A London operator has been granted permission to run an additional fleet of electric buses, with 23 10.8 metre vehicles and their associated infrastructure due to be in service by summer 2018.
The buses will be operated by Metroline and will be supplied by the BYD/Alexander-Dennis Limited (ADL) partnership. They will be based at the operator’s Holloway garage and will operate on Route 46 from Lancaster Gate to St Bartholomew’s Hospital.
Royal Mail has signed an agreement with PEUGEOT to purchase 100 zero-emission Partner L2 Electric vans, to be used by postmen and women on their delivery rounds. The vans will go into service from December 2017 at delivery offices around the UK, supported by a comprehensive rollout of charging infrastructure.
The Government confirmed today that it will end the sale of all new conventional petrol and diesel cars by 2040, as it unveiled new plans to tackle air pollution.
The UK Plan for Tackling Roadside Nitrogen Dioxide Concentrations produced by Defra and the Department for Transport outlines how councils with the worst levels of air pollution at busy road junctions and hotspots must take robust action.
Today’s announcement is focused on delivering nitrogen dioxide (NO2) compliance at the roadside in the shortest amount of time. This is one part of our programme to deliver clean air – next year the Government will publish a comprehensive Clean Air Strategy which will address other sources of air pollution.
Air quality in the UK has been improving significantly in recent decades, with reductions in emissions of all of the key pollutants, and NO2 levels down by half in the last 15 years.
Despite this, an analysis of over 1,800 of Britain’s major roads show that a small number of these - 81 or 4% - are due to breach legal pollution limits for NO2, with 33 of these outside of London.
Brake, the road safety charity, is running a free webinar for fleet and road safety professionals on the benefits of taking part in UK Road Safety Week, and providing advice on how to get involved.
Road Safety Week is coordinated annually by Brake as a community event involving thousands of companies, schools, public sector organisations, and community groups. The theme for Road Safety Week 2017 (20-26 November) is ‘Speed Down Save Lives’ and focuses on the need to keep to lower speeds, especially in built up areas.
Brake’s online webinar, Taking part in UK Road Safety Week 2017, is an opportunity to hear from companies that took part in Road Safety Week 2016, and will provide employers with inspiration and advice on running successful activities and communication campaigns, both internally and as community events. The webinar takes place 10am – 11.30am on Wednesday 20 September. For more information, and to book, visit www.brakepro.org.
Katie Shephard, development director at Brake, said: “Road Safety Week provides companies with a great opportunity to engage their staff, suppliers, and customers with vital road safety messages, as well as the opportunity to run awareness raising campaigns in their local communities. Road Safety Week is free to take part in, and we provide all organisations who get involved with ideas, resources, and support, to help make their activities, whether internal or external, as successful as possible. I’d encourage anyone interested in getting involved in this year’s Road Safety Week to sign up for our free webinar to find out more about the many benefits of taking part.”
East Ayrshire Leisure has taken delivery of two Mellor Orions to provide a library bus service to the community.
The bespoke vehicles have been fitted with a full-length awning and rotating book stands which can be secured when the bus is in motion. The Orion also comes with Wi-Fi, electrical sockets, space for a laptop or kettle and external sockets for convenience. There is also under shelf lockable storage, side door entrance and a manual ramp for easy wheelchair access.
Adam Geary, Cultural Services Manager for East Ayrshire Leisure, said: “It was fantastic to take delivery of our new mobile libraries and they have been a great hit with the public. Whilst they have less book stock than our previous mobile libraries, the smaller size has the advantage of greater accessibility in our smaller towns and communities.”
The Orion range with its lightweight but extremely robust body construction utilises modern material and construction methods and delivers a class leading fuel economy of 22mpg on average.
The mobile libraries visit areas throughout East Ayrshire including schools, rural communities and residential homes. Scheduled stops are rotated fortnightly.
Drivers of vehicles leased from Alphabet won't be left feeling flat after they visit the company’s new online Tyre Replacement Portal, delivered in collaboration with Kwik Fit.
In what is believed to be a first-to-market for the leasing and mobility industry, corporate drivers can arrange a quick, timed appointment to replace their tyres online or via an app. What’s more, the new approach guarantees drivers get the right tyre at the right time – so no more wasted time hanging around or needless journeys.
The new service offers corporate drivers the choice of having replacement tyres fitted at their home or office via a mobile service or at a fast-fit centre. The system not only ensures that drivers have the correct tyres available to them at the first visit, it also offers a choice of timed appointments at convenient times and locations for the driver. Crucially, it checks that the tyre the customer requires will be in stock when they get there to avoid delays or wasted trips.
Chevin Fleet Solutions, a leading global provider of fleet management software, will provide support to the Driving & Vehicle Standards Agency’s (DVSA) new ‘Earned Recognition’ pilot scheme. Chevin’s advanced reporting system FleetWave® can already be used to manage a number of functionalities including vehicle servicing, MoT renewals, driver and maintenance compliance and the management of online data, however, the software will be extended to automate reporting processes for the new DVSA Scheme.
