Illinois Has 16,000 Miles Of Roads To Plow, Needs Plow Drivers
Several states are facing a shortage of salt-truck and snowplow drivers going into the winter season, and what do you know---Illinois is one of them.
Outside of Illinois, Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Wyoming have found themselves coming up short in the plow and salt truck drivers department.
Understaffing Is A Problem Everywhere, But A Lack Of Plow Drivers Can Be Deadly
According to USA Today, even though Illinois needs salt and plow truck drivers, our needs aren't nearly as desperate as some other states. The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) says that they haven't seen a driver shortage like this in 30 years. They blame a competitive job market and private sector employers who offer sign-on bonuses as the main problem in hiring.
In Ohio, job applications for the seasonal jobs of plowing and salting are down 50 percent. Colorado's stable of snowplow drivers is down 20%.
The Illinois Department Of Transportation Is Taking Applications Right Now
As we sit inside and look out the window today, you can understand why IDOT wants to get the word out about the job openings for plow and salt truck drivers. As of this morning, IDOT had around 90 positions posted, paying part-time plow drivers $20.55 an hour. Salaried full-time winter maintainers can make $4,666 a month. Those positions are open all over the state. (click here for more information on applying)
If you prefer Wisconsin's winter scenery, Milwaukee is doing some serious searching for salt and plow truck drivers, too.
In Milwaukee, the city's Department of Public Works has reported that it is finding it "extremely challenging" to find workers to drive the snowplows amid a nationwide labor shortage and high competition for workers with commercial driver's licenses.
Milwaukee officials are hoping a $2.59 bump in minimum hourly pay will help head off what could be a dire staffing shortage that would likely require more time to clear snow from the roads.