Come 2012, haulage companies would have far fewer things to worry over if restrictions on night time deliveries were lifted. It's no secret that they aren't the only ones who stand to gain if this is done and the industry has been clamouring over this for a long time now. Finally, the ripple effects of these restrictions have caused other quarters to start making urgent calls for their lifting too.
In her independent review into the state of the UK's high streets, retail guru Mary Portas cites delivery restrictions as a major impediment to high street business. In the government commissioned report, she says large retailers have told her that delivery restrictions on haulage companies are among the key trading issues they face.
"Businesses big and small have told me that restrictions, such as restrictions on night-time deliveries and noise, are an issue for them trading in town. " She said that too often, the opinions and vocalisations of a minority could inhibit the progression of small businesses and serve to halt a project before it even gets off the ground.
Portas has recommended fewer restrictions on night time deliveries and setting up local delivery networks. She also says the government would seek guidance from the FTA and Noise Abatement Society on quiet night time deliveries.
Haulage companies have backed the calls, which they have been making for some time now. The Freight Transport Association (FTA) and the Road Haulage Association, which represent some 7,500 haulage companies throughout the UK, have agreed with Portas.
The RHA had previously indicated that in a 2008 survey, its members estimated that they'd lost 20% of on road productivity due to congestion. It also cited estimations that the annual cost of congestion to the UK economy was close to