Legislation recently introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives would lower the age requirement for interstate transportation.
According to federal law, truckers must be at least 21 years old to transport goods across state borders. Many states, however, allow truckers between the ages of 18 to 20 to transport within the state.
Anyone under the age of 21 also is not permitted to transport cargo coming off of ships at port, even if they have a commercial driver’s license and drive semi-trucks elsewhere within their state, because picking up goods from a port is classified as interstate transportation. This is true even if the port is located in the same state as the distribution center or the final location.
The Supplying America Needs Truckers Aged 18 Act would eliminate the age requirement. The goal is to keep the supply chain moving leading up to Christmas by maximizing the labor force.
President Joe Biden opened some West Coast ports 24 hours a day, seven days a week in October in response to the supply chain crisis. A lack of drivers has made this decision ineffective, according to an article in Business Insider.
Seventeen members of the House introduced the bill.