FORS Standard version 5 now available to download

Version 5 of the FORS Standard is now available to download from the FORS website . Organisations with audit dates on and after 14 January 2019 will be audited against version 5 and must therefore prepare their Bronze, Silver or Gold audit(s) against the new and updated requirements.

The FORS Standard is revised every two years to ensure it keeps abreast of industry trends and upcoming legislative changes, and to provide guidance for members in their quest to achieve ever-increasing levels of best-practice. The revised FORS Standard now has a broader remit to encompass more vehicle types, including passenger carrying vehicles and powered two-wheelers.

Recognising air quality priorities in UK cities, environmental requirements have been revised to ensure that emissions and air quality issues are treated with the same importance as safety issues within the FORS Standard. The revised edition also sets out requirements to help operators mitigate threats of terrorism.

To help identify the key changes, Annex 5 of the FORS Standard version 5 provides a comprehensive summary of changes. Section 2 contains important information such as scope of the FORS Standard, terminology, temporary vehicles and drivers, small operators, and an explanation of the new ‘call-out box’ at the end of some of the requirements which is used to show how the demonstration of that requirement links to other supporting requirements.

In addition to general updates across the Standard, there are seven new requirements, identified in the table below. Key updates in version 5 include:

Requirement Key updates
Bronze D4 Professional development Mandatory FORS Professional Security and Counter Terrorism eLearning module completed within the past 24 months. This module is no longer part of the suite of safety eLearning modules
Bronze M1 FORS documentation Alongside a name change, it now provides a single list of the policies and procedures that must be evidenced at audit
Bronze M6 Vehicle fleet – NEW REQUIREMENT Requires operators to maintain a register of the number, type and distribution of all vehicles in scope of FORS accreditation including vehicle registration mark and trailer identification number
Bronze M8 Health and safety Now lists all risk assessments throughout the FORS Standard. These are divided into health and safety risks and operational risks
Bronze V5 Load safety Now split by vehicle type
Bronze V6 Vehicle safety equipment Now includes a London specific requirement for vehicles over 12 tonnes gross vehicle weight
Bronze 04 Passenger safety – NEW REQUIREMENT Requires operators to have a policy in place for each particular vehicle type, including accessibility arrangements where applicable
Bronze 07 Counter terrorism – NEW REQUIREMENT Requires operators to have a policy and supporting procedures in place and name a Counter Terrorism Champion
Silver S1 FORS Bronze Operators must have 45 days left on their Bronze (and Silver if applicable) accreditation(s) prior to applying for Silver
Silver S5 Professional development Mandatory FORS Professional LoCITY Time to clean up eLearning module completed within the past 24 months
S6 Vehicle safety equipment Previously two requirements, now covers blind spot vision aids and audible warning systems.  Fresnel lenses are no longer permitted, but, to allow for older vehicles, a tolerance in the number of vehicles fitted with camera systems may be accepted for vehicles registered before 1 January 2015.  Operators must use the FORS vehicle safety equipment report, which includes vehicle registration marks, to evidence this requirement
S7 Noise pollution Previously a Gold requirement
S8 Internal communications – NEW REQUIREMENT Requires operator to have an annual plan in place to communicate topical issues that are relevant to FORS to ensure flow of FORS information across the whole organisation
S9 Sub-contracted services – NEW REQUIREMENT Requires operators to incorporate a FORS Silver flow down clause in the terms of sub-contract agreements where FORS accreditation is specified in contracts
G1 FORS Silver Operators must have 45 days left on their Bronze and Silver (and Gold if applicable) accreditation(s) prior to applying for Gold
G3 FORS case study Now renewed every three years to reflect meaningful improvements
G4 Recruitment and retention Requirement for driver licence acquisition training to help address driver shortage
G5 Professional development
  • Mandatory FORS Professional LoCITY Driving classroom training course completed within the past five years
  • Gold initial audit: working towards FORS Practitioner qualification for the responsible person
  • Gold re-approval audit: qualification as FORS Practitioner for the responsible person
G8 Staff travel – NEW REQUIREMENT Requires operators to have a staff workplace travel plan
G9 Contracted services – NEW REQUIREMENT For new contracts awarded, requires operators to have a flow down clause

All mandatory training requirements are set out at Annexes 1 and 2 of the FORS Standard for drivers and managers respectively. Annex 1 is split by vehicle type for ease of reference. Both annexes include important information relevant to each type of driver which must be read alongside the training requirements. FORS-approved courses may be used as alternative to a number of FORS Professional training as indicated in Annexes 1 and 2.

