Fleet News

RAC chief stresses importance of safety in maintaining a greener fleet

CREATING an environmentally-friendly fleet should go hand-in-hand with establishing a safe fleet, the event heard, according to Allen Bewley, head of risk management at the RAC.

About 65% of company cars will have an accident in the next year, while 95% of all road accidents have human error as the main factor and Bewley said: 'When it comes to road safety, it is linked to good stewardship of natural resources.'

The RAC, one of the fleets signing up to the Motorvate scheme, has carried out practical sessions with fleet drivers on checks they should carry out on their cars before driving. It discovered that 11% of fleet motors had mechanical defects, mainly low oil, which could cause engine failure, while 34% had defective tyres. Yet a 15% underinflated tyre cuts its life by 18% and increases fuel consumption by 1.5%.

Bewley said: 'There is clearly an environmental and safety factor in tyre care and there is a duty of car among fleet managers to ensure their employees are safe on the road.'

However, although protecting the environment was vital, Christopher White, principal at Vehicle Management Services, which provides consultancy to fleets ranging in size from 65 vehicles to more than 1,000, restated that fleets already had a sound environmental record.

He said: 'Fleets use the newest and cleanest vehicles. A driver in a 15-year old Volvo going into town once a year produces more pollution that a fleet driver in a new Volvo doing the same journey every day of the year.'

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