Two years since the last face-to-face conference, the Woodfines Solicitors Road Transport team were thrilled to be back ‘talking transport’ in person and celebrating the industry that has ‘kept the show on the road’ during the pandemic at their 16th Transport Conference at the Imperial War Museum Duxfordin November.
The conference was opened and hosted by Partner and Head of the Transport and Regulatory team, Mike Hayward, who gave a legal round-up and update of what has happened since everyone last met, as well as recognising the logistics industry as the lifeblood of everything we do.
Damian and Justyna Sodel, owners and founders of NN1 Personnel spoke of their experiences with driver recruitment and also the fact that, quite shockingly, HGV driver is not listed as an eligible occupation to apply for a Skilled Worker Visa.
Keeping to the theme of drivers, Ruth Edwards, Operations Director at Talent in Logistics/RTITB and ambassador for the logistics industry looked further into the issue, and more specifically at the importance of driver engagement and retention.
Woodfines’ Nathan Taylor-Allkins delivered an interactive session which involved delegates voting in live polls, adding some fun whilst still being informative, and then after a refreshment break, the delegation enjoyed a presentation from Mark Cartwright, Head of Commercial Vehicle Incident Prevention at National Highways, who delivered a strong presentation reminding delegates of the importance of load security and post-crash support, as well as sharing some rather shocking stories of what the organisation has seen out on the roads.
Woodfines’ Head of Corporate and Commericial, Maria Gallucci discussed employee status and the importance of getting this right, whilst barrister, Kim Preston of 4 Kings Bench Walk, with whom Woodfines have a strong and longstanding relationship, took to the lectern to deliver an important and informative presentation with added humour about health and safety in the logistics workplace, and what happens when the wheels (quite literally in some cases) fall off.
After lunch, there was an opportunity to chat with Traffic Officers from Leicestershire Police who, together with one of their undercover HGVs, were there for the day to discuss first hand experiences and concerns from out on the road; while Phil Breen, Head of Earned Recognition at the DVSA, and a regular speaker at Woodfines conferences, gave an update on Earned Recognition, as well as sharing some case studies from operators and members of the scheme to demonstrate the positive impact it has had on their business.
Last, but by no means least, Jane Anderson from Woodfines Solicitors gave a very topical update on the tightening of rules around the use of mobile phones whilst driving, an important issue which has been spoken about at conferences on several occasions and one which the officers reported seeing all too often out on the roads.
Mike Hayward said:
“With it being such a long time since we last met, it was fantastic to bring everybody together and celebrate the logistics industry who have worked so hard during the pandemic to keep things moving. Thank you to all of my team, the guest speakers and everyone who took the time out to join us during this difficult and busy time and make the day such a success.”
The team would also like to thank all of their transport contacts who were unable to make it on the day for their continued support.
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