The Benefits Of Warehousing For Businesses

The Benefits Of Warehousing For Businesses

Warehousing is the process of storing goods that will be sold or distributed later. It is an important factor in the logistics chain and many businesses put it to good use. There are a variety of potential roles within a warehouse that helps maintain a controlled and efficient environment – For example, you’ve got your Warehousing Managers who ensure stability and efficiency throughout the operation, Quality control teams ensure products are distributed correctly and in the right conditions, skilled technicians ensure technology is properly maintained within the warehouse, and finally, packers and loaders ensure vehicles are packed and loaded within the correct time. All of these roles contribute to ensure protection, inventory and management happens within a business and there are many other benefits that go with it! 

Here at Swannells Transport, we are a haulage company offering many useful services such as warehousing in Cambridgeshire. Warehousing services can be very beneficial to businesses, big or small! Let’s discuss a few reasons, shall we?

Warehousing in Cambridgeshire
Swannells Transport – Warehousing in Cambridgeshire

It’s Necessary For Even Small Businesses!

Small businesses usually means small property and working environment, which also means there probably isn’t enough room to store and distribute goods. So firstly, warehousing provides extra space and a central location for your products to be stored! Secondly, small businesses comes with a small team with big responsibilities, so they probably don’t have the time or capability to be your own version of a warehousing manager. As a result of this, investing in a warehouse passes those particular responsibilities to the warehouse personnel, saving you more time to find business for the warehousing etc. 

In comparison to your office, Swannells Transport boasts approximately 60,000 square feet of storage space entirely for warehousing in Cambridgeshire – so we’ve got the space, time and expertise for you!

Saves You Time as a Business Owner

As a business owner, you probably don’t have a lot of time on your hands. That’s why investing in some warehousing in Cambridgeshire is probably your best option! Furthermore, if you own a business that tends to distribute products on a daily basis, who simply has the time or hands for that? A Warehousing team will handle the operation entirely for you and your business. With each shipment arrival, they will work to identify, sort, pack and dispatch the goods whilst you can focus on other tasks to improve business and income. 

Cost Efficient

Sure, warehousing isn’t exactly a small dip in the pockets, but if you think about it, the cost provides you with efficiency, capacity, economical benefits and a secure destination to keep your goods. Additionally, without the services of warehousing in Cambridgeshire, for example, you are left with multiple deliveries and destinations, requiring a suitable vehicle, packaging, petrol costs and overall organisation under one or two people. However, with a warehouse, it’s all packed and loaded more swiftly and safely under one or two large vehicles, saving money, time and having economical benefits, too!

It Makes Your Business Look Impressive

Owning your own business? That’s cool, but who doesn’t these days? If you want your small business to stand out warehousing in Cambridgeshire can help do just that. Sure, loads of businesses have warehouses, but with such an investment provides organisation, a bigger team, space and more reliable distribution, which is impressive to a customer or client. 

Gives You an Opportunity to Expand

If you aren’t looking to remain a small business, investing in a warehouse can give a great head-start! Like I mentioned earlier, potential customers and clients will be impressed by a warehouse, so firstly; it can earn you more business (and that’s always the most important step on expanding your company).

If the operation has been running smoothly these last few months, you should hopefully be seeing business improving. This gives you the fun opportunity to expand your business – from using your warehouse to only store and distribute materials to actually producing them! Moreover, you can introduce a whole new manufacturing section when business begins booming, so more products are being produced and distributed but this time, all under one big, successful roof!

Warehousing in Cambridgeshire
Swannells Transport – Warehousing in Cambridgeshire

Warehousing in Cambridgeshire…

By getting in contact with Swannells Transport today, we can provide you with a variety of different haulage services that can benefit your business, including warehousing in Cambridgeshire. To learn more about us and the team, visit our website or Swannells Transport’s Facebook Page!

Thanks for reading.

What Life-Saving Technology Can Your Vehicles Have?

What Life-Saving Technology Can Your Vehicles Have?