In order to assist FORS members, a number of transitional provisions are in place for the following requirements:

  • D4 – FORS Professional Security and Counter Terrorism eLearning module
  • G5 – FORS Professional LoCITY Driving classroom course
  • G5 – FORS Practitioner qualification
  • G9 – Contracted services

All transitional provisions are identified at Annex 6 of the FORS Standard.

To view the FORS Standard version 5, please click here.

FORS operators accredited against version 5 Silver requirements will meet both TfL (Transport for London) work-related road risk requirements and the requirements of the CLOCS (Construction Logistics and Community Safety) Standard version 3 due to launch in January 2019.

For detailed information about the version 5 updates, take advantage of the free FORS Members’ Regional Briefings, located at venues throughout the UK. Book your place here. We are also running special FORS Standard version 5 Going for Bronze and Going for Silver/Gold workshops.  To view dates available, click here for Going for Bronze, and here for Going for Silver/Gold.

Look out for eNews communications about forthcoming changes to the FORS rules and procedures which will also come into effect from 14 January 2019.


If you are a FORS company, or if you are working towards accreditation, your business is entitled to some exclusive fuel cost saving offers from Fuel Card Services. Click here for more information.

WHITE HAULAGE LTD– MAINTAINING GOLD

White haulage ltd is a franchise haulier for tarmac based in Hayes, Middlesex, we have recently become ltd company after trading as a sole trader for 13 years previously. Danny white the owner driver of the company explains how White haulage ltd has improved driver training day to day operations & fuel economy through FORS.

We first heard about FORS through our work with tarmac some years ago, since then tarmac and a number of other companies request at least FORS bronze to carry out work on their behalf and even more now require gold as a minimum. When we researched it more we could see the benefits FORS would bring to the business such as driver training, fuel economy improvement & a more organised business all round.

We passed the bronze audit first time round and this encouraged us to keep all of our records up to date and organised and also keep up to date with the latest training courses and industry news.

After getting the bronze accreditation we made the most of the benefits on offer in particular the e learning facilities , I  also attended the lo city driving and safe urban driving FORS funded CPC courses.

‘FORS e-learning gives us an easy way to keep drivers up to date and show them what is expected of them.’ Danny white – owner

We found the safe urban driving course particularly useful and informative as you get to see the road from the cyclists point of view and understand the dangers they face, we have also seen an improvement in fuel economy and the lo city driving course and e-learning module were particularly useful in helping to achieve this. More recently the security and terrorism courses have provided very useful information.

‘Going into our 2nd year as a gold operator our business is benefitting all round from being a part of FORS.’ Danny white – owner

Once we were bronze we decided to progress to silver and gold because we could see the benefits it would have on the business, not only in getting more work but with improving fuel economy, driver awareness and making us a more efficient operator all round. Now going into our 2nd year as a gold operator we feel a lot more confident going into our fors audit as all our files are in place and our safe systems of work tried and tested.

We are proud to maintain our zero incidents and PCN record for the fourth consecutive year.

MPG Incidents per 100,000 Kms Number of PCNs
Jan-Dec 2016 8.4 0 0
Jan-Dec 2017 8.0 0 0
Percentage improvement -4.76% 0 0

*Annual improvement in MPG and Incidents per 100,000 Kms

Although this shows a negative movement on the mpg, between 2015 & 2016 we noted a 2.4% increase in mpg. The negative figure is mainly down to a lot more urban driving & city based jobs in 2017. We are hopeful that a new euro 6 truck due very soon will show great improvement on our fuel economy.

The health and fitness of any drivers we use is taken seriously, any driver whether casual or regular is required to fill out a health declaration notifying us of any underlying issues, these are done every year, we also do eyesight tests every 6 months.

Due to the small size of the company we don’t have a specific recruitment policy, however when a new driver starts with us they are given a 2 week buddying program designed to ensure they are fully trained to carry out their role, we also fund any CPC training required to keep them up to date with all the latest courses and to encourage them to stay with us long term.

Drivers are aware of measures that can be taken to reduce noise especially when working at night and we have a noise risk assessment in place, which drivers read and sign to make sure they understand the implications things such as leaving the engine running can do to the local environment.

For the type of work we carry out there are currently no alternative vehicles available to us, due to the use of PTO systems, insulated bodies and high load capacity. We monitor industry news regularly to see the latest developments and I’m sure in the future alternative fuel vehicles will be available to our industry.

