Today, Wednesday 17 June, the Road Haulage Association will deliver an urgent plea to the Prime Minister demanding government intervention to help with the chronic truck driver shortage, which is having a profound affect on the UK’s supply chain and which threatens to slow the UK economic recovery.
There is a national truck driver shortage, estimated to be in the region of 45,000 thousand. And with over 35,000 thousand existing drivers due to retire in the next two years, the situation is deteriorating fast.
There are numerous reports of the driver shortage leading to operators turning work away, having to park up trucks and cancelling orders for new trucks.
Road Haulage Association (RHA) chief executive Richard Burnett said: “The RHA represents UK hauliers who, between them, operate over 100,000 heavy goods vehicles. Our members, quite literally, move the UK economy. We are now facing an unprecedented and critical shortage of qualified truck drivers – currently estimated to be in the order of 45,000 across the country. Current retirement levels and low levels of new entrants to the industry are creating a perfect storm.
“The cost of training to be a truck driver is very high – typically some £3,000. This is a serious barrier for individuals wishing to train up. Margins in the small and medium sized haulage companies that make up the bulk of our industry are very tight and this limits their capacity to fund the required training.
“UK hauliers move the economy. This driver shortage threatens to slow the economic recovery.”
Driver shortage figures by regional split based on ONS headline estimates for December 2014 – February 2015
|Region||Driver Shortage||BBC Local Radio|
|North East||1.719||Newcastle, Tees, Cumbria|
|North West||4.842||Lancashire, Manchester, Merseyside|
|York and Humberside||3.654||Humberside, Leeds Sheffield, York|
|East Midlands||3.240||Lincoln, Derby, Leicester, Nottingham|
|West Midlands||3.757||Coventry & Warks, Shropshire|
|Hereford & Worcester|
|East of England||4.275||Stoke, WM, Cambs, Norfolk, Suffolk|
|Northampton, 3 Counties, Essex|
|South East||6.426||Kent, Surrey, Sussex|
|South West||3.825||Cornwall, Devon, Bristol, Gloucester|
|Somerset, Wiltshire, Wales|
|Northern Ireland||1.206||Ulster, Foyle|