People in Suffolk will be forced to turn to their taps as an HGV driver shortage has left the county parched of bottled water.
Industry insiders have confirmed that the HGV driver shortage has meant space on lorries is in shorter supply.
As a result heavy, bulky items like water which push up lorry’s weight are not being prioritised in the same way other items are.
On top of that, the hot weather has meant more of the stock is being bought, thus making shelves emptier.
Experts added that this, coupled with the ‘pingdemic’, had resulted in an industry-wide issue.
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Andrew Opie, director of food and sustainability at the British Retail Consortium, said: “A shortage in HGV driver numbers has resulted in minor disruption to some supply chains, delaying the restocking of some items in some areas. Supermarkets are working closely with their suppliers to ensure that consumers are able to get hold of all the goods they need.
“Nonetheless, government must rapidly increase the number of HGV driving tests taking place, fill gaps by providing visas for EU HGV drivers, and also look for a longer-term solution to this issue.”
Rod McKenzie, managing director of policy at the Road Haulage Association (RHA), has described the shortage of lorry drivers in the UK due to Brexit and the “pingdemic” as “a recipe for chaos”.
He said: “We don’t know how many drivers are affected in terms of the pingdemic on a daily basis, but the effects are clear.
“That’s a shortage of 100,000, and when you’re that short on staff to begin with, and you have the pingdemic on top of that, you’ve got a recipe for chaos, and chaos is what we’re now seeing unfolding in front of our eyes.”
However, people in Suffolk can feel secure in turning on their taps as Anglian Water say the county enjoys some of the best water in the country.
A spokesman said: “Water quality is regulated by the Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI). This body makes sure all water companies supply safe drinking water that meets legal standards and is acceptable to consumers.
“Last month, the DWI issued its Chief Inspector’s for the last year, in which our performance was singled out as exemplary against all the key water quality measures, meaning Anglian Water is some of the best tap water in the UK.”