I think I'm right in saying that the working time directive puts strict laws in place to limit working hours of drivers over any seven-day period and a 70 hour week is clearly in breach of it. If what you say is true, drivers need to stop bitching and just get the lawyers involved.
You're quite right on that the WTD have laws about hours worked, BUT just for the Haulage industry they brought in a special clause called POA which is period of availability meaning when a driver gets to a delivery point if there is a hold up for any reason he switches the tachograph that regulates his hours onto this new POA clause and the clock stops, so even though the driver is still at work it doesn't count towards his working week, so go figure that one out.
As for gratitude... I'd rather have more goods ferried about on the rail network, taking heavy traffic off the road system, helping to make roads safer and reducing pollution.
Always makes me laugh this "on the rail network" crap, Most congestion is caused in towns and cities so unless you have a train station outside your local Tescos and Asda you still need the same amount of lorries on the road, The only vehicles you would be removing from the roads by using trains are the trunkers that run from the outskirts of one city to the outskirts of another. Even the rail industry use road haulage to move there supplies about as they cant rely on the rail network to get the stuff there on time how ironic is that.
Sorry, I'm ranting now, but the idea that I should be grateful to lorry drivers has really hit a nerve, there are far more professions on far less money, doing far more for society that I should be grateful to than bloody tanker drivers.
Maybe grateful was a wrong choice of word to use by me but when you take as much shit as lorry drivers do off the public and the unbelievable amount of regulations it touches a nerve, I know the haulage industry isnt the most important out there but again you are very naive if you think it isn't an important one, Remember the 2001 fuel protests 5 days with no lorries on the road and the country ground to a halt and we was public enemy number one because you didn't have your fresh milk and bread.