The head of Halfords is calling on Boris Johnson to address a shortage of specialist mechanics able to cope with the government’s ambitions to rapidly grow the number of electric cars on Britain’s roads.
Graham Stapleton, chief executive of the retailer and motoring services business, said he is “very concerned” that sufficient steps are not being taken to address the “skills gap”.
The sale of all new petrol and diesel cars and vans is set to be banned by 2030.
There are around 500,000 zero and low-emission cars on UK roads but this is projected to rise to up to 11M by 2030.
Stapleton said there is expected to be a shortfall of about 35,000 technicians across the UK able to deal with these vehicles, and called for state support to rapidly grow this workforce.
He said: “There are simply not enough and we will have to keep training thousands every year if we want to be anywhere near the levels needed.
“I’ve been talking to the Government because I am very concerned that we need to be training more people, or at least setting out how this process will take place.
“The plans they have laid out to grow the electric car space is obviously really interesting, but there needs to be skills in that space to cope with this.”