Industry News

  • SOE fellow John Parry dies Friday March 05, 2021

    John Parry (pictured), Society of Operations Engineers (SOE) fellow and former IRTE director, has died at the age of 76. Most recently chair of the IRTEC steering group and SOE board member, Parry was a major influence on the SOE’s industry standard irtec initiative by instigating its relaunch in 2011. It gave technicians recognition for their capabilities and changed the face of vehicle maintenance. Parry had also been an IRTE Services board member. In 2006, he won Motor Transport’s Service [...]

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  • SPONSORED: Durite Ltd joins Safe Fleet Wednesday March 03, 2021

    Durite, the UK’s leading brand in Vehicle Safety, Lighting and Auto Electrical parts for commercial vehicles and general automotive aftermarket, has been acquired by Safe Fleet, a global leader in fleet safety solutions headquartered in Belton, Missouri, USA. Safe Fleet owns a portfolio of market-leading brands that provide safety solutions to fleet vehicle manufacturers and operators around the world. Their reputable smart solutions form an integrated safety platform for fleets of every type: Public Service Vehicles, Emergency services, Truck & [...]

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  • Transport industry divided over Spring Budget Wednesday March 03, 2021

    The transport industry has given a mixed reaction to today's (3 March) Spring Budget. Logistics UK welcomed chancellor Rishi Sunak's moves to support the recovery of the economy, including a freeze in fuel duty and extension to the furlough scheme, but said the industry needed to see greater investment in training programmes to help fill growing job vacancies. Meanwhile, e-commerce specialist Parcelhero warned the Budget would "fail to rescue retail or bail out business". Alex Veitch, general manager of public [...]

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  • Brexit ‘abyss’ looms for GB-Northern Ireland trade Wednesday March 03, 2021

    While prime minister Boris Johnson dismisses custom delays between Britain and Ireland as “teething problems”, hauliers are telling a very different story. At a recent session of the Northern Ireland Infrastructure Committee, operators spelt out the reality of the new trading rules in stark detail. Ballymena haulier McBurney Transport employs 800 staff and operates 350 trucks and 1,100 trailers. The company ships approximately 114,000 trailers across the Irish Sea every year. Director Paul Jackson told the committee his firm had [...]

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  • Durite Ltd joins Safe Fleet Wednesday March 03, 2021

    Durite, the UK’s leading brand in Vehicle Safety, Lighting and Auto Electrical parts for commercial vehicles and general automotive aftermarket, has been acquired by Safe Fleet, a global leader in fleet safety solutions headquartered in Belton, Missouri, USA. Safe Fleet owns a portfolio of market-leading brands that provide safety solutions to fleet vehicle manufacturers and operators around the world. Their reputable smart solutions form an integrated safety platform for fleets of every type: Public Service Vehicles, Emergency services, Truck & [...]

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  • Scania set to unveil new £10m regional HQ near Glasgow Friday February 26, 2021

    Scania will open a new £10m regional headquarters close to Glasgow later this year. The 43,000sq ft, 7.8-acre plot at Eurocentral will replace its existing operation in Bellshill and will include 12 workshop bays, an ATF lane, parts department, office accommodation and secure parking for 50 trucks and trailers. “Scotland has been a key market for Scania since we began importing trucks into the UK back in the mid-1960s,” said Martin Hay, Scania (Great Britain) MD. “Our continued sales growth [...]

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  • Scania names new chief executive and president Friday February 26, 2021

    Scania has appointed a new chief executive and president, Christian Levin, from 1 May. Levin is currently on the executive board of TRATON SE and chief operating officer of TRATON Group and has more than 20 years’ experience working at Scania. As well as becoming chief executive, he will also remain a member of the executive board. Levin succeeds Henrik Henriksson, who leaves after 23 years at Scania and more than five as its chief executive, to join H2 Green [...]

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  • New Crewe logistics park will create 300 jobs Thursday February 25, 2021

    One of the biggest speculatively developed sites in Crewe is about to begin construction and is expected to provide around 300 jobs on completion. Developer Panattoni said ‘Crewe 305’ on the Crewe Commercial park would include 27 dock doors, five level access doors and a yard with parking for 49 HGVs. The 305,000sq ft unit also includes 13,864sq ft of office space and parking for 213 cars. Panattoni’s first development on the park was eventually let to NWF Group Plc [...]

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  • Fleet Operations recruits business development manager Thursday February 25, 2021

    Fleet Operations, a provider of outsourced fleet management services, has appointed a new business development manager to support its growth plans. Mark Gallagher brings with him 20 years in the fleet industry and has previously spearheaded solutions to help businesses transition to electrification. Fleet Operations said Gallagher’s new role will involve accelerating the growth of its client base. Gallagher said: “As the fleet industry readies itself for recovery in the wake of the pandemic, companies will be looking at how [...]

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  • Webfleet Solutions enhances PRO Driver Terminal with new features Friday February 19, 2021

    Webfleet Solutions has upgraded its PRO Driver Terminal, the PRO 8475, which it said would give fleet operators improved workflow efficiency, enhance customer service and boost productivity. The upgrade includes LTE connectivity and Google services, as well as combining features such as order management and two-way communication between drivers and fleet managers. Webfleet said the PRO 8475 is designed for both in-vehicle and outdoor usage and is drop-proof, break-resistant, shock-proof, UV-resistant, vibration-proof, dust and water protected. Paul Verheijen, Webfleet Solutions [...]

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  • FORS cuts subscription fee to help hauliers Thursday February 18, 2021

    FORS is reducing its annual subscription fee for members from next month in a move aimed at helping hauliers during the pandemic. The reduction, for new and existing members, is based on fleet size and means an operator with between six and 10 HGVs will see the fee cut by 4.8%; an operator running 11 to 25 HGVs will see it cut by 5.6% and if the fleet includes between 51 and 100 lorries then the cost will be reduced [...]

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  • DAF Trucks grows market share as demand rises Tuesday February 16, 2021

    DAF Trucks has delivered the second largest market share its history. Last year saw it register 37,580 trucks in a total European heavy-duty market of 230,400 vehicles, resulting in a share of 16.3% (2019: 16.2%). In the same period, DAF Trucks’ market share of the European medium-duty truck market, which totalled 41,400 units, was 9.5% (2019: 9.7%). Last year also saw DAF Trucks continue its heavy-duty market leadership in the Netherlands (31.8%), the UK (31.6%), Poland (23.7%), Hungary (27.9%) and [...]

