2 November 2015

Activa helps fleets target major cuts in fuel bills and ‘at-fault' accident rates

We are launching a new in-vehicle option for our fleet customers that has the ability to cut accident rates by up to 60% and fuel bills by as much as 20% while reducing vehicle wear and tear, insurance premiums and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Provided by Ashwoods Lightfoot® the sophisticated in-vehicle driver behaviour technology will not only help fleet managers meet occupational road risk management obligations, but also cut overall operating costs.

Activa has forged its partnership with Ashwoods Lightfoot® to give customers access to the UK’s leading in-cab driver behaviour system, which is already fitted to thousands of fleet vehicles.

The formal partnership is Ashwoods Lightfoot®’s first with a leading UK contract hire and leasing company and Activa anticipates strong demand for the technology, which can be fitted to company cars and light commercial vehicles.

In addition to playing a vital role in cutting fleet operational overheads, Ashwoods Lightfoot® also provides a vehicle tracking option. This enables fleets to track their assets, optimise their operations and keep their personnel secure.

Fleet decision-makers can gain online information showing the current position of vehicles, speed of travel and drivers’ behaviour. Ashwoods Lightfoot® also provides online reports highlighting data including start and finish address, mileage and idling.

Billed as ‘the next evolution in vehicle telemetry’, Ashwoods Lightfoot® delivers average fuel savings of up to 20% by improving and sustaining driver behaviour. What’s more, improving vehicles’ MPG simultaneously reduces their CO2 emissions, helping to shrink an organisation’s carbon footprint.

Once Ashwoods Lightfoot® is installed in a vehicle, its dashboard-mounted screen delivers real-time visual and verbal guidance to employees on their driving style. This approach directly influences driving style in the moment and empowers drivers to modify the way they drive so better driving quickly becomes second nature. In this respect the technology is a significant step-change from traditional telematics products that provide after the event data, which fleet managers have to analyse extensively and then respond to retrospectively.

Fleet decision-makers receive a weekly email highlighting the at-the-wheel performance of individual drivers in a colour-coded chart and their ranking within the fleet, organised from the best driver downwards.

Underpinning the weekly reporting, Activa Contracts will undertake analytical reviews and make recommendations, which could include driver training with partner company AA DriveTech, for employees deemed to be at risk as evidenced by the Ashwoods Lightfoot® data. The technology is part of our suite of vehicle and driver risk-management solutions and is being offered at an additional cost to customers.

Lisa Temperton, Sales and Marketing Director, Activa Contracts, said: ‘Ashwoods Lightfoot® improves and sustains good driver behaviour. It is like having a driver trainer sitting next to a driver every second they are on the road, encouraging them in real time to drive in the most efficient way possible and making sure they do not slip back into bad habits. The technology is a positive influence without being a spy in the cab.’

The focus on reducing fuel costs – typically the second biggest financial burden after vehicle acquisition/depreciation potentially accounting for at least 25%–30% of fleet expenditure – encourages employees to adopt a smooth and sympathetic driving style.

As a consequence driver safety on the road improves as actions such as harsh braking and acceleration are curtailed.

Lisa Temperton said: ‘The beauty of Ashwoods Lightfoot® is that it changes driver behaviour to levels agreed with fleet managers that are recognised as both safe and efficient. From an employers’ duty of care perspective, setting a standard and providing their driving workforce with a tool to help them achieve what is required is a diligent investment in their safety and wellbeing.’

Additionally, by encouraging drivers to adopt a more sympathetic driving style fleets can expect:

    • A reduction in at-fault accident rates of up to 60% and consequently insurance premium savings.
    • Savings in vehicle wear and tear costs – notably reduced engine, clutch, gear, brake and tyre wear – thus cutting fleet maintenance bills.

Lisa said the self-help technology from a drivers’ perspective was being recommended to customers as part of Activa’s consultative approach to working with customers.

She concluded: ‘Evidence suggests that Ashwoods Lightfoot® delivers a swift return on investment, notably in helping fleets to reduce unbudgeted expense. Many telematics technologies deliver a raft of data that requires fleet decision-makers to trawl through information. Ashwoods Lightfoot® delivers immediate results to drivers and a straight-forward weekly report to fleet decision-makers without them having to sift through reams of statistics making analysis an onerous task.’

Martin Kadhim, director at Ashwoods Lightfoot®, said: ‘We are delighted that Activa Contracts has chosen to work with us to give its fleet customers a radically different approach to telematics.

‘By empowering the driver to change their own behaviour and by delivering real-time, all-of-the-time coaching through Ashwoods Lightfoot®, Activa Contracts will enable its customers’ fleets to become significantly safer and more efficient, cutting fuel bills, accidents, wear and tear, CO2 emissions and the volume of data that fleet managers have to contend with. It’s a win-win situation for all involved.’