Fun Logistics Facts & Stats

Fun Logistics Facts & Stats

  • Time to read 8 minutes
Fun Logistics Facts & Stats

The changing numbers on these Global transport facts, are just since you've been on this page!

A Few Logistics Facts




  • 2.54 million people work in the UK haulage and logistics industry. That's half the population of Sweden!
  • 840,000 additional workers required to work in logistics sector. The sector grows!
  • The sector is the UK’s fifth largest employer.
  • Industry worth £124Bn GVA to UK economy.
  • 8% of the total UK workforce are employed in the logistics sector. That's 1 in every 12 people you meet!
  • £86.5 billion contributed to UK economy by logistics sector. Bravo!

A Few Road Haulage Facts:


road haulage


  • The Oxford English Dictionary says its etymology is obscure but it may be related to the dialect verb lurry, meaning to lug or drag along, which dates back to the 17th century.
  • The word lorry was first seen in English in 1838 when it referred to the luggage truck on a train
  • The earliest record reference to a “lorry driver” was in 1926.
  • 220,000 employed specifically in UK road haulage. Enough to fill Old Trafford three times!
  • 89% of all goods transported by land in Great Britain are moved directly by road (but even the 20% that is not moved by road often needs road haulage to complete journeys to/from ports, airports or rail terminals). 
  • In 1990 there were around 480,000 trucks in use on UK roads compared with about 415,000 today – a 14% reduction. In contrast there are 53% more vans and 35% more cars on the roads than in 1990.
  • Each 44 tonner contributes around £60,000 a year in fuel duty and VAT to the exchequer.
  • In the U.S. alone, there are over 20,000 females that are long-haul truck drivers. Female truckers account for only about 5.8% of all truck drivers in the U.S.
  • It takes approximately 36 of the latest large trucks today to emit the same NOx (nitrogen oxides) pollutants as one truck registered in 1993.
  • 98% of all food and agricultural products in Great Britain are transported by road freight. 
  • The typical 38 tonner 20 years ago achieved 7 mpg, while today’s 44 tonner delivers 9 mpg – a 28% improvement while carrying 20% more payload.
  • 98% of all consumer products and machinery in Great Britain are transported by road freight.
  • In city environments, tests have demonstrated that the exhaust emissions from the latest trucks are cleaner than the air going into the air filter.
  • 600,000 Goods Vehicle driving licence holders.
  • 34,000 road haulage companies trading in the UK. We would love to help each and every one!
  • 493,600 commercial vehicles over 3.5 tonnes are registered in the UK.
  • The top commodities transported between the U.S. and Canada are vehicles and parts. Michigan is the state with most freight flows to and from Canada.
  • The trucking industry is expected to grow by 21 percent over the next ten years. Trucks remain the most popular mode for transporting goods to and from Canada and Mexico.
  • Thanks to the clean diesel trucks that operate today, it would take 60 trucks to equal the exhaust emissions of just one truck from 1988.
  • There are significant numbers of large HGVs, 5 axle and above covering long distances on key strategic corridors where there are parallel rail routes, some of which could be captive to rail if the network is upgraded. For example, half of the traffic from these large HGVs is on trips over 200kms, and a quarter on trips over 300kms.
  • However the lack of a level playing field continues to make it difficult for sustainable freight modes to compete with road transport. 
  • Overall car pollution remains about the same as it was in 1990 because the improvements in efficiency are counteracted by the increase in car numbers. In contrast, trucks emit about 5% of the pollutants they were responsible for 20 years ago.
  • Latest UK research using Government Statistics shows that HGVs are paying less than a third of the costs they impose on society in terms of crashes, congestion, road damage and pollution as HGVs receive a subsidy of around £6.5 billion per annum.
  • Research shows that a 44,000Kg articulated combination only takes approximately 20 metres longer to stop from 56mph than a car weighing about 1,500Kg.
  • 13% of workers in road haulage are self-employed. "Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision"
  • The increase in maximum vehicle payloads to 44 tonnes – from 38 tonnes 20 years ago – has resulted in fewer truck journeys to deliver an equivalent tonnage of goods.
  • The primary cause of trucking accidents is failure to stay in the lane. Poor vehicle maintenance, inclement weather, and improper cargo loading are also contributing factors to trucking accidents worldwide.

