The HSE has clarified the rules on providing visiting drivers with toilet facilities after a shipping company claimed it was entitled to refuse drivers access to its toilets for the first two hours they are on site.
Scotline’s policy came to light after a driver contacted CM to complain about the lack of adequate toilet facilities at two of its depots in Rochester.
The driver told CM that the company provided one temporary toilet, which had a faulty flushing system, for drivers at its Crown Wharf site, and two at its Sir Thomas Longley Road site.
The driver added: “I feel degraded and insulted being forced to use second-rate toilets when there are better facilities on site for other more worthy staff or visitors.”
HSE guidance states that temporary toilets should only be provided as a short-term measure for visiting drivers while permanent ones are constructed.
A statement provided on behalf of Scotline shipping manager Roy Brooks claimed the firm was operating within the law.
It said: “We have provided fixed welfare facilities in the past and these were abused by the lorry drivers, so they were removed and temporary toilets were provided instead. There is no guidance on providing toilet facilities to visiting commercial drivers, who are onsite for no more than two hours, from the HSE.”
It added: “Although we’re not obliged to provide temporary toil for drivers, we continue to do so and they are cleaned and emptied regularly by a contract company. This should, in theory, be a benefit to the drivers saving time from going to the local truckstop, but clearly our benevolence is wasted on some.”
Asked to clarify the rules on when drivers are allowed to use toilets onsite, an HSE spokesman told CM: “It is not acceptable for there to be any restriction on drivers for two hours before allowing access to toilet facilities.”
Scotline had yet to respond to CM’s request for comment on HSE’s clarification of the regulations as it went to press.
- For your drivers' rights when delivering to a third-party site, see our guide to the rules around toilet access.
Other firms to be highlighted recently include: Thew Arnott reminded of obligations by HSE after refusing to grant visiting driver access to a toilet; Retailer Boots accused of not providing adequate toilet access to visiting driver; John Lewis Partnership, Magna Specialist Confectioners and Synergy Health Sterilisation accused of not providing professional drivers with toilet access.