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  • Scania (Great Britain) MD Martin Hay steps down Friday February 12, 2021

    Scania (Great Britain) MD Martin Hay has decided to take early retirement. The truck manufacturer said it was now recruiting for a successor to the post and an announcement would follow in due course. Hay has worked for Scania for more than 30 years, with roles in the dealer network, at importer level and at Scania's headquarters operation in Sweden. His dealer career included appointments as MD for the former Scantruck operation and as regional executive director for Scania South [...]

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  • Hauliers revert to TIR system to sidestep Brexit red tape Thursday February 11, 2021

    It’s ‘back to the future’ for international hauliers needing smooth transport across borders after Brexit, with the International Road Transport Union (IRU) claiming firms are returning to the TIR system. The IRU said paperwork, delays and a shortage of customs brokers and transit guarantees meant transport operators were turning to the TIR carnet as “a simple, cost-effective and easily accessible” method to manage new customs border arrangements. The union highlighted the case of Polish haulier Sachs Trans, whose driver (pictured) [...]

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  • Save lives by carrying new low-cost, in-cab defibrillators Monday February 08, 2021

    Road safety organisation Driver First Assist is planning to roll out low-cost defibrillators to the transport industry and beyond, reports Jack Carfrae. Everyone has seen defibrillators in public. Airports, shopping centres, train stations, outside shops; they sit innocuously on the wall, ignored by all and sundry until they suddenly become vital. The British Heart Foundation (BHF) says 30,000 people suffer out-of-hospital cardiac arrests every year in the UK and, according to the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), the survival [...]

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  • Kickstart given to 30 youngsters’ logistics careers Monday February 01, 2021

    Over 30 unemployed young people are set to join the Port of London Authority (PLA) in Gravesend and Forth Ports, including Tilbury Port, as part of the government’s £2.4bn Kickstart work programme. Successful applicants will join a paid six-month traineeship. Opportunities range from experience in administration through to operations with the aim of giving 16 to 24-year-olds a chance to gain important experience in a real working environment. Glenn Witham, HR director at the PLA, said: “With the pandemic seriously [...]

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  • Go west, Brittany Ferries tells hauliers Friday January 29, 2021

    Brittany Ferries has urged firms to send unaccompanied trailers via ports on the western channel designed to receive driverless loads, as demand rises. The ferry company said the need for drivers to provide negative Covid tests had driven the trend for unaccompanied loads travelling from the continent to UK ports such as Portsmouth and Poole. Ferry firms have reported reduced freight volumes in January as a consequence of Brexit concerns and stockpiling. However, Brittany Ferries said the proportion of unaccompanied [...]

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  • Customs delays continue for deliveries into EU Monday January 18, 2021

    Companies relying on postal carriers for deliveries into the EU have been warned delays are being caused by couriers struggling with customs and duty charges. Neil Kuschel, chief executive at cross border e-commerce technology provider Global-e, said not only are customers in Europe facing new charges now that the UK has left the EU, but some carriers are also struggling to manage duty clearance fees and paperwork. He said: “If you are a brand or retailer who has been wholly [...]

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  • Date set for inquest into smart motorway deaths Friday January 15, 2021

    An inquest into the deaths of two men who died after being struck by an HGV on a stretch of smart motorway on the M1 starts on Monday (18 January). Jason Mercer and Alexandru Murgeanu had pulled over to exchange details after being involved in a minor road traffic collision when a truck driven by Prezemyslaw Szuba struck them both, in June 2019. Read more New campaign to win over smart motorway sceptics Death crash HGV driver jailed but campaign [...]

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  • Truck cartel compensation hearing to start in April Thursday January 14, 2021

    A hearing to decide whether or not a claim by hauliers for compensation over price-fixing by a cartel of truck makers can take place will start in April. The Competition Appeal Tribunal will hear the RHA’s application for a collective proceedings order between 19 and 26 April, with any subsequent trial possibly taking place in 2022 at the earliest. Steven Meyerhoff, head of commercial litigation at Backhouse Jones, said there were currently around 13,100 operators in the RHA’s application, representing [...]

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  • Covid tests to continue for cross-Channel truckers Friday January 08, 2021

    HGV drivers crossing the Channel must continue to provide proof of an authorised negative coronavirus test within 72 hours of travelling to the border, according to the government. It has urged hauliers to seek tests at one of 34 information and advice sites across the country before reaching Kent, in order to help smooth traffic management. The testing arrangements will continue following a decision by the French government on 7 January to keep the current system in place. It means [...]

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  • Microlise begins hunt for Britain’s best truck driver Wednesday January 06, 2021

    Microlise has launched its 2021 Driver of the Year awards. The initiative shortlists drivers by analysing a year’s worth of Microlise telematics performance data to identify the most talented short-, medium- and long-distance candidates. The process involves the Microlise data science team, who will initially analyse in excess of 250,000 drivers’ telematics records from 2020. Data will be anonymised with company, contract and driver personal identification information removed. Initially developed in conjunction with the University of Nottingham’s Advanced Data Analytics [...]

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  • Microlise begins hunt for Britain’s best trucker Wednesday January 06, 2021

    Microlise has launched its 2021 Driver of the Year award. The initiative shortlists drivers by analysing a year’s worth of Microlise telematics performance data to identify the most talented short-, medium- and long-distance candidates. The process involves the Microlise data science team, who will initially analyse in excess of 250,000 anonymous drivers’ telematics records from 2020. Data will be anonymised with company, contract and driver personal identification information removed. Initially developed in conjunction with The University of Nottingham’s Advanced Data [...]

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  • Work starts on major new multimodal Northampton hub Monday January 04, 2021

    Infrastructure works have started this week on the Segro Logistics Park Northampton Gateway (SLPNG) - a 450-acre multimodal logistics hub located next to junction 15 of the M1. The project has been designated as a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP) which will provide five million sq ft of industrial facilities and a Strategic Rail Freight Interchange (SRFI) once it is completed. Winvic Construction has begun the infrastructure works this week, including the 35-acre SRFI which will handle up to 16 [...]

