Less than half of lorry and coach companies satisfied with England’s major roads

15 August 2023

Less than half (49 per cent) of freight and coach businesses are satisfied with England’s motorways and major ‘A’ roads.

In a new survey the independent watchdog Transport Focus asked logistics and coach businesses how satisfied they are with England’s motorways and major ‘A’ roads when it comes to meeting their business needs.

This represents a small jump in satisfaction from the survey last year that found 46 per cent of freight and coach managers were satisfied with the country’s major roads.

In the survey Transport Focus spoke to more 1000 logistics and coach businesses about their views on information, response to incidents and accidents, road surface quality, rest stop quality and how National Highways manages the roads.

Anthony Smith, chief executive of Transport Focus, said:

“Our freight and coach businesses help keep the country moving and working. And while it is good to see some improvement in the overall rating of the survey, it is clear that more needs to be done to meet their needs.

“We’ll continue our work with National Highways to keep these issues a priority and get the improvements needed.”

Key survey findings:

  • Overall 49 per cent of the freight sector is satisfied and 46 per cent of the coach sector
  • Less than half of freight and coach businesses are satisfied with the availability of live travel information or advance planning information
  • Information about overrunning roadworks is particularly low, with only 22 per cent rating it good

Rest facilities had low ratings. Less than one in ten rated the value for money of rest stops as good (8 per cent)

  • On the day-to-day management of National Highways’ roads, safety scored highest with 60 per cent rating it good

Asked what they want done better, businesses said they wanted National Highways to:

  • reduce the length of the roadworks and do roadworks in smaller bites
  • improved roadside facilities including more secure parking and toilet facilities
  • clear incidents more quickly

The survey is referred to in the Government’s Road Investment Strategy for 2020-25 and Transport Focus looks forward to it being confirmed as an official performance indicator from April 2024.

In the year ahead Transport Focus will use the results of the survey to press National Highways to improve this and ensure its approach meets the needs of these key customers.

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