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LGV/HGV Driver Shortage Continues This Christmas

The Christmas shopping season is in full swing. Shoppers are taking to the streets in search of Christmas gifts, but a large percentage of them will also be shopping online, for the sake of convenience and to make use of online deals being offered by retailers.

Online shopping has increased year-on-year since the birth of the internet. However, the trend for online shopping looks under threat as the continuing shortage of HGV/LGV drivers may mean goods bought will not be delivered on time.

FTA Reports LGV Driver Shortage

For the last two years, the Road Haulage Association (RHA) have reported that there is a major shortfall of HGV/LGV drivers in the UK. This assessment was backed up this year by the Freight Transport Association (FTA).

The FTA Skills Shortage Report, released in November this year, found that the LGV driver shortage has risen sharply to 52,000, an increase of 49%. This large number is likely to have a very harmful effect on Christmas deliveries and on the UK economy as a whole.

Why The Driver Shortage?

With LGV driver numbers down 4% year-on-year, questions need to be asked within the industry over its ability to recruit and retain new drivers.

The FTA report found that the average age of drivers has increased by nearly a year, with the largest proportion of drivers (63%) being over 45 years of age.

The inability of the industry to retain young drivers is perhaps the most worrying statistic. The FTA report showed that in 2016 there was a substantial boost of in the number of young drivers entering the industry, indicating that the recruitment efforts aimed at young people was highly successful. However, in 2016/17 this gain was completely reversed, with the loss of younger drivers more or less responsible for the entire reduction in overall LGV driver numbers.

This inability to retain those newly qualified drivers who flocked to the industry in 2016 represents a major failure within the industry, and one that everyone associated with road haulage would do well to heed.

Haulage Industry Challenge

In the UK, 2.2 million people are employed by the road freight industry and its associated warehousing operations. These people are vital to the UK economy, as more than 85% of goods bought by people need to be transported by HGVs at some stage in their supply chain cycle.

With the ever-increasing demand from retailers to offer the fastest and cheapest deliveries to online shoppers, drivers are preparing to distribute record numbers of parcels and goods this year. Without qualified, certified HGV/LGV drivers, a major issue is brewing in the retail sector that could have serious consequences for the economy as a whole.

Both the UK government and the haulage industry need to take steps to retain younger drivers and reduce the shortfall, to prevent major damage being done.

Training with Transport Training Academy

TTA are passionate about the Logistic Industry. We believe that retaining young drivers begins with high quality training. We fully understand and appreciate that the haulage industry needs highly trained, enthusiastic and dedicated individuals, who in turn will become valued employees to an operation giving a positive return on investment.

Our commitment to solve the problem of driver shortage is to give young drivers the experience and confidence they will need to operator safely and efficiently in a real working environment.

To learn more about HGV/LGV training at TTA contact us today.



Celebrate TTA's Latest success stories...

Aaron Cochran


Well Done to Aaron Cochran for passing his CAT C with us on 21st February 2020. Congratulations from all at #TTA

Ryan Talbot


Well Done to Ryan Talbot for passing his B+E with us on 21st February 2020. Congratulations from all at #TTA

Christopher Murnaghan

Transport Manager CPC

Well Done to Christopher Murnaghan for passing his Transport Manager CPC with us in February 2020. Congratulations from all at #TTA

Andrew Meanley


Well Done to Andrew Meanley for passing his CAT C with us on 14th February 2020. Congratulations from all at #TTA

Paul Donoghue


Well Done to Paul Donoghue for passing his C+E with us on 14th February 2020. Congratulations from all at #TTA

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