back to article Cheeky chappy rides horse around London filling station, singing: 'I don't need petrol 'cos he runs on carrots'

First it was bog roll and pasta shortages. Now people are panic-buying petrol to round out the post-pandemic/Brexit apocalypse. It's a suboptimal situation but an effective ad campaign for electric cars or, indeed, any other mode of transport that doesn't run on fossil fuels. And as with any suboptimal situation, you'll find …

  1. theOtherJT

    "He runs on carrots"

    Which is all very fine and well, but if the supermarkets around there are having supply issues anything like the ones around here, you'll have trouble finding any of those either.

    1. Pen-y-gors

      Re: "He runs on carrots"

      It'll be okay provided the haulage companies switch back to horse-drawn carts for delivering the carrots from the farms.

    2. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

      Re: "He runs on carrots"

      At least Findus won't run out of "meat" to put in their Lasagne.

      1. Dabooka Silver badge

        Re: "He runs on carrots"

        Surely you mean Tesco and burgers?

        1. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

          Re: "He runs on carrots"

          No I meant Findus and Lasagne.

        2. davidp231

          Re: "He runs on carrots"

          "Hello horse, I shall call you Tesco."

    3. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

      Re: "He runs on carrots"

      He's not in Belgium, you know.

    4. Natalie Gritpants Jr Silver badge

      Re: "He runs on carrots"

      And, they don't. They run on hay and vet bills.

    5. Klimt's Beast Would

      Re: "He runs on carrots"

      I wouldn't recommend it.

      Carrots are very slippery as I have discovered although I am not a horse (honest).

      Also slippery when wet! Cue the Bon Jovi!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "He runs on carrots"

        Also cue the Commodores

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLr5cL0eG2w

    6. Blackjack Silver badge

      Re: "He runs on carrots"

      And once the carrots come from the other side, he either picks ups the "waste" himself or he will get arrested.

      Horses do not need to do like bears, they need no woods, they leave their waste everywhere.

      1. ElPedro100

        Re: "He runs on carrots"

        In the old days of horse drawn deliveries people used to rush out with a shovel and collect the byproduct of the horses digestive system to put on their rhubarb.

        Personally, I preferred custard on mine.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

    7. martinusher Silver badge

      Re: "He runs on carrots"

      Horses will eat carrots but they don't usually run on them. They run on cereals, mostly oats (at least they used to back in the rag and bone man days -- these days your thoroughbred lives off specially formulated horse diet stuff that you use your Range Rover to fetch from the feed store).

      Horses also need to be fed when they're not being used, their keepers don't get to take days off (they need constant maintainance) and a regular supply of food, water and bedding. They generate not inconsiderable amounts of waste -- before WW1 horses were becoming a serious problem in UK cities -- which I daresay by modern H&S rules will require immediate attention if on a public street. (in the old days the neighbours used to pick it up -- "good for the roses").

      This character is like someone swanning around on a full tank of fuel crowing about how he can move and others can't. He'll run out eventually. On theory it would be a good time to own an electric car but I'm not sure the UK's infrastructure is up to it.

      1. Jonathon Green

        Re: "He runs on carrots"

        “ On theory it would be a good time to own an electric car but I'm not sure the UK's infrastructure is up to it.”

        I do (and have for 6 years), and trust me it’s fine.

        I’m (mostly) resisting the temptation to wind people up over it, although some people seem totally nonplussed by my lack of interest in discussions of which locations have or have not got fuel locally… :-)

        1. ThatOne Silver badge
          Devil

          Re: "He runs on carrots"

          > I do (and have for 6 years), and trust me it’s fine.

          Just wait for another dozen million EVs to turn up and you'll change your mind, as most city dwellers will be desperately searching for the illusory available charging station. All right, except those owning a detached house near a power plant, where they can charge their car themselves without being too much annoyed by the constant brownouts...

          Point is, what's fine for 10k EVs isn't necessarily enough for 10 million EVs. Now I admit I don't know anything about UK's grid capacity and charging infrastructures, but the general human inability to grasp scale issues, and their propensity to keep saying "it's enough for one person, why shouldn't it be enough for a million" is terribly counterproductive and dangerous.

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

            1. chriskno

              Re: "He runs on carrots"

              There are 16,377 charging locations in the UK, (not including the over 250,000 home chargers). They have 26,058 devices with 44,686 connectors, and 569 new devices were added in the last 30 days. That is more locations than there are petrol stations. Source: https://www.zap-map.com/statistics/#points. What has also changed is that fast chargers have now been upgraded from 50Kw to 350Kw, meaning 100 miles range in 10 minutes. And the range of the cars have increased to an average of around 230 miles, but over 300 miles is not uncommon. Can your bladder last for 230 miles? The grid is on top of planning for the necessary expansion, and technologies such as vehicle to grid and vehicle to home will revolutionise the energy market. Oh, and driving an electric vehicle is a real pleasure with features such as single pedal driving and semi autonomous driving technology. Its all out there, take a look, and it will last, nothing else comes close.

              1. ThatOne Silver badge

                Re: "He runs on carrots"

                > That is more locations than there are petrol stations

                Charging locations need obviously to be way more numerous, since charging takes way more time than filling up with petrol. The question remains, are there enough if every vehicle in the country was an EV? How many cars are there again?

                .

                > upgraded from 50Kw to 350Kw

                Will the grid hold up if all those chargers are used simultaneously?

                Sorry, your fact cherry picking does not address the infrastructure problems I was speaking about. The fact EVs are nicer to drive and have all kinds of cool features is totally irrelevant, the question is, has the country (yours, mine) the needed infrastructure to switch more than a happy few to EV - for everyday use (not just occasional demonstration runs)? That includes a lot of people driving all day, and thus needing a full recharge each and every day. What happens during a cold spell in winter, when power gets scarce? Will the consumption increase due to the additional charging trigger a brownout? Where and how do people living in an apartment, without a parking space at home or at work, charge their cars day after day?

                There are some individual solutions, but they all are very specific and most do not scale. Imagining that what works for a (selected, well-off) minority will work as well for everybody else is naive. Unless we henceforth limit car ownership to the affluent. That would obviously solve many infrastructure problems, wouldn't it...

              2. Cuddles Silver badge

                Re: "He runs on carrots"

                "And the range of the cars have increased to an average of around 230 miles, but over 300 miles is not uncommon. Can your bladder last for 230 miles?"

                Well yes, very easily. That's only just over 3 hours driving on a motorway, less in some countries. That's pretty routine for a no-stop drive. Personally I prefer not to do much more than that in one go, but a month or so ago when the bastard motorway was broken I ended up doing 6 1/2 hours. Some people, especially those of the older persuasion, may prefer to stop more often. That's absolutely fine, and is why there are even laws regulating how many service stations we have on motorways. Others stop significantly less. I don't understand why, every time electric cars are mentioned, someone will pop up to say that no-one could ever want a car with a range bigger than 200 miles because it's impossible to drive that far without a break. It's really not that long at all, as the actress said to the bishop.

                "meaning 100 miles range in 10 minutes"

                And of course, this is the other problem. Even if we accept that it's simply impossible to drive more than 200 miles without stopping, that doesn't help much if I can only recharge under 100 miles in the time it takes to use the toilet. Because that now means barely an hour driving before I have to stop again, and if you can't manage more than that you probably shouldn't be on a motorway in the first place.

                The thing is, we may actually need to change our habits. Humanity's past behaviour is clearly not sustainable. Maybe we need to accept that electric cars aren't identical to dinosaur explosion cars and never will be, and just as our driving habits changed when we replaced horses with cars, they need to change again when we all change to electric cars. Having to make somewhat more regular, longer stops for charging probably wouldn't be the end of the world. The problem is that many of the more vocal proponents of electric cars don't seem willing to consider this, and instead insist on endlessly pushing the same nonsensical, dishonest claims about how amazing electric cars are. The simple fact is that electric car ranges are significantly lower than other cars, and refuelling times are significantly longer. There's absolutely no point trying to persuade people that they must currently spend half an hour stopped for every two hours driving and therefore an electric car is exactly the same, because everyone knows that it's simply not true. Tell us that electric cars are good enough that the sacrifices necessary to make the change are small enough to be acceptable, and that's something many of us could get behind. Blatantly lie to us about how far we are currently able to drive, while throwing in dishonest diversions about technology completely unrelated to electric motors, and you're not going to convince anyone of anything.

                1. Alan Brown Silver badge

                  Re: "He runs on carrots"

                  here's my claim: it does for my commute to work and even using expensive fast chargers costs about £20/month to fuel up with ZERO maintenance costs to speak of, vs about £200/month to run an econobox

                  I don't care that my little electric turd only has a 40 mile range and tops out at 80mph - because that's all I need. If I need to go further it's easier and cheaper to hire something, fly or take public transport (and usually less hassle overall)

                  1. ThatOne Silver badge
                    Happy

                    Re: "He runs on carrots"

                    Sure, but that's slightly irrelevant. Next someone will come and tell us his work place is just across the street and thus cars (and all transports) should be banned, since they are useless and only hinder crossing the street.

          2. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: "He runs on carrots"

            > But the general human inability to grasp scale issues, and their propensity to keep saying "it's enough for one person, why shouldn't it be enough for a million" is terribly counterproductive and dangerous.

            THIS in spades

            In europe, most electricity providers allow an average consumption of 1kW per household when laying out power allowanges and feeder cables

            It's 400W/household for older streets

            Now, remove gas heating (it will be banned after 2030) and add electric cars to the mix and those design criteria are problematic

            The movie "Brazil" didn't actually have any terrorists - explosions were mostly the result of dilapidated infrastructure breaking down. In real life London's already suffered a number of "exploding footpaths" - which were electrocal supply cables failing under overload conditions and the issue is only going to get worse

      2. ChoHag
        Joke

        Re: "He runs on carrots"

        > This character is like someone swanning around on a full tank of fuel crowing about how he can move and others can't. He'll run out eventually.

        But in the meantime, it's *funny*.

      3. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: "He runs on carrots"

        "On theory it would be a good time to own an electric car but I'm not sure the UK's infrastructure is up to it."

        if you reply on the public charging network, it isn't. More chargers around my way are dead than working in my experience of trying to use the things

  2. Franco Silver badge

    I was a student and working in a supermarket during the fuel protests years ago, and it was much the same then. We very quickly had to restrict items becuase idiots were buying (for example) 6-8 loaves of bread at a time, despite admitting that they wouldn't use it before it went stale and didn't have space to freeze it.

    Unsurprisingly the reaction from the continent appears to be "I'm not moving back there for 6 months just to bail them out of the shit then get kicked out again"

    1. Dabooka Silver badge

      I cannot fathom the downvotes

      Your points are, er, on point.

