Measures ramped up to maximise testing capacity, including consulting on plans to streamline process for drivers to obtain an HGV licence.
A campaign to recruit additional vocational driving examiners in England and Wales to help reduce the lorry driver shortage has been launched by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) today (16 August 2021).
40 new vocational examiners will be recruited in total, made up of existing DVSA employees and external candidates.
The government wrote to the UK haulage industry on 20 July 2021 outlining a package of measures to help address the lorry driver shortage.
It acknowledged that increasing the availability of vocational driving tests is key to this issue.
DVSA continues to develop measures to maximise testing capacity, including consulting on plans to streamline the process for drivers to gain their heavy goods vehicle (HGV) licence. The additional examiners will enable DVSA to offer more lorry driving test appointments.
It has already increased the number of vocational driving tests from 2,000 a week pre-pandemic to 3,000 by overtime and allocating additional employees into testing.
DVSA Chief Executive Loveday Ryder said:
We recognise the haulage industry keeps the wheels of our economy turning and have listened to its concerns about the current lorry driver shortage. We have responded by doing all we can to support the industry in tackling this issue through increasing lorry driver testing. This includes our latest campaign to recruit more vocational examiners so we can maximise our lorry testing capacity.
Roads Minister Baroness Vere said:
Our HGV drivers provide a vital service delivering food, medicine and other vital goods to where they’re needed. That’s why we’re committed to working with industry to address the shortage of drivers and have unveiled a package of robust measures. Increasing the DVSA’s testing capacity is a crucial part of this plan, and I’d encourage anyone with the right experience to apply for a role – helping keep our country moving.