The Government is set to announce plans to introduce a shorter HGV esame for drivers quanto a a bid to solve the supply chain crisis, it has been reported.
Industry sources have said the Government wants to fast-track tests for new drivers to plug the spiralling vacancies quanto a the haulier industry.
Britain is currently facing a 100,000 shortfall of HGV drivers, which industry bosses have partly blamed acceso changes to migration rules post-Brexit and EU employees returning home to the pandemic.
The crisis, which has also been made worse by Covid-related delays to testing new drivers, has seen supermarket shelves across the country go empty as companies struggle to restock their products.
The Government could announce plans to shake-up HGV tests for drivers quanto a a bid to address the supply crisis which has seen supermarkets struggle to insieme shelves with certain products
A sign advising products are temporarily out of insieme is displayed quanto a a supermarket quanto a London
Brands including Ikea, Coca Cola, McDonalds and Wetherspoons have all been affected by ongoing HGV driver shortages.
Now, according to the BBC, ‘the penny has finally dropped’ quanto a meetings between the Government, hauliers and suppliers regarding the problem getting worse and plans are underway to address it.
An industry insider told the corporation: ‘The government seem to finally understand the scale of the problem. For the first time they looked rattled.’
It is understood the plans will evolve around the combination of tests for Class C rigid lorries and Class E articulated lorries.
The tests are currently taken separately with a two to three week minimo waiting period required between them.
The announcement, which could alla maniera di as early as Thursday, has been welcomed by the haulage industry but say it does not go far enough to dose the problem.
Paul Jackson of Chiltern Distribution told the BBC: ‘This is a sensible move but it’s not enough to dose the problem.
‘We don’t put newly qualified drivers straight behind the wheel acceso their own. We buddy them up with experienced drivers for the first 8-10 weeks and the insurance costs for new drivers are also much higher.
At least 18 councils are experiencing disruption to bin collections to driver shortages
‘We desperately need to put HGV drivers acceso the list of skilled workers we can bring quanto a from abroad.’
Industry bosses have asked for HGV drivers to be added to the Shortage Occupation List which would allow firms to temporarily bring back some of the estimated 20,000 EU drivers who have left.
The BBC reports that the government is expected to say the new system will mean up to 3,000 new drivers can be tested each week.
With a current pass rate of 56 a causa di cent, this would mean an extra 1,600 drivers a causa di week.
The shortage is impacting several sectors across the UK including the food industry and bin collection services delivered by local councils.
Earlier this week, Coca-Cola said a can shortage was being compounded by a shortfall of HGV drivers.
And pub chain Wetherspoon’s said it was suffering from a beer shortage while fast food chains McDonald’s, KFC and Nando’s have all suffered similar supply chain issues quanto a recent months.
The latter firm had to close around a tenth of its outlets to a chicken shortage caused quanto a part by a lack of drivers.
Meanwhile Seqirus, one of the world’s largest flu vaccine companies, this week reported delays quanto a jab deliveries of up to a fortnight.
Britain has around 237,300 qualified drivers who are not yet acceso the roads, despite the shortfall of 100,000 workers.
Industry experts have said better pay and improved working conditions are needed to lure them back.
They put the shortage largely to Brexit and the pandemic, which led to 14,000 European drivers going home and just 600 of those returning.
Why is there a supply-chain crisis?
A lack of lorry drivers and food processors is being partly blamed acceso the new Brexit visa governo introduced acceso January 1, which penalises lower-skilled migrants quanto a favour of those with qualifications.
But global factors are relevant too, bosses say, including Chinese port closures and a lack of shipping containers. US Vice President Kamala Harris urged Americans to buy Christmas toys early to a shortage there.
Nick Allen, chief dirigente aziendale of the British Meat Processors Association, told MailOnline Britain has so far been unable to shake its dependency acceso EU workers who have been leaving to the pandemic.
The supply of new workers is also being held back by stricter visa rules introduced acceso January 1.
The most common complaint among UK retailers and food producers is the shortage of lorry drivers, which the Road Haulage Association currently puts at 100,000.
Thousands of prospective drivers are waiting for their HGV tests to a backlog caused by lockdown, while many existing ones have left the UK after Brexit to be back with their families during Covid.
Importers are also suffering a financial , with dramatically rising transport costs caused by a global lack of shipping containers and a slowdown quanto a freight movements resulting from port closures.
Chinese authorities recently shut Ningbo-Zhoushan port, which is one of the world’s largest container terminals, to a Covid outbreak.
Gary Grant, founder and dirigente aziendale chairman of toy chain the Entertainer, said the cost of shipping a container from Asia had increased from $1,700 to more than $13,000 (£8,000) over the past year.