The life of a lorry driver is not always an easy one and this is particularly true on long hauls. There are a handful of issues that this hard working group face, including one which has caused every single trucker a great deal of stress, discomfort and even anxiety during long haulage jobs. This is the severe lack of suitable toilet stops around the country. |
A Cause for Concern
This results in long haul drivers having to go for hours without using the lavatory or even having a rest break. In addition to the obvious concern over the lack of toilet access, driving without stopping regularly is dangerous and unhealthy; this is particularly true when you consider that this group is often travelling for up to 5 days at a time.
Regular restroom stops are often out of the question due to the lack of space and suitable parking facilities for big rigs, so what is a truck driver to do when nature calls or when they need a break? This is a problem that has (understandably) caused uproar within the trucker community and many have recently taken to the internet to vent their frustration.
A Call for Change
A campaign has formed online, the Truckers’ Toilets UK (TTUK) campaignto highlight toilet issues in the working environment. The campaign has gained quite a following of frustrated truckers, who have shared their own experiences and who are calling for change. The campaign is urging the government to introduce a network of restrooms and parking areas for long haul drivers, which would provide them with decent lavatory facilities, shower facilities and places where they can eat and rest.
Change on the Horizon?
Fortunately, these calls for action have not gone unnoticed and the work of the campaign group could see results in the near future. After putting pressure on Transport Minister John Hayes, an agrement was made on 22nd December 2016 to address the truckers’ concerns to Parliament. The industry now waits to see if their wishes will be met.
In the meantime, there is an alternative for those on haulage jobs who struggle to find suitable loo stops and want a more dignified solution than a bottle or the roadside. This alternative is to have a portaloo fitted onboard, a clean and eco-friendly option.
The Current Issue Facing Truckers
Due to the current lack of facilities, many lorry drivers find themselves having to simply use the roadside when nature calls and they cannot be blamed for this. This is, clearly, not a great solution for anybody and particularly for the driver. It could potentially be unsafe, plus they would also receive a fine if they were caught.
The importance of the issue and the energy of the campaigners will hopefully bring about a solution in the near future. However, it is a shame that this hard working group finds itself in such awkward situations when they take on long haul haulage jobs.
Norman Dulwich is a Correspondent for Haulage Exchange, the leading online trade network for the road transport industry. Connecting logistics professionals across the UK and Europe through their website, Haulage Exchange provides services for matching haulage jobs with available drivers. Over 4,000 transport exchange businesses are networked together through their website, trading jobs and capacity in a safe 'wholesale' environment.
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