Currently, when DVSA operatives stop a vehicle for checks they look at the vehicle’s safety, inspection, MoT and servicing records, as well as driver compliance, tachograph and defect reporting. While a highly important process, for many fleets this can mean significant downtime which affects operational efficiency.
The development of the ‘Earned Recognition’ pilot scheme means that businesses will suffer from less downtime and any associated costs, as the DVSA will be satisfied on receipt of automated records – all of which will be audited and sent from FleetWave – that any fleet in question is compliant and legal. This will allow the DVSA to concentrate on stopping vehicles and businesses with less complete reporting structures and processes.
The increasing number of vehicles on the road and regulations that need to be observed make life more and more difficult for the professional truck driver. To help them carry out their work safely and responsibly, the Freight Transport Association (FTA) has published a fully updated version of its Drivers’ Handbook, sponsored by Mercedes-Benz Trucks, containing key compliance information which must be provided to all drivers of large and heavy goods vehicles by their employer.
The Handbook has been written by FTA specialists who advise the association’s members on all aspects of commercial vehicle operation. It covers staying legal, driving best practice, looking after yourself, what to do when things go wrong and driving abroad. There is also a section of useful contacts and an HGV driver’s walk around check pull-out. It includes key updates on a range of issues from changes to speed limits to a major update on load security.
The study applies to rural, single lane carriageways with a 60mph speed limit. The roads are widely known to be the UK's most dangerous, with more deaths and serious injuries occurring on them than any other3. It shows that more experienced drivers are aware that it is not always safe to drive at or near the speed limit - something learned over a period of years. Below is a table detailing 10 of Britain's deadliest roads4 with exclusive data from Quartix revealing the average speed of the road or the 'free flow' rate (no congestion.)
Safety-conscious organisations from across the globe have made it through to the final stage of Brake’s Fleet Safety Awards 2017. The road safety charity received a record number of first-time entries this year and now more than 70 organisations are in with a chance of winning one of 15 prestigious awards.
The annual event, sponsored by ARI and ProVision, recognises the achievements of fleet operators and suppliers who are working hard to reduce road crashes involving at-work drivers. This year’s finalists include household names such as FedEX, Royal Mail Group, and British Gas, as well as smaller companies including TMJ Interiors, AbbVie and Reflex .
A full shortlist (details below) has now been released for each category, and winners will be announced at a gala dinner on Thursday 28 September 2017, at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole, Birmingham.
Tickets are on sale for just £150 per person and there are still some sponsorship opportunities available. Full details are available at www.fleetsafetyawards.com.
Corporate Vehicle Observatory 2017: More than half of fleets backing alternatives to petrol and diesel
More than half (56%) of UK fleets are already operating at least one alternative fuel to traditional petrol and diesel models or are planning to do so in the next three years – an increase of 6% since 2015.
Their choices include traditional hybrids (22% implemented / 27% planning to introduce within three years), plug-in hybrids (15% / 22%), electric vehicles (10% / 22%) and hydrogen fuel cells (2% / 18%).
The finding comes from the 2017 edition of Arval’s long-established Corporate Vehicle Observatory Barometer, research which covers 3,847 fleets. It has become widely recognised as one of the most authoritative pieces of research carried out in the fleet sector. Each year, a wide ranging series of questions provide a comprehensive examination of fleet trends in the UK and across Europe. For 2017, 3,847 separate and detailed interviews were carried out with managers who were responsible for fleets ranging in size from one to thousands of cars and vans.
More than a fifth (21 per cent) of UK companies whose employees drive for work purposes have no road safety policy in place, new research has revealed.
The study by TomTom Telematics among senior managers at 400 UK businesses1 found a further four per cent did not know whether their organisation had a defined policy.
At the same time, 60 per cent of respondents said staff members had been involved in road traffic accidents while on business duty, with 78 per cent claiming this resulted in lost productivity due to injury or time off work.
“Driving is one of the most high-risk activities the majority of workers will conduct as part of their job, but is too often seen as a poor relation when it comes to workplace health and safety,” said Beverley Wise, Director UK & Ireland at TomTom Telematics.
A new guide to help businesses electrify their commercial fleets, has been launched by the UK’s biggest electricity distributor at the LoCITY roadshow.
UK Power Networks launched the guide at the event in London yesterday (July 12) to give fleet operators useful tips and information about the options available to connect to the electricity network. It also advises fleet operators to contact experts at UK Power Networks when they start their journey to invest in electric vehicles, to receive guidance on the charging connections available.
New electric fleets may need charging points installed on site and there are various options such as faster charging, to be considered. The guide explains what the connection process is for getting a new or upgraded electricity supply to power a fleet of vehicles, and estimates how much it will cost.
Not even the thought of causing an accident appears to be enough for some drivers to permanently break the habit of illegally using a handheld phone at the wheel, research for the RAC’s Be Phone Smart campaign has found.*
While 60% of drivers said causing an accident would make them stop for good, the RAC is surprised the figure is not significantly higher given that the consequences can be so severe in terms of the impact on human life.