We aim to make continual improvements to the business and at the time of writing we are awaiting the delivery of a new euro 6 Scania to improve fuel economy & safety. This vehicle has an n3 chassis which gives a much lower entry point and better all-round view of the road. We are also continually reviewing safe working procedures, and driver training as ultimately this will help us become a better and more efficient company and hopefully allow us to expand in the future.

For White Haulage ltd maintaining our gold accreditation would mean we are continuing to achieve the best possible practice. The training courses and toolkits on offer from FORS ensure we can stay up to date with all the latest news and changes to the industry. Going forward we want to continue to reduce harmful emissions and the impact we as a company have on the environment.

 


If you are a FORS company, or if you are working towards accreditation, your business is entitled to some exclusive fuel cost saving offers from Fuel Card Services. Click here for more information.

New FORS Standard unveiled

FORS has revealed the new FORS Standard at its annual Members’ Conference.   

The new FORS Standard is the fifth iteration of the document, and sets out the requirements operators must meet if they wish to become FORS accredited. 

The revised edition addresses the need for air quality improvements and sets out requirements to help operators mitigate against threats of terrorism. Provision is also made for a broader range of operations and vehicles, including powered two-wheelers, and new requirements for bus and coach operators.

 

The FORS Standard is updated every two years to reflect the continuous evolution of best practice and FORS’s singular aim to drive-up safety, environmental, and efficiency standards for all road transport operations. Version 5 of the FORS Standard was revealed to 500 FORS members at its annual conference in Birmingham today (Tuesday 16 October).

This edition of the FORS Standard, published as FORS reaches its 10th year of operation, highlights the increasing diversity of commercial fleets and aims to make it more accessible for a broader range of vehicles to achieve accreditation. It contains a more robust commitment to raising environmental standards in operations, recognising the need for better air quality in UK cities via revised requirements and a revised training programme.

FORS director, John Hix said, “FORS has always been committed to promoting continuous best practice, both in the progressive nature of our accreditation, and in the way we work to ensure our requirements remain relevant.

“The FORS Standard is not a static document, because best-practice is not static. The FORS Standard must respond to emerging best practice and new legislations which affect members, and the feedback of members themselves.”

Key changes – FORS Bronze Audit

The revised FORS Standard has been designed to make FORS accessible to more vehicles, especially the growing fleets of motorcycles and other powered two-wheelers, which contribute to many last-mile deliveries on UK roads.  Now,  specific load safety requirements set out by vehicle type are included not only for heavy goods vehicles, vans and passenger carrying vehicles (PCVs), but also powered two-wheelers.

PCVs are also given greater credence, with a new requirement at FORS Bronze to ensure accessibility, comfort and safety for all passengers.  The requirement must be demonstrated via a passenger safety policy, on vehicle signage and adequate access for all passengers.

A new counter terrorism requirement has been introduced, meaning operators must have a policy and supporting procedures in place at FORS Bronze, which names a Counter Terrorism Champion. Under new Bronze training requirements members must also have completed the current FORS Professional Security and Counter Terrorism eLearning module within the 24 months prior to audit.  Since its launch in January 2018, the module has been completed by over 15,700 individuals.

 

John Hix noted, “With the terrorist threat ongoing, it is now more important than ever that we all play our part in tackling the dangers to personal and vehicle safety.  FORS is proud to be supporting our operators and drivers in managing and reducing risk in their day-to-day operations.”

 

Key changes – FORS Silver and Gold Accreditations

An added emphasis on improving environmental operating standards becomes evident with a  new requirement at FORS Silver for HGV and van drivers to complete the FORS Professional ‘LoCITY – Time to clean up’ eLearning module within the 24 months prior to accreditation.

In line with the progressive nature of the scheme, FORS has also introduced a requirement at Gold for drivers to have completed either the FORS Professional LoCITY Driving training course, or a FORS Approved environmental awareness course within the past five years.  This is in addition to the current requirement to have attended a Safe Urban Driving (SUD), a Van Smart (VS) or a FORS Approved work-related road safety training course, within the five years prior to accreditation.

FORS Silver also includes a commitment to tackle noise pollution – a criteria formally only mandated at FORS Gold.  Operators seeking FORS Silver accreditation must complete noise assessments at operating centres and noise sensitive locations in a bid to minimise noise pollution and its impact on local communities.

