Why is that?
A shortage of goods? No, A shortage of money? No, A shortage of drivers to deliver the goods? Well, sort of. There isnít a shortage of drivers, what we have, is a shortage of people who can drive, that are willing to drive anymore. You might wonder why that is. I canít answer for all drivers, but I can give you the reason I no longer drive. Driving was something I always yearned to do as a young boy, and as soon as I could, I managed to get my driving license, I even joined the army to get my HGV license faster, I held my license at the age of 17. It was all I ever wanted to do, drive trucks, I had that vision of being a knight of the roads, bringing the goods to everyone, providing a service everyone needed. What I didnít take into account was the absolute abuse my profession would get over the years. I have seen a massive decline in the respect this trade has, first, it was the erosion of truck parking and transport cafťís, then it was the massive increase in restricting where I could stop, timed weight limits in just about every city and town, but not all the time, you can get there to do your delivery, but you canít stay there, nobody wants an empty truck, nobody wants you there once they have what they did want.
Compare France to the UK. I can park in nearly every town or village, they have marked truck parking bays, and somewhere nearby, will be a small router, where I can get a meal and a shower, the locals respect me and have no problems with me or my truck being there for the night. Go out onto the motorway services, and I can park for no cost, go into the service area, and get a shower for a minimal cost, and have freshly cooked food, I even get to jump the queues, because others know that my time is limited, and respect I am there because it is my job. Add to that, I even get a 20% discount on all I purchase. Compare that to the UK £25-£40 just to park overnight, dirty showers, and expensive, dried (under heat lamps) food that is overpriced, and I have no choice but to park there because you donít want me in your towns and cities. Ask yourself how you would feel, if doing your job cost you money at the end of the day, just so you could rest. But that isnít half of it. Not only have we been rejected from our towns and cities, but we have also suffered massive pay cuts, because of the influx of foreign drivers willing to work for a wage that is high where they come from, companies eagerly recruited from the eastern bloc, who can blame them, why to pay good money when you can get cheap labor, and a never-ending supply of it as well. Never mind that their own countries would suffer from a shortage themselves, that was never our problem, they could always get people from further afield if they needed drivers. We were once seen as knights of the road, now we are seen as the lepers of society. Why would anyone want to go back to that?
If you are worried about not getting supplies on your supermarket shelves, ask your local council just how well they cater for trucks in your district. I know Canterbury has a total of zero truck parking facilities but does have a lot of restrictions, making it difficult for trucks to stop anywhere. Parkin any roadside laybys, get you diesel stolen curtains slashed loads stolen, respect for mother road users is nil shouted at swore at scorned upon, then ask why we donít want this job.
Do you want me to go back to driving trucks? Give me a good reason to do so. Give anyone a good reason to take it up as a profession.
hope you understand why lorry drivers are now saying, treat up like people and notjust scum.
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