New measures announced to address HGV driver shortage

Up to 4,000 people will be trained as new HGV drivers, as part of a range of measures being introduced to help tackle skills shortages and support more people into logistics careers.

The package of measures also includes using MOD examiners to help increase immediate HGV testing capacity by thousands over the next 12 weeks and sending one million letters to drivers with HGV licenses to encourage them back into the industry.

The government has also added 5,000 HGV drivers and 5,500 poultry workers to the existing visa scheme until Christmas to ease supply chain pressures in food and haulage industries.

The Department for Education is investing up to £10m to create new free skills bootcamps to train up to 3,000 people to become HGV drivers, allowing people to gain a category C or category C&E license and become road-ready, with an additional 1,000 people expected to be trained through local courses funded by the government’s adult education budget.

parked trucks

Transport secretary, Grant Shapps, said: ‘This package of measures builds on the important work we have already done to ease this global crisis in the UK, and this government continues to do everything we can to help the haulage and food industries contend with the HGV driver shortage.

‘We are acting now but the industries must also play their part with working conditions continuing to improve and the deserved salary increases continuing to be maintained in order for companies to retain new drivers. After a very difficult 18 months, I know how important this Christmas is for all of us and that’s why we’re taking these steps at the earliest opportunity to ensure preparations remain on track.’

Education secretary, Nadhim Zahawi, added: ‘HGV drivers keep this country running. We are taking action to tackle the shortage of drivers by removing barriers to help more people to launch new well-paid careers in the industry, supporting thousands to get the training they need to be road ready.

‘As we build back from the pandemic we’re committed to supporting people, no matter their background, to get the skills and training they need to get good jobs at any stage of their lives, while creating the talent pipeline businesses need for the future.’

In related news, Sadiq Khan, The Mayor of London, is calling for a time-limited visa to help maintain critical services while UK workers are recruited and trained, after Brexit and the pandemic have left thousands of businesses with a shortage of workers.

Photo by Marcin Jozwiak


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Help us break the news – share your information, opinion or analysis
Back to top