Since the mass truck fire on the N3 Mooi River in 2018, the trucking industry has faced many challenges that have threatened not only the sustainability of the sector but, to some extent, the stability of the economy. African, said Anton Cornelissen, director of Santam. Heavy transport.
The past 18 months have not been easier for the industry, he said. “The continued sporadic truck fires and attacks on truck drivers, service delivery protests and looting, lockdowns and various restrictions associated with the Covid 19 pandemic have further crippled the industry.
“Due to restrictions and limitation on the transport of essential goods during the hard lockdown, carriers have seen their turnover drop dramatically, with most having to downsize and some even shutting down permanently. Those fortunate enough to be still operational now have to stretch their staff and meet deadlines, putting additional strain and fatigue on drivers due to long hours on the road – a major concern. “
Cornelissen added that due to recent extensions to the validity of expired driver’s licenses, most drivers have not had to undergo their medical exams to renew their Professional Driver’s License (PRDP), posing a danger to health and safety.
“These factors are evidenced by the increase in the number of accidents involving a single vehicle, which can be attributed mainly to driver error. This is the main reason why, in recent years, Santam has worked with the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) to advocate for the well-being of drivers.
What Truck Drivers Earn in South Africa
Despite these problems, the heavy transport industry still provides a stable income for thousands of South Africans.
The Ministry of Labor has published its the minimum salary for South Africans who drive as wholesale and retail truck drivers, in February 2021, with these changes taking effect from March.
According to the regulations, drivers are paid according to the region of South Africa where they are based:
|Zone A||Areas around Bergrivier, Breede Valley, Buffalo City, Cape Agulhas, Cederberg, City of Cape Town, City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality, City of Tshwane, Drakenstein, Ekurhuleni, Emalahleni, Emfuleni, Ethekwini Metropolitan Unicity, Gamagara, George, Hibiscus Coast, Karoo Hoogland, Kgatelopele, // Khara Hais, Knysna, Kungwini, Kouga, local authority Hessequa, Lesedi, Makana, Mangaung, Matzikama, Metsimaholo, Middelburg (Mpumalanga), Midvaal, Mngeni, Mogale, Mosselbaai, Msunduzi, Khubatama Mandela, Nokeng tsa Taemane, Oudtshoorn, Overstrand, Plettenbergbaai, Potchefstroom, Randfontein, Richtersveld, Saldanha Bay, Sol Plaatjie, Stellenbosch, Swartland, Swellendam, Theewaterskloof, Umdoni, uMhlathuze and Witzenberg.|
|Zone B||All zones not listed in zone A.|
For those who work as drivers, the maximum number of hours allowed per week is 45. Broken down into a five-day work week, which represents a maximum of nine hours per day.
Drivers can work overtime and agree to work six-day weeks, depending on the agreement they have with their employer.
|Pilot type||Zone A||Zone B|
|Lightweight (3,500 kg or less)||R4 229.22||R4 229.22|
|Medium (3,501 kg – 9,000 kg)||R 5,085.20||R4 229.22|
|Heavy (9,001 kg – 16,000 kg)||R 5,535.62||5,264.60 R|
|Very heavy (16,001 kg or more)||R6083.53||R 5,787.15|
It should be noted that these are minimum wages and do not reflect what more experienced drivers can earn in South Africa.
Drivers can also earn a lot more depending on the companies they drive for and the transportation they provide.
Data from the salary website Indeed shows that the basic salary of a truck driver is closer to 10,324 R per month in South Africa – about R124,000 per year.
Payscale’s comparative salary data shows that the average salary is slightly less than R98,225 per year, or 8,185 rand per month.
As South Africa’s trucking industry faces a crisis, a severe shortage of truck drivers in the US and UK has led more and more companies to bring in drivers from the UK. foreigner.
Craig Fuller, founder and CEO of data and information company Freightwave, said Bloomberg As companies increasingly turn to drivers from South Africa and Canada, as workers in these countries can often speak English, making it easier to obtain the necessary permit.
This was taken up by Arnoux Mare, Managing Director of Innovative Solutions Group, who said RSG that this is not a new trend and that South Africans have been in demand for some time.
UK government is seeking to make thousands of visas available to foreign workers in response to escalating crisis over fuel shortages and empty supermarket shelves, said Nicola Digby, senior consultant at a company specializing in immigration. Sable International.
“Workers of all nationalities are welcome to apply, the majority coming from the EU. Although the exact criteria for the program have not yet been released, it is expected that visas will fall under the T5 temporary worker category, ”she said.
“The government should also make 5,500 additional visas available to seasonal workers in the poultry industry.”
Bloomberg reported earlier this week that the UK had received just 127 applications from tanker drivers wishing to come to Britain, which Prime Minister Boris Johnson said illustrated the global driver shortage.
“What we said to the road haulage industry was good, give us the names of the drivers you want to bring in and we’ll settle the visas,” Johnson said on UKTN TV, after the UK announced a program to bring in migrant drivers to deal with a fuel and supply chain crisis.
“They’ve only produced 127 names so far.” Britain has said it is ready to issue a total of 5,000 short-term visas to fill critical gaps in its labor market, especially for the transport of fuel following major outages at fuel stations. service.