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Driving an efficient fleet

As an organisation primarily engaged in transportation services, the main environmental impacts of our operations arise from vehicle emissions.

Recognising this at an early stage in the development of the business we decided to focus our efforts on sustainability in this area specifically:

1. Vehicle routing and utilisation

Essentially based around the question, ‘is the vehicle travelling the shortest distance necessary to provide the most number of services?’

To tackle this problem we developed Mediworks, our bespoke Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system. It enables real-time route planning, just-in-time service booking and in-cab communication with drivers, all of which allows us to travel shorter distances per service provision.

2. Driver behaviour

‘Are the vehicles being driven in the most efficient way possible?’

We installed a fleet tracking system across the entire fleet to monitor every aspect of driver behaviour from harsh braking, acceleration and cornering through real-time speed reports to idling time.

The accurate data produced allows us to track development improvement programmes for vehicle fuel economy and carbon emissions.

Within 2015, we have achieved:

  • An average 7 improvement in our MPG, with highs of 10
  • An average of 10 reduction in our CO2 emissions, with some levels reaching 13
  • A 2 average reduction in mileage per month

“We want our drivers to behave safely and operate efficiently, making sure all our vehicles on the road are reducing their impact on the environment, ensuring the smoothest journey for our patients and are improving the health of those in the local communities in which we work.” Lee Jackson, Group Head of Fleet Services.

Cleaner Fleets, Healthier Streets

We recently delved further into our driver’s behaviour, in a project working with Global Action Plan (GAP. We looked at the fleet we operate for our Barts Health NHS Trust contract and how we can reduce our contribution to local air pollution. To tackle this problem GAP created ‘Cleaner Fleets, Healthier Streets’ – an initiative which formed part of the Barts Health Cleaner Air for East London Project.

The Cleaner Air team from Global Action Plan were onsite for the two days, putting our drivers’ eco-driving skills to the test. Using an interactive eco-driving simulator, they taught the team how to adopt low pollution driving behaviours and clearly explained how small changes in our driving style could reduce air pollution and improve the health of those in East London. Each driver made a ‘pledge’ to drive down pollution by altering their driving behaviour.