As Brits adjust to life post-pandemic, hauliers gear up for possibly the busiest Christmas in history, amid near two-week delays to deliveries from food and retail suppliers.
The question is, could this be just another nightmare before Christmas for the transport industry? How will Brits cope with yet another turmoil?
It seems Britain has got a long way to go before life returns to normal.
DVLA Paperwork Delays Cause Havoc
While the DVLA is doing its utmost to clear a backlog of over 1.4 million letters, recent delays to driving licence applications have slowed the process of getting newly trained HGV drivers on the roads.
Motorists are encouraged to submit their requests through their online application system where possible in order to make HGV licence applications a priority.
Nevertheless, many hauliers claim they are fighting a losing battle with the fluctuation of HGV driver numbers.
Petrol Prices Hit All-Time High
Additionally, with such a recent surge in petrol demand, suppliers have been left with no choice but to increase their prices and thus, the consumer is feeling the effects of the national fuel price increase.
The cost of petrol has hit a record-high in the UK, adding even more pressure on hauliers to re-shuffle their finances and account for the extra cost of running their delivery vehicles.
New Shipping Regulations Leave Brits Marvelled
Moreover, the new shipping regulations introduced after Brexit have left Brits baffled as they grapple with paperwork requirements in a bid to avoid customs charges and delays.
Hauliers are responsible for ensuring freight clears customs promptly, ready for delivery to the endpoint, but with current delays, this is adding more pressure to an already chaotic situation.
Furthermore, hauliers are tasked with taking extra care when checking paperwork for goods heading overseas, which in turn, is causing small delays to some shipments.
Supermarkets Left with Bare Shelves
With the national driver shortage continuing, supermarkets have reached the height of the crisis, with many displaying bare shelves, while suppliers have warehouses full of stock but no way of delivering it.
Hauliers and their remaining HGV drivers are under pressure to clear the backlog of food supplies and help supermarkets restock in time for the first Christmas following the pandemic.