UK road freight more efficient than ever – DfT statistics19 August 2016

The amount of goods transported on UK roads last year increased by 12% -- but the logistics sector was able to deliver this with just a 9% increase in HGV use.

That’s among the key findings from the Department for Transport’s road freight activity statistics, which show continued improvements in fleet efficiency, according to both the Freight Transport Association and the Road Haulage Association.

FTA’s head of national and regional policy Christopher Snelling says: “HGV use was already incredibly efficient, as being able to fill vehicles as much as possible is key to making a profit or keeping costs low... HGV use has become almost a fifth more efficient just since 2004.”

“This is a great performance by a big, diverse industry – and the reasons are dynamism and innovation,” says RHA director of policy Jack Semple.

Semple points to high capacity trailers – both double decked and longer trainers up to 15.65m – as a key reason for the improved performance, along with greater collaboration (pallet networks) and better use of IT by hauliers.

The DfT data also points out that three-quarters of all UK goods movements are made by road, rather than by rail or water.

FTA’s Snelling says: “We need to do more to maximise the use of rail and water freight as part of making the UK’s supply chain as efficient, clean and safe as possible.

“But they can never replace the need for road freight – that is why the best future will see us maximise the efficiency of road freight as well as the other modes.”

Click the link below to see the DfT’s latest statistics.

Laura Cork

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