As we move deeper into the winter months and arguably the busiest time of the year on roads throughout the United Kingdom, FORS have released some brand-new fuel management and winter driving guides for drivers.
Last year we experienced some of the worst winter conditions that we have seen for many years in the United Kingdom, ice and snow covered the roads for weeks throughout December as temperatures plummeted causing school closures, disruption on motorways and train cancellations. The conditions worsened to a point whereby people were told to stay at home and ‘do not travel’ warnings were issues. However, hundreds of motorists ended up being stranded on different parts of the motorway overnight as HGV’s couldn’t cope with the conditions.
These experiences last year will hopefully prepare everyone for potential snow and ice this year. The new FORS guides are a prime example of this, everyone is preparing in case situations similar to last year do occur again this year using the experience to their advantage.
So, what can you expect to find within the new FORS guides? Well there is a ‘winter guide for HGV drivers’ and a ‘FORS fuel management guide’, which can both be downloaded and printed for drivers to keep in their cab for reminders about season driving and fuel-efficient techniques.
The winter guide for HGV drivers covers a range of content and aims to promote well-known best practice techniques, as well as reminding them about the safety precautions they should follow to ensure they are prepared for any weather conditions, detailing specific issues related to driving in winter. The guide includes information about the importance of pro-active journey planning which will enable drivers to stay well informed about traffic on the roads. Vehicle preparation will always be an essential part of any HGV journey but drivers must also respect the weather conditions, this guide includes information about driving techniques for; snow and ice, wind, fog, heavy rain and flooding as well as ensuring your vehicle always has the right emergency equipment. Although these areas are part of a driver’s daily routine the importance of them is highlighted further during the festive season.
The FORS fuel management guide is all about encouraging operators to use the well-known ‘measure it, manage it, save it’ mantra to promote fuel efficiency. The overall focus of this guide is about helping FORS members to reach their intended targets when monitoring fuel consumption and vehicle emissions, as well as delving deeper into the policies and procedures that can help them to achieve their targets. In short, this guide is designed to help operators meet the requirements of the new FORS standard version 5 Bronze requirement. Providing a range of tips, information and advice about fuel management and avoiding unnecessary fuel costs. Other details within the guide include the importance of driver training, fuel storage and tyre management.
Most operators and drivers will already have a good knowledge and years of experience. However, it is always useful to remind ourselves of best practice routines as well as the considerations we need to have for external conditions such as the weather. There is a large amount of companies within the United Kingdom that are FORS accredited. Therefore, they will already be operating in conjunction with these standards and be well equipped to implement them. However, for those companies which aren’t it may be worth asking drivers to read through these guidelines before setting off on their next journey.
If you want to find out more information about the new FORS guides please visit this link.