Truck drivers have been urged to make a little extra effort each day to cut the amount of fuel they use by putting their driving skills to better use.
Volvo Trucks held its annual Global Drivers' Fuel Challenge in Sweden last week and the title of 'world's most fuel efficient driver' went to Christian Scheiflinger from Austria.
He explained that anyone with a full understanding of their vehicle and how it reacts – something most haulage drivers should possess already – can improve their driving and boost fuel efficiency.
Andrew Low from Volvo Trucks, who was responsible for setting up the test track, added that a truck's weight can be used to the driver's advantage, as can adapting to the traffic ahead. For example, braking gently but well in advance of an obstruction and then accelerating lightly away again will result in less fuel being used in slowing the vehicle down and speeding it back up.
Just these measures alone can result in a ten per cent reduction in fuel consumption, which could save significant sums of money for haulage companies and reduce European Union carbon emissions by up to 20 million tonnes per year.
"It's about creating an awareness of how much difference each individual driver can actually make," said Arne Knaben of Volvo Trucks. "Fuel costs remain a heavy burden for many haulage companies in the UK and Ireland. However, despite this – as demonstrated in the final – an improved driving style can result in considerable cost savings."
Earlier this month, the Department for Transport revealed it is carrying out a ten-year trial of extended trailers for haulage providers. If the scheme is widely taken up and they are made significantly longer, it should result in more goods being transported by trucks per journey and therefore fewer vehicles on the roads, cheaper costs for haulage firms and lower carbon emissions.
Posted on 23rd September 2014
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