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  • Chaos at Dover as French block UK freight Monday December 21, 2020

    French transport minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari has told Sky News a plan is being worked on to resume the movement of unaccompanied freight from the UK to France with cross-EU talks "to begin within hours". The move to "establish a solid health protocol" comes after the UK governement and industry groups warned of "serious disruption" following France's decison to refuse arrivals of UK passengers for 48 hours amid concerns over a new strain of the cororavirus. Freight trucks have been banned [...]

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  • New campaign to win over smart motorway sceptics Thursday December 17, 2020

    A major national campaign to educate the public about how smart motorways work and what to do in the event of a breakdown will launch next month. The move follows widespread criticism that the traffic management technique – which includes the controversial practice of converting the hard shoulder into a live lane – is not fully understood by motorists. In October, HGV driver Prezemyslaw Szuba was jailed for 10 months after he collided with two men on the M1 who [...]

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  • Defra mulls clampdown on live animal transport Friday December 11, 2020

    Defra has launched a consultation on live exports, proposing to ban livestock movements if the temperature falls outside of the range 5–30 degrees, unless vehicles have a thermo-regulation system. The proposals also include stricter conditions for poultry, with a temperature range of between 5 and 25 degrees. In its plans, the government department said there were growing concerns about the requirements for the transport of animals, which did not reflect latest scientific evidence on welfare. It said that now the [...]

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  • Freight logistics expert launches IT consultancy Thursday December 10, 2020

    A new specialist consultancy for freight logistics has been launched to help businesses capitalise on IT opportunities. Innovate Freight will help hauliers understand the advantages and disadvantages of in-house and external solutions and spread IT best practice across the sector. The brainchild of Richard Litchfield, who has more than 20 years of experience of implementing freight management systems, Innovate Freight is launching with three product offerings: IF Health Check, IF Consult and IF Consult Plus, which provide a range of [...]

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  • Sponsored: Bandvulc delivers sterling service for MC Rental Monday November 30, 2020

      Bandvulc transforms tyre service standards for major commercial vehicle rental firm Fleet of more than 2,500 vehicles wholly monitored and managed by Conti360 Fleet Solutions through national service network Communication key to success for MC Rental, via key account contact, online platform and holistic management of processes Combination of Bandvulc, Continental and Uniroyal tyres fitted to a wide-ranging mix of vehicles For commercial vehicle rental firm, MC Rental, Bandvulc has proven to be the perfect fit. Their decision to [...]

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  • Commercial vehicle production down 25.6% in October Friday November 27, 2020

    The large-scale transition to electric commercial vehicles and economic recovery can only be achieved if a “favourable” Brexit deal is thrashed out, according to the SMMT. Its comments followed the release of dire production figures for October, which showed CV manufacturing fell by 25.6%, with just 6,761 units leaving factory gates. The SMMT said overseas and domestic market production figures are in double-digit decline as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing threat of a no-deal Brexit hitting [...]

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  • MPs demand year’s suspension of CAZ rollout Thursday November 26, 2020

    A group of MPs have urged the government to pause the rollout of Clean Air Zones (CAZ) for at least a year and review the evidence of their effectiveness in light of changing travelling patterns. The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on road freight and logistics said no one was disputing the need to tackle air pollution, but that the situation in this country had changed since the debate over charging zones first began a few years ago. The APPG [...]

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  • Scottish cartel ruling to trigger UK action? Monday November 23, 2020

    Haulage operators in Scotland now have until next summer to lodge a claim for damages in relation to a cartel among truck manufacturers, following a decision in the country’s Supreme Court. The Court of Session rejected an argument by Europe’s largest truck manufacturers that it was too late for companies to pursue compensation, after the European Commission found they had fixed the prices of trucks over a 14-year period between 1997 and 2011. The ruling is not binding in England, [...]

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  • Penso riding high on wave of home delivery growth Thursday November 19, 2020

    Carbon-fibre body-builder Penso is on track to double capacity at its Coventry production line as demand for its lightweight Blue Ocean home delivery pods ramps up. Following a bumper order from supermarket Asda earlier this year, Penso has seen a surge of enquiries from logistics companies looking to maximise payload as they seek to handle record consumer demand for home deliveries. Manufactured from a blend of carbon fibre and recycled plastic, the triple-compartment ultra-lightweight pods are said to be able [...]

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  • Government launches Brexit handbook for hauliers Wednesday November 18, 2020

    The RHA has welcomed the publication of a handbook for hauliers to help prepare them for the end of the transition period in just 31 days’ time. The government has faced criticism from the haulage industry for a lack of clarity and information about the systems required to ensure trade flows smoothly in January when the UK leaves the European Union. Information and advice sites have now been set up across the country, which provide assistance on how to apply [...]

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  • DfT mulls trial of 25.25m long, 60-tonne road train Tuesday November 17, 2020

    The government is considering a trial of 25-metre double artics on Britain’s roads as part of a wider multi-modal transport strategy. The move follows the recent launch of a DfT consultation into the use of longer semi-trailers (LSTs) on the UK’s roads, following a successful seven-year trial which showed LSTs delivered significant cuts to mileage and CO2 emissions. Denby Transport chairman Dick Denby recently met with DfT minister Baroness Vere to argue the merits of the 25.25m 60te B Double [...]

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  • CV Show moved to June 2021 due to pandemic Monday November 16, 2020

    The Commercial Vehicle Show 2021 is to be rescheduled due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the show’s organisers have announced this week. The show will still take place at the NEC in Birmingham but will move from the original date of Tuesday 13 April to Thursday 15 April 2021 to the new date of Tuesday 8 June to Thursday 10 June 2021. A spokesperson for the show said the decision was led by “consideration to the ongoing coronavirus situation and [...]

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  • Highways England gets behind CALM drivers campaign Sunday November 15, 2020

    Highways England is backing the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) to help raise awareness of mental health issues, focusing on commercial vehicle drivers. It has produced a range of windscreen stickers and leaflets encouraging anyone suffering in silence to talk to someone and giving details of where to go for help. Mark Cartwright, head of commercial vehicle incident prevention at Highways England, said commercial vehicle drivers were especially vulnerable as they spent long periods alone behind the wheel. "This has [...]

