Driver shortage looms

A survey by the Transport and Logistics Industry Skills Council suggests the transport industry will be facing a severe shortage of drivers in the future. The survey of operators’ opinions was conducted at the end of 2009.

“Before the global financial crisis, productivity in the transport industry was hampered by the limited pool of heavy vehicle drivers,” says the report. “Under present licensing arrangements, the time required to achieve a heavy vehicle licence means drivers cannot be trained quickly enough to meet demand in a strengthened economy.

“It is anticipated that there will be a rapid growth in demand for higher level heavy and combination vehicle driving skills. Satisfying this demand will require strategies to increase the total pool of appropriately skilled drivers.”

This report follows hot on the heels of an enhanced licence proposal by the ATA. It wants new rules to allow drivers to advance more quickly through the graduated licensing system if they undertake an enhanced competency-based training and assessment as well as providing a recorded history of safe driving on the job.

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