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The UK cross-Parliamentary Transport Committee is to launch an enquiry into skills in the road haulage industry, to assess industry complaints that it is suffering a severe shortage of skilled drivers.

It will also “assess how effective the government’s response has been”, it said.

One of the problems in terms of developing skills and training is that responsibility for it tends to fall across several different ministries, which can make such investigations difficult.

However, among other issues specific to the haulage industry, the transport committee said it would specifically look at whether statistics bear out anecdotal evidence of a lack of drivers; what actual role the government has so far played in helping to recruit new drivers; and the impact of the introduction of the Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) qualification.

The industry itself has until 19 October to make written submissions to the committee.

The Road Haulage Association says the driver shortfall currently afflicting the industry is around 45,000, and is likely to rise to 60,000 within the next year, while the Freight Transport Association claimed that “the skills shortage in the logistics sector has reached crisis point”, and welcomed the investigation.

FTA chief executive David Wells said: “FTA is delighted that the Transport Committee is going to investigate the lack of skilled drivers, as this has been an important issue for our members for some time.

“In our recent conversations with MPs, we have emphasised the real problems the logistics sector is having in attracting new recruits and suggested that government and the industry need to work together to find solutions which enable us to keep delivering the goods for the UK economy.”

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  • peter wright

    April 25, 2016 at 10:07 am

    No it suits the big transport companies and the employment agencies
    across the UK…

    forget this idea about there being a shortage of skilled drivers and this constant cry of ‘We need more drivers.. ‘what there is are people who are not willing to drive a artic or rigid lorry for stupid money so because the UK drivers have had
    enough and are hanging up their keys ‘and looking elsewhere for employment or
    retiring early The big companies and agencies are looking overseas for cheaper labour ‘and they are getting it by the hundreds and ‘its not just happening here
    look at most European countries and there is a sizeable amount of cheaper labour
    at the wheel.
    I for one ‘don’t blame those drivers one bit ‘if your country’s Standard of living is
    lower than ‘say the UK then its stands to reason ‘if you’re being paid 4 euro a hr in whatever country you live in ‘then getting 8 pounds a hr in the UK is worth leaving for.
    NO I don’t blame those people I don’t blame them one little bit
    The People I blame are the same old crowd the big players in the transport
    industry so called logistics companies … the driving agencies and the good old EC
    no investment low pay bad conditions idiot proof automatic lorries
    the utter sham of the this so called CPC and the constant search for other drivers within a company to take on the mantel of ‘Driver assessor
    or someone else to take the blame. yes there maybe a shortage of good skilled
    lorry drivers out there and small hauliers know that more than most ‘thankfully our last drivers found other work outside this industry after eighty
    years in haulage our gates shut this week all our fleet have now been sold ‘so glad to be out of it…
    peter wright
    haulage contractor
    c/o Arthur Wright & Sons Haulage Contractors
    Est 1936 Essex.

  • Brian Mc Caig

    August 29, 2016 at 12:09 pm

    Shortage of drivers is caused by low pay and unsocial hours