MetroWest mechanic shortage as less students enroll in technical class

Those who are looking to get their cars fixed might have to wait a few days — even weeks — before they can nail down an appointment at their neighborhood auto shop.

A shortage of mechanics is the reason. Simply put, there just aren’t enough of them to do all of the work.

“I’ve been looking for a mechanic for over five months,” said Tony Lakkis, who has owned Sudbury Mobil at 432 Boston Post Road (Rte. 20) for 32 years. He employs one mechanic, but needs another.

Meanwhile, work is piling up. And Lakkis isn’t alone.

At Wally & Son Auto at 46 Water St. in Framingham, owner Elias Antonios said “everyone is going through this, finding mechanics.”

Tony Lakkis, owner of Sudbury Mobil at 432 Boston Post Road (Rte. 20), has been looking to hire a mechanic for five months.

The industry outlook isn’t rosy. Nationally, the number of mechanics and auto technicians is expected to decline by 4% between 2019 and 2029, from 756,600 to 728,800, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Why the shortage?

David Protano, dean of automotive technology at MassBay Community College, said people used to tinker with cars in their front yards. Young people, even kids, used to watch the tinkering, and some thought of being a mechanic one day.