When given a range of scenarios** which might make a driver immediately stop using a mobile phone illegally, being personally responsible for causing an accident came top, followed by being caught or the threat of being caught by a police officer (55% and 54% respectively), knowing the victim of an accident where handheld phone use was a factor (54%), and causing a near-miss (53%).
The findings suggest a sizeable minority of drivers still do not see anything wrong with using a handheld phone illegally because they believe they are not likely to cause an accident or be stopped by the police. This is despite the clear risk of distraction while using a handheld phone – as shown by a number of high profile cases reported in the media – and the fact that police forces are now much more visible in their enforcement of the law on mobile phone use.
A new tipper body chassis cab variant for the multi-award winning Transporter has been created by conversion specialists Ingimex, in partnership with Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.
Available for both the T30 and T32 (3,000 kg and 3,200 kg GVW) versions of Transporter, the new tipper body, known as the ‘Tip-Up’ has been designed to meet the needs of customers, reinforcing Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ Working With You promise.
Although tippers are more commonly seen on Volkswagen’s larger van, the Crafter, Ingimex has created this one for the smaller chassis of the Transporter.
The compact Transporter provides a strong platform for an urban load carrying solution, with the new Tip-Up body offering payloads of around 800 kg (for T30) and 1,000 kg (for T32). Ingimex can also offer dropside bodies for the T6, referred to as its ‘Pick-Up’ range, which boast payloads of around 1,000 kg and 1,200 kg. The Transporter chassis is also available with a 4MOTION all-wheel drivetrain which can be supplied to the Pick-Up and Tip-Up body, making it a highly capable vehicle for use on- and off-road.
A £20 million government investment will help develop electric vehicles capable of returning electricity to the grid. The new investment will support vehicle-to-grid projects as part of the government’s Industrial Strategy and create a smarter energy system, while increasing the numbers of electric cars on UK roads.
The projects will investigate technology that allows plug-in electric vehicles to not only draw power from the grid when charging but return it to people’s homes or back to the grid.
There are already 100,000 electric cars and 11,000 chargepoints thanks to government support. As this number grows they become a resource for a smart electricity grid – bringing benefits for drivers and creating a more flexible and efficient energy system.
Jaama, the UK’s leading fleet and asset management software company, is helping truck fleets comply with tougher new roadside inspections by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) that include an emissions check.
Jaama’s industry-leading, multi award-winning Key2 software enables users to record and store all emissions-related data and then use the information to trigger any rectification requirements.
The Department for Transport has said that from August, roadside lorry inspections will include an emissions check with DVSA enforcement officers particularly looking for use of so-called ‘cheat devices’.
Although rogue hauliers are the DVSA’s target, Jaama says that it is critical that all HGV fleets have a robust audit trail of emission data recorded at every vehicle check, including service schedules and MoTs.
Transport Minister Jesse Norman has unveiled a £6.1 billion programme of road improvements as part of the government’s £23 billion upgrade to the road network in England.
Road users will benefit from shorter journey times, reduced congestion and increased capacity on roads, creating better local connections and improved passenger journeys as a result of these projects.
Over the coming six months, the government will take the next steps on 55 road improvements across the country, including opening eight schemes, consulting on 10 schemes and publishing final plans for another 29 schemes.
Volvo Cars, the premium car maker, has announced that every Volvo it launches from 2019 will have an electric motor, marking the historic end of cars that have only an internal combustion engine (ICE) and placing electrification at the core of its future business.
The announcement represents one of the most significant moves by any car maker to embrace electrification, and highlights how, over a century after the invention of the internal combustion engine, electrification is paving the way for a new chapter in automotive history.
The Freight Transport Association (FTA) – the country’s biggest transport trade body representing half the UK fleet - says the Government’s new transport investment plan is good news for the sector but more investment is needed to upgrade the road network.
The policy, announced yesterday (4 July 2017), dedicates funds raised from Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) to road improvements. The money can be used for major local authority roads as well as the Strategic Road Network but FTA says it cannot not be the sole solution to finance future road infrastructure projects.
FTA’s Head of National and Regional Policy Christopher Snelling said: “FTA believes that the government focus on investing in roads that will deliver improved performance, economic growth and reduce bottlenecks is correct. Enhanced road infrastructure can only make Britain’s logistics network and business dealings more efficient.
“Major local authority roads form a crucial part of the road network so our members welcome the news that the new fund can be allocated to support a wider range of projects. However, this extension of use will undoubtedly mean greater calls on one pot of money, so the Government will need to support infrastructure investment beyond just that provided by VED.”
The announcement focuses on road spending but FTA understands the approach affects all aspects of transport expenditure.
Mr Snelling commented: “To help deliver the industrial and trading success the UK wants for the future, the Government needs to deliver a flexible transport network as a whole, not just roads. This must mean continued investment in rail infrastructure and also the delivery of the expansion of Heathrow. It is welcome that these areas will also be addressed with this approach.”
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