Over 250 Stagecoach North East employees have joined the ranks of the elite and are leading the way in a prestigious global performance scheme which measures safe and fuel-efficient driving.
A total of 255 drivers from the local bus operator’s six depots across the north east have been awarded Fleet Elite status and a special badge under the driving safety measurement programme managed by GreenRoad, whose telematics system serves professional drivers in the UK, Ireland, Europe, the Middle East, America, Australia and New Zealand.
19 drivers from Hartlepool, 118 drivers from Newcastle’s Slatyford and Walkergate depots, 45 drivers from South Shields, 27 drivers from Teesside and 46 drivers from Sunderland have received the Fleet Elite standard.
Of these, 163 Fleet Elite drivers throughout the six depots have achieved the Gold badge for consistently maintaining the Fleet Elite safe and fuel-efficient driving standard for three consecutive years. 143 have achieved the Master Fleet Elite status for maintaining the rating for four or more consecutive years, reflecting the success of Stagecoach’s uncompromising approach to safety and ongoing investment in driver training.
Fleet Elite standard drivers must clock up more than 500 driving hours in a year and achieve an average of five or less events, such as harsh braking or acceleration, per 10 hours of driving over the calendar year.
Steve Walker, Managing Director, Stagecoach North East, said: “Our drivers continue to deliver impressive results under the Fleet Elite scheme. This year’s achievements once again reflect the thorough training our drivers receive and the professional driving behaviours our people display every single day while out on the road.
“Smoother, fuel-efficient driving is safer and provides more comfortable journeys for our customers, as well as helping to cut our carbon footprint.”
Stagecoach drivers represent almost half of the 9,892 drivers globally who met the Fleet Elite standard in 2017. More Stagecoach employees gained Fleet Elite status than any other bus operator – or any other company – in the worldwide scheme.
GreenRoad’s research shows that driving decisions are responsible for up to 33 percent of fuel spend, and that even experienced drivers can improve their fuel efficiency with the right guidance. To date, the use of GreenRoad’s system, together with the success of Stagecoach’s comprehensive driver training programme, has helped Stagecoach achieve a 3 percent improvement in its fuel efficiency across its operations.
Stagecoach has also supported its multi-million-pound investment in the GreenRoad technology with a dedicated annual driver bonus pot. Employees can earn ‘green points’ for greener driving, which is converted into a cash bonus. In 2017, approximately £1.1 million in bonus payments were made to Stagecoach drivers.
David Ripstein, GreenRoad, CEO, said: “We congratulate Stagecoach on its impressive safety record and are proud of the part that our system has played in helping them achieve such a high standard. Stagecoach, together with a growing number of Fleet, Safety and Risk Managers around the world, increasingly recognises the power of immediate driving feedback.
“The Fleet Elite incentive programme makes a huge positive impact on driver safety, performance and overall organisational culture, and we are pleased to endorse it. The professional and peer recognition, together with monetary rewards, that drivers gain when they achieve Fleet Elite status year after year, has proven to be an effective incentive that leads to smoother driving, lower fuel consumption and fewer accidents. We are all the beneficiaries.”