Amazon blamed as 'swarm' of white vans clog up industrial estate
PUBLISHED: 16:15 29 November 2019 | UPDATED: 09:58 30 November 2019
A Norwich business owner has called on Amazon to "take responsibility" for illegally-parked delivery drivers clogging up a city industrial estate.
The retail giant's distribution centre on the Sweet Briar Industrial Estate sees dozens of couriers visit each day to collect the thousands of packages ordered online by people in the region.
But other firms on the estate have complained about congestion caused when drivers park on Hellesdon Hall Road while waiting for their time slot - with some parked illegally on double yellow lines.
Karen Seaman, owner of Norwich Tile Centre, said customers and delivery lorries were struggling to access the industrial estate as a result.
She said: "A swarm of vans tends to arrive between 10 and 11 in the morning, so getting access into the car park here and into the estate is becoming more and more of a problem. It is affecting business."
Jordan Craske, an employee at the neighbouring Johnstone's Decorating Centre, said: "We've definitely lost business. We have regular customers who know that between the hours of 9am and 11am it's a nightmare. They will avoid the area at those times and so they end up going elsewhere.
"Deliveries are tough as well - artic lorries have to back in. If the vans are out there parked on the double-yellow lines then [the lorries] don't have the turning circles to get in."
Both believed that Amazon needed to do more to discourage the drivers - who are self-employed - from causing so much disruption.
Mrs Seaman said: "If only Amazon would just take responsibility for the times that their drivers arrive. It would be nice if they would just control the time slots and that they're adhered to.
"I appreciate that the drivers are just doing what they need to do, but it would be better if Amazon could manage it."
An Amazon spokesperson said: "Amazon strives to be a great neighbour. We have a range of measures in place to minimise the impact of our operations on the local community including off-site parking. We are also working with the local authority to put in place further preventative measures.
"We will continue to communicate with the independent delivery companies that deliver Amazon parcels, reminding them to be considerate of local residents and to use the off-site parking provided."