The words ‘low fat’ and ‘sugar free’ might not appear on many truck stop menu boards, but in fact that is just what four in ten businesses say their HGV drivers tell them they want.
Finding a healthy snack while out on the road every day is actually seen as one of the biggest frustrations facing commercial drivers, according to research by RAC Truck Rescue, with 41% of firms saying lorry drivers in particular have reported this.
The survey of 500 UK businesses, asking what drivers list as their top roadside gripes, suggests lorry drivers are more health-conscious than company car drivers – 21% of company car drivers listed a lack of healthy food alternatives at service stations as one of their biggest bugbears, in contrast to 41% of lorry drivers.
Indeed, for lorry drivers, healthy food came above other issues on the road, including using mobile phones (40%), poor standard of overnight facilities (39%) and middle lane ‘hoggers’ (34%).
“We recognise that service station facilities are always improving and more food outlets are opening up for drivers, but there is clearly still more that can be done,” RAC Truck Rescue spokesman Matt Dallaway said. “The haulage sector has struggled with concerns over the health of its workforce, so it’s really encouraging to see this shift in attitude. But the facilities need to be there to cater for those looking for a healthy option.”
The research follows Transport Focus’ Take A Break report, which was released by the independent watchdog to show that the basic needs of truck drivers are not being met, particularly on A-roads. The campaign group, which called for action to be taken to improve roadside facilities, will work with the Government and Highways England to address the issues highlighted.
Matt Dallaway added: “As an industry we need to support our truck and lorry drivers and flag up issues such as this. Driver health is just as important as vehicle health for any fleet, as they are the ones at the front end keeping businesses moving.”