Early this summer we were audited by FORS (Fleet Operator recognition scheme) and achieved our FORS Bronze accreditation.
FORS is voluntary and open to any company operating a fleet including vans, lorries, mini-buses and coaches.
The FORS process of accreditation and continuous improvements make sound business sense, and give our clients peace of mind, that not only do we take compliance seriously, but that we have a strong commitment to high standards of road safety and accident reduction.
The process itself was rather a long one, taking around 3 months, and although many of the auditing criteria were met by procedures we already had in place, our documentation was standardised and improved upon during the process to fall in line with FORS standards.
The accreditation is split into 4 main sections Management, Vehicles , Drivers & Operations, with each section dealing in areas you would typically expect such as compliance, training and health & safety. However, FORS also extends its training to include key priority areas for us as a transport company: the environment and dealing with vulnerable road users (cyclists and pedestrians).
Being “green” has always been something we have considered when expanding our fleet (see last month’s EURO VI low emissions post) and the FORS accreditation means we are now looking even more in depth at our fuel consumption and environmentally-friendly credentials.
All of our drivers and technicians have, or will be, taking part in the Safer Urban Driving Course which will see them both in the classroom and out on the road on a bicycle.
All of our new vehicles will be delivered fully FORS compliant, with audible turning signals and on-board cameras, and all of our older vehicles are in the process of having these extra safety devices retro-fitted.
We are already beginning the process towards achieving our Silver accreditation to continue and improve on our current systems and practices.