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  • Pallet networks report steady Q3 volumes Friday November 13, 2020

    Volumes in UK pallet networks held up well in the third quarter, falling just 0.3% year on year, despite the impact of the viral pandemic. Latest figures from the Association of Pallet Networks (APN) also showed that economy volumes were up 18% to the end of September and total volumes during the month increased by 16%. Quarter pallets increased by 9.6% compared to Q3 2019 and APN chairman Paul Sanders said this was perhaps symptomatic of the increase in home [...]

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  • Platooning trials will be completed, project chiefs insist Thursday October 22, 2020

    The lead organisation overseeing the UK platooning trials has told motortransport.co.uk that the project is “very much still alive”, despite progress stalling due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) said the government remained committed to the trials and that desk-based research has continued during the pandemic. We reported last week that the consortium behind the project had completed off-road trials and extensive safety testing and driver training, but that on-road trials scheduled for 2020 had been abandoned. [...]

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  • New telematics tool shows operators where to electrify fleets Wednesday October 21, 2020

    Telematics firm Teletrac Navman has launched a web-based automated AI tool, aimed at supporting fleet operators with the move to electric vehicles. The EV Readiness Tool integrates with the company's fleet management and tracking platforms and analyses telematics data to provide operators with detailed recommendations of where electric vehicles could be adopted into their operation. The smart algorithms assess the feasibility of switching and calculate the total cost of ownership of an EV switch versus the existing fleet (purchase price, [...]

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  • Pandemic halts trials of autonomous HGV platoons Friday October 16, 2020

    Trials on British roads involving platoons of autonomous HGVs have been put on hold due to the ongoing pandemic. The consortium behind the investigations into the use of the technology said off-road trials and “extensive safety testing and driver training” had been completed, but Covid-19 had affected the programme and on-road trials scheduled for this year had been abandoned for the time being. HelmUK added: “An evaluation will be made at a future agreed date to understand the changes in [...]

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  • Dawsongroup Truck and Trailer launches new website Tuesday October 13, 2020

    Dawsongroup Truck and Trailer has launched a new, mobile-friendly website. The company, which is headquartered in Milton Keynes, said the new site has a fresh, modern look and provides users with access to more dynamic and up-to-date information, including company news, testimonials, videos, case studies and bespoke build and supply projects. Dawson Group Truck and Trailer, which is an independent supplier of tractor units, rigids, trailers and specialist heavy commercial vehicles, has over 11,000 assets and provides award-winning contract hire, [...]

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  • Leeds to ditch CAZ plans Tuesday October 13, 2020

    Leeds Clean Air Zone is no longer required, Leeds City Council announced today (13 October). The decision follows a joint government and city council review which found that air quality improvements, driven by businesses switching to cleaner vehicles faster than expected, had made the scheme redundant. Instead the council will look at bringing in new air quality targets that go further than the national standards. The review found that more than 90% of buses and 80% of HGVs driven in [...]

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  • Logistics UK calls for overhaul of roads policing Monday October 12, 2020

    The policing of the UK’s roads should be run on a nationwide basis to ensure consistency across the whole network, according to Logistics UK. The call comes in its response to a joint review of roads policing by the Home Office and DfT. Logistics UK head of road freight regulation policy James Firth said: “Logistics UK is calling for the government to establish common, unified road safety objectives which all enforcement bodies are committed to achieving and that are governed [...]

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  • CM Show takes a look forward to future technology Friday October 09, 2020

    The first virtual Commercial Motor Show conference hosted a discussion of a broad base of presentations on the common theme of future technology, and in particular, how technology in different fields is helping to increase the operational efficiency of truck fleets. Bridgestone technical manager – north region, Gary Powell opened by highlighting the ways in which tyre choice can help both fleet and global issues by using the labelling system which rates truck tyres in respect of fuel economy, wet [...]

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  • SP Training launches mental health courses Friday October 09, 2020

    SP Training has launched two mental health training courses aimed at both management and drivers, to coincide with World Mental Health Day. The Mental Health & Wellbeing in Logistics course is the first to be registered as a Driver CPC module and receive JAUPT accreditation and can be delivered remotely or in the classroom. The course is designed to help drivers understand mental health conditions, cope with stress and teaches them how to improve their health and wellbeing. A one-day [...]

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  • Industry debates post-Covid-19 future Friday October 02, 2020

    How will transport and logistics look after Covid-19 has eventually receded? There is no shortage of companies who would like the answer to that question and visitors to the Commercial Motor Show conference gained some valuable insight in a special panel discussion. Speakers included former John Lewis partnership COO Dino Rocos, Clipper Logistics chief executive Tony Mannix, head of sales – transport at Wincanton Steven Cleary, and British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA) director of corporate affairs Toby Poston. [...]

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  • Goods vehicle road deaths up 20% last year Friday October 02, 2020

    There was a 20% increase in the number of goods vehicle occupant fatalities in Great Britain last year, according to official figures. In 2019, 66 people died in HGV cabs following road traffic accidents, up from 55 the year before. Of this number, the Department for Transport (DfT), said 55 were drivers and 11 were passengers of heavy and light goods vehicles. Overall goods vehicle casualties have shown a decreasing trend, falling by 2% from 5,071 in 2018 to 4,985 [...]

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  • Hapless Seaborne Freight goes under owing £2m Wednesday September 30, 2020

    Seaborne Freight has appointed a voluntary liquidator and will go out of business owing almost £2m. The company has lodged a winding up resolution with Companies House and appointed voluntary liquidator Quantuma. The freight ferry company was awarded a £13.8m government contract in December 2018 to provide extra freight capacity to UK ports in the event of a no-deal Brexit back in March 2019 – despite having no ferries or any sector experience. The award was part of a wider [...]

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  • CM Show put skills shortage in the spotlight Thursday October 01, 2020

    Skills shortages is a constant theme for the logistics sector that was tackled on day two of the virtual Commercial Motor Show. While Covid-19 saw volumes in many parts of the industry fall off a cliff, with the RHA finding that at the depths of the lockdown half of all HGVs were laid up, the combination of suspension in LGV driving tests and the end of the Brexit transition period at the end of 2020 could see the current 50,000 [...]

