Mobile Mini (UK) Ltd – FORS as a catalyst for change: Vehicles; People; Processes
Mobile Mini are a provider of portable storage solutions with a hire fleet of portable storage containers, portable site units and self storage facilities through a network of branch locations in the UK, the US and Canada. Keith Silvester, Lifting Operations Manager explains how Mobile Mini have utilised modern technology to modify driver behaviour; improve efficiency; and reduce traffic related and site incidents.
We first came across FORS as a result of a number of our customers beginning to insist on it as a contractual condition of delivering to their sites in 2012. Through our progression from Bronze, through Silver and eventually to Gold it opened our eyes to the benefit of road management policies not just as a client requirement but with real commercial benefits; such as with safety, fuel efficiency, and road related incidents. We have successfully renewed our Bronze each year since.
Once we received Bronze; with our qualified FORS practitioners; and started to get a taste for the improvements we were making with our transport we soon progressed up to FORS Gold, of which we are extremely proud of as a company. We believe it serves as a clear indicator to all of our customers of how seriously we take our responsibilities as an operator in the City.
“FORS was the direct catalyst for our advances in vehicle technology.”
Once Gold was achieved the challenge that Mobile Mini faced was on how to continue to improve and in doing so exceed the standards already achieved. The review of Mobile Mini’s systems focused on how to further improve three key areas, our vehicles, our people and our processes.
This included upgrading the camera system from a forward dash cam and a reversing camera to a full all round 360 camera system. This provides the driver with additional scope to view blind spots around the vehicle.
Back Watch a company that first became known to Mobile Mini via FORS were contacted to fit reversing sensors to all vehicles and trailers. This system provided an audible and visual warning in the cab to warn the driver that an object was in close proximity when reversing.
The purpose of the additional cameras and the reversing sensors were to control as far as is reasonably possible reversing manoeuvres.
Mobile Mini have for the past number of years used the DCPC cycle to develop the driving skills and behaviours of its drivers. The Road Haulage Association (RHA) were approached with a view to developing and delivering bespoke courses specific to the areas of risk associated with Mobile Mini’s operations. Previous courses have included SAFED, load security, and professional driving. This significant investment has helped in not only satisfying the DCPC requirements but in also reducing the companies transport accident rates by developing the skills of the drivers.
The company has strengthened its processes to try to ensure that the standards that being a Gold member means are upheld. The processes that have been improved are wide and varied. The induction and recruitment process is now more stringent and focuses on driving experience, attitude, culture and expectations. The driver’s safety meetings include information relating to driving safely and covers all incidents and the shares learning outcomes to prevent recurrence.
The follow up investigations to accidents have been improved to help prevent recurrence and training is now structured and planned more efficiently, always with the aim of seeing a continuos improvement of the organisations transport operations.
Due to the success of the transport initiatives that were generally initiated as a result of FORS in London a decision has been made to ensure all of the organisations vehicles are to be FORS compliant this will involve a detailed project of retro fitting around an additional 35 vehicles.
Since embracing the FORS scheme Mobile Mini has seen a 100k reduction in the company’s motor insurance premiums. This demonstrates that not only do the initiatives make transport operations safer they also provide a ROI due to less road traffic incidents.