      Upvoted

      1. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

        Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

        Re : "I cannot fathom the downvotes"

        Some men aren't looking for anything logical, like money. They can't be bought, bullied, reasoned, or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.

        1. hoola Silver badge

          Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

          The UK also did not "kick" anyone out. Many went home due to Covid and have discovered that they can earn enough money doing a job at home than driving all over Europe.

          Yes Brexit has not helped with the HGV driver shortage but it existed long before Brexit appeared on the scene. The industry has refused to do anything other than pay the absolute minimum whilst working conditions appear to have got steadily worse.

          The fact that the very people suffering from the shortages, the supermarkets are actually the root cause of this has also been carefully buried.

          The major supermarkets contracted out or sold off most of the delivery operations to third parties in the quest for efficiency. What this in effect has meant that they can now force down the costs or haulage because overall they are a monopoly. All the price cuts that the supermarkets do never come out of their profits, all they do is force it on the the supply chain.

          The net result is that nobody can afford to pay people to pick crops or drive trucks.

          1. hoola Silver badge

            Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

            Could those downvoting please also post what they feel the issue is.

            We have a shortage of mostly low-paid Eastern European labour who for a variety of reasons including Brexit have decided not to return after going home due to Covid.

            The issues being discussed in this article relate to HGV drivers. That shortage is across Europe and although conditions are meant to be better in parts of Europe, people are still leaving and new drivers not starting. Poland has a shortfall of 124,000 with a population half of the UK. Germany upwards of 45,000.

            I am no fan of Brexit but one of the arguments is that UK employers have been able to get away with paying less and having poor conditions because EU workers were prepared to do the work whilst British people were not. The fact that many went home due to Covid and have now found they can earn enough with better conditions locally is why there is a shortage all over Europe. If you can drive a fork lift or dumper 9-5 and go home at night, why would you then drive an HGV and sleep in the cab?

        2. TRT Silver badge

          Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

          I don't think it's a gender related phenomenon, TBH.

      2. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

        I guess the two downvoters don't understand that European HGV drivers aren't waiting day after day by the phone for it to ring and them to get their chance to get called up and save Blighty, until the 25th of December when they become illegal immigrants and they'll be put on a flight to Jamaica.

        1. Franco Silver badge

          Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

          It's a continual argument around the internet. The "we stopped them coming over here and taking our jobs" brigade will of course not be taking jobs like HGV driving, meat processing or fruit picking, and instead of admitting that Brexit is one of the factors in this shortage (there are of course others, HGV driving has been losing people for years due to the conditions, and the pandemic and IR35 reform have also been factors) these people are instead celebrating the clear victory of the crown symbol returning to British pint glasses.

          https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2021/09/16/brexit-triumph-crown-stamp-returns-pint-glasses-bonfire-eu-rules/

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. John Robson Silver badge

            Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

            Pretty sure we could have printed those anyway...

          3. elsergiovolador Silver badge

            Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

            Brexit is the factor in the sense that our own drivers didn't go to EU countries to work. If we didn't have Brexit the shortage would have been much worse due to IR35.

          4. martinusher Silver badge

            Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

            Don't forget that British passports are now blue again (even if they are a shadow of their former selves).

            (Aren't they printed in Poland by a French company or something?)

      3. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

        Re: I cannot fathom the downvotes

        The downvotes?

        They weren't "kicked out" in the first place.

    2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      "I'm not moving back there for 6 months just to bail them out of the shit then get kicked out again"

      3 months, and kicked out on Chirstmas Eve.

      To be honest, knowing what I know about upcoming troubles, keeping the xenophobia dial turned up to 11 will be the least of Priti Patel's problems soon. Let's just say it looks like certain public sector unions will be (rightly) rejecting a 1% pay offer, and we'll see where that leads.

    3. elsergiovolador Silver badge

      The fuel shortage in 2000 coincidentally happened when IR35 was first introduced... oh...

    4. big_D Silver badge

      There are also driver shortages in most EU countries already. There is plenty of work to go around, here on the mainland.

      What are you going to take? 2 - 3 months work for ungrateful people, who don't want you there and will kick you back out "their" country, once the Christmas rush is over, or long term employment on the same landmass as your family?

      With increasing welfare rules coming into effect next year in Europe, there will need to be even more drivers over here... I think the UK is going to be in for a surprise.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        "There is plenty of work to go around, here on the mainland."

        At a decent rate of pay, with decent overnight accomodation, without drivers being treated badly or ripped off for parking, etc etc etc

        There's a driver shortage worldwide. Covid is worldwide. British pay and conditions are amongst the worst in Europe and then there's Brexit

        There's a reason the logistics system is only falling apart in the UK but not anywhere else. Straws and camels spring to mind

  3. Ian Johnston Silver badge

    Can you imagine what would have happened if he had done this in a Liverpool? It wouldn't be easy riding a horse away when all four legs had been nicked.

    1. TRT Silver badge

      You'd need pep talk from Deep Thought...

  4. sandman

    Thames Ditton

    Hmm, Thames Ditton may in theory be in Greater London, but in reality it's in an affluent part of Surrey. People not only recognise what a horse is, a few probably own one.

    1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      Re: Thames Ditton

      Thames Ditton is not very far from Surbiton where the (fictional) couple Tom and Barbara Good attempted to live self-sufficient life.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Good_Life_(1975_TV_series)

      I think the only petrol they needed was for the rotovator

      1. JetSetJim
        Facepalm

        Re: Thames Ditton

        Outdoor filming took place in the northern Greater London suburb of Northwood, although the series was set in Surbiton, south-western Greater London.

        Set there, but not filmed anywhere near there :)

        1. sabroni Silver badge
          WTF?

          Re: Set there, but not filmed anywhere near there :)

          If you think one side of London is nowhere near the other side.

          If you live in another part of the county, it was filmed near where it was set.

    2. JetSetJim

      Re: Thames Ditton

      They might open them, but the housing is not such as you'd find a horse in someone's back garden. A single horse needs a decent amount of space.

      1. martinusher Silver badge

        Re: Thames Ditton

        I live in a part of the world where we have tracts of 'horse property'. If you're not a horse enthusiast then you'll refer to the neighbourhood as "horsefly property".

  5. Sloppy Crapmonster

    Was he wearing a plastic bag on his head?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljPFZrRD3J8

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Was he wearing a plastic bag on his head?

      Came here to make exactly that comment :-)

  6. codejunky Silver badge

    Hmm

    Someone shouts fire in a crowded room and people knock each other over to get out. Much the same for the loo roll and petrol. Yet we still wait for the world to end.

    1. gnasher729 Silver badge

      Re: Hmm

      On the positive side, the amount of fuel most people could hoard is one tank full, while the amount of toilet paper one can hoard is usually one loft full.

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: Hmm

        @gnasher729

        "the amount of fuel most people could hoard is one tank full"

        I have seen pictures of some people filling water bottles and bin bags. Dangerous and stupid, I am waiting for news of stuff burning down.

  7. I should coco

    Why now

    Can someone reasonably explain to me why this "petrol shortage" is happening now and not 6 or 9 months ago?

    Was it caused by a Guardian reader by any chance?

    1. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

      Re: Why now

      There was a minor shortage from one firm that wouldn't have caused any problems for anybody.

      The press reported on it with glee, so everybody rushed out an bought petrol.

      Then the press reported on the panic buying with glee in order to elongate the panic buying.

      The Times ran a story yesterday on the *front page* that Christiano Ronaldo's *driver* was queueing for petrol. Absolutely pathetic from the press. They should be shot.

      Everything is fine. There is plenty of petrol. It's just people are buying (literally) 5 times more than normal.

      Once everybody has a full tank, this will be over.

      1. Fr. Ted Crilly Bronze badge

        Re: Why now

        You could almost be forgiven for thinking that the furore is deliberate, never let a crises go to waste....

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Why now

          Yep. Somebody planned this to happen and is making a lot of money out of it.

          1. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

            Re: Why now

            Well, it's the Road Haulage Association that started the rumour about a petrol shortage in order to try to bounce the government into letting in unlimited workers in order to drive down wages.

            So yes, the members of the RHA stand to make money if the government backs down. Fortunately they aren't doing.

      2. the small snake
        Boffin

        Re: Why now

        Interesting thing is that a panic can not last for that long unless you assume people have vast tanks in their garden which most people probably do not, or whizz around madly in their cars to burn the extra fuel they are buying.

        Sums are fairly easy but with reasonable assumptions longest panic is perhaps 10-20 days. If it lasts longer than that it's real. If it's real then refineries will also start shutting since the other end of the supply chain will block up.

        Suspect it is not real, but it may be. Obviously HGV driver shortage is real.

      3. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

        Re: Why now

        And yet it’s still going. Perhaps the party line isn’t quite as true as you hope?

      4. sabroni Silver badge

        Re: The press reported on it with glee, so everybody rushed out an bought petrol.

        Are you sure that's all there is to it? Don't the people reading the press need to be fucking idiots too?

        1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
          Unhappy

          Re: The press reported on it with glee, so everybody rushed out an bought petrol.

          I think that's as given.

          1. Wellyboot Silver badge

            Re: The press reported on it with glee, so everybody rushed out an bought petrol.

            Yes, remember, IQ=100 is at the top of the bell curve...

    2. David 132 Silver badge

      Re: Why now

      Wanting to bounce the government into allowing them to bring in cheap drivers from Eastern Europe so as to pad their profits, BP and the Road Haulage Association thought they were being oh-so-clever "leaking" that some BP forecourts were (allegedly) having difficulty getting their supplies delivered.

      Of course, these strategic geniuses failed to take into account:

      1) there's a shortage of truck drivers all across Europe (~100,000 less than needed in Poland alone, from what I read last week), so it's not like there's a vast number of drivers who are queuing to come and work in the UK,

      2) after 18 months of lockdown etc, people are twitchy and more nervous than usual, so it's even easier to spark panic - you don't even need to shout "fire", you just have to start sniffing and muttering "do I smell smoke?"

      A large part of the problem is that the DVLA has sat on their collective arses for the last 18 months, "working from home". Which means that vital stuff like passing on drivers' details promptly to dob them in to private parking enforcement has been maintained and has met all SLAs, but the unimportant irrelevant trivial stuff like renewing HGV licences, car licences, etc, has been allowed to go hang.

      So, 18 months of drivers retiring (average age of the UK's HGV driver fleet is 55+) and of no new drivers becoming qualified, and this is the result.

      A proper fix would be for a) the industry to see common sense and start paying drivers a decent package (and to Boris' credit, this is pretty much what his administration is saying; they've recognized that relying on endless cheap labour from Eastern Europe to subsidize industry is NOT a good long-term strategy), and b) the seat-polishers at the DVLA to actually start working again.