A Few Sea Freight Facts:


sea freight


  • Roughly 90% of all world trade still travels by ship. The same percent of vehicles in the U.S. that could be electric by the early 2040’s.
  • Shipping by boat is a greener alternative compared to trucks and planes. Although, it’s a slower method. But hey, you can’t have it all.
  • The average annual salary of a maritime worker ranges from £35,000 to £50,000.
  • At any given time, there are about 20 million shipping containers making their journey across the seas. That’s the same number of people in Sri Lanka—the 58th most populous country in the world, according to the United Nations Population Division.
  • Around two-thirds of ship crews have no communications means in the open sea. With the average person spending 5 hours a day on their phone, it seems unlikely they would thrive in this situation.
  • Around 2 ships are lost every day due to pirate seizes, especially off the coast of Somalia.  In March 2017, Somali pirates hijacked their first commercial ship in 5 years by pretending to beg for water.
  • In one year, a container ship can travel the equivalent of three-quarters of the way to the moon and back. To put that into perspective, the moon is a vast 238,900 miles away.
  • Philippine residents make up more than a third of crews worldwide, as nearly a quarter million is at sea.  The Philippines have been the world’s main supplier of seafarers since 1987.
  • Females make up only about 2% of seafarers. Of the 2%, 94% of them work in the cruise line sector.
  • Despite shipping being one of the oldest industries in the world, it plays a more important role than ever.  The earliest depiction of a ship under sail appears on a painted disc found in Kuwait that dates back to the late 5th millennium BC.
  • Container ships can transport up to 18,000 20-foot containers at a time. “Benjamin Franklin” is the name of the ship capable of carrying 18,000 containers.
  • Worldwide, only about 2% to 10% of containers are inspected.
  • Greece and Japan are the two largest ship-owning countries. Together, they control almost 30% of the world’s tonnage.
  • Ocean shipping is so cheap that rather than fillet their own fish, Scotland can send their cod 10,000 miles across the ocean to China to be filleted and then sent back for less than the price of doing it themselves. Ocean freight also causes much less environmental impact than most other methods of transportation.
  • Shipping companies are extremely secretive and private, e.g. the official Greek shipowners’ association won’t reveal how many members it has.   Greek shipping magnate and second husband to Jacqueline Onassis Kennedy, Aristotle Onassis, was quoted for saying, “The secret of business is to know something that nobody else knows.”
  • A container ship engine has approximately 1,000 times more power than a family car. The largest engine ever constructed stands at an enormous 56 feet tall!
  • The largest ships can cost over £155 million to construct
  • In terms of cost to ship, a bicycle would cost roughly £7.79 to ship, while a soda can would cost less than a penny.
  • In the United Kingdom, the shipping industry accounts for 2% of their GDP. That’s more than restaurants, takeout food, and civil engineering combined.
  • The shipping industry was one of the first to adopt widely implemented safety standards. Regulations are developed at the global level by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), which is the London based United Nations agency responsible for the safety of life at sea and the protection of the marine environment.
  • The U.S. relies on shipping to bring in two-thirds of its oil supply. Most oil imported into the U.S. comes from Canada and Latin America.

A Few Rail Freight Facts:


rail freight


  • Rail freight has a key role to play in the low carbon economy as rail produces 76% less carbon dioxide emissions than the equivalent road journey and a gallon of diesel will carry a tonne of freight 246 miles by rail as opposed to 88 miles by road.
  • Rail transported 16.95 billion tonne kilometres of freight in 2017/18 equating to 10% of freight surface transport.
  • The rail freight market has adjusted and largely recovered from the huge changes in the past three years because of the rapid decline in coal movements due to the need to reduce CO2 emissions it is being phased out by 2025. 2016/17 saw record levels of consumer and construction traffic.The final quarter figures for that year show 9 per cent consumer and 11 per cent construction traffic increases compared to the same quarter in the previous year.
  • Rail freight moved by commodity sector in Great Britain 2016-2017: Construction 25%, Oil & petroleum 6%, international 3%. Metals 9%, other 10% which including biomass, Domestic Intermodal 40% and coal 7%.

A Few Air Freight Facts:


air freight


  • Air freight is often placed on commercial flights in and out of China.  With the average person spending 5 hours a day on their phone, it seems unlikely they would thrive in this situation.

A Few Myths


Myth: Trucking is a dirty industry.

