Butler Tech officials cited the most recent information available from the Ohio Department of Employment and Family noting that there are 73,200 commercial trucking jobs in the state.
Butler Tech officials said there were 8,600 CDL driver jobs available in Ohio alone with about 231,100 openings planned nationwide for heavy-truck and tractor-trailer drivers each year, in average, over the decade.
More than 2 million people drive large trucks in the United States, according to 2019 data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. The trucking industry is short of 61,000 drivers, American Trucking Association (ATA) officials reported and said new drivers are needed to bolster an aging workforce.
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Only drivers 18 and over are eligible for the Butler Tech CDL program.
Forty-nine states and the District of Columbia allow drivers under the age of 21 to drive large trucks within state lines, according to the ATA. The federal interstate age limit is 21 for driving large trucks, defined as having a gross weight rating greater than 10,000 pounds.
The COVID-19 pandemic slashed the pipeline of new drivers when trucking schools closed for several months and restrictions on state motor vehicle offices slowed the process of obtaining commercial driver’s licenses said Kevin Burch, who was president of Jet Express Inc. before the Dayton. trucking company was sold to Martin Transportation Systems.
The Butler County vocational school system is one of the largest in Ohio and serves both mature high school students to learn a wide variety of vocational and vocational training and certifications through numerous partnerships with local industries and health care providers.
School officials said their new site, among other local CDL training providers, offers a five-week program to obtain a commercial driver’s license. The goal of BTS is to allow testing immediately after the training program ends, they said.
Michael Berding, president of the Butler Tech school board, said the expanded CDL program is “another example of Butler Tech responding to a workforce issue.”
“The new CDL test site cuts the wait time for your CDL exam from 4-6 months to about 3 days after graduation. Very proud of the work we do for adults in Butler County.” , said Berding.
Editor-in-chief Lynn Hulsey contributed to this story