Garbage collection becomes the latest victim of the shortage of truck drivers Business News

Garbage collection in 24 local councils has been disrupted due to self-isolation rules and the lack of workers to drive the trucks.

Local government leaders have called on Home Secretary Priti Patel to relax immigration rules for heavy truck drivers to ease the disruption.

The Association of Local Governments said that while most councils have been able to keep their collections running, some – like Manchester City Council and Cambridge Country Council – need to cut services.

A spokesperson added: “These problems are partly due to the shortage of truck drivers, which is also affecting other sectors of the economy.”

They highlighted some of the quick steps the private sector is turning to, such as increasing the wages of drivers, saying: “[This] risk exacerbating problems in the public sector, with increases potentially creating a retention problem as well as a recruitment problem for boards and their contractors.

A spokesperson for Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole council said The independent that they had to suspend their collection of green waste for a month from July to August because of the self-isolation of the staff.

They added that the nationwide shortage of truck drivers has increased pressure from the council as they “compete with the private sector, including supermarkets, for additional staff at this time.”

It was reported last week that Waitrose was offering its truck drivers more money than some executives at head office due to chronic staff shortages, with drivers being offered up to £ 53,780 a year.

There is currently a shortage of some 100,000 drivers in the area, which has led to supply shortages in restaurants, supermarkets and supermarkets.

Food wholesalers warned on Friday that the heavy truck crisis could push food prices up. Darren Labbett, of Woods Foodservice, said his industry faces a “perfect storm” of problems. “At the same time we have the Brexit situation and the aftermath of the pandemic,” he said.

The shortage of drivers is also affecting bus services, said the Confederation of Passenger Transport, the body also warning that delays in issuing licenses are affecting the transport sector.

A spokesperson said: “It is essential that any measures aimed at helping the heavy-duty sector do not have a negative impact on the testing of bus and coach drivers, given the crucial role played by the area to help people get to work, school or visit local main streets. “

Lichfield District Council in Staffordshire is experiencing disruptions in its garden waste services. A problem his spokesperson attributed to a combination of “Brexit, Covid, competition, staff leave and delays in testing for heavy goods vehicles”.

Joint Waste Solutions, which manages garbage collection for Mole Valley, Surrey and Woking councils, said the nationwide shortage of heavy truck drivers means not all services can be run every week.

Wigan Council said staff had isolated themselves due to the coronavirus and Amber Valley Borough Council said their recruiting agencies were struggling to find temporary replacements.

BBC reported that three Devon councils wrote to the Home Secretary on Thursday, asking the government to grant temporary visas to European heavy truck drivers trained to alleviate the shortage.

Councilors Steve Darling, David Worden and Alistair Dewhirst wrote: “At the time of writing, the North Devon Council was trying to fill seven [bin lorry driver] vacancies, Torbay Council eight vacancies and Teinbridge Council ten vacancies.

“This equates to about 20% of the HGV workforce in vacant driver positions and it is proving very difficult to fill this lack of resources given the dynamics of this labor market. “

South Ribble Borough Council in Lancashire has written to the Transport and Environment Secretaries expressing similar concerns. Councilor Paul Foster wrote that “household garbage collection has become unsustainable due to the significant and rapidly deteriorating shortage of truck drivers available to drive our garbage collection vehicles.”

He added that this had left the council in “a totally unacceptable position where our residents are unfairly affected”, and highlighted “the impacts of Brexit … exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic” for causing the problems.

In an effort to alleviate the driver shortage, waste management company Veolia has appealed to mothers looking for part-time work to ‘get behind the wheel and help the UK get through the road. crisis ”. The company, which serves numerous boards in the UK, also announced a £ 1,500 membership bonus for new workers.

But a new report from the Confederation of Recruitment and Employment has found that the impacts on the labor market may be here to stay. Chief Executive Officer Neil Carberry said: “Large numbers of people are finding new jobs after the pandemic as the economy reshapes.

“But this realignment will take time, and there is good evidence to suggest that the market will remain tight for a few years to …

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This notice was published: 2021-09-03 16:49:57

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