Technician shortage at crisis point in near future – FTA 18 June 2019

More than half (52.7%) of vacancies for vehicle mechanics, technicians and fitters will not be filled in the near future, with vehicle inspection and repair units hitting “crisis point”.

That’s according to the Freight Transport Association (FTA) which revealed the finding in its 2019 Logistics Report.

Lawrie Alford, head of automotive at FTA, says: “Currently, six million vehicle inspections are undertaken per annum by 30,000 technicians working on HGVs, trailers and PSVs. But unless the skills shortage is tackled, workshops will struggle to keep up with demand, and queues for vehicles inspections and repairs will grow longer and longer.

“Operators will be forced to place their vehicles in downtime for increasing periods, which could cause their operations to come grinding to a halt – not ideal for the consumers and businesses who have come to expect superfast, just-in-time deliveries.”

Alford adds: “Not enough secondary school and college leavers are drawn to technician apprenticeships; we must work together to promote the benefits of this career and ensure the industry attracts a steady flow of new talent.”

This issue was discussed last week (11 June) at the FTA’s Fleet Engineer Conference, which was held in Stoneleigh, Warwickshire.

Laura Cork

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