      I am not optimistic on (b).

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Why now

        The Road Haulage Association had nothing to do with it, rather was a political hit job by their trained newspaper (if you can call it that).

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Why now

        I look forward to your suggested fix for seasonal work such as picking fruit / veg and preparing all the lucky turkeys for Xmas.

        There do appear to be a lot of jobs that us Brits don't really want to do and have been fortunate enough that people from "Eastern Europe" would do for us over the past decade or so. Did you realise we used to have eat turkeys from France at Xmas!

        Given the "deal" that our government did with the EU, I'm not surprised that foreign truckers (and the companies they work for) are less keen to come over with deliveries when they've got all the paperwork each way (apparently they're happy to leave the UK empty as it saves paperwork, but that means they've got to charge more on the outbound journey as there is no return leg cargo/revenue).

        Oh well, at least I learnt a new word from all this - cabotage.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Why now

          " cabotage."

          That's the leafy rabbit food you throw away before munching into your kebab, right?

          1. RichardB

            Re: Why now

            Cabotage.

            With a soft C?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Why now

          If there really is a driver shortage in Europe as some have reported, then there is bugger all chance of EU drivers jumping through the paperwork hoops to come here only to be turfed out again once Priti Patel needs to find someone else to victimise.

          Why would they bother when they can go freely work anywhere in the EU or EEA.

          Same applies to anyone else really. The UK really is going to have to find some way to persuade all those people who want to become Instagram influencers to drive trucks and pick fruit.

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: Why now

            Not only that, but the visa scheme is only being offered for a few months. HGV drivers are in demand everywhere. Why would someone want to come work in the UK for only a couple of months? The visa scheme should have had a 12 month minimum term. At least that might be a bit more attractive.

            1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

              Re: Why now

              The visa scheme should have had a 12 month minimum term. At least that might be a bit more less unattractive.

              FTFY

              1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                Re: Why now

                I see the government have sort of listened and started the visa scheme now instead of next month and extended it to March next year. That may attract a few drivers if the wages are right. Sttill not enough IMO, better better than the original plan.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Why now

              >Not only that, but the visa scheme is only being offered for a few months.

              Add to that the way they were all treated last Christmas and New Year and it's plain to see EU drivers will not be flocking to the aid of Brexit Britain.

              What next? Roaming pressgangs from the DfT shanghaiing passers-by to work in the haulage sector?

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Why now

                No, just change the rules to allow existing drivers to keep going until they crash from exhaustion.

          2. RichardB

            Re: Why now

            If only there was some mechanism by which employers could encourage people to do stuff for them.

            Maybe some kind of token they could exchange for their time spent doing these tasks, that could then be swapped for something they really want.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Why now

            If I were an EU truckie, I would need all of the following before I even considered coming here:

            A salary sufficiently larger than I could get in somewhere like Germany or Poland.

            Employer to cover all visa processing costs.

            Employer to cover all relocation costs.

            Employer to provide short term accommodation.

            Even then, I would think long and hard before coming, having to put of with the hassle of a short term move and the general xenophobia in parts of the country. Of course, if any do come then the consumer will end up picking up the tab for the high employment costs.

            1. Anonymous Coward
          4. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: Why now

            "If there really is a driver shortage in Europe as some have reported, then there is bugger all chance of EU drivers jumping through the paperwork hoops to come here only to be turfed out again"

            .... unless they're pair really REALLY well for their trouble.

            The words "over a barrel" and "awaiting a red hot poker" do spring to mind.

        3. TheMeerkat Bronze badge

          Re: Why now

          The reason Brits don’t want to do those jobs is low wages while the job is physically demanding.

          But is relying on constant stream of cheap and willing workforce from abroad is a sustainable solution?

          1. Will Godfrey Silver badge

            Re: Why now

            I'd say the current situation answers your question.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Why now

            Is the SE relying on a constant stream of cheap and willing workforce from North of Watford a sustainable solution?

            The problem is even with higher wages, Brits still won't want to do them. Plus with higher wages, input costs go up, so prices go up. Inflation occurs, then the BoE is forced to increase interest rates.

            Unless everybody's wages are going up at the same rate, the poorer end of the community or people in the wrong jobs are screwed.

            Immigration is good for the economy.

          3. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: Why now

            "But is relying on constant stream of cheap and willing workforce from abroad is a sustainable solution?"

            Of course not - and the supply was already drying up as more and more Romanian/Bulgarian drovers realised thery could make better money at home. British pay/conditions are the worst in Europe - and then there's the appalling lack of accomodation and sky high parking charges in motorway truck stops which other EU countries don't do - basically a perfect storm brewing and then Brexit was the icing on the cake

            Brexit sisn't just exacerbate what was already happening but ALSO blew away cabotage rules which made it possible for the shortages to be spread across the entire EU rather than "any one country" - meaning that international shipments/drivers have to run point-to-point now instead of doing drop-offs and pickups along the way. That means even fewer drivers want to cross the Channel

            In another 2-3 years the supply of drivers would have forced wage increases anyway, but in another 2-3 years there would have been more new ones coming through as well. Right not there's a critical shortage in the UK _AND_ no replacements wanting to come in from anywhere to fill positions _AND_ nobody in training.

            Perfect self-inflicted storm. Project Fear has become Project Here

      3. nsld

        Re: Why now

        Pretty much everything you've written is wrong.

        Firstly Poland doesn't have a shortage of drivers, it has vacancies in its very successful pan European haulage businesses, all countries have vacancies, only 1 has cut off the freedom of movement of goods (food, fuel), Services (Haulage), Capital (Paying the bills) and people (delivering the first three!).

        So you can have loads of vacancies but still have a functioning cross border supply chain which can cope with demand, thats the benefit of the single market.

        As for fuel shortages, we had got to a critical point where forecourt reserves had been significantly diminshed as delivery cycles had got longer and longer for the stations.Then add in the news breaking and boom, queues and closures.

        The UK actually delivered more HGV tests in 2020 than it did in 2019, the DVLA hit job going on at the moment is as laughable as blaming the RHA for the structural problems with Brexit

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Why now

          "The UK actually delivered more HGV tests in 2020 than it did in 2019, the DVLA hit job going on at the moment is as laughable as blaming the RHA for the structural problems with Brexit"

          I was chatting with an out-of-work HGV driver the other day. He turned 70 about a month ago. He had applied well in advance for his licence renewal so it wouldn't interrupt his ability to work. He's still waiting for the renewal to be approved and on benefits now because he can't drive. Lorry drivers need medicals and other licence renewals far more frequently than us mere mortal car drivers, so he's well aware of what he needs to do and when.

      4. Outski Silver badge

        Re: Why now

        the DVLA has sat on their collective arses for the last 18 months, "working from home"

        So you'd be happy for drivers' PPI including medical information to be sent to DVLA workers' private addresses, with all manner of hazards to official documents like kids' jammy fingers, cats, mislaid post, etc? Not to mention that DVLA and its lax Covid protocols resulted in the largest single workplace-based outbreak in the UK, which the not very militant PCS are a bit peeved about.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Why now

          It's all done online with electronic documents now. Has been for some while now.

          1. Outski Silver badge

            Re: Why now

            Not necessarily. I believe the medical section still processes a lot of paper. MrsO just submitted a change of address on paper, as she has no UK passport to verify online through the passport office (like what I did) and BRPs aren't as yet linked in to DVLA systems.

        2. TheMeerkat Bronze badge

          Re: Why now

          May be DVLA employees should not have worked from home if working from home is impossible? You know, like supermarket employees who were coming to their place of work every day despite Covid?

          1. Outski Silver badge

            Re: Why now

            Did you miss the part about the DVLA having one of the worst single workplace Covid outbreaks, before the majority of the population was vaccinated?

    3. EvilDrSmith Silver badge

      Re: Why now

      I saw an interview with someone from the petrol retailers' association (I think it was) during the week.

      8,500 petrol stations in the UK. Last week, a few tens had closed (temporarily) due to supply problems in one particular area, which were known about and being addressed.

      Media publish that there are supply shortages, and tell everyone DO (not) PANIC!

      Demand for petrol nationwide increased by 500% on the weekend. I'm not sure any supply chain would survive that sort of surge in demand.

      Media companies saw a way to create a panic and sell more papers / get more clicks.

      Media still saying there are problems - my local neighbourhood social media group was full of 'no petrol' stories Monday / Tuesday, but is now saying everything is fine (in my area).

      This was the media walking into a crowded theatre and shouting FIRE because someone was having a fag outside.

      1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

        Re: Why now

        A petrol station person was interviewed on the beeb this morning. She said that they are actually getting more fuel delivered than usual, but the panic-buying fools are still draining it faster than it can be topped up.

        "Newspapers" like the 'i' are largely to blame, running headlines like "Petrol rationing", when no such thing was happening.

        1. Franco Silver badge

          Re: Why now

          That's the only way they can sell papers anymore though, because most people read the news online or if they do read a paper it's The Metro because it's free when you're a commuter.

          I read The Metro myself when I'm using public transport, but I'm not going to the effort of going to the local station to grab a copy of a morning the rest of the time.

          It's also why the newspapers love to demonise the BBC. They don't (and in fact can't) charge for the news website. The arguments for and against the content of their news site is for another discussion, but the BBC are providing for "free" (as part of the license fee) what the newspapers are charging for.

        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Why now

          "Newspapers" like the 'i' are largely to blame, running headlines like "Petrol rationing", when no such thing was happening.

          *Technically*, they can get away with saying that because some filling stations were putting limits on how much they would sell you.

          I saw the initial reports of the very few filling stations having supply issues, but the next morning, last Friday, the Daly Mail printed the headline "Britain Running on Empty". By that evening, it's was coming true because that (and maybe other media outlets) click-bait headlines caused the panic buying.

          1. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

            Re: Why now

            Not just the Mail. The Times was at it. Every paper was at it.

            1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: Why now

              That's the bit I am curious about. The only one I saw on the Friday morning was the Daily Mail. Had the previous Thursday evening papers already run the click-bait or did they follow suit on the Friday evening? Anyone know?

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Why now

          >>>"Newspapers" like the 'i'

          You mean the Provisional Wing of The Daily Mail?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Why now

            The i is more than a little to the left of the Daily Fail.

      2. katrinab Silver badge
        Headmaster

        Re: Why now

        Sales at *one* petrol station increased by 500%.

        Sales at most petrol stations is down 100% because they don't have anything to sell.

        The Asda I normally fill up at wouldn't be physically capable of selling 5x its normal supply, because it just doesn't have that much spare pump capacity.

    4. katrinab Silver badge
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Why now

      People started return to work after the holidays, in many cases for the first time since Coronavirus kicked off, so traffic was back to 90% of pre-pandemic levels.

