Army HGV drivers are ready to step in to tackle UK’s huge shortage of lorry drivers which is causing food shortages.
The government is expected to ask the military for help very soon, who will be using army lorries instead of civilian ones, according to The Sun.
Around 2,000 HGV drivers from the Royal Logistics Corps and other regiments will be put on a five-day notice to help with food and essential supplies distribution.
But they are meant to replace a shortage of 100,000 truck drivers, previously made up primarily of Eastern Europeans, who have been unable or unwilling to work in the UK because of post-Brexit rules and UK’s Covid travel restrictions.
A source told The Sun today: “Messages are being sent out to all army personnel with HGV qualifications. They are being put on five-day standby notice for driving jobs at major distribution centres around the country.
Even the Sun is reporting this.— LittleGravitas — ?? ? #FBPE #ICareUK (@LittleGravitas) August 8, 2021
The piece implies it’s mainly down to #Brexit:
“Britain has a shortage of 100,000 truck drivers and the situation worsened with the test and trace pingdemic.”
When are @Keir_Starmer and @AngelaRayner going to get ahead of this one?@UKLabour https://t.co/rBdwtZRWTU
“Soldiers will be put up in hotels where necessary and will be working extended hours to assist with the crisis.
“They will be involved with food distribution as well as the transportation of other essential goods and medical supplies.”
It comes as many supermarket shelves have been empty over recent weeks, and Premier Foods, one of UK’s biggest food companies, recently called on the government use the army to supply food.
During a meeting with the government, Chris Hall, head of logistics at Asda, said the supermarket was “just about keeping our head above water”.
Romanian lorry driver reveals why he is thinking of leaving the UK too
Earlier this month, a lorry driver has explained why he is thinking of following in the footsteps of his colleagues and moving back to Romania to work across Europe.
Why aren’t British journalists writing page on page criticism of Brexit for all the empty shelves in supermarkets?— UK is with EU (@ukiswitheu) August 8, 2021
Why isn’t Labour doing the same?
Why isn’t Brexit getting it’s due attention?
Viorel Alexandru Onu, from Transylvania, Romania, used to work from his home country across Europe, and he thinks his previous work conditions were better than the ones he has in the UK.
He said there is now more risk, tiredness and pressure on lorry drivers delivering to UK supermarkets, because they are expected to cover for Brexit-related drivers shortages under even longer working hours approved by the government.
He said: “Without any doubt, the prolonged hours are raising the risks for lorry drivers and for other road users.
“I think those who focus on delivering goods for supermarkets experience higher stress to do as many deliveries as possible; and to do the same deliveries with the same lorry drivers to make up for the shortages.
And he thinks companies paying bigger salaries for less drivers to do as many deliveries as possible will not help either.
He said: “The problem is there are the same drivers left in the UK. To cover for the shortages, you have to bring drivers from abroad.
“If you pay better salaries, you attract existing drivers from other companies, but those companies then have drivers shortages and it’s the same thing.”