According to a recent poll, more than half of Canadians consider trucks to be the most important form of transportation for the country’s economy.
According to the majority of Canadians surveyed by Abacus Research (51%), trucking is far more important than rail (19%), air (18%), and marine (13%), as a means of transporting goods across Canada. Approximately three-quarters of Canadians (76%) consider trucks to be either the most or second-most important mode of transport for goods.
Regarding the importance of moving goods, respondents in Saskatchewan/Manitoba thought trucks were more important than any other mode (59%) and an astounding 93% of respondents in those provinces ranked trucks in the top two. Most respondents across all regions, genders, ages, and supporters of all significant federal political parties ranked trucking in the top two modes.
“During the pandemic, Canadian truck drivers were widely acknowledged as vital workers. But it’s abundantly clear that even as things return to normal, the trucking industry and our devoted truck drivers’ contribution to Canadians’ daily lives continue to be highly valued and appreciated, according to Stephen Laskowski, president of the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA).
The vast majority of Canadians are also aware of how the current labour and driver shortage in the trucking industry is directly impacting the supply chain and impeding the delivery of goods to retail markets.
65 percent of Canadians believe that there is a severe (25%) or moderate (40%) labour shortage in the trucking industry. The trucking labour shortage was most pronounced in Quebec, where 38% of respondents rated it as “severe.” Only 2% of respondents across all provinces claim that there is no shortage at all in the industry.
96% of Canadians agree that labour shortages in trucking and logistics have a more significant impact on Canada’s supply chain and ability to deliver food to consumers than do labour shortages in the agricultural sector. 67 respondents predicted a significant impact from the shrinking labour pool in the trucking industry, while 28% predicted a less significant impact.
With 72% and 74% of respondents from British Columbia and Alberta indicating that trucking labour would have a major impact on food supply disruptions, respectively, these states appear to be the most concerned. This is higher than the national average of 67%.
In every province, age group, and gender in Canada, more than 60% of respondents said they believed that trucking labour shortages were seriously affecting the food supply chain. And over 90% of respondents in each category concur that there has been a major or minor impact. Women seem to be the most concerned, as 71% of them think there will be a significant impact, compared to 63% of men.
67% of respondents who were asked whether the current shortage of retail goods is directly related to the lack of truck drivers’ labour agreed that it is, with 23% noting a “severe” impact and 44% noting a “moderate” one. Another 18% think there may be a tenuous link. Only 3% of respondents claimed there is no effect at all.
In every survey category, more than half of respondents claimed that there is either a severe or moderate correlation between trucking capacity and shortages of retail goods.
According to Jonathan Blackham, director of policy & public affairs for the CTA, “the impact of the truck driver shortage on the Canadian public and their ability to access food and other crucial products is very real and it is not going unnoticed.” “There is no question that the Canadian public has drawn a link between a decline in trucking jobs, issues with the supply chain, and product shortages on store shelves. Acting is now necessary.
The CTA hired Abacus to conduct the survey. It was conducted between October 21 and October 26 with 1,500 Canadians who were at least 18 years old.