      This meant that the driver shortage, which was previously hidden by the pandemic, became a problem.

      By the way, there were shortages before it hit the news, not quite as bad as now, bit it was getting worse.

      As for the long queues. There is an element of panic buying, but it is mostly people who normally buy from the empty petrol stations going elsewhere to find petrol. On my route to work, I go past 10 petrol stations that are visible from the road I take. 9 of those were empty last time I went in, and the other only had petrol in 2 out of its 6 pumps. That petrol station had long queues, but not 10 petrol stations worth of queues. Probably more like 3 or 4 stations worth.

    5. hoola Silver badge

      Re: Why now

      The Sun and other Murdoch papers.

      "Running on empty" was the headline and that day, kaboom, everyone went insane and promptly drove to their nearest fuel station to fill up, regardless of whether they needed to, creating an instant shortage as deliveries could never keep up with a huge surge in demand.

  8. chivo243 Silver badge
    Coat

    I would hate

    Being the only Brit petrol truck driver delivering 'guzzoline' and having the scoot trash from Mad Max queuing up behind your truck to syphon off your cargo!

    How many guns can I fit in one coat??

    1. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: I would hate

      Ireland has "an imminent national emergency" according to the Irish Road Haulage Association.

      They actually have guns. That could be interesting.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: I would hate

        They need between 3000-4000 drivers and are saying the "imminent national emergency" will be the supply chain shortages seen in the UK. source

        I guess the imminent national emergency that Ireland fears is known as normality in the UK. Nothing to see here.

        Ireland has some of the most restrictive gun control laws in Europe and there are fewer guns per capita than in the UK.

        1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

          Re: I would hate

          Ireland has some of the most restrictive gun control laws in Europe and there are fewer guns per capita than in the UK.

          As long as you don't count all those hidden caches in the Wicklow Mountains that have been there since the early '90s. Allegedly.

          Being serious for a moment, I think the issue here may not be with the number of registered guns in Ireland, but with the number of unregistered ones, both in Ireland, and the North. Nobody actually knows the number of those, and nobody in their right mind wants to find out. Unfortunately, the situation in NI is not entirely under the control of those in their right mind right now, and with sabre-rattling from the likes of Frosty the Negotiator, it could deteriorate if not handled sensitively.

          1. nematoad Silver badge

            Re: I would hate

            It's not only the presence of unlicensed guns in Ireland that could be a problem, it's the fact that there are a lot of people trained in their use and with an inclination to use them.

            When I was lucky enough to live there each time the bank down the road got a delivery of cash the place was swamped with soldiers with guns. Don't tell me that that was done for show. Someone, somewhere,was aware that illegal arms were a problem and were taking steps to counter any threat.

            1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

              Re: I would hate

              Indeed. There's a reason the banks in Ireland have "airlocks". I've never seen one of those in a UK bank. I'm sure I've seen them in Dublin.

              I've never been lucky enough to live in Ireland, but my wife has, and we have several friends, and family, there.

        2. katrinab Silver badge
          Alert

          Re: I would hate

          Northern Ireland has less restrictive gun laws than the rest of the UK though, and a very open border with Ireland.

    2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: I would hate

      "Being the only Brit petrol truck driver delivering 'guzzoline' and having the scoot trash from Mad Max queuing up behind your truck to syphon off your cargo!"

      I saw report of a tanker driver suddenly realising there was a line of cars behind him on the dual carriageway and no one was passing him. When he came to his turn off, about 20 cars followed him. When he got to the construction site he was delivering mortar to, the car drivers got a a bit pissed off because he wasn't driving a fuel tanker :-)

      FWIW, I filled up on Friday as normal, drove about 300 miles (half tank) on Monday, filled up at that end, drove back 300 miles on Tuesday, filled up back home, did a "short" day and a "long" day, using another half tank, filled up on Thursday night, then used another half tank on Friday. I'll probably have to fill up at some stage on Monday because that's going to be another half-tank day. So far, the only issue I had was on the way home last Friday when the first place I stopped at had a £30 limit.

      As far as I can tell, the problems seem to be regional and mainly in high density urban areas or heavily travelled commuter routes. Probably the school-run crowd filling up when they normally do 2-3 miles per day and fill up once per month causing most of the issues.

    3. TRT Silver badge

      Re: I would hate

      Pied Piper sets controls to "idiot" and drives tanker painted up as fuel truck around gathering a conga line behind before driving the lot off the end of a pier.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "An effective ad campaign for electric cars"

    Good job energy prices haven't gone through the roof recently, hey?

  10. Natalie Gritpants Jr Silver badge
    Childcatcher

    Can we please start a rumour of a halloween merch shortage?

    Or cigarettes. Fireworks could also do with being panic bought.

    1. Gene Cash Silver badge

      Re: Can we please start a rumour of a halloween merch shortage?

      Some of the fuckers here had Christmas stuff up 2 weeks ago. No Halloween, no Thanksgiving, do not collect $200.

      I need to exercise my gun rights.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Can we please start a rumour of a halloween merch shortage?

        I noticed Aldi have their Christmas cakes/puddings/other Xmas treats on the shelves as of last week.

        1. RichardB

          Re: Can we please start a rumour of a halloween merch shortage?

          Check the best before dates...

    2. JetSetJim

      Re: Can we please start a rumour of a halloween merch shortage?

      There is a shortage of fireworks, at least. Blame the ridiculousness of dropping the CE mark in favour of the new "UK" mark caused by our inept leaders.

      1. Outski Silver badge

        Re: Can we please start a rumour of a halloween merch shortage?

        TH UK mark doesn't replace the CE mark until next year, but wholesalers are understandably reluctant to saddle themselves with a load of unsaleable boomskis, because, as per bloody usual with this bunch of muppets, no thought was given to transition

  11. Mossess

    Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

    The whole of Europe is laughing at the UK right now. Not because of the situation you're in, but because it is precisely what you voted for, and every publication in the UK seems to be avoiding mentioning Brexit. I'm surprised that the Register is not calling it out, it's purely down to Brexit. No other country is going through this.

    "combined with the perfect storm of Brexit and IR35, has left the UK short on HGV drivers"

    And Thumbs up to Gus the Horseman

    1. EvilDrSmith Silver badge

      Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

      Apologies for a twitter link, but it's relevant:

      https://twitter.com/James7Holland/status/1443877723026477077?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1443877723026477077%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Forder-order.com%2F

      Supply shortages in Brussels today, due to logistics problems.

      So no, it is manifestly not "purely down to Brexit", and other countries most certainty are experiencing problems due to shortages of HGV drivers

      1. nsld

        Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

        Two seconds on that twitter thread and you find its a strike by Carrefour workers in a warehouse rather than a structural failure in supply chain.....

        https://twitter.com/biscuitsgod/status/1443921901022232584

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

          How dare you look deeper into a story and debunk falsehood in this way, Sir!

        2. EvilDrSmith Silver badge

          Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

          nsld,

          Entirely fair comment.

          It took me about two second to find and paste the link, because quite frankly, I thought that the truth of there being a shortage of truck drivers throughout the EU was quite well enough known that it didn't need any greater effort on my part.

          However, it was laziness on my part, and for that, I do of course apologise.

          Perhaps the following links would be more to your liking? (They only took 5 minutes or so to dig out, thus proving that I was unjustifiably lazy in my original link, also ignoring the fact that it was a twitface link and so inherently unreliable anyway):

          https://www.politico.eu/article/europes-looming-truck-driver-shortage-trucker-haulier-brexit-hgv/

          https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/lorry-driver-shortage-an-imminent-national-emergency-in-ireland-1.4686883

          https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/oct/01/america-supply-chain-shortages?utm_source=ground.news&utm_medium=referral

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

            All valid links. But the narrative of shortages on mainland Europe (which let's be fair is the one the government and hardcore Brexiteers are pushing in the UK to make Brexcuses) are causing shortages is false.

      2. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. H in The Hague Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

        "... and other countries most certainty are experiencing problems due to shortages of HGV drivers"

        Situation in the Netherlands: I haven't noticed any empty shelves in the supermarkets or smaller shops (still v important here). Though about 10% of the shelves in the Asian food department of a local food wholesale place were empty - that might have to do with supply lines across a longer distance. Just did a quick search through a few NL newspapers' websites and there are only a few items about lorrydriver shortages here.

        That time of day/week -->

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

          I do like people from the UK earnestly explaining to EU citizens on the Internet that they have shortages too because the government minister said so on the BBC and in the Daily Mail.

    2. codejunky Silver badge

      Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

      @Mossess

      "because it is precisely what you voted for, and every publication in the UK seems to be avoiding mentioning Brexit"

      Really? They seem determined to mention brexit even though its got nothing to do with the petrol situation.

      "I'm surprised that the Register is not calling it out, it's purely down to Brexit"

      What is? People panic buying which pushes demand far beyond normal for no reason? Something which could not be handled at the best of times never mind after the covid disruption. Amazing how there is a shortage of drivers in the UK, US and growing issues in Europe yet only for the UK is brexit the reason.

      "The whole of Europe is laughing at the UK right now."

      Why? They have a growing shortage of drivers as they open back up. Just because they are behind the curve doesnt mean they wont have the problem as they slowly recover.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

        There is a shortage of an estimated 400,000 drivers across Europe, of which there is a shortage of an estimated 100,000 drivers in the UK so the UK has a disproportionate part of the problem.

        Brexit (customs checks, no cabotage, 180 days visiting per year, UK only accepting passports on the border) means EU-employed drivers don't want to deliver to the UK, take deliveries from the UK to the EU, or make runs within the UK.

        Brexit (visas) means EU citizens don't want to/can't reach the income requirements to base themselves in the UK to work as a HGV driver.

        IR35 means UK-employed drivers, some of which are EU citizens, are leaving the profession in the UK. Most will have started employment again in the EU, and they will not make deliveries to/from/in the UK as previously mentioned.

        The pandemic is not really a factor now, but no EU-employed driver is going to forget what happened at Manston last Christmas. In case you forgot they were held on a disused airfield with no services for days reading on people passing food through holes in the fence while tests were found when they wanted to be at home celebrating Christmas with their families.

        Complete lack of services for HGV drivers is another reason not to drive a truck in the UK.

        All these things add up. But Brexit is a large part of the reason as to why the supply chain is breaking down in the UK.

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

          @Dan 55

          "There is a shortage of an estimated 400,000 drivers across Europe, of which there is a shortage of an estimated 100,000 drivers in the UK so the UK has a disproportionate part of the problem."

          And the Europe is a mix of varying stages of recovery, the UK being ahead of the curve.

          "EU-employed drivers don't want to deliver to the UK, take deliveries from the UK to the EU, or make runs within the UK."

