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Some OEMs up Driver Rate; May be Temporary

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May 1, 2014 by   Leave a Comment

More than two weeks after recreational vehicle transport carriers gathered to discuss a driver shortage, some area manufacturers have increased their pay rates for drivers.

As reported by The Elkhart Truth, the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) on April 15 called a meeting at the RV/MH Hall of Fame where they encouraged transport firms to place ads recruiting drivers on www.findtherightjob.com, a national employment website. The RVIA estimated there were 25,000 to 30,000 finished units sitting around the Elkhart area awaiting delivery to dealers around the country and said about 2,000 more drivers were needed to eliminate a four- to six-week backlog.

But Shawn Shelt, manager at Southeastern Trailer Transport in Elkhart, said that solution failed to address the underlying issue behind the shortage: drivers aren’t paid enough.

Some of the manufacturers he works with this week increased their transport rates, and Southeastern Trailer Transport is passing the entire increase on to drivers, Shelt said.

“They’re making adjustments in the pay scale that more accurately reflect the cost of operating in today’s trucking industry,” Shelt said. “The response we’re getting from drivers who call in has been very positive.”

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