Hauliers have delivered a damning verdict of the security, quality and availability of rest stops in the UK, with most rating them ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’.
In a survey of more than 1,000 freight and coach firms, 59% described rest stop facilities on motorways and major A roads as inadequate.
A further 56% said their availability was either very poor or poor.
Just 1% rated their security as ‘very good’.
Independent watchdog Transport Focus, which conducted the survey, said satisfaction with the clearing up of after accidents and with rest stop facilities were rated the lowest and the value for money of rest facilities received the lowest individual rating.
Logistics UK said the results reconfirmed a desperate industry need: “Three years ago, the government pledged to increase the availability of secure, safe parking spaces for lorry drivers – who work tirelessly to transport the goods the nation needs – but it has not yet delivered on its promise,” said Michelle Gardner, head of public policy at the trade association.
“With the industry already needing to fill 76,000 HGV driver vacancies, the parking shortage and resultant need, on occasion, for drivers to take legally mandated breaks in unsafe locations could discourage new entrants from joining the profession.
“Our members need government to listen carefully to the concerns of businesses shared in the report.”
Essex-based KBC Logistics recently criticised the “appalling” security at MSAs after a spate of incidents in which its HGVs were broken into.
Company director Dave Ashford said: “There is no real effective deterrent we can install or use, these people come equipped with disc cutters to remove any locks.
“There are generally a group of them so I would not expect a driver to challenge them.
“In essence I don’t think I should need to do anything; that is what we pay the police and the services for.”
Anthony Smith, Transport Focus chief executive, said: “Logistics and coach businesses rack up huge mileages on motorways and major ‘A’ roads so it’s important that Highways England knows what they think.
“This survey gives a clear view of what these businesses think they do well and where they need to improve.
“Freight and coach businesses tell us they want better rest stop facilities, incidents to be cleared up faster and for roadworks to take less time.”
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