Due to the size and weight of an HGV (Heavy Goods Vehicle), it would come as no surprise at the severe consequences it can cause if something goes wrong. That’s why, like most companies in most industries, haulage companies and departments have been integrating live-saving technology into these vehicles to assist drivers for about a decade now, and it has seriously changed the game for these qualified drivers.

We are Swannells Transport, a haulage company in Cambridgeshire, and we ensure our qualified drivers are healthy and safe to drive these large and heavy vehicles. Your safety is our main priority, so you can rely on us to have full concentration on the road and for any knowledge on how to keep the roads safe for you and me.

How to prevent accidents?

Before we get into the ground-breaking technology that has helped us save lives, let’s talk about the common and simple ways we can prevent accidents. Obviously, this will probably only concern you fellow HGV drivers, but it’s always interesting to know! A high percentage of HGV accidents are fatal, and this is because of its huge weight and potential. Furthermore, a lorry travelling just 50mph can tear straight through a house, so imagine what it could do to a car.

Although you should be medically checked during your training course, it is important to keep your company and the DVLA updated on your healthy self. Due to this profession, it is crucial you always check up on yourself, and genuinely look after yourself, to ensure you are fit to drive an HGV. Failure to do so can cause serious, life-changing accidents that probably won’t just affect the driver and the lorry itself.

Another thing to reconsider is road rage. Sure, you have a deadline, the vehicle you have is large and slowly responsive, and the car tail-gating you are probably getting on your last nerve. However, the thing you must remember is your actions can have serious consequences, and the safety of yourself and others should be your main priority, NOT the deadline. Think about this – which sounds less harmful? “You caused a pile-up because to try and be on time, but didn’t make it anyway” or “He was late because he was driving legally and safely”? Safety is key. As a result of this, get plenty of sleep, have a healthy meal before you leave and allow plenty of time for your journey.

Finally, just remember the basics – stay legal. Keep to the speed limits, check your mirrors and just take your time. You can really save lives.

Vehicle Technology

Now… let’s talk about vehicle technology. HGV Safety Technology has helped and will continue to help make roads safer for drivers and nearby pedestrians. After all, Heavy Goods Vehicles are incredibly useful and saves huge amounts of time, despite their risks, so it’s not like they are going to be taken off of the roads anytime soon. According to a 2017 AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety Study, many of these technology breakthroughs could help prevent 63,000 lorry crashes a year. This includes:

Video-Based Safety Monitoring Systems

This technology is like a CCTV surveillance system for HGV drivers. Where cameras, sensors and other recording devices that allow the monitoring of a driver’s behaviour. Like a black box, the devices detect when a person is driving carelessly, whether it is speeding, not keeping within the lanes or just generally increasing the risk of an accident. The haulage company is then contacted, and the consequences are then dealt with. AAA estimated that this system can help prevent up to 293 deaths a year.

Lane Departure Systems

A mechanism designed to keep the vehicle in the lane, and to warn the driver vividly if the vehicle sets off course. Using a series of cameras and sensors, the device monitors the position of the vehicle in the road and if it suddenly goes off course, it has the intelligence to alert the driver via noise or sign etc. It’s incredibly clever and is predicted (by the AAA) to prevent up to 115 deaths a year.

GPS Monitoring

Special GPS monitoring devices allow companies to check in on their driver before, during and after their journey. It detects their journeys and also alerts companies if their driver is speeding or driving carelessly, like a video-based safety monitoring system. With the added pressure, it’s much less likely an HGV driver would have the guts to drive in such a careless manner and will get the job done.

Self-driving Lorries

We know what you are thinking – this sounds a lot more dangerous than a person driving HGVs, however, they have turned out to be pretty successful. The process involves up to 3 lorries where they travel in a particular formation, where acceleration and braking will be controlled by the leading vehicle, whilst steering is controlled by the human driver. This highly-intelligent system will stop careless drivers on the road and will hopefully make people more alert when being around these type of vehicles.

