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Pay rates a part of the solution for truck driver shortage

8 May, 2014

Pay rates a part of the solution for truck driver shortage

The drivers’ union is supporting moves for enhanced training and development for truck drivers, but says that in some cases poor pay rates remain a problem.

The Road Carriers Association is working with a range of driver groups to help the industry help itself.

“This is a positive move, and we are pleased to work with the Road Carriers Association on a programme to encourage more Kiwis to take on the profession of truck driving,” said Karl Andersen, Transport & Logistics Secretary, FIRST Union.

“We are encouraged by Association’s ideas on training and development and in making the industry more accessible to women.”

Karl Andersen said that the current industrial dispute at Toll Carriers in Northland highlighted the problems of low pay in parts of the industry.

“The Toll drivers are the lowest paid by far in the Northland area for the type of work they do.”

“Their job is a highly skilled one dealing with potentially dangerous material and often it can take upwards of 10 years of experience to acquire the skill necessary to haul petroleum.”

“Yet we have two wealthy companies, Toll Carriers and BP, the petrol station network it supplies, who are benefiting from Toll’s low wage rates, as Toll refuses so far to move anywhere near to pay parity with other operators.”

“We are supportive of the initiative the Road Carriers Association has taken to help the industry resolve some of its driver shortage concerns. But companies like Toll and BP need to considerably lift their game too,” Karl Andersen said.

ENDS

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