An Ex-Haulier Tells His Story
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AREPRESENTATIVE of "The "Commercial Motor" has been able to trace the cause and effect of some of the present transport difficulties, as a result of an interview with Mr. S. G. Vaughan, an ex-haulier in East London. He was managing director of Vaughan Transport, Ltd., Old Kent Road, which was acquired by the Road Haulage Executive in April this year.
His books showed that the business • was growing, and the five-vehicle fleet was kept busy throughout the year, although one vehicle was normally
• intended to act as a spare. All the vehicles were of Bedford manufacture and had been delivered since 1947, the latest having arrived only a few months before nationalization took place. Two were 8-ton articulated vehicles, and the other three 5-6-ton lorries. They were employed on routes to East Anglia, including Cambridge, March, Peterborough and Lincoln. General loads were carried out of London, but
to some extent the haulier specialized in carrying fragile and difficult goods— paint,glass, lead, petrol pumps, spirits and groceries.
The loads of paint, which were carried regularly, were charged at a rate of 45s. to 48s. a ton. Clearly, the loss by spillage or damage of a one-gallon tin of paint at 45s. a gallon meant the loss to the haulier of one ton carried. Drivers were given a bonus of 2s. 6d. per ton of back load which they managed to pick up. Empty running was unheard of, said. Mr. Vaughan.
Another point in connection with this operator's service was that all orders were carried out within 24 hours. •
Since the business became a limited liability company three years ago, Mr. Vaughan had been receiving an average of £1,400 a year in emoluments. When the concern WAS 'incorporated in the R.H.E. he was offered a post under the unit manager of .the group to which his vehicles Went, first at /400 a year and, finally, at /600 a year. He was employed for two months, after which his services were'dispensed with. During that time the unit was said to be operating at a loss of £1,000 a month.
" Some of my old customers were turned down because they were said to make too many claims," declared Mr. Vaughan. "The paint loads, in particular, were described as too dangerous and risky. I don't think 1 ever spent an easier two months itt my life."
• Investigations into the activities of the ex-customers of Vaughan Transport, Ltd., revealed that the biggest two were now running their own C-licensed fleets. The transport manager of the paint concern said that he was giving scarcely any work to the R.H.E., although he • would much prefer to hand the work to a private haulier than do it himself.
' After two months of unemployment, Mr. Vaughan is now about to open a transport cafe at Cop' Dock, near Ipswich.