HGV Topics: What is causing the Fuel Shortage in the UK?

Are you wondering why there is a shortage of petrol or diesel at the pumps in recent days and is it related to HGV driver shortages?

This is something that has been that has been attributed to everything. From a lack of HGV drivers, COVID, Brexit, the RHA, the media, the government and the public.
On a background of a long term shortage of HGV drivers. The situation has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. During the first lock down many HGV testing sites were forced to close their doors. This meant the usual steady supply of newly qualified drivers was cut off for an entire year. There are usually 30,000 HGV tests carried out annually.
Another issue was the pause in many industries work during the pandemic. This caused a great deal of pent up demand. As all industries reopened, the transport of goods, raw materials and fuel all far exceeded their usual steady demand.

The Perfect Storm

This therefore had caused a shortage of enough HGV drivers to fill the needs of the UK. Combined with a history of stagnant wages over many years it was a perfect storm.
There were a few situations where petrol tankers could not reach specific BP garages in time for their delivery due to driver shortage. This concern was raised in a meeting where the RHA were present.

The Media & a solution

In addition some media outlets had misinterpreted the story and started to publish that the pumps would be out of fuel.
This therefore naturally created worry as transport is the lifeblood for any thriving economy even with an increase of working from home. In addition this lead to queues at pumps and naturally if you are running low on fuel after a week of communing on a Friday night, you will join the queue.
In conclusion to blame one particular group for this situation is not accurate. To improve the situation would be to improve pay and conditions for drivers. In addition for short periods of demand,  temporary assistance from retired drivers and if needed temporary visas that the government have now enacted.

HGV medicals

VitalMedicals continue doing HGV medicals. We can to help ease the shortage and have been proud to have been open throughout the pandemic.
If you would like to book a HGV medical make sure you visit Vital Medicals – £49.99 ONLINE OFFER

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