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  • PML recruits youngest-ever director Thursday October 01, 2020

    Logistics specialist PML has appointed its youngest director in the company’s 17-year history with the promotion of Ryan Parr to operations director. The 25-year-old joined the business at 18 and for the last seven years he has worked across various parts of the company to develop an understanding of the global logistics sector. In his new position, Parr will have direct responsibility for the day-to-day running of PML’s operations, exports, warehouse, transport and sea freight. Read more PML rides Covid-19 [...]

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  • Energy chiefs back hydrogen but call for better infrastructure Thursday October 01, 2020

    The road to zero carbon emissions will need big changes to the refuelling and charging infrastructure, according to industry specialists attending last week’s CM Show who agreed that hydrogen is now a viable alternative to electric. A specialist conference panel comprised of Mark Griffin, market development manager – Clean Fuels, BOC Gases; Danny Jones, director, Off Grid Energy; David Horsfall, director of property, Tylesey Energy Park and Dr Duncan Yellen, MD, ITM Motive. Yellen claimed there was still considerable “misunderstanding” over hydrogen [...]

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  • Baroness Vere opens CM Show and hails “army of heroes” Wednesday September 30, 2020

    The Commercial Motor Show has been formally opened by Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Department for Transport, Baroness Vere of Norbiton (pictured), and chief executive of the RHA, Richard Burnett, introduced by Commercial Motor editor Will Shiers. Acknowledging the role played by the industry in recent times, the Baroness said in her opening speech: “You’ve been the lifeblood of our economy during the Covid crisis. You’ve kept supermarket shelves fully stocked, and food on our plates. You’ve kept factories [...]

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  • SMMT launches £100,000 apprenticeship rescue bid Monday September 28, 2020

    The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has launched a £100,000 fund to help Covid-hit automotive businesses save apprenticeship jobs as the government’s furlough scheme comes to an end. The newly launched SMMT Apprentice Support Programme, funded by the SMMT Charitable Trust Fund, is accepting applications from small and medium automotive firms from across the entire supply chain. Successful applicants to the scheme will have apprentice salaries covered for those apprentices at risk of redundancy due to Covid-19 pressures. [...]

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  • Cartwright Conversions sold to Trek Group Friday September 25, 2020

    Cartwright Conversions, a subsidiary of the Cartwright Group in administration, has been sold to Sheffield-based Trek Group in a £4.8m deal. The sale of the Belton, North Lincolnshire-based business, which is a specialist convertor for blue light emergency vehicles, saves 66 jobs. Trek Group said the new company will retain the Cartwright name, due to its reputation in the industry, and will be called Cartwright Vehicle Conversions. It will be led by Cartwright Conversions’ MD Steve Shaw (pictured). Tom Janion, [...]

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  • HGV drivers warned not to use A5 during closure Friday September 18, 2020

    Highways England (HE) has warned HGV drivers not to ignore road closures on the A5 in Warwickshire after receiving reports of vehicles flouting the law. Essential maintenance between Redgate and Higham has meant the A5 is closed in the evenings, but HE bosses said lorries were attempting to access the route from the nearby A444. “We are receiving reports from other road users that heavy goods vehicles and other vehicles are attempting to access the A5 at the A444 Longshoot [...]

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  • Police save HGV driver’s life after motorway crash Thursday September 17, 2020

    Two hero police officers helped save the life of an HGV driver, who suffered a heart attack at the wheel on the motorway and collided with the central reservation. Shane Sharkey entered cardiac arrest on the M60 and lost control of his lorry, which then hit the concrete central reservation causing extensive damage to his vehicle and resulted in the contents being emptied across both carriageways. PC Chris Pixton and PC Patrick Geoghegan-Shaw of Greater Manchester Police (GMP) intervened and [...]

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  • Police operation at Dover port causes “mayhem” Wednesday September 16, 2020

    Kent police said border checks were returning to normal after an operation at Dover port prompted the implementation of Operation Stack and six-hour queues. Kent police did not disclose the reason behind the sudden checks of all vehicles and passengers exiting the country on 15 and 16 September, but in a statement it said the operation had now been “stood down”. It added: “Border control checks are now returning to normality.” Earlier, the port of Dover said it was part [...]

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  • Police stop 32 trucks on A1 using unmarked vehicle Tuesday September 15, 2020

    A police operation which used an unmarked lorry to target large commercial vehicles in the Lincolnshire area of the A1 has resulted in 32 trucks being stopped over a three-day period. A total of 49 vehicles were stopped during Operation Tramline. These included 32 lorries, 11 LGVs and six private vehicles. The 46 offences identified were: Mobile phone – 3 Seatbelt - 37 Construction and use offences – 2 Driving without due care – 2 No insurance – 1 Drivers’ [...]

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  • Covid risk may force ADR driver training online Friday September 11, 2020

    Moves towards delivering dangerous goods driver training remotely are underway following concerns that classroom training is putting candidates and training providers at risk of contracting Covid-19. The Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) told motortransport.co.uk that although ADR drivers must currently attend training centres to take a test, a transition towards online examinations was now being looked at. One training provider said he couldn’t understand why he had to put trainers and candidates at risk: “The authorities are happy to allow Driver [...]

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  • Sheffield scraps Clean Air Zone plan Friday September 11, 2020

    Sheffield has dropped “economically damaging plans” to introduce a Clean Air Zone (CAZ) after Covid-19 showed there were alternative ways of improving air quality without charging businesses. Following decisions by Bristol and Leeds to change their approach to driving down emissions, Sheffield City Council said the situation was now “dramatically different” compared to when it first developed its proposals. In a statement, the council said: “The situation has changed significantly and unexpectedly due to the global Covid-19 pandemic and we [...]

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  • Hauliers give mixed verdict on UK road network Monday September 07, 2020

    Almost a third of haulage companies are unhappy with the country’s motorways and A-roads, according to a report. The survey by Transport Focus measured the satisfaction of HGV managers from 526 logistics and coach businesses. It found two fifths of businesses that run lorries and coaches on England’s motorways and major A-roads are satisfied with how those roads meet their business needs. But three in ten companies overall were dissatisfied with road performance. The rating was based on five key [...]

