Here at Driverlink one of our most popular courses is Drivers Essentials, where we work through all of the detail of scheduling and Working Time Directive.
Knowing and adhering to the rules on driving hours and break times is one of the most important parts of a drivers day, and is equally as important to all haulage operators. But despite this, the provision made for drivers to park up safely and legally throughout the country is limited at best.
It’s small step forward, but the issue has now been raised in parliament recently, specifically debating the the need for decent parking facilities for lorry drivers.
The Minister of State for Transport called for the provision of suitable areas for drivers to stop. The lack of HGV parking facilities was described as ‘a national problem that requires the government, local authorities and industry to work together.’
The Rt Hon John Hayes MP stated: ‘HGVs are vital to the economy. They carry what we need to where we need it, and take what we make, grow and fashion to those elsewhere who want to buy it.’
There will now be a ‘Round Table’ on the HGV parking problem to include truck stop operators and the freight industry. All good news but not much comfort to those about to enter the busiest time in the Haulage calendar, knowing that something needs to be done and fast!
David Wells, The FTA’s chief executive, said: ‘This is a key issue for our members who believe the lack of suitable places to take their rests and breaks is contributing to the ongoing shortage of drivers, making it more difficult to attract new entrants to the industry.
‘Decent parking facilities providing basic needs for lorry drivers are vital. HGV drivers are legally required to take regular rest breaks. There are insufficient truck stops located where they need them, and even where they do exist availability of spaces can be a problem.
‘It is important to recognise driver preference for lorry parking facilities which provide basic needs together with security on site, so that they can feel comfortable and safe.’
Small laybys on A roads seem to be the best option in many areas, offering no facilities for the drivers stopping overnight, no way to treat those who are making sure our Christmas deliveries are on time!