          Also the EU is short of drivers.

          "Brexit (visas) means EU citizens don't want to/can't reach the income requirements to base themselves in the UK to work as a HGV driver."

          And the EU is short of drivers.

          "IR35 means UK-employed drivers, some of which are EU citizens, are leaving the profession in the UK."

          Also shutting down the economy putting drivers out of work while also not training anywhere near the number of replacements needed has led to a shortage of drivers. In the US and Europe (including UK and EU).

          "The pandemic is not really a factor now"

          First they are put out of work. Then the pingdemic (hate that word) stops them from working. We dont train replacements for 2 years of lockdowns. So when economies are warming up again we have a shortage of drivers. There are still quarantine and testing rules plus economies recovering at varying paces.

          "Complete lack of services for HGV drivers is another reason not to drive a truck in the UK."

          Very true. The lack of cheap workers is causing an increase in compensation for being a driver. Apparently its becoming harder to find people even in the EU willing to put up with the lifestyle that comes with truck driving.

          "All these things add up. But Brexit is a large part of the reason as to why the supply chain is breaking down in the UK."

          And this is where it makes little sense. Yes things add up and had there not been a pandemic there would probably have been some small effect from brexit. But since the US, UK and rest of Europe are having the same problem (with the EU's problem lagging behind as their recovery is) the issue is the pandemic. Various places in the world having the same problem but for some reason the excuse is different for the UK? That needs some serious reasoning to justify.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

            The Brexcuses are really getting desperate now. But a long as the Brexit goblins on social media are still sharing photos of the Belgian Carrefour strike (as "proof" that the sad UK situation is same everywhere) then many UKers will continue to fall for this tripe.

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

              @AC

              "The Brexcuses are really getting desperate now."

              If you mean how anything is blamed on brexit regardless of the cause then I agree. But I dont think thats what you ment. Instead you seem to suggest the same problem exists all over the world and yet brexit is the cause for the UK. Blaming brexit for anything and everything 'perceived' wrong is still as infantile as project fear and the punishment budget.

              I keep expecting posts saying 'I stubbed my toe and its because of brexit'.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                If truck driver shortfalls are not exacerbated in the UK by Brexit: (Removal of freedom of movement/working, removal of cabotage etc.) Then why ever would the UK start begging for European drivers to come back to embattled Brexit Britain and help? (Even if the offer of short term visas is risible.)

                I have to admit mind, that now the UK is no longer in the EU there is finally a real Brexit benefit available: The UK can drop HGV testing standards and just allow people to win licences in Christmas Crackers! Genius. Great to see such "upskilling".

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                  @AC

                  "Then why ever would the UK start begging for European drivers to come back to embattled Brexit Britain and help? (Even if the offer of short term visas is risible.)"

                  Why is it risable? Opened up economy needs drivers so scrounges for drivers. Its not the best paid job with the best benefits so the compensation of the job is increasing in the UK but still we have covid restrictions. Essentially the same as the EU is doing looking beyond EU borders to find people willing to drive trucks to cover their shortfall. And Europe is in various stages of opened up.

                  "The UK can drop HGV testing standards"

                  Due to leaving the EU it appears yes the UK can train more people and with fewer bureaucratic tests.

                  From the EU supporting independent- https://www.independent.co.uk/business/wrong-to-say-brexit-to-blame-for-lorry-driver-shortage-says-transport-secretary-b1926210.html

                  So if the UK lost 20,000 European drivers (doesnt say from the EU, but Europe) left since brexit (wasnt there a pandemic going on??) why are we short of 100,000? The UK is ahead of the curve and a warning to the EU of whats to come if they dont do something about it-

                  https://www.politico.eu/article/europes-looming-truck-driver-shortage-trucker-haulier-brexit-hgv/

                2. Alan Brown Silver badge

                  Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                  "there is finally a real Brexit benefit available"

                  Brexit is already highly beneficial

                  for Australia, NZ, Ireland, the EU, the USA, Japan, China, Russia, etc etc

          2. Dan 55 Silver badge

            Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

            Various places in the world having the same problem but for some reason the excuse is different for the UK? That needs some serious reasoning to justify.

            It's different for the UK because the UK has shut itself into a walled garden, as explained above.

            As an example, estimates say Poland requires 120,000 more drivers. But Poland sends HGVs all over the EU (nearly 25% of all goods are transported by Polish HGVs) and can call one of its drivers back if something has to be delivered in Poland... or maybe a driver from one of its neighbouring countries can do the run instead.

            Fact check: Poland needs 120 000 drivers, so surely they must have even biggest shortages than Britain!

            The UK can't call one of its drivers back from the EU to make a run because most of its drivers are all concentrated inside the UK within the walled garden anyway. It also can't call upon EU drivers from neighbouring countries to make a run to or inside the UK because the customs hurdle makes the route unprofitable.

            No other country in Europe has sealed itself off like the UK has, no other country sees shortages like the UK is seeing now. EU countries may be against the limit but they haven't passed it. Also EU countries are working to address the problems in this sector, whereas the UK doesn't seem to have a long term plan.

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

              @Dan 55

              "It's different for the UK because the UK has shut itself into a walled garden, as explained above."

              And as I explained it doesnt work. When did the US, Germany, Poland or others leave the EU? Blaming brexit as its your favourite excuse (or looking for anything to blame on brexit) doesnt fit with the facts.

              "and can call one of its drivers back if something has to be delivered in Poland... or maybe a driver from one of its neighbouring countries can do the run instead."

              Who can call them back? Its a competitive market for a poorly compensated job. And the neighbours are short of drivers. The shortage is increasing as the EU is behind in recovery so as more members climb back there will be more demand.

              So if we remained there would still be a shortage of 400,000 drivers in Europe. Still. And yet you think if we remained we should/could pull these people to drive for us even with pandemic rules? The EU is having to look outside its borders to get drivers.

              "The UK can't call one of its drivers back from the EU to make a run because most of its drivers are all concentrated inside the UK within the walled garden anyway"

              How do you mean call back drivers? Drivers are fairly mobile as is the job description and the UK is separated from the mainland by water.

              "It also can't call upon EU drivers from neighbouring countries to make a run to or inside the UK because the customs hurdle makes the route unprofitable."

              And the EU is short of drivers and pandemic rules make it undesirable to move away. More job openings nearer to home is nicer than travelling to the UK and potentially being isolated should lockdown/quarantine rules get in the way.

              "no other country sees shortages like the UK is seeing now. EU countries may be against the limit but they haven't passed it."

              Its almost as though countries that are recovering have demand and those that aint dont! And as those not doing so well catch up they will have demand. As the US, UK and some EU countries are showing.

              "Also EU countries are working to address the problems in this sector, whereas the UK doesn't seem to have a long term plan."

              Eh? The UK has reduced the training requirements (duplicated training for similar vehicles) and increased the number of training slots. The market is increasing compensation and the market is better at this than central planning from a government. I would be more worried if the gov had a long term plan to meddle and bugger up the market.

              People crying against the shortage of drivers cannot be part of the group supporting the heavy lockdowns of the economy without being extremely inconsistent. People were warned that shutting down the economy will bugger up the economy, that it cant just be restarted in an instant and it is destructive. Such warnings were shouted down that the pandemic is too dangerous and so the economy must be stopped. This is part of the price to pay, this is what shutting down an economy does.

              1. Dan 55 Silver badge

                Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                Who can call them back?

                Their employers.

                So if we remained there would still be a shortage of 400,000 drivers in Europe.

                Yes, but EU citizen drivers could come to the UK, deliver their goods, then make two, three, four, or five runs within the UK, then pick up goods for export and leave the UK, and we would not be suffering these concentrated shortages inside the UK's walled garden.

                How do you mean call back drivers?

                Their employers tell them where to go.

                Eh? The UK has reduced the training requirements (duplicated training for similar vehicles) and increased the number of training slots.

                It has done this within the last couple of months, that's not a long-term plan. The link to the EU website is from last year.

                The market is increasing compensation and the market is better at this than central planning from a government.

                The increasing compensation makes no difference if the pool of drivers remains the same inside the walled garden, it just means shortages move around as drivers churn between employers.

                I would be more worried if the gov had a long term plan to meddle and bugger up the market.

                They already have, it's called Brexit and this is the result.

                Such warnings were shouted down that the pandemic is too dangerous and so the economy must be stopped. This is part of the price to pay, this is what shutting down an economy does.

                The EU economy has been open for a while now. Vaccine certificates recognised across the EEA are a thing, the rules for travelling between countries are known, goods are moving between EEA countries. The UK has just walled itself off in regards to goods and workers and this is the result.

                The UK is even quietly working out having to rejoin the European energy market after unnecessarily leaving it after I think seven energy suppliers in the UK have gone bust so far this year.

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                  @Dan 55

                  "Their employers."

                  And this is the problem. There is a lot of competition all over the US and Europe for drivers. There employer is whoever they decide to work for and with more options and pandemic rules its probably easier to work locally.

                  "Yes"

                  That is the answer with a full stop. There would still be a shortage of 400,000 drivers in Europe. The idea they would want the risk and hassle of coming here with the pandemic rules is unlikely. So the shortage exists full stop. In or out that is the number over Europe where new drivers are needed. Imported from worse places willing to work for poor compensation or trained and improved compensation.

                  "It has done this within the last couple of months, that's not a long-term plan."

                  Making it easier to train as a driver isnt a long term plan? When a driver shortage existed pre-pandemic and the pandemic turned a small issue into a huge one? Seems a fairly good plan to be honest short and long term. Relying on cheap imported labour is a poor plan when there is an abundance of vacancies nearer home for them during pandemic rules.

                  "The increasing compensation makes no difference if the pool of drivers remains the same inside the walled garden, it just means shortages move around as drivers churn between employers."

                  Now that you burn your suggestion that remaining would help with the issue (as shortages just move around) the first part of that statement is wrong. Increasing compensation attracts more people to train as drivers, and lack of new drivers is why we have this shortage. Nowhere near the usual numbers have been trained in the last 2 years!

                  "They already have, it's called Brexit and this is the result."

                  And this is where your broken record doesnt work. You stubbed your toe 'Brexit!'. You catch a cold 'Brexit!'. Yet doesnt match the facts.

                  "The EU economy has been open for a while now."

                  Nope. Some countries are doing well, others not so and some really no.

                  "The UK has just walled itself off in regards to goods and workers and this is the result."

                  So not shutting down the economy for 2 years? You dont see that as a problem? The thing which has screwed with other countries too? Almost like brexit is magical.

                  "The UK is even quietly working out having to rejoin the European energy market after unnecessarily leaving it after I think seven energy suppliers in the UK have gone bust so far this year."

