Towns in anti-HGV Kent without bin collections for a fortnight due to driver shortage

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Towns in anti-HGV Kent without bin collections for a fortnight due to driver shortage

Kent, the UK’s most hostile county towards truck drivers, suddenly finds itself in need of bin lorry drivers. As Kent Online reports, residents in two Kent towns are having to go without collections for a fortnight as a result of the current driver shortage in Great Britain.

Urbaser, who are contracted to carry out bin collections in Tonbridge and Malling, say they are unable to collect refuse from residents’ ‘green lid’ bins for another two weeks.

The company’s managing director, Javier Peiro, told Kent Online that the decision was taken amid the current driver shortage:

„We would like to apologise to residents for this disruption to their recycling service and reiterate that we remain committed to recommencing collections as soon as possible. A significant upturn in waste and recycling volumes, combined with a national driver shortage exacerbated by the lack of driver training and testing during the pandemic, means that we are struggling to address the current shortfall. However, we are taking positive steps to address the issue and this brief suspension of the service will help us to consolidate our resources and resume recycling collections.”

Regular readers will be aware that Kent County Council aren’t exactly flavour of month as far as lorry drivers are concerned. The council have been clamping trucks left, right and centre since the start of the year, and want to extend their unpopular HGV parking ban indefinitely.

At the end of March, Councillor David Brazier blamed lorry drivers for Kent being “infested” before the ban was introduced. Just days later, Councillor Seán Holden claimed Kent residents had been “oppressed” by some truckers.

The irony of the UK’s seemingly most lorry driver-phobic county needing drivers clearly wasn’t lost on Truck and Driver magazine, who reacted to the news with sarcasm on Twitter:

Will the council’s attitude to lorry drivers change if the bin collection problem exacerbates? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Photo credit (illustrative photo): © Copyright Jaggery and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

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