Energy Saving Trust and mileage capture software provider Vertivia Mileage Management have joined forces to evaluate the effectiveness of eco-driving training.
Fleets who can provide historical fuel and mileage data as a benchmark are invited to apply to take part in the scheme, with benefits to the participating organisation including up to £6,000 worth of eco-driving training provided free of charge.
As part of the programme, the Energy Saving Trust will provide free Smarter Driving training to an organisation’s drivers, then analyse the fuel savings achieved over the next year. The study will include controls to minimise the impact of other factors on fuel consumption.
One organisation has already signed up to participate in the trials, which will take place until March 2014.
This is the first time that the long-term effectiveness of fuel efficient driver training will be measured on a large scale in the UK. Energy Saving Trust has delivered Smarter Driving training sessions to business car and van drivers for the last five years, with participants achieving an average 15% improvement in MPG immediately after training.
Around 500 drivers will participate in the trials in total, with a sub-sample receiving a second in-vehicle coaching session to assess whether refresher training helps maintain fuel savings.
Vertivia’s software is integral to the success of the first fleet to sign up to the trials, as it will provide accurate fuel and mileage data for each driver so individual fuel consumption can be calculated.
Tim Anderson, Senior Knowledge Manager at Energy Saving Trust, said: “I am pleased to announce this partnership with Vertivia. Research undertaken in Germany as part of the ECOWILL project found long-term savings of eco driving of around 3-4%, but this is the first time such a study has been carried out in the UK.
“We hope that understanding changes in driver behaviour over the long term can provide useful insight for Government to use when creating policy.”
Paul Chater, director at Vertivia, added: “I am excited to see what additional savings can be achieved by training drivers in fuel efficient techniques”.
Energy Saving Trust expects to publish the result of the trials in the summer of 2014. Organisations interested in applying should already be accurately measuring fuel consumed (e.g. through fuel cards) and be tracking mileage via a robust system.
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