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Introduction to the Trucking Industry

Despite the fact that trucks and the trucking industry are pervasive and essential parts of contemporary life, the actual structure of the industry is complex. In addition the the resources below, Dr. Belzer has also revised the introduction to his monograph Truck Driver Occupational Safety and Health.


“Truck drivers are overtired, overworked and underpaid.” The Conversation. July 25, 2018. Read more

Burks, Stephen V., Michael H. Belzer, Kwan Quon, Stephanie G. Pratt, and Sandra Shackelford. 2010. Trucking 101: An Industry Primer. In TRB Transportation Research Circular E-C146, edited by Transportation Research Board Committee on Trucking Industry Research (AT060). Washington: Transportation Research Board. December 22. 68 pages.

Truck Driver Occupational Safety and Health: 2003 Conference Report and Selective Literature Review. 2007. With Gregory M. Saltzman. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Department of Health and Human Services Publication No. 2007-120. 117 pages.

Panel on the Review of the Compliance, Safety, and Accountability (CSA) Program of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Committee on National Statistics, Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education, Transportation Research Board, & National Academies of Sciences - Engineering - Medicine. (2017). Improving Motor Carrier Safety Measurement. Washington: National Academies Press. ISBN 978-0-309-46201-3 | DOI 10.17226/24818. Summer 2017. With Panel members Joel B. Greenhouse, Sharon-Lise Normand (Committee Co-Chairs), Dan Blower, Linda Boyle, Michael Daniels, Don Hedeker, Brenda Lantz, Dan McCaffrey, Brisa Sanchez, Robert Scopatz, and Juned Siddique.


"Building Back Better in Commercial Road Transport: Markets Require Fair Labor Standards." Presented to the US Department of Transportation: Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Council, July 19, 2021. Download

"Pay Rates and Motor Carrier Safety" Presented to Transportation Research Board, ACS60, Truck and Bus Safety Committee,

January 15, 2020 Download

"Truck Drivers are Overtired, Overworked, and Underpaid."Presented to Wayne State University, January 25, 2019. Download

In the News

“The Trouble With Trucking: Want to understand how workers so often get a raw deal, even during a growing economy? Ask long-haul truckers”, The Editorial Board, The New York Times, August 11, 2018. Read more

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