The new FORS Standard aims to minimise the probability and severity of collisions involving vulnerable road users.  FORS Silver accreditation is also fully aligned to meet both the TfL requirements on managing work-related road risk (WRRR) and the new CLOCS Standard v3, due to come into force  in January 2019.  

 

The evolution of the FORS Standard

 

The FORS Standard review process has been managed by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT), part of the FORS Community Partnership (FCP), under the direction of a Technical Advisory Group of the FORS Governance and Standards Advisory Group (GSAG) – a group made up of FORS members, specifiers and stakeholders who provide advice and guidance on the development of FORS.

John Hix concluded, “FORS has grown from a relatively-small London-centric operation, to encompass well over 5,000 members of diverse fleets nationwide.  With this truly national remit, it is vital that FORS is flexible enough to meet the evolving challenges our members face and to help operators striving for continuous operational excellence and best practice.  We are confident the new Standard moves our members forward on this course.”

“Version 5 FORS requirements and demonstrations will guide FORS members on how to run a safe, efficient and environmentally-sound operation,” said John Hix, adding, “their operation is in safe hands with the FORS Standard.”

The FORS Standard version 5 is now available to download on the FORS website here: https://www.fors-online.org.uk/cms/new-standard/ and becomes effective from Monday 14 January 2019 for both new and existing operators.


If you are a FORS company, or if you are working towards accreditation, your business is entitled to some exclusive fuel cost saving offers from Fuel Card Services. Click here for more information.

Wooldridge Group – Gold Case Study

The Wooldridge Group prides itself on being a family-run business. Founded in 1975, Wooldridge has always strived to maintain the highest level of quality and service. We are committed to providing a friendly, safe and equal working environment for our staff, an efficient and economical service to our clients and regular business for our suppliers. The group continues to expand within the established businesses of Groundwork, Plant Hire, Road Sweeping, Demolition, Muck Away, Property Development, Construction and Landscape Supplies, providing customers with a broad scope of services from demolition to delivery.

The company have achieved huge reductions in fuel use / reduced CO2 emissions, lowered NOx and Particulate Matter emissions by regularly updating the vehicle fleet to newer and more energy efficient vehicles. We have also invested into hybrid vehicles and we have made designated charging points at our operating centre. If a company vehicle is involved in an accident or receives a transport related fine the driver is interviewed to find out why this has taken place and it is then logged on his personal file. We will then look to see how we can reduce the chances of this happening again, examples of methods used are driver awareness courses and even taking the vehicle away.

We were made aware of FORS through emails received from Transport for London. We realised it would help us to achieve best practice and benefit us by giving us opportunity to work for high end companies by promoting FORS to them. By keeping compliant with the FORS Standard the safety aspect of our operations has greatly increased. Higher profile clients have a FORS requirement.

The Wooldridge Group passed their initial audit first time around. We found this was great learning curve for the company and showed us how to become a better FORS member from here we were encouraged proceed to better ourselves with a view of achieving Silver and Gold.

“By keeping compliant with the FORS Standard the professionalism, company profile, client’s management system and safety aspect of our operations has greatly increased.”

Having seen the benefit of bronze as listed above silver was the obvious progression to further improve safety, efficiency and company profile. Gold, as the name suggests is the pinnacle in fleet operating standards. Gold will allow us to promote our business to the most demanding of clients and show that we are capable of operating to the highest standards of safety, efficiency and environmental awareness.

An analysis has been carried out of the fuel consumption of our commercial vehicles during the period April 16 to March 17 and April 17 to March 18 (see table below). The results show that having gained our Silver accreditation in 2017 our fuel consumption has improved by 3%. This is particularly satisfying given that our fleet size has increased by 16% in the same period and represents a reduction of more than 20,000litres of fuel for the year.

Commercial Vehicle MPG Analysis between 04/16 – 03/17 and 04/17 – 03/18

 16/17 16/17   17/18 17/18 
 Total litres used  594853  Litres  669792  Litres
 Total mileage covered  1980168  Miles  2293845  Miles
 Number of Vehicles  108  Vehicles  125  Vehicles
 Average MPG per vehicle  15.13  MPG  15.57  MPG
 Average L/100km per vehicle  18.67  L/100km  18.14  L/100km
 Percentage MPG improvement L/100km reduction   3%

 In order to make continual fleet improvements we will continue to monitor alternative fuels and asses’ fitness and health of drivers promoting to our customer and suppliers.

