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Vehicle downtimeBalfour News digestBeattyThames WaterCar Recruitmentreviewsrisk assessment, while point scoring all events. But BBUS worked closely with RiskMaster's IT team to develop the product further so that it would integrate with a telemetry system. This allows BBUS to quickly identify the risk of an individual both in historical terms and real time behavioural trends. "Crucially, RiskMaster is a live organic process, which works in tandem with GreenRoad to update risk rating depending on contemporaneous driving practices," said Mitchell.Prior to the initiative being rolled out last year, BBUS was effectively running about half a dozen different tracking systems, because of amalgama-tions and mergers over the years. However, none were able to provide the desired level of data on driver risk that it was looking for. All reported on date, time, speed and location, but GreenRoad's ability to analyse and report on up 120 different aspects of driver behaviour was of particular interest to the company."It enabled us to discover what the real issues were," said Mitchell. An in-vehicle LED display provides instant feedback to the driver, using the same traffic light system as RiskMaster. Driving infringements are recorded against a driver's GreenRoad profile, with the total number per day divided by driving hours to give a safety score. If a driver is classified as 'Red' or 'Amber' based on a day's driving, 10 or five points respec-tively are added on to his/her RiskMaster profile. This cumulative process means that, while a driver may initially be granted a 'permit to drive', if their driving standards slip intervention can occur.But as Mitchell explained, the vehicle is also crucial. It's resulted in the company placing an order with Mercedes-Benz for nearly 700 Sprinter vans. The Sprinter already boasts impressive safety features, including adaptive brakes and brake lighting, multiple crumple zones and driver and passenger airbags. But BBUS has taken safety further with this year's vehicles by specifying a number of additional features, including parking sensors, daytime running lights and edge protection.In all, 352 3.5 tonne vehicles were delivered last year, 32 this year and a further 235 are on order, while 25 of the five-tonne derivative have also joined the fleet and 14 are also on order.Together, the changes BBUS has instigated has led to a 4-5% fuel saving across, while it believes a further 10-15% saving could be achieved."I think we have still got a way to go to achieve Zero Harm, but we have come a long way," concluded Mitchell. "As far as our drivers are concerned, we have the knowledge and understanding we were looking for. In terms of vehicles, Mercedes-Benz is head and shoulders above the rest, but we know we need to do more on the actual journey now."Continues120Number of different aspects of driver behaviour GreenRoad can analyse'We have still got a long way to go to achieve Zero Harm'Brent Mitchell, Balfour Beatty Utility SolutionsBrent Mitchell

Vehicle downtimeBalfour News digestBeattyThames WaterCar Recruitmentreviews'I want to talk to all drivers and get them to think differently'Michelle NasrDrivers are told to 'think differently' to cut accidentsBy Sarah ToozeReducing Thames Water's accident rate is top of the fleet agenda for fleet services manager Michelle Nasr. The 2,000 vehicle fleet had 610 reported accidents in the last financial year. On average, 70% were caused by Thames Water drivers.One hundred and twenty nine of the incidents were parking related and as a result rear parking sensors are fitted to all new vehicles. Nasr is now looking at driver training and upping communication with drivers, high-lighting the risks that they face. "I want to talk to all drivers - regardless of whether they drive a company vehicle or not - and get them to think differently," she says. The project is in its early stages with a team consisting of fleet, HR, health and safety and insurance representatives being set up. Nasr is still getting her feet under the table in her new role as head of the fleet department. The department consists of a commercial transport team, an administration team and a business analyst. She was previously in charge of the admin team. Ten of Nasr's 17 years in fleet have been spent at Thames Water. She has a car fleet background having previ-ously worked for a firm of quantity surveyors with a car fleet consisting of Audis, Jaguars and other premium brands. But she enjoys the variety a utility fleet brings."We've got people out repairing mains, people reading meters and doing water sampling and there are tankers and disinfection units," she says. "It's such a variety of things to consider."Utility company aims to reduce number of incidents through training and communicationFleet profile Thames WaterContinues over