The government has been urged to take urgent action to improve facilities for lorry drivers in evidence given to a parliamentary committee.
Speaking at the Transport Select Committee’s inquiry into the road freight supply chain, Elizabeth de Jong, director of policy at business group Logistics UK, said: “The road freight supply chain is facing many challenges and opportunities, including the ongoing shortage of HGV drivers, a patchwork of local urban regulations, and the need to decarbonise operations efficiently.
“As I raised during the session today, the lack of available lorry parking facilities nationwide is a key contributor to the HGV driver shortage. Many commercial drivers are forced to take their rest periods in their vehicles at the side of the road or on industrial estates, with no access to hygiene facilities. This is preventing individuals – particularly women, who only make up 2% of HGV drivers – from remaining in or wanting to join the workforce.
“Logistics UK is urging the government to take immediate action to help enable improved facilities for drivers. Without this, businesses will continue to struggle to recruit the workforce they need.
“Logistics UK is also pressing government to address the EU’s proposed Entry Exit System (EES), which would see the introduction of new customs checks at the borders of Dover and Folkestone. These new rules could cause delays to supply chain operations at borders, while compromising the safety of drivers, as they would be required to exit their vehicles to undertake the checks.”