Everything and anything at one time or another has most likely been moved by truck before it makes its way to you. The groceries you buy at your local market, the gas you pump at your neighbourhood service station...the Canadian trucking industry moves 90 percent of all consumer products and foodstuffs within the country.
The industry is large, dynamic and growing. It consists of for-hire carriers, private carriers, owner-operators and courier firms that are differentiated by fleet size, equipment type, geographic scope, services offered, and freight carried. Carriers that provide interprovincial or international trucking services are under federal jurisdiction, while carriers that operate solely within a province fall within that province's jurisdiction.
Working in Trucking
Trucking work is more than driving trucks. Many workers support road operations to ensure everything arrives safely and on time. The industry has a wide range of functional and supervisory/management positions, each with its own rewards.There are occupations in:
- Driving: pick-up and delivery drivers, short-haul and long-haul drivers, driver trainers and supervisors, fleet and operations managers
- Vehicle maintenance: truck and transport mechanics, truck and trailer technicians, parts technicians, wheel and tire technicians, autobody repairpersons, weldors, shop supervisors
- Cargo management: forklift operators, dock workers and supervisors, terminal managers, warehouse managers
- Support operations: dispatchers, safety and loss prevention specialists, sales and fuel tax administrators, rate clerks, pricing analysts, licensing and permits specialists, freight claims specialists, traffic managers.
Skills & Training
Most positions do not require specific trucking-related training, as most training takes place on the job.
However, professional drivers must have a Class A or a Class 1 licence and be formally trained by a truck driver training school. Training costs vary from a few thousand dollars to $8,000 - $12,000 for more extensive training. The length of the program and the quality of the training school are important. Top carriers tend to align themselves with reputable training schools, and insurance companies may offer premium reductions for drivers trained in recommended schools.