                  So the UK having energy problems is trying to get energy from Europe? I am shocked I tell ya! And why is the UK having energy problems? Maybe something warned about for some time? All that green numptying that is costing people huge sums? A lack of actual power generation being built and instead monuments to the sky gods?

                  Hell France is gonna do well out of this selling to the UK and Germany and everywhere else with such dumb monuments. UK and Germany burning coal just to keep the lights on. I am not above saying I told you so to the greenies.

                  1. Dan 55 Silver badge

                    Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                    There employer is whoever they decide to work for and with more options and pandemic rules its probably easier to work locally.

                    Are you under the impression that European HGV drivers don't transport goods internationally? Their employer in Poland sends them to make a run elsewhere in the single market, their employer in Poland tells them to come back to do a run in Poland. There are no barriers except the ones around the UK.

                    That is the answer with a full stop. There would still be a shortage of 400,000 drivers in Europe. The idea they would want the risk and hassle of coming here with the pandemic rules is unlikely.

                    So nothing to do with customs checks, no cabotage, 180 days visiting per year, UK only accepting passports on the border, and driving licence exchange due to Brexit then?

                    Now that you burn your suggestion that remaining would help with the issue (as shortages just move around) the first part of that statement is wrong.

                    They would be shortages over a wider area therefore less concentrated inside the UK. And do I really have to explain what cabotage is all over again?

                    And this is where your broken record doesnt work. You stubbed your toe 'Brexit!'. You catch a cold 'Brexit!'. Yet doesnt match the facts.

                    It doesn't match the facts if you refuse to look at them.

                    So not shutting down the economy for 2 years?

                    Do be so kind as to tell us which European country shut down their economy for two years.

                    So the UK having energy problems is trying to get energy from Europe? I am shocked I tell ya! And why is the UK having energy problems? Maybe something warned about for some time? All that green numptying that is costing people huge sums?

                    The numptying was from the government which allowed Centrica to shut down its gas storage facilities in 2017 then it left the European energy market at the beginning of this year. So now the UK cannot store cheap gas for the future and cannot participate in the European energy market and is at the mercy of spot prices. The UK not only has no plan it chose to make things worse for itself.

                    I see we're going round in circles again and as the novelty of repeating the same thing again and again is wearing off, I'll let you have your final reply and then everyone's happy.

                    1. codejunky Silver badge

                      Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                      @Dan 55

                      "There are no barriers except the ones around the UK."

                      The water and threat of lockdown/quarantine?

                      "So nothing to do with customs checks, no cabotage, 180 days visiting per year, UK only accepting passports on the border, and driving licence exchange due to Brexit then?"

                      400,000 drivers short over the whole of Europe has nothing at all to do at all with that, so yes. Also a lot of what you complain about there doesnt apply to international transportation you were talking about.

                      "They would be shortages over a wider area therefore less concentrated inside the UK. And do I really have to explain what cabotage is all over again?"

                      So it would make 400,000 shortage be 400,000 shortage. Or since they went home from the pandemic would leave the UK short by 100,000 compared to the current 100,000? Also aint those the rules that bugger up touring bands visiting the EU (might be wrong on that)?

                      "It doesn't match the facts if you refuse to look at them."

                      Which is why I am putting the answers under your nose but cant make you see sense. Without the pandemic we might possibly have noticed something maybe. The pandemic just drowns that out completely and is demonstrated as a problem in the UK, US and Europe but for some reason you reject the common cause across them all to blame brexit for the UK.

                      "Do be so kind as to tell us which European country shut down their economy for two years."

                      Which country? Because they are isolated? The first lockdown was Jan 2020 which was China and only got worse from there (hitting Italy pretty bad). Granted I am rounding up saying 2 years but if you want to call it less its only more frightening. Then there are the varying reactions and varying severities of lockdown and vaccination rates over time causing different responses (Apparently Norway has lifted a lot of rules now). Over covid some 40,000 lorry driving tests were cancelled and thats just in the UK!

                      "The numptying was from the government which allowed Centrica to shut down its gas storage facilities in 2017 then it left the European energy market at the beginning of this year"

                      Considering our reliance on gas I agree. But the core problem is our reliance on gas but lack of will to extract it. Or have sensible power generation.

                      "The UK not only has no plan it chose to make things worse for itself."

                      Similar issues with Europe (and the US is having problems as Biden reversed some of Trumps achievements). Russia is running the show with the supply of gas and France has the ageing Nukes for now. But that comes back to the green insanity which puts us all in this situation.

                2. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                  "The UK is even quietly working out having to rejoin the European energy market after unnecessarily leaving it after I think seven energy suppliers in the UK have gone bust so far this year."

                  Shhhh! No one is meant to notice that. The Gammons will be choking on their crown marked pints if they find out!

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                @codejunky

                Thanks for the comedy about Europe not recovering - you've certainly been receptive to the "we're better than Johnny Foreigner" messaging that was put out until very recently.

                Whilst we were ahead of our neighbours (but not some other countries) at the start of the vaccine rollout, we're now behind most of our neighbours now, especially in the secondary school age range.

                We are also above our near neighbours in terms of reported daily infections and here's a really interesting article/chart for you to peruse that combines GDP information and deaths/million per country:

                https://99-percent.org/how-does-our-government-stack-up/

                Feel free to correct, but I'm thinking a more truthful slogan for Brexit would have been "we're hopeful we can still be better than Peru and Argentina".

                As someone who appears based on your comments to have voted for Brexit, why not own it when it goes bad - you after all knew what you were voting for and "won".

                If you're not man enough to own it, shut up and don't make shit up whilst trying to defend the indefensible.

                1. Dan 55 Silver badge

                  Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                  Interesting link - shows countries can't pretend Covid doesn't exist in the name of the economy or screw up their Covid response as the economy just won't recover.

                  1. codejunky Silver badge

                    Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                    @Dan 55

                    "Interesting link - shows countries can't pretend Covid doesn't exist in the name of the economy or screw up their Covid response as the economy just won't recover"

                    So balance like Sweden?

                2. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                  @AC

                  "Thanks for the comedy about Europe not recovering"

                  Are you claiming it has? Some (rich) countries are and performing well (UK being one of them). Some are really not.

                  "Whilst we were ahead of our neighbours (but not some other countries) at the start of the vaccine rollout, we're now behind most of our neighbours now, especially in the secondary school age range."

                  Yes. The UK was ahead when the EU was ordering the vaccine because they buggered up. When members abandoned the 'in it together' approach and just ordered some vaccine they shockingly managed to vaccinate. Since the UK took a cautious approach and voluntary approach to vaccination then its little surprise to see the less vulnerable not being vaccinated. And yet even in Europe we are far from slackers-

                  https://ourworldindata.org/covid-vaccinations

                  I recommend hitting the play button on the chart.

                  "We are also above our near neighbours in terms of reported daily infections "

                  Does it matter? Infections doesnt really matter any more, its hospitalisation and death we should care about. Hell the idea of vaccines is to detatch infection from serious consequence. So opening up would cause more infections so I can believe we have more than our neighbours as we are ahead of the curve.

                  "combines GDP information and deaths/million per country:"

                  Your link is bunkum because they got the figures wrong. They say UK GDP was down 10% yet dont seem to realise the UK calculated it differently to other countries. Other countries assumed money spent on public services is their output value (as is the norm in normal times) but the UK deducted that for sectors who didnt work but were still paid. Basically the UK looks worse because we reported correctly and our lockdown was excessive (a comment that upsets some people)-

                  https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/56042270

                  https://blog.ons.gov.uk/2021/02/01/minding-the-gap-why-has-uk-gdp-fallen-so-sharply-in-the-pandemic/

                  "As someone who appears based on your comments to have voted for Brexit, why not own it when it goes bad - you after all knew what you were voting for and "won"."

                  I certainly voted for brexit. I am critical of the stupidity of leaving N.Ireland at the mercy of the EU. I am not convinced we got the best split we could have got and I consider Boris the last hope we had after the previous 2 sell-outs and didnt trust him one bit. But I also acknowledge the benefits of leaving even if it gets some wet panties in a twist.

                  "If you're not man enough to own it, shut up and don't make shit up whilst trying to defend the indefensible."

                  And there are the twisted wet panties. Grow up.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                    @codejunky

                    Thanks for pointing out with your 1st link that we're behind the "PIIGS" countries (apart from Greece) in vaccinations. Aren't they all supposed to be basket cases?

                    "Does it matter? Infections doesnt really matter any more" - remind me how variants are produced? Did the current Delta variant appear from nowhere, or by mutation in someone that was infected. It's not just for bragging rights that it's a good idea to have lower infections.....

                    The BBC link on GDP measurement you provide does have the following at the end:

                    It is clear that the decline in GDP was significantly bigger in the UK than in Germany last year," said Andrew Kennington, from Capital Economics."

                    "The UK economy fared badly last year. Adjusting for differences in methodology improves that performance, but it still leaves the UK towards the bottom of the league for economic performance."

                    Well done us! So we're hoping that we were in the worst 20%, not the worst 5% as per the document or do you still believe we did better economically than Sweden, The Netherlands, Ireland, Germany....

                    "I am critical of the stupidity of leaving N.Ireland at the mercy of the EU."

                    Oh where to start on this. I am critical of the stupidity of people who didn't realise that NI and Gibraltar would be in significant difficulties unless we stayed as part of the single market/customs union - perhaps you voted for that brexit - perhaps you didn't. I'm sure some people voted leave thinking we would stay in SM/CU (Daniel Hannan was tweeting that - but has somehow accidentally deleted that tweet now - I wonder why).

                    Here's one he's not deleted yet:

                    https://twitter.com/danieljhannan/status/1060860086703308801?lang=en

                    Think it would have been 52:48 with those options on the table - you're on drugs if you do.

                    I'm am sorry you, but pleased you at least recognise you didn't get the "moon on a stick" split you had imagined.

                    I also see some hope that you didn't trust Boris one bit - was it that he's been fired for lying, he's on record as a racist (watermelon smiles anyone?) or that he's got zero integrity (even by politician standards)?

                    I was in awe of him when he said to bin the customs paperwork when he was talking to business people in NI back in Nov 2019:

                    https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/johnson-tells-northern-ireland-businesses-to-bin-customs-forms-38674258.html

                    It had zero chance of being true - but apparently people no longer appear to care* about being blatantly lied to.

                    "Grow up" - said the man who voted for a rainbow unicorn and the liars that were selling it...... comedy gold!