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  • CEVA Logistics launches global roll out of CargoWise platform Monday September 07, 2020

    CEVA Logistics is aiming to standardise and simplify its 4PL global operations with the roll out of logistics platform CargoWise. The CargoWise platform allows logistics operators to execute complex transactions in areas such as freight forwarding, customs clearance, warehousing, shipping, tracking, land transport, e-commerce, and cross-border compliance, enabling them to manage their operations on one database across multiple users, functions, countries, languages and currencies. CEVA will roll out the platform over the next five years, replacing multiple legacy systems. The [...]

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  • CM Show 2020: Develop your professional road skills online Friday September 04, 2020

    Road Skills Online will be demonstrating our Professional Development Plan Online training from their booth at the upcoming Commercial Motor Show. Road Skills Online are excited to share how the bite sized toolbox talks will help you and your drivers to remain safe, legal and compliant.  The professional development plan is complementary to your other periodic training as it embraces all drivers in a regular, consistent training culture, thus overcoming the ‘forgetting curve’ which follows conventional training. The professional development plan [...]

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  • CM Show 2020: Join Mercedes-Benz in the virtual world Thursday September 03, 2020

    Mercedes-Benz Trucks UK is showcasing its market-leading products and services at the Commercial Motor Show 2020. The jewel in the crown for Mercedes-Benz Trucks is the new Actros. Show attendees can find out why the truck was crowned International Truck of the Year 2020, and learn about its pioneering innovations, including MirrorCam, Multimedia Cockpit, Enhanced Predictive Powertrain Control, Active Brake Assist 5 and Active Drive Assist. These features increase driver comfort, business efficiency and safety, all of which will be [...]

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  • Concerns raised over plan to ban pavement parking Thursday September 03, 2020

    Government plans to ban parking on pavements across England must not be at the expense of freight deliveries, according to Logistics UK. A consultation into proposals that could give councils greater powers to ban parking on pavements and fine drivers was launched this week after a review found the practice disproportionately affected the visually impaired and wheelchair and mobility scooter users. Three options have been put forward: making it easier for councils to prohibit parking; giving councils the power to [...]

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  • FORS fleets reveal biggest fears Thursday September 03, 2020

    Software and risk management company FleetCheck has designed a series of factsheets for FORS companies after conducting research among members that revealed common areas of concern. The six information sheets, entitled Driver Engagement; Managing Compliance; Automated Fuel Reporting; Common Challenges; FORS Tools and Five Common Mistakes, are designed to give fleet managers the information they need to reach the and maintain their FORS standards. Peter Golding, FleetCheck MD said: “Through our existing collaborations with FORS we work with hundreds of [...]

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  • Pandemic speeds digitalisation of transport planning Thursday September 03, 2020

    Cloud-based transport software firm Simacan has joined forces with eCMR platform TransFollow to offer combined information about shipments alongside updates about status and arrival times. The partnership will involve Simacan integrating the TransFollow eCMR into its software and Simacan’s smart estimated times of arrival will become visible on TransFollow’s platform. The move allows transport planners to use the Simacan platform to manage the trip execution in real time based on the combined information and in addition to alerts about deviations [...]

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  • New trade body launched to unite training providers Monday August 31, 2020

    Skills for Logistics has announced the launch of a major new independent trade association for the UK’s specialist logistics training providers. The Logistics Skills Network aims to bring together key organisations from the sector to develop and share best practices, knowledge, experience and resources, and offer a communication platform for the coordination of collective interests. The network intends to work closely with government organisations such as the DVSA and DfT and will also receive strategic support from industry leaders. Skills [...]

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  • CM Show 2020: TRP looks the part and takes centre stage Tuesday September 01, 2020

    TRP, the UK’s largest all-makes truck-and-trailer parts brand, supported by DAF Trucks, is to receive its own dedicated presence at the Commercial Motor Show. Details of DAF genuine parts will be available on DAF Trucks’ main stand at the show. With TRP experts on-hand to describe the TRP brand, show-attendees will experience a number of TRP’s many service offerings including the DAF Webshop, the online outlet which hosts the eCatalogue of TRP’s entire range, TRP’s national fleet programme and a [...]

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  • CM Show 2020: Come and meet the procurement experts Saturday August 29, 2020

    Given the current circumstances, it is even more important that transport operators are obtaining the best possible pricing from their suppliers for the goods and services they require. Expense Reduction Analysts (ERA) are experts in procurement and have been helping UK businesses and organisations for over 25 years to ensure that they receive best value on an ongoing basis. ERA clients include leading industry operators such as Clipper Logistics, Lloyd Fraser, Breedon Aggregates, PD Ports, and many other fleet operators [...]

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  • RHA begins National Lorry Week campaign Friday August 28, 2020

    The RHA has begun ramping up the industry’s profile as it embarks on a 13-week campaign culminating in National Lorry Week between 16-22 November. The event will showcase logistics as being innovative, inclusive and sustainable and follows the HGV Heroes campaign, in which the trade association celebrated the very best of the industry after staff went above and beyond to keep goods moving during lockdown. Read more Love the lorry, it would be a poorer world without them National Lorry [...]

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  • CM Show 2020: All you need to know about Direct Vision Thursday August 27, 2020

    SmartWitness will be exhibiting their full line of video telematics solutions at the virtual Commercial Motor Show including TfL Direct Vision Standard (DVS) systems, their latest line of 4G hardware platforms, and innovative cloud-based intelligence. Since 2007, the company has been a global player in the fleet video space focusing on reliability, ease-of-use, and powerful analytics. For DVS, SmartWitness will be providing free consultations to assist fleet owners with safety rating evaluations for all vehicles over 11-tonnes and HGVs that [...]

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  • CM Show 2020: Diesel Technic celebrates fifth anniversary Wednesday August 26, 2020

    In 2020, Diesel Technic UK & Ireland is celebrating its fifth anniversary and since 2015 has been reliably supplying its distribution partners and their workshop customers in Great Britain and Ireland with automotive parts and accessories with the product brands DT Spare Parts and SIEGEL Automotive. The parent company was founded in 1972, and today, Diesel Technic is one of the largest suppliers in the automotive sector. Customers in over 150 countries especially value the one-stop shop: 41,000 products from [...]

