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Student Thesis and Dissertations

Developing a Robust Survey Methodology for Collecting Information on the Port Truck Drayage Industry

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Publication: Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium (PacTrans)
Publication Date: 2014
This paper describes the population characteristics in the drayage trucking population of the Port of Seattle as determined by the 2013 Truck Driver Survey. The 2013 Truck Driver Survey was created to give the Port of Seattle more information on the trip destinations, working conditions, equipment, and economics of truck drivers serving the Port of Seattle, so that policymakers creating regulations affecting trucking at the port could be better informed about the trucking population.
The survey was a 44 question mail-back survey that was distributed at the Port of Seattle. The survey was distributed for eight days at all container terminals at the Port of Seattle, and got a 29% response rate.
The majority of the trips to and from the Port of Seattle are for the local Seattle area (33%) and the Kent Valley (20%). Other trips are distributed to service areas throughout the State of Washington. Owner-operators were found to make more of the short trips, with employee drivers making more of the long trips.
62% of trucks at the Port of Seattle are more than 12 years old. These trucks will have to be replaced before 2015 to comply with the Port of Seattle Clean Trucks Program.
The Port of Seattle has a diverse population, with 53% of drivers indicating that they did not speak English as a first language. Among drivers who indicated that they didn’t speak English, about 50% were from Africa, with South/Central America and Asia/Pacific Islands also having significant populations.
Authors: Dr. Anne Goodchild, Jerome Drescher
Recommended Citation:
Goodchild, Anne, and Jerome Drescher. Developing a Robust Survey Methodology for Collecting Information on the Port Truck Drayage Industry. No. 2012-S-US-0017. Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium, 2014. University of Washington Master's degree thesis.
Student Thesis and Dissertations

Economic Characteristics of Drayage Drivers at the Port of Seattle

Publication Date: 2014

The Port of Seattle surveyed drayage truckers serving the port in 2006, 2008, and surveyed drivers again in 2013 in partnership with the University of Washington. This thesis describes the methodology used to survey drayage drivers at the Port of Seattle, describes the economic conditions of drayage drivers at the port and changes in economic conditions since previous surveys, and attempts to model driver earnings based on other driver characteristics.

By increasing the number of days that the survey was distributed, and by soliciting driver feedback to make the survey understandable and relevant to drivers, the 2013 survey was able to gather a larger survey size than previous efforts (290 responses in 2013, compared to 99 responses in 2008 and 167 responses in 2006).

From 2008 to 2013, there was a reduction in the number of drivers working five or more days per week, from 80% in 2008 to 70% in 2013. The percentage of drivers doing work other than port trucking has increased from 8% in 2008 to 37% in 2013. Findings suggest that due to changing conditions at the Port of Seattle, there is a growing population of drivers that do port trucking as a part-time job in combination with other forms of work, rather than a full-time occupation.

Attempts at modeling driver earnings based on other factors (English as a second language, trip type, doing work other than port trucking, and average hours worked per week) did not discover strong relationships between these factors and earnings. It is recommended that future efforts in this area use higher resolution earnings data than the data available from the 2013 survey.

Authors: Jerome Drescher
Recommended Citation:
Drescher, Jerome (2014). Economic Characteristics of Drayage Drivers at the Port of Seattle, University of Washington Master's Degree Thesis.
Thesis: Array