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How to tackle your LGV drivers’ mental health during the Covid-19 pandemic

Blogs | 10th Oct 2020

As more workplaces turn to homeworking to help control the spread of Covid-19, LGV drivers are still on the road, yet facing greater pressures than ever as key workers.

With World Mental Health Day today – 10th October 2020 – it’s the ideal time to consider your LGV drivers’ mental health and wellbeing since the outbreak of Covid-19. Here is some advice to help you support your drivers during these challenging and changing times.

Why is being an LGV driver challenging?

Before the pandemic, the transport and logistics industry was already facing a struggle with the skills shortage, given the increasing number of older workers retiring and the younger generation not seeing these roles as attractive career options.

Since the outbreak of coronavirus earlier this year, these already stretched key workers face extra challenges, all of which could negatively impact their mental health and wellbeing, including:

  • Longer working hours and intense concentration
  • Additional work demands and stricter time constraints
  • Increased isolation
  • Reduced contact with people due to social distancing measures
  • Heavier traffic conditions

Mental health in the transport industry

Statistically, men are less likely to speak up about mental health problems, so suffering in silence is all too common in the male dominated transport industry – 86.8% of workers in this sector are still male, according to the 2019 FTA Logistics Skills Report.

Talent in Logistics’ 2020 Driving Engagement in Logistics research suggests shouldering the burden of this pressure may be costing drivers. Only a third say their companies support balance between work and personal life, while more than half reported that they have been stressed about work over the last 12 months.

Good mental health is good for the economy

Mental health problems among workers are said to cost the UK between £70-100 billion per year, with work related stress costing 10.4 million working days per year. So addressing these issues – especially during these challenging times – will not only be hugely beneficial to individual drivers and their employers, but could also positively impact the UK economy.

As the leading Driver CPC Consortium in the UK and Ireland, at RTITB we believe it’s incredibly important to not only take action and recognise mental health and wellbeing in the workplace, but to also improve the drivers of our future. That is why we have specifically taken action to help you, your drivers and your business. We have recently launched a new Driver CPC training platform – for RTITB Master Driver CPC Consortium members – which includes refreshed materials, including a game changing Mental Health module. These changes have been made in the hope that awareness and increased understanding amongst drivers will help reduce some of the worrying figures we are seeing around mental health.

Improve mental health with Driver CPC training

We have developed five innovative new topics within our Driver CPC Periodic Training suite that can really help to tackle this growing area of concern.

  1. Mental Health at the Workplace
  2. Driving and Depression
  3. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  4. Driving and Anxiety
  5. Bullying in the Workplace

Our aim is that drivers completing these Driver CPC training topics will get far more than their required training hours. We hope that LGV drivers will also gain the confidence to speak up and ask for help if they need it – whether that be from their employer, family, friends or other professional. Starting a conversation about mental health doesn’t have to be difficult, and our new modules will give employees the skills and confidence they need to speak out about any mental wellbeing issues faced.

We believe that removing the stigma attached to mental health WILL result in a happier workplace environment for all.

To find out more about how our Driver CPC training modules can address mental health concerns for drivers, and many other current topics, request a 30 day free trial for our Driver CPC training portal at https://www.rtitb.com/dcpcdemo/ or call our specialist team on +44 (0)1952 520207.