDL drivers to make deliveries across state lines.

Currently, federal law says 18- to 21-year-olds can be certified truck drivers, but it's still illegal for them to cross state lines while driving.

On Monday, Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R-Indiana) joined leaders at Mister P Express, along with with officials from several other organizations including the Indiana Motor Truck Association, to introduce the Drive Safe Act, a bill he is co-sponsoring. 

The legislation would give 18- to 21-year-olds the opportunity to better benefit their companies by being able to drive to other states.

Right now, a shortage of truck drivers across the country is impacting Indiana -- slowing deliveries, preventing products from getting on shelves, and making it difficult to run a trucking company.

Hollingsworth said the Drive Safe Act will give people a great career without having thousands of dollars in college loan debt.

"The opportunity is going to afford 18- to 21-year-olds to be able to grow themselves, develop a skill and empower them to rely on a career that will benefit them for the rest of their lives,” he said.

Prospective new truck drivers would go through 400 hours of apprenticeship training with an experienced driver to learn about the technology and safety behind having a CDL license.

The legislation is currently in the U.S. House.

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