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Restart vehicle deliveries to aid Covid-19 relief effort, says BVRLA

Dealerships and the wider automotive supply chain should restart vehicle deliveries to unclog the thousands of cars and vans congesting the sector.

Gerry Keaney, chief executive of the BVRLA

New guidance from the BVRLA published with the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) highlights how maintaining vehicle deliveries is essential to enable vital coronavirus response work while also ensuring fleets and drivers are ready when lockdown restrictions lift.

While the government guidance on 23 March on the coronavirus restriction measures outlined that specified businesses and venues should close – affecting dealer showrooms as well as auction houses – the organisations say the collection and distribution of vehicles, including from dealerships and auction houses, remains permitted, subject to observing other coronavirus precautions.

The BVRLA has added that a letter sent by Department for Transport to the logistics sector makes it clear logistics, including the collection and delivery of vehicles, should carry on during the lockdown, provided that it can be done in accordance with the coronavirus safety guidelines.

In the letter to the RHA and FTA, Ben Rimmington, Co-Director, Road Safety, Standards and Services at the DfT, said all logistics professionals “need to continue to go about their business to keep supply chains moving, and government policy is clear that this applies to all supplies chains and not only those for food and medical supplies”.

“The Government has made it very clear that it wants ‘all supply chains’ to continue ‘to the greatest extent possible’ during the Covid-19 outbreak,” said BVRLA chief executive, Gerry Keaney.

“This includes vehicle logistics, and not just cars and vans that are being delivered to essential workers.”

He added: “By getting these vehicles moving, we are not only helping the Covid-19 response, we are also ensuring that businesses and individuals can pick-up where they left-off as soon as the lockdown ends.”

The document produced with the SMMT and FLA sets out specific guidance that members and agents should consider in vehicle collection and recovery, including measures on social distancing.

“We hope that the guidance we have produced with the SMMT and FLA can give our members and their supply chain partners the confidence to start making this happen,” Keaney finished.

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Written by Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.

Natalie edits all the Fleet World websites and newsletters, and loves to hear about any latest industry news.

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