Hauliers call for flexible working time legislation

Road haulage employers will have to recruit 60,000 more lorry drivers and
face £3.8bn of extra costs when new legislation limiting working time comes
into force in 2005.

This is the conclusion of a report by the Road Haulage Association (RHA)
into the impact of the Working Time Directive for Mobile Workers, which will
affect all commercial drivers.

The RHA is calling for the Government to ensure it includes as much
flexibility as possible when it drafts the UK legislation to implement the

Under the directive, drivers will be able to work an average of 48 hours a
week over a four-month period. It will also mean that anyone working during the
core period for night work (a four-hour period between midnight and 7am) will
be limited to working a maximum of 10 hours.

Roger King, chief executive of the RHA, wants working time averaged over six
months instead of four and more flexibility over drivers’ working time when
they are hit by unavoidable delays such as ferry crossings.

Paul Langley, operations HR manager for logistics firm Christian Salvesen,
said the directive would hit the company hard.

"We will see increased pressure on obtaining new staff in an already
diminishing labour market. I hope the directive will allow employers
flexibility over the management of hours," he said.


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