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The problem of the lack of human resources in the German transport industry intensifies. There are no young drivers, while older ones will soon retire. German Road Safety Council (DVR) supports the introduction of C+E driving licence for 17-year-olds.

German transport associations are raising the alarm.

 In the next 15 years 2/3 of drivers will retire – warns Markus Olligschläger from the German logistics association DSLV.

Out of 1.5 million drivers who had the driver card last year, over million are older than 45 years old.

According to Olligschläger, on average, truck drivers retire at the age of 60 so the industry should get ready for an even bigger crisis associated with lack of personnel, especially since the demand for road transport is increasing. The European Commission estimates that the transport of goods will increase by approx. 40 percent by 2030 (compared to 2005) and by slightly more than 80 percent in 2050.

In the face of such a serious problem the idea of introducing the C+E driving license from the age of 17 becomes more and more popular amongst German forwarders.

This time it appeared thanks to the entrepreneurs from the transport industry, Peter Bassen, who, despite the strenuous attempts and intensive actions, has found no willing apprentices.

He hopes that lowering the age limit would encourage more young people to educate themselves in that direction. The faster they would earn the experience, the faster they could start working. Combined with good earnings this could increase the attractiveness of the profession in the eyes of the German youth.

According to the suggestion, 17-year-olds would have to spend the first months of works in company of the more experienced colleagues.

 Education begins at the age of 16 so we should not keep such a student in the garage for two years so that they have something to do – stresses Bassen.

DSV approves

Right now 17-year-olds can only get a license for passenger cars. German Road Safety Council (DSV) positively evaluated this solution. Therefore, they suggested a similar one for licenses to driver trucks. As reported by the German media, the government representatives got involved in the case. We will keep you up-to-date on further details.

No human resources in transport in Poland and other countries

In our country there is only 650 thousand professional drivers. According to the report drawn up by the advisory firm PricewaterhouseCoopers in cooperation with the employers’ association „Transport i Logistyka Polska” [Transport and Polish Logistics] Poland needs approximately 100 thousand more truckers. The average Polish driver is a 40-year-old with a 13-years of experience. In the researched group there were relatively little very young people – the involvement of drivers aged 18 to 24 is not even 1%. The 25-34, 35-44 and 45-54 age groups account for approx. 30% The oldest truckers, older than 55, amount for approx. 5%.

The situation in Poland appears to be slightly less worrying than in other countries, such as Germany or Spain.

According to data of the General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) in Spain there is approximately 250 thousand drivers and 44 percent of them are over 50 (42 thousand aged 50-54, 40 thousand aged 55-59 and 32 thousand in the 60-64 range).

What do you think about the suggestion? Would this help them with lack of human resources?

Editorial team comments:

In Germany the problem of the lack of human resources in the transport industry has existed for years. It is similar in the case of the lack of appropriate infrastructure which would be able to support the growing number of road transports. As confirmed by the toll statistics, traffic on German roads is still growing, although there is less and less trucks to the great dissatisfaction of Germans.

Unfortunately, they believe that the cause of this decline is not the shortage of workers in the transport industry but the supposed social dumping by Eastern European companies.

If our neighbours from the West devoted as much energy on promoting the work in transport and the improvement of the infrastructure as on expelling the Eastern carriers from the European market, their real problems would be resolved long ago.


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