Truck drivers wait an average of 2.5 hours at warehouses without getting paid — here are the 20 cities where truckers wait the longest

  • Truckers lose $1.3 billion in wages annually waiting at warehouses for loads.
  • On average, truck drivers waited at a shipping dock for 2.5 hours per job in 2018, according to data from FreightWaves SONAR.
  • It points to inefficiencies in the trucking industry, FreightWaves chief insight officer Dean Croke told Business Insider.

As a long-haul truck driver in Australia, FreightWaves chief insight officer Dean Croke spent most Sundays waiting for six to seven hours for grocery loads.

“You hear people bellyaching about the driver shortage,” Croke told Business Insider, but he said those same industry leaders aren’t looking at a key inefficiency in the trucking industry – the hours per week that truck drivers spend waiting for loads.

Read more: The US has a major truck driver shortage – but the co-founder of a trucking startup that’s attracted $80 million in funding says there are 3 other problems that are making the shortage seem worse than it is

One way to look at detention times is to parse out the locations in which truckers are waiting the longest. Truckers waited at shipping docks for 2.5 hours per job on average in 2018, according to FreightWaves SONAR data from its 135 markets. The average wait was as high as 5.5 hours in Fresno, California.

According to a survey administered by the freight marketplace DAT Solutions that polled drivers from 257 trucking companies, only 3% of truckers said they receive detention pay for at least 90% of their claims to the shippers.

Here are the cities with the 20 worst detention times, according to FreightWaves:


20. Detroit, Michigan — an average of 177 minutes

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19. (tie) Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and Hutchinson, Kansas — an average of 178 minutes

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18. (tie) St. Cloud, Minnesota, and McAllen, Texas — an average of 179 minutes

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17. Spokane, Washington — an average of 180 minutes

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16. (tie) Chattanooga, Tennessee, and Bowling Green, Kentucky — an average of 181 minutes


15. Raleigh, North Carolina — an average of 186 minutes


14. Wilmington, North Carolina — an average of 188 minutes


13. (tie) Lakeland, Florida, and Knoxville, Tennessee — an average of 194 minutes

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12. Bloomington, Illinois — an average of 197 minutes

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11. Fayetteville, Arkansas — an average of 208 minutes

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10. Laredo, Texas — an average of 212 minutes

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9. Fort Wayne, Indiana — an average of 223 minutes

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8. Little Rock, Arkansas — an average of 230 minutes


7. Duluth, Minnesota — an average of 231 minutes


6. Shreveport, Louisiana — an average of 237 minutes

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5. El Paso, Texas — an average of 253 minutes

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4. South Bend, Indiana — an average of 267 minutes

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3. Rochester, New York — an average of 279 minutes


2. Erie, Pennsylvania — an average of 323 minutes

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1. Fresno, California — an average of 331 minutes