The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) hosted the inaugural meeting of the Women of Trucking Advisory Board (WOTAB), where members discussed the results of a new FMCSA report on driver safety. The new Advisory Board, created by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, is composed of 16 founding members with diverse backgrounds in the industry, and is focused on recruiting, retaining, supporting, and ensuring the safety of women commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers and strengthening the trucking industry as a whole.
Collectively, WOTAB members have more than 80 years of driving experience with trucks, motorcoaches, and ports and more than 275 years in trucking and other modes of transportation. Currently, women make up just seven percent of all truck drivers on the road today.
FMCSA conducted its survey, Crime Prevention for Truckers, to better understand the nature and prevalence of harassment and assaults against truckers, specifically women and minorities. The report details harassment, threats of harm, or actual physical harm perpetrated against truckers, their possessions, vehicles, or cargo.
The survey found that female truck drivers are exposed to more sexual harassment at their companies or by their trainers than their male counterparts. In addition, roughly half of the harassment incidents go unreported due to concerns that reporting the incident would not make a difference.
The Women of Trucking Advisory Board will use the results of this survey and other data, as well as the firsthand experience of its 16 women members, to make recommendations and discuss the next steps regarding the findings on harassment, assaults, and crimes being committed against women truckers.
President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law created the Advisory Board to review and report on policies that provide education, training, mentorship, and outreach to women in the trucking industry and identify barriers and industry trends that directly or indirectly discourage women from pursuing and retaining careers in trucking.