2020 has been a gruelling year for logistics and delivery companies as they have struggled to deal with new, socially distanced ways of working, fluctuating B2B volumes, and a massive increase in home deliveries. It has never been harder to keep your fleet and your drivers safe.
The HGV driver shortage and the traditionally high turnover among van delivery drivers were both exacerbated by shielding, sickness or self-isolation.
Volume growth has been relentless, particularly in terms of home deliveries – the most challenging of all deliveries from a safety standpoint. We’ve collected a few statistics to illustrate the dramatic surge in volumes, and the change in freight destination.
- Retail sales in May 2020 outstripped the £2,074 million pounds spent in December 2019 by almost £300m.
- In July 2020 online sales more than doubled year on year, with household goods stores increasing online trade by 79.3%.
- It’s not just groceries – the Association of Pallet Networks says that residential delivery of palletised freight grew from 14% of all network traffic in Q1 2020 to 36% in April – and the trend continued. Half a million pallets were delivered to homes in July alone.
- In October 2020, 32% of all department store purchases, 28% of all clothes and shoes, 25% of non-food goods and more than 10% of all food was bought online, usually implying a home delivery.
This all means more pressure on drivers, more traffic, more congested urban streets – and there’s little evidence this will change in 2021.
Residential deliveries have well documented safety challenges. A lack of appropriate parking and kerbspace, access problems, busy streets, and consumers unprepared for a kerbside delivery of heavier freight are only some of the issues. If not handled carefully, the increased pressure of work and these well-known challenges can combine to make your drivers more vulnerable to fatigue, pressure or distraction than ever before.
It’s also worth considering the costs of home delivery. According to experts even the major supermarkets can see , due to high last mile costs. This means fleet costs will be under more pressure than ever before.
What’s the solution?
Start to manage your fleet better, and more safely, now. SmartDrive’s video managed safety system can help to protect and exonerate drivers, monitor and help improve their performance, and enable you to proactively cut your collision rate.
Your drivers will be safer, and your bottom line will improve from greater efficiency, lower insurance claims and non-insured losses, better vehicle usage, lower fuel bills and less unscheduled downtime.
Find out more about improving your fleet safety here.
- Posted by Nicola Burgess
- On December 21, 2020