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Today in Fleet: Monday 5 June

All the key news in fleet…

Driver using mobile phone

On 1 March the fixed penalty for using a handheld phone behind the wheel doubled to six penalty points and a £200 fine.

Tougher mobile phone penalties not deterring drivers

More than 200 drivers a day were caught using a mobile at the wheel after tougher penalties for the offence were introduced.

The figures, obtained by the Press Association under a Freedom of Information request to police forces and published by the BBC, show that in the four weeks from 1 March, when the increased penalties came into effect, almost 6,000 drivers were caught.

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said the high number of people breaking the law means the “key message still isn’t sinking in”.


The police campaign runs throughout June in England and Wales and is underpinned by locally driven operations.

Police target summer drink driving with locally-driven operations

Police forces in England and Wales have embarked on a month-long campaign to target drink driving.

The campaign, which will be underpinned by locally-driven operations, will see police forces run increased checks and patrols on the roads, including utilising local knowledge of hotspots for an intelligence-led approach. Forces will also work with the European Traffic Police Network (TISPOL) and national and local partners to enforce the law and educate about the risks of drink-driving.

Last year’s month-long summer crackdown saw police catch 151 motorists a day.

Fuel pump

The average price of petrol fell by nearly 2p a litre in May while diesel tumbled by 2.5p, according to the RAC.

Diesel price tumbles in May

The price of fuel fell in May as retailers passed on wholesale savings.

Data from the latest RAC Fuel Watch shows diesel dropped from 120.25p a litre to 117.75 while unleaded finished the month at 116.72p, down 1.83p from 118.55p at the beginning of May.

May’s price reduction was led by the supermarkets with a series of cuts. As a result, the average price of supermarket petrol fell 2.18p a litre to 113.48p in May and similarly with diesel which went down by 3.26p to 114.19p.

Oil stayed broadly the same in May, averaging $49.89 a barrel, but recording a low of $46.93 early on and a high of $53.54 on 24 May. Sterling was also stable at $1.29, although at one point it topped $1.30 – a figure not seen since September last year.

The RAC added that current indications are for prices to come down, especially for diesel which it says is still overpriced on many forecourts.

Mazda2 Tech Edition

The new Mazda2 Tech Edition is on sale from 1 July and limited to 750 cars.

Facelifted Mazda2 gains new Tech Edition

Mazda has updated its facelifted Mazda2 with the addition of a new Tech Edition trim.

On sale from 1 July and based on the 1.5 90PS SE-L Nav, the Mazda2 Tech Edition brings extra equipment including 16-inch alloy wheels, rear parking sensors, privacy glass, climate control, auto lights and rain-sensing wipers. It also offers a free-of-charge choice of Dynamic Blue Mica, Snowflake White Pearlescent or Jet Black Mica paint.

The model is priced at £14,995 – a price premium of £300 over the SE-L Nav – and is limited to just 750 cars.

Activa Contracts employees

(L-R) Activa Contracts’ Peter Renton, sales and marketing director Lisa Temperton, Ben Hunt and Matthew Higgins.

Activa Contracts announces area manager promotions

Two Activa Contracts employees have been promoted to area managers after successfully completing the company’s training and development programme.

Peter Renton is now area manager covering the East Midlands and East Anglia and Matthew Higgins is area manager for the North East of England based in Ilkley. An additional new graduate, 22-year-old Ben Hunt, joined the scheme in May after starting his automotive industry career in a franchised dealership.

Activa Contracts’ sales and marketing director Lisa Temperton, who manages the company’s 10-strong team of area managers covering England and Wales, said: “We have chosen to train our own area managers because we believe that ‘growing’ our own employees and training them in the Activa Contracts’ way of doing business and building customer relationships is critical.”


The mytaxi survey shows we waste an average of 29 hours each year following sat navs the wrong way or the long way.

Incorrect sat nav directions wasting drivers 29 hours a year

Drivers are losing over a whole day (29 hours) each year by travelling either the long way or the wrong way to their destination due to blindly following sat navs.

The study was carried out for mytaxi black cab app – newly launched following the merger of Hailo – and surveyed 2,000 British drivers. The research found one in 10 said their device doesn’t always plot the fastest or shortest route while more than half (52%) admitted they completely ‘switch off’ once the sat nav is leading the way and give little attention to road-signs and landmarks.

And a fifth (20%) confessed they have lost the ability to navigate back home from locations to which they initially drove using their sat nav.

For more of the latest industry news, click here.

Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. Natalie edits all the Fleet World websites and newsletters, and loves to hear about any latest industry news.