New ATRI Research Identifies Strategies for Mitigating Women Truck Driver Challenges


June 18, 2024

Contact: Abbigail Huffman


Washington D.C. – The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) today released new research identifying approaches to increase the number of women truck drivers entering and staying in the industry.  After quantifying six key challenge areas facing women truck drivers, the research lays out an action plan for the industry – with discrete steps for motor carriers, truck driver training schools and truck drivers – all designed to make trucking careers more attractive to women.

This research was identified by ATRI’s Research Advisory Committee in March of 2023 as a top priority to help further understand the challenges women drivers encounter.  The research then promulgates specific strategies that the industry can implement to increase the relatively small number of women in trucking. 

Among the challenges identified in ATRI’s research were industry image and perception, training school completion, truck parking shortages and restroom access, and gender harassment and discrimination.

ATRI’s research included input from thousands of truck drivers, motor carriers and truck driver training schools through surveys, interviews and a women driver focus group to identify the underlying factors that generate challenges, as well as strategies for navigating and overcoming these barriers to success for women drivers.

“ATRI’s research gives a voice to the thousands of women truck drivers who have found successful and satisfying careers in this industry and encouragement to other women to consider truck driving jobs,” said Emily Plummer, professional driver for Prime Inc. and one of the America’s Road Team Captains

The research found that women are drawn to driving careers for the income potential, highlighting the fact that pay parity for women and men is much more prevalent in the trucking industry than in other fields. 

The analysis found that carriers that implement women-specific recruiting and retention initiatives have a higher percentage of women drivers (8.1%) than those without (5.0%).  The report details how fleets can put such initiatives in place.

“This report provides an important roadmap for the industry to increase the number of women drivers,” said Joyce Brenny, Brenny Transportation President and CEO.  “We have found tremendous success and improved safety with our women drivers and believe others who utilize this research will also experience success.”

A full copy of the report is available through ATRI’s website here.

ATRI is the trucking industry’s 501c3 not-for-profit research organization. It is engaged in critical research relating to freight transportation’s essential role in maintaining a safe, secure, and efficient transportation system.

# # #