Transport for London (TfL) is introducing new requirements for fleet service contracts to continue improving vehicle safety on London’s roads. From April, all new Greater London Authority Group contracts worth £1 million and over involving vehicles will require suppliers to be FORS Gold accredited.
Fleets will either have to have a Gold accreditation from the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS) or a TfL equivalent approved scheme (Mission Zero and DVSA Earned Recognition).
FORS currently has more than 203,000 vehicles accredited across 4,700 companies within the UK and abroad. The introduction of additional safety equipment and additional driver training through FORS has led to a 31% reduction in serious injuries as a result of collisions involving commercial vehicles based on performance data submitted for Silver audits between 2021 and 2022.
However, freight vehicles still remain disproportionately represented in fatal collisions in the capital and more action is needed to achieve the Vision Zero goal, says TfL.
It argues that moving to the higher standard of FORS Gold will ensure accredited operators meet the enhanced standards which are above the legal requirements for operating commercial vehicles, further reducing the risk to vulnerable road users.
Suppliers holding contracts valued under £1m will be required to be accredited to a minimum of FORS Silver accredited. Their internal supply chains must also be FORS Bronze accredited.
Deputy mayor for transport, Seb Dance, said:
London has been leading the way in improving lorry safety through the Direct Vision standard, which has seen a huge reduction in fatal collisions where sight is a contributing factor. FORS Gold is another example of how we are driving up standards in the freight and fleet industry to build a better, safer city for everyone.