IRU: Demographic Disaster Affects Road Transport

The latest IRU research, based on the survey of 4,700 transport companies in Europe, Asia, and America, shows the scale of the driver shortage problem today and in the future. In the majority of the surveyed countries, the percentage of drivers under the age of 25 is 12% or less. At the same time, most regions have a high proportion of drivers over the age of 55.

The youngest age group accounts for more than 12% of all drivers only in China and Uzbekistan. In the first instance it is 17%, and in the second case it is 25%.

The situation in Europe is particularly dire: the average age of a driver is 47, and approximately one third of truck drivers are aged 55 or older. The proportion of the youngest drivers is also critically low: only 5% of truck drivers in Europe are younger than 25.

The situation in Russia is no less serious: the youngest drivers account for only 4% of truck drivers, while the oldest group accounts for 31% of all truck drivers.

The percentage of young drivers under the age of 25 in the USA increased from 6% in 2020 to over 8% in 2022.

Without a radical change in the situation, the future of the transportation industry looks quite alarming. A number of companies in Central Europe are beginning to hire employees from the Far East and Central Asia, i.e., regions with a slightly better driver demographic structure.