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  • Highways England boss Jim O’Sullivan to leave next year Tuesday August 25, 2020

    Highways England chief executive Jim O’Sullivan is to stand down early next year. O’Sullivan, who was appointed in 2015, has led Highways England’s (HE’s) delivery of the government’s roads programme. He has also overseen the controversial smart motorways system which was suspended earlier this year after the Transport Select Committee and the Police Federation warned that the practice of using the hard shoulder as a live lane in periods of congestion had created “deathtraps”, largely responsible for 38 deaths on [...]

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  • Plan to develop 40-tonne autonomous trucks gets government funding Wednesday August 19, 2020

    A consortium which includes autonomous tech firm StreetDrone has won £2.4m of funding to develop self-driving 40-tonne trucks capable of moving parts and assemblies between Nissan’s Sunderland car manufacturing plant and local businesses. The 800-acre Sunderland site will host the proof-of-concept project, which aims to evaluate how 5G connected and autonomous logistics operations can be used in industrial supply chain operations. The 5G Connected and Autonomous Logistics project, dubbed 5GCAL, will develop software and hardware solutions spanning redundant braking systems, [...]

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  • Shell to simplify European tolling for fleets Wednesday August 19, 2020

    Shell has launched a new European electronic tolling solution (EETS) for heavy-duty fleets to help simplify the complexity of cross-border toll payments. It is designed to enable drivers to manage tolls in more than 10 countries across Europe and to ensure that fleet managers can keep track of a range of fuel and non-fuel purchases. These include toll payments - along with Shell Fuel Card expenses - with a single set of invoices in their own currency, managed through Shell [...]

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  • Motor Transport Awards 2020 move online Friday August 14, 2020

    It probably won’t come as a huge shock that this year’s Motor Transport Awards are moving online. We are naturally disappointed that our black-tie ceremony, widely known as THE event of the year for our sector, won’t be taking place in 2020. Goodness knows we all deserve a good night out! But we will always put safety first, as we know all of you do every day in your operations. The good news is that the 34th annual awards will [...]

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  • ATF operators slam DVSA over MOT exemption plan Wednesday August 05, 2020

    Moves by the DVSA to give Earned Recognition operators a 12-month MOT exemption on their HGVs and and trailers will do nothing to change the way the role of ATFs is interpreted and compromises safety, according to The Authorised Testing Facilities Operators Association (ATFOA). Operators have made use of three-month exemptions since the start of the Covid-19 crisis, but the DVSA said it was expanding the exemption period for certain operators it considered to be safer to ease the massive [...]

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  • 100 years ago: Motor Fuel Research. Monday July 27, 2020

    Motor Transport was launched in 1905 as Motor Traction. Here we look back on a story published 100 years ago. MONDAY, JULY 26TH, 1920 Progress of Investigations by the Fuel Research Board. On Thursday, July 15th, the Director of Fuel Research – Sir George Bielby – invited representatives of the press to attend a meeting of the Scientific and Industrial Research Department to receive an account of the progress made by the Board into the problems connected with alternative fuels [...]

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  • Commercial Motor Show to debate the fuels of the future Monday July 27, 2020

    The Covid-19 pandemic is widely expected to give the government’s net zero carbon emissions strategy a big boost, and the new Commercial Motor Show virtual conference will take a look at the options for decarbonising heavy road transport. David Cebon, professor of mechanical engineering at Cambridge University, will compare the efficiency of hydrogen fuel cells with battery electric vehicles, while Brian Robinson, head of commercial vehicles at the LowCVP, will review the role of biofuels. Rob Fowler, chief executive of [...]

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  • Green hydrogen dual fuel trial saves 14 tonnes of CO2 Wednesday July 22, 2020

    Over 14 tonnes of CO2 has been saved in a two year project by the Low Emission Freight and Logistics Trial (LEFT) involving just 11 urban trucks and vans running on green hydrogen dual fuel. With between 20-45% of the diesel fuel being displaced by green hydrogen on the various vehicles, the HyTIME project concluded that with the appropriate hydrogen infrastructure, fleet wide roll-out could provide "a huge and timely step change in overall fleet emissions". ULEMCo - the company [...]

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  • Demand for warehousing hits record levels Tuesday July 21, 2020

    Take up for warehousing space in the UK reached record levels in the first half of 2020, with over a third of space taken up by Amazon and 11% involving deals where the lease is for less than 12 months due to the pandemic. A total of 22.4m sq ft of warehousing was taken up in H1, 38% above 2019 levels and 66% above the long term average, according to the latest Savills Big Shed briefing. However, Savills is warning [...]

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  • DfT pledges to increase HGV parking facilities Tuesday July 21, 2020

    The government has pledged to improve overnight HGV parking facilities through “established and new” processes as part of its Covid-19 recovery plan. The move is revealed in a letter sent last week from Transport Secretary Grant Schapps and transport minister Baroness Vere to RHA chief executive Richard Burnett. The letter notes “the incredibly important contribution that delivery drivers make to the nation, the economy and businesses,” and pledges to look at new ways to overcome the barriers to creating more [...]

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  • Dipesh Shah takes the reins at Highways England Tuesday July 21, 2020

    Highways England has appointed a new chair with a brief to lead the delivery of the government’s second five year Road Investment Strategy. Dipesh Shah, who assumes the role on 1 September, will replace Colin Matthews, who has held the role for six years. Shah was selected after a competitive selection and brings extensive experience as a non-executive director of Thames Water, Commissioner of the Crown Estates and as former CEO of the UK Atomic Energy Authority. The new chair [...]

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  • Freeports have potential to free up trade – FTA Friday July 17, 2020

    The FTA said a plan by the government to establish 10 freeports in the UK as part of its “levelling-up” agenda has the potential to unlock significant opportunities for international trade. However, it also warned that the policy brings with it a host of problems relating to competition, planning and friction with the Northern Ireland protocol and it urged clarity and more details about their creation. Freeports are zones considered as outside their home country for customs purposes, enabling goods [...]

