Transport for London (TfL) is implementing new fleet service contract requirements – here’s what you need to know

Advancing Road Safety: Mission Zero and FORS Gold

Mission Zero is a Quality Standard for the road fleet sector, offering organisations a roadmap towards zero collisions, zero emissions, and zero prohibitions. Officially accredited and recognised as equivalent to FORS Gold, Mission Zero promotes high standards of safety and environmental responsibility.

The London Mayor, recently reinstated for a third term, prioritises road safety through the Mayor’s Transport Strategy, aiming to eliminate all deaths and serious injuries on the city’s network by 2041. Highlighting the issue, the Mayor noted that Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) collisions disproportionately result in fatalities and serious injuries. Between 2015 and 2017, over 1,000 people were killed or seriously injured in collisions involving goods vehicles in London. This statistic is particularly concerning given that LGVs and HGVs account for less than one-fifth of the total vehicle kilometres travelled in London.1

The impact of these collisions is devastating not only for victims but also for drivers, with four drivers killed and 76 seriously injured during the same period. Many drivers also suffer long-term trauma from these incidents.2

To advance towards Mission Zero, Transport for London (TfL) is implementing new fleet service contract requirements. From April 2024, all Greater London Authority Group contracts worth over £1 million and involving vehicles must be FORS Gold accredited or comply with a TfL-approved scheme like Mission Zero or DVSA Earned Recognition. Contracts valued at £1 million or less must be accredited to at least FORS Silver, with internal supply chains requiring FORS Bronze accreditation.

These changes aim to enhance vehicle safety on London’s roads, reinforcing TfL’s commitment to making streets as safe as any other workplace. Currently, over 101,000 vehicles across 4,700 companies worldwide are FORS accredited, demonstrating the widespread commitment to road safety and operational excellence.3

FORS Accreditation and the new TfL contractual regulations for fleet operators

The Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS) is an accreditation program established by Transport for London (TfL) in 2008, now managed by Sopra Steria. It recognises freight and fleet safety and environmental standards, awarding Bronze, Silver, and Gold accreditations. FORS requires HGVs to be equipped with additional safety equipment and mandates high-quality driver safety training. It assesses fleet performance in environmental impact, safety, and operational efficiency.

New regulations mandate that from April 2024, all Greater London Authority (GLA) Group contracts over £1 million must have FORS Gold accreditation or an equivalent scheme like Mission Zero or DVSA Earned Recognition. Contracts under £1 million must be FORS Silver accredited, with internal supply chains requiring FORS Bronze accreditation. This initiative aims to enhance vehicle safety on London’s roads, with FORS v7 becoming effective from January 2, 2025. These regulations apply to contracts advertised from November 2018.4

How FORS Accreditation aligns with enhanced 2024 Direct Vision Standard (DVS) requirements

From October 2024, TfL will require all HGVs over 12 tonnes to have a three-star Direct Vision Standard (DVS) rating or install Progressive Safe System measures to operate in Greater London. The DVS and HGV Safety Permit Scheme mandates permits for these vehicles to improve safety for all road users.

The FORS accreditation aligns with these DVS requirements. FORS Bronze requirement V6 and Silver requirement S6 were updated to match DVS Safe System improvements for right-hand drive vehicles. This alignment means Silver and Gold FORS members with zero-star-rated vehicles, equipped with all required safety equipment, meet the DVS standards for permits.5

However, all FORS members with vehicles over 12 tonnes must still apply for the HGV Safety Permit to operate in London (https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/dvs-safety-permit-application/). Operators must upload photos showing the fitted Safe System measures when applying for the permit through the TfL portal. Vehicles registered before January 1, 2015, must comply with specific camera fitment standards.

How Exeros can help

Transport for London (TfL) requires DVS safety technology to be highly accurate. AI can significantly enhance this accuracy and reduce incidents by up to 80%.

How reliable is the safety technology on your fleet? Does your camera system accurately distinguish between street furniture, like bollards and lampposts, and genuine risks, such as pedestrians suddenly stepping into the road?

False alarms can distract drivers and potentially cause incidents, undermining the purpose of safety technology. AI camera technology addresses this by ignoring irrelevant objects and focusing on real dangers. This precision is crucial for fleet operators in London to comply with the updated Direct Vision Standard (DVS).

Exeros can assist you and your fleet in achieving both FORS Gold accreditation and DVS compliance.

Achieve FORS Gold and DVS compliance: Your path to excellence with TfL contracts

If you’re looking to contract with TfL or any of the wider Greater London Authority (GLA) factions, FORS accreditation is essential.

For businesses aiming to go beyond the standard, choosing Exeros is the right move. Our dedication to excellence and innovation ensures that you receive the most advanced and reliable solutions available. Partner with us to elevate your fleet’s performance and secure your place in London’s competitive and regulated market.

 

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Footnotes

1 https://content.tfl.gov.uk/freight-servicing-action-plan.pdf

2 https://content.tfl.gov.uk/freight-servicing-action-plan.pdf

3 https://tfl.gov.uk/info-for/media/press-releases/2024/january/tfl-requires-suppliers-to-be-fors-gold-accredited-from-april-2024-ensuring-safer-fleet-services-across-the-capital

4 https://tfl.gov.uk/info-for/media/press-releases/2024/january/tfl-requires-suppliers-to-be-fors-gold-accredited-from-april-2024-ensuring-safer-fleet-services-across-the-capital

5 https://www.fors-online.org.uk/cms/wrrr/