Author Topic: Lorry Drivers  (Read 1170 times)

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Offline Maxi

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Lorry Drivers
« on: September 18, 2021, 07:54:46 am »
Seen on Facebook but relevant to all.
So, you are running out of food on the shelves, fuel in the garages, you can’t buy things you need, because the shops can’t get their supplies.
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 isn’t actually a shortage of drivers, what we have, is a shortage of people who can drive, that are willing to drive any more.  You might wonder why that is.  I can’t 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 licence, I even joined the army to get my HGV licence faster, I held my licence 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 didn’t 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 café’s, 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 can’t 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 routier, 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 of 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 don’t want me in your towns and cities.
Ask yourself how you would feel, if doing your job actually cost you money at the end of the day, just so you could rest.
But that isn’t the 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 pay good money when you can get cheap labour, 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 the grand total of zero truck parking facilities, but does have a lot of restrictions, making it difficult for trucks to stop anywhere.
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.
Perhaps once you work out why you can’t, you will understand why your shelves are not as full as they could be.
I tried it for over 30 years, but will never go back, you just couldn't pay me enough.

Offline baldy

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Re: Lorry Drivers
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2021, 15:15:01 pm »
Very interesting.

I'm a chartered surveyor looking for a job as a surveyor at the moment. During the Summer this year, the jobs market for surveyors was virtually dead and so I was tempted to look for a second string to my bow that had no connection to property or politics.

I settled on training to be a HGV driver and even got the Trowbridge Job Centre to put me on a list of folk who would be put on a HGV training course that is fully funded by the Government.

Unfortunately, one week before I was due to attend an open day about the course I developed a serious eye condition and had to withdraw. I'm being treated at RUH eye clinic and I understand that my eye problem will either resolve itself over a few weeks or months or I will be given glasses or an operation that sorts my eye sight. Until then, I have been told to stop driving altogether.

As it happens, the jobs market for surveyors has dramatically picked up over the last few weeks, especially in the telecoms sector - I used to be a site acquisition surveyor for Vodafone and other mobile network operators / infrastructure suppliers and I've now started to get replies to my job applications along the lines of let us know when you can drive again ...

To be honest, I'm still tempted to go on a HGV traning course when my eyes allow if I don't get a surveying job soon as I think pay for HGV drivers will rise and I really don't care about the antisocial hours or alleged poor conditions. Most jobs have become harder over the last 3 decades.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2021, 15:22:03 pm by baldy »
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Offline Bob DeBilda

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Re: Lorry Drivers
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2021, 16:03:22 pm »
Seen on Facebook but relevant to all.
So, you are running out of food on the shelves, fuel in the garages, you can’t buy things you need, because the shops can’t get their supplies.
Why is that? 


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Offline baldy

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Re: Lorry Drivers
« Reply #3 on: October 11, 2021, 15:33:10 pm »
I had the all clear to drive again from the eye clinic in RUH Bath today.I am amazed at what has happened.

I had double vision creep up on me from the right hand side gradually moving towards and then across my forward vision. The specialist doctors said it was caused by high blood pressure which I had no idea about. My blood pressure is now back to normal and my vision looking ahead is now normal and the double vision now only affects my peripheral vision to the right and this is now expected to clear up fully over the next 2 months. They've even taken back the glasses they gave me saying that I don't need them now.

I am waiting to see if a recent indication of an intention to make a job offer to me as a surveyor subject to being able to drive soon is now confirmed. If so, I'll give up on the HGV course idea for now. If not, I'm going to see how things go and I still have a sneaky wish to go on the HGV driving course, not least because I fancy the job qualification anyway - if only to cover future periods when GP chartered surveyors are less in demand due to another recession or similar ...

I don't really care about lorry drivers having to take leaks in bushes .... I do that from time to time anyway and I've got used to towns and cities having WCs closed everywhere or impossible to find quickly ....   It's amazing how many places exist all over the place where you can see that someone else was there not long before you ...
« Last Edit: October 11, 2021, 16:09:35 pm by baldy »
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