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  • HGV tyres over 10 years old to be banned Thursday July 16, 2020

    Tyres aged 10 years and older will be banned from HGVs in England, Scotland and Wales, under new rules to help improve road safety. The ban, which will also affect buses and coaches, follows an extensive investigation, including research commissioned by the Department for Transport (DfT), which indicated ageing tyres suffer corrosion which could cause them to fail. The move will make it illegal to fit tyres aged 10 years or older to the front wheels of lorries, buses and [...]

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  • New Texaco engine oil halves rate of ash build-up Tuesday July 14, 2020

    Texaco has launched a new engine oil which is intended to mitigate the effects of diesel particulate filter (DPF) clogging on operating costs. Delo 600 ADF features what Texaco calls Omnimax technology - additives which are designed to prevent the ash build-up which eventually requires fuel- and time-consuming regeneration. Texaco research over the past two months has revealed that 67% of operators had experienced emissions problems on Euro-6 engines, with 29% being DPF blockages. The new lubricant is said to [...]

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  • Developer of My Transport Planner welcomes 100th partner Tuesday July 14, 2020

    The Algorithm People, developer of pay-as-you-go route optimisation platform My Transport Planner, has signed up its 100th partner. The software uses algorithms to calculate the most efficient routes and schedules for vehicles engaged in deliveries, collections and site visits. The company insists smarter planning minimises wasted mileage and improves vehicle utilisation, generating cost savings of up to 30% for transport operators. My Transport Planner users range from small businesses through to national chains such as Selco Builders Warehouse. The Algorithm [...]

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  • Cardiff haulier folded after key personnel became ill Thursday July 09, 2020

    Cardiff Container Link entered into administration after “key personnel” at the company became ill and were absent from the business. The background to the Roath Docks-based container haulier’s financial woes is contained in a report to creditors, which explained that it had expanded and traded well up until January 2020. At this point, after five years of trading, the company began to experience cash flow constraints, which administrators at RSM Restructuring said was “due to a variety of factors, including [...]

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  • Volvo Trucks UK & Ireland names new MD Wednesday July 01, 2020

    Christian Coolsaet has been appointed MD of Volvo Trucks UK & Ireland. He succeeds Robert Grozdanovski who will move to Gothenburg to take up an appointment as Volvo Trucks’ senior vice president for sales area Europe Central East & East. Coolsaet brings more than 20 years of Volvo experience to the role, most recently from the German market and has been MD of Volvo Trucks Germany since 2015. He will take up his new position in the UK on September [...]

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  • England’s best motorway services revealed in new survey Thursday July 02, 2020

    Extra and Westmorland have been voted England’s best motorway service operators by almost 10,000 visitors. Extra, which operates six sites in the survey conducted by independent watchdog Transport Focus, and Westmorland, which operates four, achieved the joint highest overall satisfaction score of 97%. Transport Focus said that across the country as a whole, motorway service operators performed well, with 93% of visitors satisfied with their experience. Customers were least satisfied with the value for money of the food or drink [...]

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  • Microlise joins forces with Commercial Motor Show Saturday June 27, 2020

    Microlise, organisers of what has become Europe's largest transport conference, is to take over the third day of the virtual conference at the new Commercial Motor Show, bringing the usual mix of presentations by senior industry figures in the fields of compliance, new technology and data. The Commercial Motor Show will be a free, three-day virtual exhibition and conference starting on 29 September and has already attracted the support of leading truck makers including DAF, Isuzu, MAN and Mercedes-Benz. More [...]

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  • RHA classrooms to reopen for training on 6 July Friday June 26, 2020

    The RHA is reopening its training classrooms with social distancing measures in place on Monday 6 July. The association has been given the go-ahead to offer classroom-based training after the recent change in government coronavirus guidance. Special measures are in place at RHA training sites to keep delegates safe, where staff will enforce strict and clear social distancing, issue sanitiser and offer face masks on request. RHA head of learning and development – Scotland & NI, Brian Kenny said: “The [...]

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  • Passport to a second life for Electra EV batteries Thursday June 25, 2020

    Electric HGV manufacturer Electra Commercial Vehicles has signed up to a battery monitoring service that provides vehicle owners with recommendations for extending the lifespan of their batteries. The Battery Passport enables operators to better understand their batteries, as well as providing a pathway for those being sold in the second-life market. The passport service continually assesses and grades the future potential of the battery so that when it nears the end of its vehicle life, the owner can share the [...]

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  • AS24 passes 1,000 filling stations mark Thursday June 25, 2020

    Fuel card provider AS24 has announced its customers now have access to 1,000 refuelling stations in 28 countries. It said the stations all utilise its chip and pin technology and all sites offer wide lanes and high-volume pump nozzles. Roland Saunion, AS24 UK and Ireland MD, said: “We are very proud to be able to facilitate the mobility of our customers throughout Europe. “It’s very important for us to be able to offer AS24 stations to our customers, because I [...]

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  • Fleet Source cuts cost of Earned Recognition audits Wednesday June 24, 2020

    Fleet Source has reduced the cost of Earned Recognition (ER) audits to help operators achieve the DVSA accreditation. The company is offering the audits from £495 + VAT. Nick Caesari (pictured), Fleet Source chief executive, said ER “demonstrates that you are an exemplary fleet operator, less likely to have your vehicles stopped for roadside inspections and Earned Recognition is fast becoming a key factor in bidding for contracts. “But for many operators, the price of the audit itself has been [...]

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  • DVSA to restart HGV testing from 4 July Friday June 19, 2020

    The DVSA will restart heavy vehicle testing from 4 July. The agency said it has issued three-month exemptions for vehicles due to be tested this month and will issue further exemptions for July tests. “This will help us manage demand as we resume testing,” it added. In a statement, the DVSA said: “In August, vehicles which have already received an exemption will need a test. “All other vehicles due for a test in August will receive a three-month exemption. When [...]

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  • FORS resumes Bronze site audits as Covid-19 lockdown restrictions ease Monday June 15, 2020

    FORS is lifting its suspension of all Bronze site audits this week following government moves to ease Covid-19 lockdown restrictions. FORS members in England will be able to book Bronze on-site audits from today (Monday 15 June). However, all FORS operators requesting a Bronze on-site audit will be required to complete a Covid-19 risk assessment first as part of “stringent” coronavirus measures introduced by FORS to ensure the safety of its auditors and members. FORS director, John Hix, added: “We [...]

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