Truth: Indeed there are some jobs that are dirty. However, the majority are clean. Uniformed drivers are common place within the industry and with companies pushing this hard, this myth is finding it increasingly difficult to survive. Image is everything in modern business. Vehicles are expected to be washed regularly and drivers are expected to wear a uniform.


Myth: Trucking is a sector dominated by men.

Truth: The majority of truck drivers are male. However, there is an increasing amount of female drivers on the road. There are many stories that fly about that highlight the growth of the female workforce in this industry.


Myth: Trucking is a lonely job.

Truth: It depends. Some people like to spend time on their own. Some do not. There are driving jobs out there that employ drivers for (say) ten hour shifts meaning that they are at home most nights they drive. Other companies employ drivers who leave on Monday morning and do not return until Friday night. Naturally it can be lonely at times but it is highly dependent on the driver as well as the frequency and locations of the drops.


Myth: Trucking is moving pallets from A to B.

Truth: There are various types of trucking jobs available. Not everything can be palletised. Such jobs can include driving:

  • Bulk tankers (such as milk, powders, petrochemicals, gases and other liquids)

  • Curtainsiders (carries palletised loads, bags, etc)

  • Multidrop vehicles (small rigid vehicles used for multi-drops around town and city centres)

  • Box trailers (used for carrying cages to supermarkets, etc.)

  • Tippers (small rigid tippers that specialise in local quarry work to large articulated tippers specialising in long distance work)

  • Flatbeds (Used to carry goods of such a nature they would be unsuitable for a curtainsider or box trailer)

  • Car transporters (used to carry vehicles to dealerships)

  • Specialised units (brick carrier, refuse collection, skip lorries, etc.)


Myth: Trucking is a dying industry.

Truth: Trucking cannot die. If it were, how would products be transported to supermarkets? How would milk get from farms to dairies? How would cars get to dealerships without using excess mileage? Trains, planes and boats can take these so far but cannot deliver them to the end user as efficiently and cost effectively as trucks!


Myth: The haulage sector is full - there are no jobs available.

Truth: There are jobs available. Some may be temp jobs, others may require special licences and/or experience but it's the same with any other industry. Think seriously about a career in trucking. There are thousands of companies out there all specialising in different systems to collect and distribute products. If you do not like one system try another! There are plenty of haulage companies out there!

Some people have commented about how the recession has impacted driving jobs and whilst it has reduced the number of available jobs, it has done this to nearly every industry in the country. The more flexible you are and the more skilled and stable you are, the more chances you have at getting a truck driving job.

Road transport is a highly competitive and low-margin business. It is a service-driven industry, responding to fluctuating customer demand.

The sector has to deal with variable road conditions and sometimes appalling congestion while delivering safely on-time to customers..

Its environmental performance has been transformed; the latest Euro 6 lorries are recognised by TfL as compliant with the planned Ultra-Low Emission Zone.  Modern lorries are efficient and quiet

This is the industry that HGV Alliance represents – modern, innovative, clean, committed to safety, a substantial employer in its own right, all-pervasive and essential to the success of the UK economy. Its voice needs to be heard.

In truth the trucks on our roads are cleaner, safer and more efficient than they have ever been and it’s ironic that while most of us demand instant gratification of our retail desires, the workhorses that make that possible are still so unloved by the public.

Truck Stickers


lorry meme sticker
funny lorry meme sticker
funny lorry meme sticker
funny lorry meme sticker
funny lorry meme sticker




funny lorry meme
funny lorry meme oh look a penny
funny lorry meme - my dispatchers face when i turn in my logs
funny lorry meme - lorry drivers be like... selfie with a friend
funny lorry meme - the face you make when your wife asks to drive your truck
funny lorry meme - cop pulled me over and said papers... so i said scissors i win and drove off
funny lorry meme - how do you make 1 million £$ in trucking? you start with 2 million £$
funny lorry meme - what do you call a lot lizard carrying a mattress? owner / operator - joke
funny lorry meme - trucker what my friends think i do what my mum thinks i do what society thinks i do what my boss thinks i do what i think i do what i actually do
funny lorry meme - new truck driver is being born
funny lorry meme - hey dispatch give us a shout when you have got a load - dead skeleton
funny lorry meme - on the road to success there are no shortcuts - bridge strike
Register FREE with HGV Alliance

Register Today

Load Exchange Platform (Register Free)
Exclusive HGV Alliance Hero Discounts
Logistics Industry Articles and News
HGV Alliance Library