G.F Gordon Plant Hire is a professional haulage company, specialising in site clearance, muck away and aggregate deliveries. We are based in Purfleet, South Ockendon. There are two company directors, myself, Ross Gordon and Arran Gordon. G.F Gordon Plant
Hire is a family run business who have been working within the FORS standard for a number of successful years. Working with FORS has enabled us to formally demonstrate our commitment in reducing our fuel and emissions, raising awareness of current legislation and providing
regular training opportunities for both our employees and members of the management team.
How we found out about FORS
We have been FORS accredited for a several years and first achieved this accolade in 2010. Initially, became aware of FORS through our clients, in and around London and the South East. Initially, we were interested in working to a higher standard through improving our environmental footprint performance, road safety and awareness and to increase our client base. FORS has enabled us to do this and much more, offering further training opportunities for our management team and our employees. We have actively incorporated the FORS standard into our daily routine, progressing from Bronze, to Silver and Gold.
Our experience of the initial Bronze audit was very positive, passing the audit gave us confidence in our services and in the foundations of our business, including employee training, vehicle safety and equipment. Achieving Bronze encouraged us in developing our company further regarding further training opportunities, vehicle developments and reductions on fuel and emissions through a variety of initiates.
Progression from silver to gold
We wanted to demonstrate our commitment to the FORS scheme by progressing from silver to gold, we strive to achieve the highest of standards and feel that achieving gold enables us to so. Gold provides further training opportunities for all employees, which benefits our company through improved knowledge and employee competence.
We strive to aim for the highest of standards and continual progression for management and fleet operators, and can proudly say that through FORS approved training, all of our drivers have achieved a variety of certificates, inclusive of Safe Urban Driving and Vulnerable Road User Safety training. Our management team have also completed CPC training and have attended Practitioner Workshops. The FORS Standard enables us to continually improve our business through thinking of and creating new initiatives that will improve our impact on the environment by lowering emissions, improve on safety initiatives for both fleet operators and vulnerable road users, and keep our knowledge up-to-date with current road industry news.
Being accredited in the FORS Standard continues to increase our prestige within the industry and allows us to work with other FORS accredited businesses alike. There are several benefits that being FORS accredited has provided, we have found that the FORS practitioner workshops have been of particular benefit as this has enabled further training for our management team and drivers, this has also enabled us in raising particular awareness for our drivers in ‘Counter Terrorism’, ‘Safe Urban Driving’ and highlights key points of awareness such as vulnerable road users. Other benefits include the use of the FORS driver’s license checking service.
‘All our drivers are assessed by our qualified assessors and undergo a half day induction. Their license and credentials are also checked before they get behind the wheel of any of our vehicles. Our drivers have Vulnerable Road Users and Safe Urban driving training’. – Ross Gordon, Company Director.
‘We have fitted our vehicles with state-of-the-art technology to ensure they are safer, with vulnerable road users in mind’ – Arran Gordon, Company Director.
From 2017 to 2018, there has been a 65% decrease in the number of accidents and incidents seen on the road by Gordon Group drivers. This is due to our improved communications with our drivers, induction and refresher training and FORS approved training courses, as well as the safety equipment that is fitted on all our vehicles. We ensure that all new vehicles to the fleet are fitted with the necessary safety features in order to keep other, vulnerable road users safe. Safety equipment includes our camera systems, safety bars and warning signage which are essential for eliminating blind spots around the vehicles, especially when performing manoeuvres, reversing and left-hand turns.
Incidents per 100,000 Kms
Number of PCNs
The increase in CO2 is due to the business expanding, and growing, however in future we are looking to normalise this. We have been actively reducing our CO2 emissions by upgrading the vehicle type, (of which we are due to introduce 7 Euro 6D engines to our fleet in September 2019) and efficiency as part of our carbon reduction strategy.
Driver health and fitness reviews
We ensure that drivers health and fitness is reviewed on a regular basis, especially in the occurrence of an incident/ accident on the road, drivers are often requested to update their health and fitness checks, particularly if there is a change to their health,
i.e. eyesight, diabetes etc.
We currently employ 44 staff members, 38 of which are our drivers. All employees undergo an induction and are made aware of the FORS standard and the wide variety of training opportunities. We recruit our employees through a range of strategies including social media, our website and word of mouth, i.e. through clients etc. This has enabled us to wider advertise the opportunities and ensure we can recruit appropriate drivers for the roles whilst aligning with the ethos of our equalities opportunities policy.
We ensure that a noise assessment is completed and reviewed on a regular basis and adapted as necessary. Our noise assessment measures the volume of noise created by our vehicles and the noise levels of our business centre, it includes times of driving, parking, loading and unloading vehicles, repairs, maintenance and servicing of the vehicles. We ensure that our noise levels are kept to a minimum so as not to disturb others around us, i.e. residents. Our employees are made aware of our noise assessments and have been made aware of the code of conduct which highlights the appropriate behaviour we expect from our employees including anti-idling controls and restricted timings for sensitive locations (i.e. residential areas).
Model shift & alternative vehicles
We have considered suitable alternative vehicles, and methods of transport, but due to the nature of our industry and technological limitations we are currently unable to use alternative means of transport. We do, however, have a modern fleet of vehicles which have a good environmental credentials given the vehicle type and striving to continually improve this as part of our environmental objectives in alignment with the standard to which we are certificated; ISO 14001:2015. We shall continue to review model shift and use of alternative vehicles.
Plans for the future
We are constantly updating our fleet and strive for the best quality to ensure that our emissions are reduced on an annual basis, in an attempt to achieve this, we have on order, seven Euro 6D engines which are due to arrive in September 2019. The Euro 6D engine is much more energy efficient, and therefore much better for the environment.
In addition to this, we are currently revising our company initiatives by introducing a ‘Travel to Work’ scheme by where we encourage our employees in taking part in car share schemes, travelling to work using alternative transport i.e. cycling or public transport where this is practical. We also ensure that all training is updated on a regular basis, including management who are currently updating their FORS workshop training.
We actively promote FORS through the use of logos displayed on our vehicles, website, social media platforms and email signatures. We ensure that any third-party contractors that we use are FORS accredited to a minimum of Silver in order to ensure that we are working towards the same standard. We actively encourage others in the industry adopting the FORS standard into their business and daily activities.
What FORS means & conclusion
FORS has been a positive impact upon our company and has motivated us to reaching high levels of performance by improving our knowledge, through FORS and FORS approved training courses, the implementation of daily activities, safety initiatives and considering our environmental impacts. We have been able to identify areas of strength as well as areas that have required further improvements, which have been achieved through the FORS standard. We have been incredibly successful and wish to maintain this at the level of Gold through continuous development such as training for all employees, safety equipment developments, monitoring of our environmental impacts and remaining up-to-date with current news within the industry.
We communicate our FORS achievements through our social media account (Facebook) under the name of G F Gordon Group, and our website, which can be found at:
*Please note: All published FORS Gold case studies have been submitted by the accredited company named above and transcribed verbatim