Fears surrounding the HGV driver shortage have been keeping the entire nation on-edge lately. Everything from the UK’s decision to leave the EU, to the unpredictable pandemic has led to fewer and fewer experts capable of handling crucial trucks and lorries. At one point, the Road Haulage Association even estimated we had a shortage of around 100,000 drivers.
While, at first, fewer HGV drivers in the country might not seem like a huge problem (particularly if you don’t like getting stuck behind lorries in traffic), the issue is bigger than it seems. Without HGV drivers, the nation simply can’t survive.
These transportation experts are responsible for everything from shipping food throughout the country, to making sure we can attend our favourite summer festivals.
Here are just 5 of the reasons we rely on HGV drivers.
- They Keep us Stocked Up on Crucial Supplies
How do you think your diesel or petrol reaches the pump before it gets to your car? What do you think it takes to transport the potatoes for your Sunday lunch from the farm to your table? That’s right – it all comes down to HGV drivers. HGV drivers aren’t just transporting construction materials around the UK, they’re also responsible for the crucial supplies we need to live.
Lorry drivers deliver the machinery and agricultural products UK farmers need to nurture crops and livestock. They also make sure we get the food we need on the shelves in our local supermarkets. Without HGV drivers, you wouldn’t even be able to enjoy a delightful meal in your favorite restaurant. Ion the last couple of years, a shortage of HGV drivers has even left us without access to the foods and drinks we love.
A lack of lorry drivers doesn’t just mean food doesn’t end up on our shelves – it can also lead to important resources being wasted. Even without enough drivers on the road, produce continues to grow, which means rising waste from perishable items. Lack of access to food also means that the prices of the items we love continues to rise. Outside of food, there are countless other crucial supplies HGV drivers help us to access too, from pharmaceuticals, to fuel.
- HGV Drivers are a Crucial Cog in the Economy
Virtually every UK business relies on some form of HGV or lorry driver at some point in the supply chain or go-to-market journey. Retail chains need HGV drivers to give them access to the products they purchase from manufacturing facilities and warehouses. Fashion houses need lorry drivers to provide them with access to crucial machinery and materials.
When lorry drivers in the UK stop being accessible, the entire economy begins to crumble. We’ve already seen examples of how the economy has struggled in the last couple of years due to “shortages” of certain supplies. You might have even noticed your favorite supermarkets and stores struggling to keep their shelves stocked lately.
HGV drivers ensure we have access to everything from pet food to everyday essentials (like toilet roll). Whether they’re transporting products from overseas, or just throughout the country, they make sure you get the products you want. Lorry drivers are even responsible for transporting beer and other alcoholic beverages to your local pubs.
- They Make eCommerce Possible
While most of us thank the internet for the rise of the ecommerce industry – it’s only one piece of the puzzle. While you need your smartphone or laptop and an internet connection to access online stores, you also need HGV drivers around the country to deliver your orders to you. After all, most online companies still have offline warehouses where they store products.
HGV drivers and lorry drivers are an important cog in the fulfilment process which makes ecommerce sales possible. Now that about 87% of UK households are making purchases online on a regular basis, it’s hard to imagine a world where you wouldn’t be able to order your clothes, food, and even your furniture from the web.
Ecommerce doesn’t just make consumer lives easier, by allowing us to find the products we want for an affordable price online, it also improves the flow of products around the world and gives new entrepreneurs the chance to grow. Without HGV drivers, companies like Amazon wouldn’t exist, but you also wouldn’t be able to buy hand-made items from would-be business owners overseas either.
- HGV Drivers Support the Entertainment Industry
While being stuck behind a HGV driver on the motorway might not seem like a lot of fun – it helps to know those drivers are an important part in making your life a little more exciting. HGV drivers support a lot of the things we enjoy doing in the UK. They help with setting up stages and delivering crucial sound equipment for festivals and gigs.
Without HGV drivers, we wouldn’t be able to enjoy amazing outdoor concerts, or look froward to markets in the summer and winter, with sellers from all the UK. Things like carnivals and funfairs would be impossible too. After all, we rely on lorries to carry rides and other attractions on a flat-bed throughout the country.
Without HGV drivers, we might even struggle to create many of the movies and TV shows todays entertainment lovers enjoy. These professionals also help with delivering set pieces and pieces of recording equipment for film scenes.
- HGV Drivers Do Their Part for the Planet
Although there’s still a lot of work to be done in the transportation sector to make HGV lorries more eco-friendly, it’s worth noting that your HGV drivers still have a positive impact on the planet in some way. For instance, they make a huge difference to reducing the waste in the food and medical landscape.
Perishable items which aren’t delivered on time can spoil before they reach their destination. The more of these crucial items we waste, the more pressure we’re putting on the agricultural landscape, the production of fresh water, and so much more. According to one study, lack of HGV drivers actually led to the waste of more than 50,000KG of fresh food one week.
Producing food requires millions of litres of water, and endless energy. If that precious resource then goes to waste, it means we’re having a negative impact on the planet for no reason. Not only that, but we may even have to produce more carbon emissions and waste more water to replace what’s lost.
Be What the Nation Needs
The nation needs HGV drivers for dozens of different reasons. That’s why the government is currently working so hard to deal with the growing shortage. Why not do help out and be exactly what your country is looking for? You can earn your HGV licence with us today, and earn a great income contributing to the British economy.