RHA’s National Lorry Week to emphasise sector’s essential role

The Road Haulage Association (RHA) will be staging a national awareness campaign, ‘National Lorry Week’, from 26-31 October.  The theme of the week is ‘Love the Lorry’.  RHA represents haulage companies that between them operate approximately 100,000 heavy goods vehicles across the UK.

The campaign has been developed to demonstrate to the public and politicians the vital role that lorries and road freight play in moving the economy and daily life.  Hauliers will be asked to display a ‘Love the Lorry’ sticker on their vehicles to coincide with a nationwide ‘spot the sticker’ competition, the winner of which will win a prize worth £1,000.

Announcing ‘National Lorry Week’ at the Association’s recent Compliance Conference, RHA Chief Executive Richard Burnett said: “Eighty-five per cent of everything we eat, wear and buy and use is moved, at some point, on the back of a UK-registered lorry.  Without us, supermarket shelves would be empty, homes would not be built and manufacturing plants would grind to a halt.

“This industry employs over 2.2 million people and, quite literally, delivers the UK economy – t o which it contributes £74.5 billion.  We have a huge impact on the lives of everyone in Britain but sometimes that positive contribution is overlooked.

“National Lorry Week will provide us with an opportunity to reach out to the public and politicians as never before to highlight our massive and positive contribution to daily life.”

Hauliers across the UK will be opening their doors and inviting the public to:
• Get up close and personal with a lorry
• Meet operators/drivers to hear about the important role the road freight industry plays
• To find out how the industry keeps them supplied with all the things their lives depend upon
• Hear about careers in driving and other industry-related jobs
• Listen to what the industry is doing to reduce its impact on the environment

The RHA will be inviting high profile media figures to try their hand at the wheel and to spend a shift working with a driver.  In addition, there will be a nationwide radio campaign throughout the week.

There will also be a TV documentary featuring BTCC and RHA-sponsored racing driver Tom Ingram.  As a professional racing driver, Tom has gone through the process of training to become a professional HGV driver and the documentary clearly shows it requires an equally high level of driving skill.

Furthermore, the RHA will be hosting a reception in Parliament for MPs and Ministers to hear first-hand about the vital role the industry plays in their constituencies and also get the chance to see if they have what it takes to be a HGV driver in a state of the art HGV driving simulator.

“The British public should be proud of its road haulage industry,” continued Mr Burnett. “It’s an industry that works hard, is efficient and innovative.  This industry is currently suffering from a massive driver shortage.  What better way to highlight the industry as a great career opportunity?

“Through National Lorry Week, the RHA will ensure that the industry and its drivers get recognition for the essential service they provide.”