Americas

Biden considers National Guard for trucking amid supply chain crisis

There are a lot of problems with not enough drivers, says US president

Servet Günerigök   | 22.10.2021
Biden considers National Guard for trucking amid supply chain crisis

WASHINGTON

The US is considering using the National Guard for transporting goods via trucks amid supply chain bottlenecks, President Joe Biden said Thursday.

In a town hall with CNN, Biden said there are a lot of problems with not enough drivers and he had a timetable, without elaborating.

When asked if the Biden administration will have national guardsmen or women drive trucks, he said: "The answer is yes, if we can't move to increase the number of truckers, which we're in the process of doing."

The president said the administration has to get to small businesses as well as big companies "because the big guys are in trouble.”

His remarks came a day after American Trucking Associations (ATA) President and CEO Chris Spear told CNN that the US trucking industry is short 80,000 drivers to support the nation's massive supply chain.

While the figure is a record, it is also a 30% increase compared to the pre-pandemic level, when the industry had a labor shortage of 61,500 drivers.

"That's a pretty big spike," said Spear.

The shortage of truck drivers comes as some are leaving the sector or retiring, against the rising demand for consumer goods and their transportation.

Supply chain bottlenecks have become a major issue in the post-pandemic period, while US ports are also backlogged with fewer drivers.

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