New Omaha truck driver school aims to end driving instructor shortage

Truck drivers are in short supply around the metro -- and one Omaha school is expanding to help fill the void.
Published: Jan. 25, 2023 at 6:53 PM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - The wheels are turning at Custom Diesel Drivers Training, as Sam Janes gets ready to teach another one of his students.

He is one of many driving instructors across the country that are trying to get the next generation of drivers to fill more than 78,000 open positions.

“I always look at instructing as moving the career field forward,” Janes said.

However, Janes said there aren’t a lot of people looking to get into truck driving; and due to the high average age of current drivers, there’s also a higher number of experienced people retiring.

Janes said this is another big problem for the industry.

“A lot of folks don’t give credit to the need for drivers and we can’t get good drivers on the road if we don’t have enough instructors,” Janes said.

Janes hopes to change that with Custom Diesel’s new school expansion, a new building opening in Gretna.

“It’s kinda a dead center point of Omaha, Fremont, and Lincoln,” said school director Ken Walker.

It’s an area that is more central to the communities in eastern Nebraska and western Iowa. He hopes to attract more students.

“We’re going to fill our classes and going to work for our students, and then if companies want to help out, we’ll help them out,” Walker said.

Custom Diesel Driver’s Training plans to open the new driving school in March.