الأربعاء 7 ذو الحجة 1443هـ - 6-07-2022م

Government calls all German residents to drive HGV

DOVER ENGLAND - DECEMBER 31 : Lorries preparing to board the last ferry before the new Brexit restrictions in Dover, England on December 31st, 2020 ( Alan Langley - Anadolu Agency )

The UK is suffering a fuel crisis due to HGV shortage. Now, the British government asks thousands of Germans residing in the UK to drive lorries, even if they have never driven one before.

According to The Independent, Germans based in the UK were sent a letter by the Department for Transport, asking them to “consider returning” to the HGV driving sector.

The letter goes as follows: “Your valuable skills and experience have never been more needed than they are now.

“There are fantastic HGV driving opportunities in the logistics industry and conditions of employment have been improving across the sector. As well as attractive pay rates, we are seeing more options for flexible working, fixed hours, fixed days, full time and part time.”

German driving licences issued before 1999 include an entitlement to drive a small to medium-sized truck of up to 7.5 tonnes, reports The Independent. It is understood that almost all Germans holding such license residing in the UK, regardless of their HGV driving experience.

Exciting Opportunity?

One 41-year-old German man, who received two copies of the letter at his London home on Friday morning, one addressed to him and another for his wife, told The Independent.

“We were quite surprised,” he said. “I’m sure pay and conditions for HGV drivers have improved, but ultimately I have decided to carry on in my role at an investment bank. My wife has never driven anything larger than a Volvo, so she is also intending to decline the exciting opportunity.

The letter is part of the same mass mailout that has also asked ambulance drivers and paramedics to come and drive HGV vehicles.

A DfT spokesperson said: “The letter was automatically sent to almost one million people with HGV driving licences, and it was impossible to narrow the copy-list by profession due to personal data protection.”

The Treasury has denied that the shortage of HGV drivers in the UK is related to Brexit. Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Simon Clarke, told the Today programme on Thursday. “The difficulties we are facing are not unique to this country. The idea that this is somehow just a British problem is fundamentally wrong. There’s a shortage of 400,000 HGV drivers across Europe,” he said.

Clarke also claimed that the situation is particularly similar in places like France, Poland and Germany.

Source: The Independent

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