In our last newsletter we reported that the entire Relay fleet stationed at our Iver depot, which handles all deliveries into London, could enter the city’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) free of charge. This was because all 26 HCVs and LCVs in the Iver fleet, comprised of 18 tonne, 12 tonne, 7.5 tonne and 3.5 tonne Mercedes vehicles, met Euro VI compliance standards.
Daily charges for entering the ULEZ for non-compliant vehicles are currently £12.50 for vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes and £100 for those above the 3.5 tonnes. So Relay’s programme of strategic acquisition has meant that we have avoided a significant increase in operating costs as well as reducing the carbon footprint of our operations.
Furthermore, the process of acquiring Euro VI compliant vehicles goes on, with new 12 tonners, Luton box vans and panel vans in the pipeline for Relay’s other two depots at Warrington and Coatbridge in Lanarkshire.
Tom McMahon, our Head of Operations, explained that the average age of vehicles across the total Relay fleet was only 52 months. This has been contrary to trends in recent years, which has seen a rise in the age of both passenger cars and commercial vehicles on European roads. Key observations from statistics provided by the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) were that:
- Passenger cars are now on average 11.1 years old, compared to 10.5 years back in 2013.
- The vans on Europe's roads were 10.4 years old in 2013, but now 11 years on average.
- Heavy commercial vehicles went from 11.7 years in 2013 to 12 years in 2017.
Tom McMahon commented: “We are continually finding ways to reduce the environmental impact of our operations through efficiencies in logistics management and the use of advanced technology, which goes hand in hand with offering the highest quality cost effective services to customers. Our nationwide fleet acquisition programme is a key element in meeting these objectives.”
Euro VI compliance regulations, launched in September 2014, state that diesel vehicles are not allowed NOx levels above 0.08g/km as opposed to the 0.18g/km permitted under the previous Euro V standard.