Investment and innovation are at the heart of the success of a London-based haulier which has achieved FORS Gold accreditation no fewer than five years in a row.
ELB Partners, which is based in Wimbledon, gained FORS Bronze accreditation in 2012 and was certified as a Gold member in 2015 – an accolade it has maintained ever since.
In that time, it has made significant ongoing investment in the safety of its fleet, with all its drivers attending the FORS safe urban driving course to ensure they are driving safely in an ever-evolving urban environment.
ELB recently upgraded its entire 50-strong fleet to Euro 6-compliant vehicles to meet the stringent emission standards set out by the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), introduced by Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, earlier this year. The modern design and greater efficiency of these vehicles ensure they comply with the parameters of FORS Gold accreditation.
Every vehicle ELB has run since joining FORS has been fitted with four-way safety cameras, with the newer ones fitted with five-way cameras.
Vehicles have also been fitted with side scan side detection systems to help spot vulnerable road users, as well as white noise left turn audible warnings, each at a cost of around £4,500 per vehicle.
FORS is recognised as the go-to best practice accreditation scheme in the transport sector, with a mandate to promote safety, efficiency and environmental protection. Its members include commercial vehicle operators of any size and make-up, with vehicles including cars, vans, buses, coaches, powered two-wheelers, and heavy goods vehicles.
Managing director, Peter Eason, said: “Our investment in our vehicles is all part of an ongoing commitment to staying ahead of the game and demonstrating how seriously we take the safety of road users, pedestrians and our drivers.
“We’ve also fitted glass bottom doors on our urban 18 tonners and 12 tonners, to give drivers a greater vision standard and help protect vulnerable road users and invested in pull-down strapping systems and XL-rated bodies and curtains.”
Along with investment in equipment, all drivers are required to attend the FORS Safe Urban Driving course, as well as FORS online e-training.
Peter added: “We take a belt-and-braces approach to training our drivers, which is of vital importance when you’re running a logistics operation in a city such as London. Businesses rely on us to get their goods to them in good time and those journeys must be carried out safely.
“One of our management team spends roughly two days a week on compliance and keeping up to date with FORS, to ensure we keep abreast of any important developments.”
“We’re also required to have qualified FORS Practitioners as part of our management team. I hold this qualification and our operations manager, Dan Philpot, will complete his training later this month.”
A sense of community is also at the heart of ELB’s business. Last summer, it provided a vehicle free of charge to ship in supplies to the site of the Grenfell Tower disaster, for a special two-part version of the hit BBC TV show, DIY SOS.
ELB staff took an 18-tonne truck full of construction products to help build a community centre and the Dale Boxing Club at the site in west London.
The team also provide transport to members of staff who need help moving house, or with any other personal jobs.
“We’re a family-run firm so being a part of our community and looking after our staff is a huge part of what we do,” added Peter.
FORS manager Sonia Hayward said: “ELB has shown a real dedication to safety and awareness of its environmental impact through its extensive investment in staff training and fleet modernisation. They should be proud of their achievements of not only obtaining but retaining FORS Gold accrediation, proof they are championing safety, efficiency and environmental awareness.”
For more information about ELB Partners, which is part of the UK-wide Pallet-Track network, visit www.elbpartners.com.