The FORS standard has been updated to bring new member requirements in a move to help enhance safety, environmental and efficiency standards for all road transport operations.
Unveiled at the annual Members’ Conference, the fifth version of the FORS standard once again sets out the requirements operators must meet if they wish to become FORS accredited, which now brings an added emphasis on improving environmental operating standards. This includes a new requirement at FORS Silver for HGV and van drivers to complete the FORS Professional ‘LoCITY – Time to clean up’ eLearning module within the 24 months prior to accreditation.
FORS has also introduced a requirement at Gold for drivers to have completed either the FORS Professional LoCITY Driving training course, or a FORS Approved environmental awareness course within the past five years. This is in addition to the current requirement to have attended a Safe Urban Driving (SUD), a Van Smart (VS) or a FORS Approved work-related road safety training course, within the five years prior to accreditation.
The new standard also makes provision for a broader range of operations and vehicles, including powered two-wheelers, in recognition of the growing fleets of motorcycles and other powered two-wheelers, which contribute to many last-mile deliveries on UK roads.
Version 5 of the standard also sets out requirements to help operators mitigate against threats of terrorism. A new counter terrorism requirement has been introduced, meaning operators must have a policy and supporting procedures in place at FORS Bronze, which names a Counter Terrorism Champion. Under new Bronze training requirements members must also have completed the current FORS Professional Security and Counter Terrorism eLearning module within the 24 months prior to audit. Since its launch in January 2018, the module has been completed by over 15,700 individuals.
FORS Silver also includes a commitment to tackle noise pollution – a criteria formally only mandated at FORS Gold – and is also fully aligned to meet both the TfL requirements on managing work-related road risk (WRRR) and the new CLOCS Standard v3, due to come into force in January 2019.
FORS director John Hix said: “FORS has grown from a relatively-small London-centric operation, to encompass well over 5,000 members of diverse fleets nationwide. With this truly national remit, it is vital that FORS is flexible enough to meet the evolving challenges our members face and to help operators striving for continuous operational excellence and best practice. We are confident the new Standard moves our members forward on this course.”
The FORS Standard version 5 is now available to download on the FORS website here and becomes effective from Monday 14 January 2019 for both new and existing operators.