                    *it really twists my wet panties and it should yours too - but you seem a bit of a Mark Francois, so I think you've likely gone commando (and look equally hard)

                    https://newsthump.com/2019/07/30/mark-francois-squeezes-into-his-old-territorial-army-uniform-and-tries-to-gatecrash-war-cabinet-meeting/

                    1. codejunky Silver badge

                      Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                      @AC

                      "Thanks for pointing out with your 1st link that we're behind the "PIIGS" countries (apart from Greece) in vaccinations"

                      Well done missing the entire point. Reread my comment. I look forward you your scathing remark about Germany. For amusement add the EU and Europe to the chart!

                      " remind me how variants are produced? Did the current Delta variant appear from nowhere, or by mutation in someone that was infected. It's not just for bragging rights that it's a good idea to have lower infections....."

                      Except its a global pandemic and Covid isnt going to just go away. The opportunity to stop it was in China but instead they covered it up. Since you will still get infected even if vaccinated and successful mutations are vaccine resistant are you saying it wasnt worth getting vaccinated and we should have just welded doors shut like in China?

                      "It is clear that the decline in GDP was significantly bigger in the UK than in Germany last year," said Andrew Kennington, from Capital Economics.""

                      Yes, that is what people wanted. The UK locked down pretty hard and screw the economy a pandemic is more important. I dont claim the UK is doing better than Germany, country by country Europe is opening at different speeds which is why the UK driver shortage is a warning of whats to come if the EU doesnt find a way to resolve the problem.

                      "Well done us! So we're hoping that we were in the worst 20%, not the worst 5% as per the document or do you still believe we did better economically than Sweden, The Netherlands, Ireland, Germany...."

                      Interesting you make a claim and attribute it to me. When did I say we did better than those economies? Also you might want to read my post history, I point out Sweden with less strict lockdown did better. I use it as one if the reasons against heavy handed lockdown that the UK did.

                      Also are you also against the excessive lockdown the UK did? I was against trashing the economy.

                      "perhaps you voted for that brexit - perhaps you didn't. I'm sure some people voted leave thinking we would stay in SM/CU"

                      I voted leave. I wanted out of the SM/CM. The Irish border in my opinion belongs where the Irish border was. Gibraltar was resolved quickly when the Spanish idiot spoke of reclaiming it and the UK mentioned sending over a destroyer or two. Very quickly resolved.

                      "I'm am sorry you, but pleased you at least recognise you didn't get the "moon on a stick" split you had imagined."

                      That hope was dashed very quickly when brexit negotiations were not allowed to be performed by brexiters. Probably died at the point the Tories won the election instead of UKIP. But at least we got out and it seems just in time.

                      "I was in awe of him when he said to bin the customs paperwork when he was talking to business people in NI back in Nov 2019:"

                      Had he the backbone to keep the border where it was he would have been right. Although I expect it might have trashed the whole existing deal signed under May.

                      "said the man who voted for a rainbow unicorn and the liars that were selling it...... comedy gold!"

                      I have the same opinion of remainers.

                      1. Anonymous Coward
                        Anonymous Coward

                        Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                        Brexcuses. Again. Yawn.

                        1. Anonymous Coward
                          Anonymous Coward

                          Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                          The Brexiteer's Cut Out 'n' Keep Brexcuses Cheat Sheet

                          [Tick the choice(s) that apply ]

                          It is ...

                          o The Foreigns'

                          o The EU's

                          o Labour's

                          o Corbyn's

                          o Blair's

                          o Remainers'

                          o Woke Leftists'

                          o France's

                          o The Irish's (Specify if Northern)

                          o The Greens'

                          o The Main Stream Media's

                          o The Students'

                          o The Farmers'

                          o Industry's

                          o The Judges'

                          o The Metropolitan Elite's

                          o Covid's

                          fault. Definitely not our fault. No Sirree. Now where is my unicorn...?

                        2. codejunky Silver badge

                          Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                          @AC

                          "Brexcuses"

                          Isnt brexcuses when everything that is bad or can be perceived as bad is brexits fault? The brexcuse of stubbing your toe 'its brexit!!'. Posting anonymously then replying to yourself winging your brexcuses?

                          1. Anonymous Coward
                            Anonymous Coward

                            Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                            "Isnt brexcuses when everything that is bad or can be perceived as bad is brexits fault?"

                            No.

                            Brexcuses 2016 (FT)

                            1. codejunky Silver badge

                              Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                              @AC

                              "Brexcuses 2016 (FT)"

                              We cant call it remoaning since remain isnt an option any more. Unless its re(joining)moaning but we wouldnt want to confuse the two delusions. Maybe its time to update the meaning of brexcuses then since some people cant think to blame anything but brexit.

                      2. Anonymous Coward
                        Anonymous Coward

                        Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                        @codejunky

                        Silly question.

                        Who did Theresa May appoint to be the lead ministers for making brexit happen in as "brexity" way as possible? (to defend against brexiteers complaining).

                        Based on your comment, you are a subscriber to the "the people negotiating weren't true believers / didn't push hard enough / etc, etc" world view.

                        Here we go:

                        David Davis - Brexit Secretary (and closet remainer according to you?)

                        Boris Johnson - Foreign Secretary (decided to be a leaver as it increased his odds of being PM, but still counted as a true leaver by most)

                        Dr Liam Fox - Secretary of State for International Trade (I'll helpful point out - not a remainer)

                        All were brexiteers, in the eyes of people with eyes. Who did you want to negotiate instead? The guy from Weatherspoons and Nigel Farage?

                        Is David Frost a remainer too?

                        The cognitive dissonance of brexiteers saying we didn't get what they wanted in the negotiation due to remainers, rather than recognising that it was never possible to get everything the leave voters had been promised is staggering.

                        On a lighter note, I think this is still one of my favourite tweets:

                        https://twitter.com/borisjohnson_mp/status/1038036428956073984?lang=en

                        1. codejunky Silver badge

                          Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                          @AC

                          "David Davis - Brexit Secretary (and closet remainer according to you?)"

                          And what happened when Davis negotiated? He has the EU fuming that they wouldnt just get us to bend over and drop trow. He did such a good job at slapping their stupidity that May overruled him and started taking over the negotiating position. Davis is the one who upset the EU by throwing back in their face a brexit bill and demanding compensation for the loss of our assets.

                          "Boris Johnson"

                          Think you probably know my opinion of him. Dont trust the guy and seems to go whichever way might get him the votes.

                          "Who did you want to negotiate instead? The guy from Weatherspoons and Nigel Farage?"

                          Amusingly the EU were shown to not be negotiating in good faith as they refused (without the right to) to negotiate while UKIP were in the room even though they had been invited by the UK to be there. Smug scruff with a long name beginning with 'V' was laughing while this was being complained to the EU for violating the negotiations.

                          "The cognitive dissonance of brexiteers saying we didn't get what they wanted in the negotiation due to remainers"

                          You mean Cameron who promised to remain to negotiate if we voted leave (leave having no official capacity to negotiate leaving nor the UK's direction because of this tit) and then May who overruled brexit for an attempted BINO. At what point did recent history get rewritten to change that? The reality hasnt changed, the brexit negotiations kept going because remainers were desperate to remain at any cost and leading the failure. If I remember right didnt Boris overshoot his deadlines too which made us all nervous.

                          "On a lighter note, I think this is still one of my favourite tweets:"

                          That is funny.

                          1. Anonymous Coward
                            Anonymous Coward

                            Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                            I've often used analogies to illustrate points relating to brexit.

                            The one for this point is that brexit is effectively a divorce.

                            If you start from that view of it, you understand that

                            1) there are going to be costs/payments that are going to need to be addressed - you can't cancel it like a gym membership

                            2) you wouldn't accept the person that broke up the marriage to be actively involved in the negotiations between you and your ex

                            (above list is not supposed to be exhaustive)

                            I've not been through a divorce, but if I had been, I'd likely have stuck to my guns on the second point.

                            Back to my observation that the people who were in charge of securing the brexit they'd promised were the conservative brexiteers - I'd agree with you if you suggested the are workshy shysters who didn't do a good job, but I'd then point out that they'd been that way for years before the referendum, so expecting them to deliver what they'd overpromised was very optimistic or criminally naïve.

                            Here's what I think brexit voters were promised:

                            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg

                            Undeliverable.

                            WTO was deliverable, but wasn't what was "sold" as it wouldn't have won the referendum.

                            1. Anonymous Coward
                              Anonymous Coward

                              Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                              Very amusing these brexiteers, repeating the same things in long posts about things they clearly know very little about.

                              I'm alright Jack!

                            2. codejunky Silver badge

                              Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

                              @AC

                              "The one for this point is that brexit is effectively a divorce."

                              This was a good analogy for leave voters as the assets get split. This is where the EU got stroppy because as a net contributor the EU would be potentially owing the UK.

                              "you wouldn't accept the person that broke up the marriage to be actively involved in the negotiations between you and your ex"

                              This is where appointed negotiators should have dealt with it and the PM let them.

                              "I'd agree with you if you suggested the are workshy shysters who didn't do a good job"

                              I am not sure it was workshy, more that they didnt want brexit and kept overruling those who did. The vote to leave was in 2016 and yet negotiations kept extending (with the UK gov even taking a holiday for one of them!).

                              "Here's what I think brexit voters were promised:"

                              Officially both remain and leave were abysmal. I honestly thought the official leave campaign was created to let remain win... until I saw the official remain were just as bad. The whole show was embarrassing (to me at least but I am sure people from both sides can agree).

    3. elsergiovolador Silver badge

      Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

      The Chancellor and Treasury knew that introduction of IR35 changes will cause severe disruption. That's why they decided to push it forward around the same time the transition period ended.

      This way, they could blame any supply chain issues on Brexit - and they will have an army of people who will perpetuate the lie simply because they don't like that we have left.

      When transition period ended, EU workers who had been working here didn't lose their rights to work. They simply left, because other countries now offer better pay and work conditions.

      Ironically, we don't have a bigger problem, precisely because of Brexit - if Brexit didn't happen, then likely our own HGV would have gone to Germany, Netherlands or other EU countries to work.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

        Ironically, we don't have a bigger problem, precisely because of Brexit - if Brexit didn't happen, then likely our own HGV would have gone to Germany, Netherlands or other EU countries to work.

        It doesn't work like that. Look up cabotage and have a think about what happened at the start of the year.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Gus the Horseman owes his fame to Brexit

          Look up cabotage

          Cabotage (noun):

          The reckless, deliberate release of a large herd of goats into someone else's field of cabbages...

  12. Primus Secundus Tertius

    Terminology

    It is not "panic buying". It is precautionary purchasing. (When I do it, that is.)

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Terminology

      Exactly. I was going to post almost the same thing. It's only "panic buying" when others do it :-)

      Although, on a more serious note, it's really only "panic buying" when people are buying purely because something is in or perceived to be in short supply and may not even need whatever it is they are buying, or are buying more than they could possibly need or use. eg the guy who filled his garage with bog roll in March 2020.

