Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme FORS

by Kevin Puckett 28/09/2016 filed under Innovation


In September 2016 Geotechnical Engineering were delighted to be awarded Bronze Accreditation under the Fleet Operation Recognition Scheme (FORS). By achieving Bronze accreditation, we demonstrated good practice for vehicle and driver safety, combined with demonstration of improving operating practices and effective monitoring of fuel and tyre usage.  FORS accreditation is often a requirement from main contractors for the supply chain to demonstrate commitment to safe and sustainable fleet management.

The scheme is voluntary and encompasses all aspects of vehicle safety, fuel efficiency, vehicle emissions and improved operations.  It helps fleet operators to measure and monitor their performance and alter their operations in order to demonstrate best practice.

To meet the Bronze Standard, we were audited on our vehicle management, our vehicle maintenance, our drivers, and how we operated the vehicles. Each requirement being based around legal compliance, safety, efficiency and environmental protection.  

Top Safety Accreditation for Geotechnical Engineering

by Kevin Puckett 21/01/2016 filed under General News


Geotechnical Engineering has again been awarded accreditation from Safecontractor for its commitment to achieving excellence in health and safety.


Safecontractor is a third party accreditation scheme that assesses health and safety arrangements. Many major clients recognise the scheme and accept the Safecontractor certificate as confirmation of a commitment to very high standards in health and safety management.


John Kinge, technical director of Safecontractor said, "Major organisations simply cannot afford to run the risk of employing contractors who are not able to prove that they have sound health and safety policies in place.  More companies need to understand the importance of adopting good risk management in the way that Geotechnical Engineering has done. The firm’s high standard has set an example which hopefully will be followed by other companies within the sector.


Under the Safecontractor scheme, businesses undergo a vetting process which examines health and safety procedures and their track record for safe practice. Those companies meeting the high standard are included on a database, which is accessible to registered users only, via a website.  Client-organisations who are signed up to the scheme can access the database, enabling them to vet potential contractors before they even set foot on site. These clients agree that, as users of the scheme, they will engage only those who have received accreditation.


Lightfoot Fleet Management and Driver Behaviour System.

by Kevin Puckett 03/09/2015 filed under Equipment



Over the next couple of weeks, all of Geotechnical Engineering Company’s commercial vehicles that are at or below 3.5 tons gross vehicle weight will be fitted with the “Lightfoot” Fleet Management and Driver Behaviour System.


The Lightfoot system is designed to assist the driver to drive more safely, reduce accidents, to help reduce impact on the environment and to help the Company save fuel. The system works by providing the driver with audible and visual guidance to help them drive more safely and efficiently. Good driving includes gentle acceleration, braking and changing gears efficiently.  Lightfoot also records the driving performance in real time and feeds back the drivers weekly performance to their line manager.


By fitting the system into the dashboard of the vehicle, a real‐time and long term traffic light display is provided to assist the driver to drive to more safely and efficiently.


If the driver keeps within the green real time indicator, they will be driving as efficiently as possible. If the real time indicator switches to amber or red, the driving performance could be better and they will be given an audible warning:


The first AMBER warning encourages the driver to improve their driving style and if they don’t they’ll get a 2nd audible warning.


However, if the driver does not improve their driving style after 2 warnings, they will receive a RED penalty.  These penalties will be shown on the weekly report.


  • How can a driver increase their time in GREEN‐ By driving in a normal, efficient, safe style which includes gentle acceleration and prompt gear changes.
  • How can a driver reduce their time in AMBER and RED‐ By being less aggressive on the accelerator, following in‐cab guidance when to change up into the next gear and paying attention to audio warnings to help improve driving style.


What do the violations mean? ‐ Prolonged time spent in the red which will lead to violations being reported back to line managers and dealt with appropriately.


Geotechnical Engineering are committed to promoting Health and Safety across the Company, with a culture for continuously engaging with innovation to improve these standards.  The Lightfoot System demonstrates our commitment to improving road safety for both our own staff and all members of the public.

The Safer Lorry Scheme

by Kevin Puckett 03/09/2015 filed under Road


The Safer Lorry Scheme, enforced as of 1st September, was put in place in attempt to reduce fatal accidents from occurring between HGVs and other road users – particularly cyclists.


Under the new scheme HGVs weighing more than 3.5 tonnes will have to be fitted with additional safety equipment. This includes sideguards to protect cyclists from being dragged under the wheels and Class V and Class VI mirrors which will give the driver a better view of other road users around them.


With the scheme operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week being reinforced by police, the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency and the joint TfL and Industrial HGV Taskforce (IHTF) there stands a maximum £1000 fine for anybody found not to be fulfilling the guidelines.


Among our fleet of commercial vehicles all 48, which would be effected by this change in legislation, comply. This is either due to the nature of the vehicle not requiring additional modifications or due to the existing features which are already fully compliant.


Driving while dehydrated: the same as drink driving

by Kevin Puckett 06/08/2015 filed under General News


According to a new study drivers who fail to keep sufficiently hydrated make as many mistakes on the road as drink or drug-drivers. The study revealed double the number of driving incidents occurred when mild dehydration was induced (to a level which could easily reflect that of individuals with limited access to fluid over a busy working day). 


The numbers and types of error were similar to someone driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. To put the results into perspective, the levels of driver errors found during the tests were of a similar magnitude to those found in people with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 per cent, which is the current UK legal driving limit.


In other words, drivers who are not properly hydrated make the same number of errors as people who are at the drink-drive limit. Given the effects listed above, even if you are desk-bound on a daily basis, it’s worth watching your hydration levels.