The UK truck driver shortage has worsened with companies warning of a looming crisis by summer.
Driver shortages that have been the norm for decades are now intensifying with Brexit ending recruitment from the EU, a backlog of driving tests caused by Covid-19 and self-employment tax reforms that have led to EU drivers leaving the UK.
Add to this the fact that nearly a third of the 300,000 UK drivers are over 55 years old and heading for retirement and the shortage will soon be critical. The government remains firm that it will not consider truck drivers as high skilled thus allowing business to recruit foreign HGV drivers, an occupation that is not deemed sufficiently skilled to be eligible for the skilled worker visa.
HM Revenue & Customs IR35 reforms have affected self-employed drivers meaning take home pay has fallen for most and encourage many EU drivers to leave the UK. Few operators believe domestic recruitment can fill the gap for a job with long working hours, tough working conditions, and poor pay.
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