Commercial vehicle accreditation schemes should be extended to cars, say fleets
As business procurement helps drive focus on at-work road safety for CV fleets, the spotlight should be extended to car and motorcycle fleets too.
That was the view of some fleet decision-makers at the recent Fleet Industry Advisory Group’s (FIAG) autumn workshop.
At the ‘Tomorrow’s Fleet’ event, attendees heard how accreditation to safety-focused schemes such as the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS), the Freight Transport Association’s Van Excellence initiative and CLOCS (Construction Logistics and Cyclist Safety) were becoming increasingly critical for companies to secure new contract wins.
During a workshop roundtable discussion on “accreditation to industry best practice programmes”, workshop delegates heard how Travis Perkins has been rewarded with revenue earnings of £500m off the back of vehicles being FORS gold accredited and CLOCS compliant.
During the debate, Ian Brooks, a former Metropolitan Police chief inspector and founder of health and safety specialist OSCAR Strategic Consulting, said: “Such standards should be extended to company cars, motorcycles and home delivery moped fleets because companies have a duty of care to other road users. Money invested in road safety will pay for itself.”
However, he added: “It is critical that accreditation scheme governance is not inappropriately continually added to so that it increases compliance costs because that would be to the detriment of society at large.”
As a result, he suggested: “It is vital that fleets are represented on scheme governance committees so compliance requirements are set that mirror real world operational attainment and there is no standards’ creep.”
Delegates also suggested that rather than a number of best practice schemes being in existence there should be a single, non-commercial government-backed initiative.
FIAG chairman and fleet industry stalwart Geoffrey Bray said: “There is no magic wand. No one knows everything and people do resist change. But there are always challenges ahead. With the number of advances in many areas of fleet operations accelerating, it means decision-makers cannot relax. There must be a continuous process of learning and understanding in every business so policies and procedures change accordingly.”