A new pilot project in the U.S. is allowing drivers under the age of 21 to operate trucks across state lines. As a business owner, having a team to meet your needs is essential. However, you also need to be sure your commercial auto insurance is in place. Protecting inexperienced drivers is essential. Here’s what you need to know and do to ensure this happens.
What Are the New Laws?
The federal government is piloting a new project to determine the safety of allowing truck drivers between the ages of 18 and 21 to cross state lines. Doing so means these drivers may take on larger and longer roles. The change is due to the ongoing truck driver shortage. With experienced drivers leaving the industry, having a younger driver to fill in the gap creates risks. It puts younger drivers at risk of causing more accidents, too. This is simply due to their inexperience.
The Department of Transportation’s pilot does have a number of limitations. It limits these drivers to those who are in the national guard or have some military experience to operate these vehicles for private trucking companies.
What You Need to Do?
If you are a commercial company, you may wish to tap into these drivers. It could help you better meet your needs. Keep the following in mind as you consider this.
- Be sure your commercial auto insurance policy reflects these younger drivers.
- Communicate with your insurer who you are hiring. Beyond age, this also includes the type of experience these drivers have.
- Incorporate advanced training for these drivers. This type of training gives your company the ability to ensure these drivers can remain safe on the road.
- Pay attention to changes in the law. This pilot project could expand to include other young drivers. It could revert back to previous laws.
- Do not simply hire. Hire for skill and experience. Making wise hiring decisions can determine the best outcome for you.
Inexperienced drivers can be good employees. They can help your company to achieve its goals. However, putting a bit more attention into these drivers is essential. It is the only factor giving you the confidence to know these drivers are safe. Speak to your commercial auto insurance professional at 844-524-4744. Be sure they know the changes you are making. Hiring well can help minimize any risks you have.
Also Read: Trucking Insurance For New Drivers: What to Expect