  13. Version 1.0 Silver badge
    Terminator

    Do we blame Brexit or Amazon?

    I see a lot of people saying that it's Brexit that's caused the delivery driver shortage but I'm wondering if it's actually Amazon to blame - they are hiring drivers everywhere and the drivers are just driving around locally and being paid better than the original truck drivers. I guess the politicians find it difficult to blame Amazon for raising their drivers wages and work environment?

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Do we blame Brexit or Amazon?

      Hardly fair to blame Amazon then, surely the blame lies with the other haulage companies who were paying so little that Amazon wages are seen as a step up?

      1. druck Silver badge

        Re: Do we blame Brexit or Amazon?

        I'd quite like an Amazon Prime same day petrol delivery tanker to come to my house and fill up my car, as I don't think the fumes left in the tank are enough to get to the nearest petrol station, even if it was open and had fuel.

        1. chriskno

          Re: Do we blame Brexit or Amazon?

          If you had an electric car you could plug it into a 13 amp plug at home. Not very quick, but 10 hours overnight would give you at least 100 hundred miles.

    2. the machine stops

      Re: Do we blame Brexit or Amazon?

      and yet europe have amazon drivers and hgv drivers. don;t see any of them queing for petrol.

      20,000 eu drivers left the uk in jan 2021 and only 600 came back. there's the problem

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Do we blame Brexit or Amazon?

        Other countries also have shortages of HGV drivers, they just don't have haulage organisation bosses leaking fake news to the press in order to discomfit the government.

  14. Cav Bronze badge

    It's really nothing to do with Brexit and I wish people would stop claiming it is. Prior to Brexit there were 330,000 HGV drivers in the UK, of which 20,000 were European drivers. That's 6%. There is now a shortage of 100,000. 20,000 is, of course 1 in 5. That's hardly THE cause of the problem. 40,000 driving tests were cancelled last year, due to Covid. i.e. double the amount of lost EU drivers.

    The UK has a record 1 million job vacancies. Working conditions and pay are abysmal for drivers, given the alternative opportunities, those who were drivers are able to switch to something with better pay, less hours and less time away from home. That conditions for drivers are bad, is borne out by the fact that the average age of drivers is 55. Those who started working that job may stay in it. However, younger people won't become drivers in an economy that offers better conditions.

    If the problem is the result of Brexit, and not poor conditions in the industry throughout Europe, then why do countries such as Poland, Spain and the Czech Republic also have a driver deficit of between 20% and 25%?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not helped by the DVLA seatwarmers in Swansea. Anything which requires a person to actually process paper, rather than handle an electronic application, isn't happening. I recently sent my EU drivers licence to them for replacement by a UK one. Gov website says it should take 3 weeks, lady in the post office said "They're on strike because of COVID, it's taking 3 months at the moment".

      1. Outski Silver badge

        648 Covid cases at the DVLA in Swansea, would you feel happy working in that environment? That's why they're on strike.

        1. Primus Secundus Tertius

          But they have been vaccinated. Or should have been. No excuse.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Being vaccinated is no assurance that you can't get covid, just that hopefully it will be less severe.

            My wife and I are both double jabbed, but have spent the last fortnight feeling absolutely awful (coincidently we started showing symptoms 5 days, the average incubation time, after the first time I've been into the office in the last 18 months.)

            PCR test shows us both to be covid positive.

            I didn't actually want to go in, but I provide services to another public sector body, and they are under increasing political pressure to get people back into the office, whether they actually need to be or not.

            Can't say I blame the DVLA lot of not wanting to go into an office with that kind of covid spreading reputation.

    2. low_resolution_foxxes Silver badge

      There were structural reasons why HGV drivers were short staffed, but the leaked comments to the media about BP running 50% lower than usual on petrol forecourts does appear to have been leaked by the MD policy director at the Road Haulage association. If I was being cynical, his previous job was... believe it or not... Head of news at BBC radio one, and coincidentally with all the political affiliations you might expect with such a position.

      He caused a right kerfuffle earlier this year on Channel 4 news. When asked about how to solve the crisis, he actually said improving salaries wasn't the best solution, favouring a cancellation of Brexit rules short term and apprenticeships longterm.

      Ultimately, the DVLA has now cancelled ~35k lorry exams this year, so this debacle shouldn't be a surprise to anyone.

    3. Marco van de Voort

      Your driver shortage numbers oversimplify and miss several aspects:

      First, and for all, cabotage has ended, and UK bound lorries from the EU often go home empty, requiring UK rides to substitute. The goods picked up by those were not counted in those 20000 EU drivers. Only the ones with some form of residency were counted.

      Moreover longer customs eat up driver-hours and thus also require relatively more drivers. Lorries are also less filled because taking goods from multiple sources complicates passing customs, again leading to more lorries being used and thus drivers.

      Moreover, the UK driver populace is relatively old, and during this almost two year period, some naturally retired, and some simply called it a day because of all the troubles, while less than the replacement were trained for various reasons. Some also might also have found other work during covid related hiatus and left the industry.

      And of course not all drivers are equal, drivers for very long lorries or lorries with hazardous materials usually needing special training and licenses.

      So basically it is brexit, covid and an already pre-existing demographic among drivers suddenly happening as a perfect storm. The speed of it all probably surprises even some of the ardent remainers, who expected Brexit impact not instant, but to be a slow trainwreck over 10+ years.

      1. RichardB

        That's something they could all see coming. But chose to not modify their business model to accommodate.

    4. Warm Braw Silver badge

      It's really nothing to do with Brexit

      You're just implementing it wrong...

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    McD’s is unable to serve mikshakes. There is a shortage of tank truck drivers. The drivers must then run on mikshake. Q.E.D.

  16. Efer Brick
    Go

    I'm sure it's a lovely horse

    https://youtu.be/FkHCaH-rt5M

  17. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C
    Alert

    whisper this very quietly

    Round our way the skip companies are quoting four working days' notice for exchange (or removal) of skips. Best get a couple of empties put on your driveway just in case you need to get shut of a mattress...

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: whisper this very quietly

      Shhhh, keep this between you and me, but I heard some of the ISPs are running low on bits and bytes due to transport shortages too. Stock up now before the rush!

      1. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C

        Re: whisper this very quietly

        Thanks for the warning. Had a word with my ISP and got a bit bag of 1s but their stock level on 0s was zero.

        Happy to trade with anyone who can help out.

  18. the machine stops

    gas lighting

    the uk govt is just blowing smoke when it pretends the fuel situation is improving. they have done virtually nothing to improve the situation.

    so far: 150 army drivers (including army reservists who are already working as hgv drivers) to fix a 100,000 shortfall, 3 month visas to hgv drivers who have a huge free trade bloc of 27 countries to "cabotage" around (and the last time they visited the uk got stuck on a disused runway with no food, drink or toilets), and 1 million begging letters to anyone who has driven a lorry to help out (as well as thousands who haven't).

    i had to do a 20 mile trip today and all five garages i passed had no fuel.

    this govt is clueless. don't expect normal operations for quite a while.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: gas lighting

      "i had to do a 20 mile trip today and all five garages i passed had no fuel."

      I drove 300 miles today. Every garage and motorway services I saw was serving fuel. And I am being hyper-aware of filling stations who are selling fuel because my job requires lots of driving. I'm guessing your in the densely populated SE of England. More people, by definition, means more idiots still panic buying. The rest of the UK seems to be getting pretty close to business as usual now, apart from the high population density areas.

      And anyway, it's a self-solving short term problem. At worst, once everyone has a full tank, even keeping it topped up is no different to always running half empty. The lack of HGV drivers not withstanding of course. It could come back to bite again, and probably will, right across the supply chain. All it takes is for someone to mention a product shortage, which gets media attention or goes social media viral, and around we go again.

      1. Alan Johnson

        Re: gas lighting

        It obviously varies by location.

        I keep hearing on the radio that the situation is 'stabalising' - to have a stable situation with severe supply difficulties does not seem good to me!

        Somewhere around 1 in 10 or 1 in 20 garages near me have fuel. Those that do can be spotted on google maps by looking for traffic jams. That is a technque I recommend if you have to get fuelk and need to find somewhere. I was desperately low so waited the 3 hours necessary to fill up. I hope by teh time I have to fill again everything is OK but I suspect we have not seen the last of supply issues because I see lote sof issues with shipping at work.

        Therem ay be areas where there is plenty of fuel available but it still is a very major issue here.

  19. the machine stops

    there's a ridiculous story about the eu being hit by shortages and empty shelves. the reality:

    "Carrefour Belgium is struggling to supply some of its shops with enough products following a strike at its logistics provider"

    this is a tiny localised problem. the only places this story is touted as an eu wide problem: daily express, guido fawkes, sputniknews....says it all

    empy shelves in the uk is 90% brexit and denying it is the new lysenkoism

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      "empy shelves in the uk is 90% brexit and denying it is the new lysenkoism"

      Must be a local thing. I'm not seeing empty shelves. Some shelves have less product on them at times, but I'm not going into shops on a Saturday shop and coming away disappointed because what I want isn't there.

    2. Klimt's Beast Would

      https://www.rtl.be/info/belgique/economie/fermeture-de-logistics-nivelles-encore-des-penuries-possibles-dans-certains-magasins-carrefour-1328809.aspx

      Our local Carrefour has been a bit threadbare in the last few days. Fortunately we have plenty of beer in the fridge.

  20. Christoph
    Flame

    Horseshoes?

    Was this horse wearing iron horseshoes, liable to strike sparks? In a petrol station? Would he still have been laughing in the middle of the resultant conflagration?

  21. Danny 2 Silver badge

    Ask a taxi

    Rather than drive around every petrol station, ask the nearest taxi driver where the fuel is. They have a fleet driving around and chatting on radios, they always know.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ask a taxi

      Uber FuelSeeks ?

      DERVliveroo?

  22. MonsieurTM

    Sadly....

    We've killed off all the sufficiently large apex predators in the British Isles, so seeking something that could consume the carcasses of the poor humans, starved to death, famished ee-en, whilst paitenty awaiting their turn...

  23. -v(o.o)v-

    Oh my God, it's a mirage

    I'm tellin' y'all, it's cabotage

  24. codejunky Silver badge

    Yikes

    Those EV drivers having a laugh will probably cry-

    https://insideevs.com/news/537120/ev-chargers-switched-off-uk/amp/

    Looks like plans are to turn off work and home chargers for up to 9 hours a day. All due to the green revolution leaving us with no power and toy cars.

  25. ArthurMow

    Do none of the 5.2m registered EU citizens want to drive a truck?

    Not sure that a few hundred visas changes the available workforce much:

    https://blog.ons.gov.uk/2021/07/02/are-there-really-6m-eu-citizens-living-in-the-uk/

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