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What Can FORS Do For You?

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FORS, the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme, is the national accreditation standard for commercial vehicle and public service vehicle operations in the UK. It has established appropriate standards of operation for vans, lorries, mini-buses and coaches and is designed to provide sound vehicle management procedures which support safe, economic and efficient operations.

In 2006, Transport for London, recognising the value of improving vehicle operations in one of the world's leading cities, conceived the idea of an accreditation scheme that would acknowledge the safe operation and compliance of participating vehicle fleets. It would also certify their status as a suitable company, worth of public respect and fit to do business with.

The plan was developed in 2007, the standards and administration set, and the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS) was launched in 2008.

Although its conception and initial application were all in London, by 2015 the process had proved so effective that it was extended across the whole UK. Now, around two-thirds of accredited operators are based outside the M25 and FORS accredited fleets are located all over the UK and even in Europe.

FORS Business Services Manager, Paul Wilkes, recently spoke to Teletrac Navman about how his industry-led accreditation scheme was developed to improve fleet activity throughout the UK and how it provides a best practice benchmark for management, drivers, vehicles and operations to work at a standard that is above the legal minimum.

"The aim of FORS is to provide an over-arching scheme that encompasses all aspects of safety, fuel efficiency, economical operations and vehicle emissions. It uses a combination of fleet audits, personnel training and advisory support to help improve operators' performance in each of these areas."

The future of road safety and the wider impacts of freight and fleet operations are changing not just in London, but across the country, as more and more clients and specifiers choose to use their procurement processes to ensure the safest fleets are working on their contracts.

But what do fleet managers who work for companies outside of London need to be aware of?

"Companies should be striving for operational best practice and aiming to move beyond the legal minimum levels of compliance." Added Wilkes

"FORS provides tools to help managers keep a close eye on the impact vehicles are having on the environment in order to ensure their CO2 emissions are falling year on year.

"That's a really important factor when seeking FORS Gold accreditation where part of the accreditation criteria is to demonstrate year on year improvements in mpg and CO2 emissions."

A study conducted by the University of Westminster calculated that the reduced carbon dioxide emissions in London from silver accredited companies equated to around 18,500 tonnes a year.

But it's not just about the impact on the environment that Fleet managers should focus, they also need to be able show that they take the safety of other road users seriously.

Teletrac Navman customer Ashworth Limited won their bronze accreditation last year. According to Operations Manager, Simon Mallion, being able to demonstrate an ability to plan routes more effectively and direct vehicles away from congested areas pleased FORS.

"Due to the apparatus we have we're able to plan routes effectively, which means we're able to direct our vehicles away from congested areas and vulnerable road users.

"At Ashworth we monitor driver behaviour and ensure that staff are not driving our assets in an unsuitable manner, and therefore, limiting risk.

"The FORS auditor liked this and I believe it was a contributing factor to us gaining our accreditation.

"This year we're going for silver!"

With the fleet industry making strong contributions to the UK's economic success, FORS is becoming an intricate part of the future and shouldn't be ignored.

Visit http://www.fors-online.org.uk/cms/ to find out more about FORS.

Click here to read how Fleet Tracking from Teletrac Navman also help Dafcon win bronze accreditation from FORS.


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