toilet roll

The FTA has slammed the government for breaking its vow to improve and expand the number of toilet facilities for HGV drivers on the national road network.

The criticism follows an FTA survey which revealed that almost all respondents believe toilet facilities have not improved since the government pledged to upgrade them 18 months ago, with some drivers claiming they had become worse.

Speaking on the UN World Toilet Day (19 November) Elizabeth de Jong, UK policy director, said many of the UK’s HGV drivers are deprived of their legal human right to sanitation as a result of the dearth of toilet facilities on Britain’s motorways and highways.

She called for the government to prioritise the provision of welfare facilities for professional drivers across the UK.

De Jong added: “The logistics sector is the lifeblood of the UK economy, ensuring businesses, schools and hospitals are all stocked with the goods they need to operate. But despite the invaluable contribution HGV drivers provide to the economy, they are often denied access to very basic amenities.

“The inconsistent provision of toilets and other facilities for HGV drivers across the road network is not good enough. Access to hygiene amenities and other welfare services is a basic right for all workers. No other industry would be expected to work without access to toilets, so why should HGV drivers?

“More than 18 months ago, the government vowed to improve and expand the provision of facilities for those charged with keeping Britain trading, but since that promise, amenities have actually become worse," de Jong said.

“In an industry where you are compelled by law to take regular breaks and rest, it is vital drivers have access to these most basic facilities," she added.