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FTA describes the ''heavy cost'' of severe weather on logistics

By: Deborah Bates
15 December 2010

With many drivers recently stranded due to the adverse weather conditions, logistics industry professionals are calling for companies to ensure the running costs associated with stranded vehicles (around £400 per day) aren't "allowed to get even greater," reports Hitachi Capital.

According to the Freight Transport Association (FTA) the weather has brought a "heavy cost" to Britain's economy, particularly that of Scotland, and the situation is likely to get worse amid reports of further snow and ice approaching the UK.

A spokesperson for the FTA, Chris MacRae, says "The running costs of a stranded HGV are very high to vehicle operators, and the knock-on impact of aborted commercial deliveries to businesses, and of course, consumers, make this cost far more significant. At one point, tankers were unable to deliver fuel to filling stations, so the situation was certainly grave."

"Our message to Government right now is that we need to ensure that we are prepared if severe conditions return next week. We have had concerns from members that key motorways were not gritted - we need to ensure that this situation is not repeated."

MacRae has also recently blasted new transport minister for Scotland, Keith Brown, for his criticism of companies who used their foresight to pull those in logistics work off the road, leaving crucial deliveries undelivered.

However MacRae and the FTA argues this is essential to avoid hundreds of stranded drivers, cited on Logistics Manager as saying "It is very disappointing that Mr Brown's opening gambit as Scotland's transport minister is to criticise those companies which have made the difficult decision to suspend their home delivers due to severe weather."

"The decision to suspend services, especially in the run-up to Christmas, is not one which is taken lightly, but road safety has to be the number one priority."

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