Obtaining Gold would show our clients, competitors and staff that we are committed to preforming to the highest standards with regards to the environment, driver fitness, awareness of the public and other road users.

Peter Small Transport Services Ltd

‘Peter Small Transport Services Ltd has been in business for one year as a limited company and as a sole trader for 16 years. The Company have always worked with Tarmac and have expanded the fleet to Four Lorries, Two 32000kg vehicles and Two 44000 kg articulated vehicles. The company is based in Radlett and has Six full time employees. We are engaged in taking away plainings on behalf of Tarmac as well as hauling aggregates on behalf of them too during the daytime. The company have mainly a 24-hour operation in place and operate exclusive for Tarmac which include working on contracts for TfL.

We first heard about FORS through Tarmac. We looked at the benefits of joining the scheme and we saw that these were standards and ethos that we wished to adopt of improving the safety for both our vehicles and drivers.

We take safety very seriously, so we achieved FORS Bronze accreditation and then went onto applying for our Silver Accreditation which we achieved in January 2017.

FORS has helped benefit by us being able to achieve better standards through their driver training programme, both classroom based and through e-Learning modules, along with FORS toolbox talks. This has led to all our drivers having a better understanding of road safety and raised their awareness of the needs of other vulnerable road users. Our non-accident rate has remained at 100% over the past five years and this is due to continuing commitment to raise awareness of Vulnerable Road Users though our driver training program with both Tarmac and FORS/COLCS.

“We are committed to improving a high standard of road safety, together with Tarmac, FORS and CLOCS” – Managing Director, Peter Small.

All our vehicles are fitted with 360 degree cameras, side cameras, near side proximity sensors and audible left turn alarms, Class IV,V, V1 Mirrors, flashing beacons on the cab of all vehicles, cyclist safety stickers to both the rear and sides of our vehicles. All our new vehicles have Anti Collison Manager, Lane Departure Warning sensors and Overhead Power Sensors fitted as standard.

The new vehicle fleet which is due in 2019 will also be fitted with additional glass in the passenger side door to aid road safety. All our drivers have completed Safe Urban Driver courses and have completed all the FORS E-Learning Modules.

We have recently implemented a new recruitment policy that outlines that we need to look at employing younger drivers/employees and provide training to that particular role.

“We are committed to road safety working with FORS, CLOCS and Tarmac” – Managing Director, Peter Small.

 We have learnt that by equipping both our vehicles and drivers to the highest safety standards that our accident rate has remained at zero over the past five years and has contributed to saving both time and money in reduced claims to the company.

All our vehicles are at Euro 6 spec and Peter Small Transport Services Ltd will continue to invest in the latest fleet so as to ensure road safety and the environment is safe guarded.

Achieving Gold Accreditation will allow us to continue to strive towards the highest road safety standards so that we are able to continue to maintain this safety record and protect the environment.

“Our accident rate has remained at zero in the last five years.” – Managing Director, Peter Small.

Once we had gained our Bronze accreditation we decided to go for the Silver Accreditation in 2017 as we were already doing everything required of us to gain Silver accreditation. Once we were at Silver we decided to show best practice and be able to stand out from our competitors.

Average MPG for Fleet Incidents per 100,000 Kms Number of PCNs
March 2016 – March 2017 6.8 0 0
March 2017 – March 2018 7.0 0 0
Percentage improvement 0.2% 100% 0%

All our drivers are required to fill in an in-depth medical declaration on an annual basis even though through the FORS Standards it is recommended every 5 years. It is mentioned in the driver’s handbook, which requires the drivers to report any change to the company and forms part of their contract of employment. Once the driver informs the company, this would lead to an investigation and if we felt the driver was unfit to drive, we would require medical evidence form the drivers Doctor informing us that they were fit to drive. The company would only allow the driver to driver once we had received the letter. The driver would then be subject to recommended reviews, until we were satisfied that they we fully fit to drive.

Last year we have recently implemented a recruitment policy to the company, that outlines that we as a company are committed to employing young drivers/employees where possible and training them into that role.

The future plans of the company are to ensure we that our safety record continues to be the highest standard, through driver training and fitment of vehicle safety equipment.

Achieving Gold will help the company to work towards these goals and help to improve the industry’s safety standards, whilst looking towards reducing our emissions through less polluting vehicles.

 


If you are a FORS company, or if you are working towards accreditation, your business is entitled to some exclusive fuel cost saving offers from Fuel Card Services. Click here for more information.

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