Written evidence submitted by Mr Menzies Philip (RDF0002)
I am a retired HGV C+E Driver of 41 years experience. I have also held a PSV License, was a AIM HGV member, hold a standard national CPC and was my last employers, a large multinational transport company, driver of the year on three occasions and in the top three in a few more.
The main issues HGV drivers have are Wage, facilities, the amount of legislation that is imposed on them and the most difficult to address attitude.
Wages that are geared to a 60hr week. Headline wages of £50,000 pa. are for 60+ hrs. Is this acceptable in 2021? If the wages were geared to a 40hr. week what would the basic hourly rate be, not £10 ph, more like £20, for the responsibility and potential legal action against you.
Facilities, lack of, are the bane of a drivers life. Motorway service areas are unwelcoming, council lorry parks, if they exist, lack facilities. There some very good truck stops but they are few and far between.
Legislation, the DCPC is legislation that needs reviewing. Having to attend in your free time and having to pay for the privilege is a obstacle to retention of drivers in the industry. If the industry were to provide this within the working week, pay for it and drastically improve the very poor repetitive training this may help. Working Time Directive, this was introduced under health and safety legislation, why could not it be integrated into drivers hours regs and simplify them. I defy most drivers to accurately describe hours and wtd regs.
Attitude, this is the most difficult to address because this is historically the driver being regarded as some kind of itinerant vagabond. Most of your professional contributors would deny this but it is endemic in the industry from employers to customers and until this is addressed the enthusiastic young driver with their shiny new license will not last long.
There are a lot more issues that will be brought to your attention but from a drivers point of view these are some of them.