RHA encouraged by new Transport Secretary’s approach

RHA Chief Executive Richard Burnett has welcomed a “totally different, proactive” approach from the new Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps MP.

The two met at the Department for Transport in London for the first time since Mr Shapps was invited by Boris Johnson to replace Chris Grayling in the role. During a very productive, hour long meeting, issues from driver shortages to Brexit were discussed.

DfT issues new guidance to help prevent terrorists accessing commercial vehicles

The Department for Transport (DfT) has issued new guidance designed to prevent terrorists getting access to commercial vehicles.

In the last five years, changes in attack methodology has placed greater emphasis on simplicity and ease of access, meaning that commercial vehicles have become one of the deadliest weapons used by terrorists across Europe.

No-deal Brexit: Government issues £300 million freight transportation tender

The Government has stepped up its no-deal Brexit plans by issuing a £300 million tender notice inviting companies to transport freight vehicles via ship, rail or air if there are delays at ports after October 31.

Blanket ban on mobile phone use “needs careful consideration”, say hauliers

Hauliers are “extremely concerned” that MPs are considering banning the use of a hands-free mobile devices in vehicles.

The Transport Select Committee, in its recommendations to government, is calling for a public consultation  to consider restricting all mobile phone usage in vehicles, including the use of hands-free devices.

Forth Ports, DRS and Eddie Stobart cement rail freight partnership

A new rail freight link between the ports of Tilbury and Grangemouth, run by Forth Ports, Direct Rail Services (DRS) and Eddie Stobart, has been made permanent following a successful trial of the service in June.

The new service will utilise DRS’s locomotives and wagon fleet and will be managed by Eddie Stobart, in close co-operation with Forth Ports and DRS. 

Hauliers targeted in overhead power cable safety campaign

A new safety campaign has been launched by the Energy Network Association to help prevent the number of fatalities amongst lorry drivers working near overhead power lines.

Road haulage workers are some of the most at risk of fatal electric shocks from overhead power lines, new research from the Energy Networks Association (ENA) suggests.

Plans unveiled to create 10 ‘freeports’ to boost trade post-Brexit

The Government has announced plans to establish up to 10 so-called ‘freeports’ after the UK leaves the EU.

Freeports are hubs for business and enterprise where regular customs controls and tax regimes are more relaxed. 

Launching the initiative, International Trade Secretary Liz Truss MP said: “Freedoms transformed London’s Docklands in the 1980s, and freeports will do the same for towns and cities across the UK. They will onshore enterprise and manufacturing as the gateway to our future prosperity, creating thousands of jobs.”

No-deal Brexit funding “a damp squib”

The Government’s no-deal funding boost for business falls short of what will be required and it still faces a huge challenge to prepare businesses in time for October 31, industry groups from across the freight and logistics sector have warned.

It follows Chancellor Sajid Javid’s announcement yesterday of a further £2.1bn to ”turbo-charge” no-deal Brexit preparations. Funding will be used for border and customs operations, critical medical supplies, and an awareness campaign to ensure the public and businesses are ready to leave the EU. 

Funding includes: 

Hauliers outline six-point plan to keep goods moving in no-deal Brexit

 

The Road Haulage Association has issued a six-point plan of action for Brexit supremo Michael Gove MP so goods can continue to flow across borders if there’s a no-deal Brexit.

In a letter to Mr Gove, RHA Chief Executive Richard Burnett (pictured above, inset) set out the measures he says would ensure high volumes of freight could continue moving if customs controls are introduced on 31 October.

Driver shortage could triple by 2020, MPs hear

The driver shortage could rise to 150,000 by 2020, the Road Haulage Association has warned. 

Rod McKenzie, Managing Director of the Road Haulage Association, told the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Road Freight and Logistics that the current driver shortage of around 60,000 could rise to 150,000 by 2020. 

“The concern is, we could be 150,000 drivers short by 2020, tripling the shortage” he said, “and added to that is age of drivers in the UK, the average age of a driver is mid-50s, just 1% of drivers are under 25”.