Automatic Brake Systems

Also found in cars, these systems consist of highly-alert sensors that warn drivers of an impending collision. Whether it is occurring from the front, behind or side of the HGV, the device immediately and obviously alerts the driver to help prevent the collision. If the system doesn’t detect a response from the driver, it will automatically apply the vehicle’s brakes.

Air Disc Brakes

Brakes with air pressure and mechanical systems that help reduce a vehicle’s stopping distance. Although it is very vital that the driver is aware and responsive at all times, these brakes will take some pressure off of the driver, making them more relaxed knowing there is a back-up plan if something goes wrong.

There are so many more awesome, life-impacting technology that can help keep the roads much safer with HGV’s on their journeys. However, we felt that these past six devices were the most exciting and ground-breaking for the industry. To read more, you can check out our blog, “How New Haulage Safety Technology Has Saved Lives”.

Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

As a haulage company in Cambridgeshire…

Here at Swannells Transport, whilst we have a passion for haulage and it’s tech, we are also a dedicated team of professionals offering a range of helpful haulage services. Let us help you! Contact us today or visit our Facebook page for more information about us!

Thanks for reading.

The Please’s and Thank you’s of a HGV Driver – Things to Remember…

The Please’s and Thank you’s of a HGV Driver – Things to Remember…

HGV (Heavy Goods Vehicle) Drivers are highly trained to drive a vehicle up to ten times the size of yours. We carry a large amount of heavy and important goods to deliver to a customer. Whilst we are in a rush to make the delivery in time, an HGV driver is mostly concerned with the safety of those they drive with. It’s no surprise that every year accidents occur regarding lorries and vans making deliveries, and while it is our responsibility, there are a few ways you, as a car-driver, can help prevent and decrease these accidents.

As professional hauliers, we want to offer you the best advice – So, as well as the offering of distribution and warehousing in Huntingdon and Cambridgeshire, we want you to understand the wishes of an HGV driver regarding the fellow drivers out there. As it is a huge vehicle, consider the fact that we need to be ten times more careful and aware of our surroundings than you, because we don’t want to cause an accident.

distribution and warehousing in Huntingdon

Distribution and Warehousing in Huntingdon and Cambridgeshire

As a result of this, here are our please’s and thank you’s of an HGV Driver i.e. things we please ask for you to remember, you will thank us later…

Please don’t park inappropriately

As a small vehicle, you can park more or less anywhere. All we ask of you is that you consider other drivers, including us and emergency service vehicles, that your space is appropriate. What we mean by this is it doesn’t cause too much obstruction for passing vehicles or even pedestrians. Therefore, please do not park on opposite junctions (unless it is completely safe to do so) or park anywhere that will block us large vehicles from passing by, as it can significantly disrupt our delivery schedule. Thank you…

Please keep a safe distance

Particularly on roads like motorways, there have been times where we have come across vehicles driving closely behind our Heavy Goods Vehicles, also known as tailgating. This can be extremely dangerous for the vehicle tailgating because if we suddenly need to break, you won’t have an efficient amount of time to react and stop your vehicle within safe time, and as an extraordinarily huge and heavy vehicle, your small engine probably wouldn’t stand a chance running into the back of us.

Additionally, as a larger vehicle we have larger blind spots, meaning that due to the long length of our load, we probably wouldn’t be able to see you if you were tailgating us. This gives you much more reason not to drive too close as 1) there is a chance we could break suddenly and even after checking our mirrors you can still be in harms way and 2) the purpose of your tailgating would be completely unnecessary, as we can’t even see you to feel the slightest intimidation or pressure. So PLEASE be safe and keep an efficient separation distance from us. Thank you…

Please understand that we are also in a rush

distribution and warehousing in Huntingdon

Please take your time…

You might be in a rush to work, an appointment or to meet friends, and whilst your social life will be much important to you than our delivery, we please ask you to understand the fact that we too are also in a rush. We may not seem it because we are still driving below the speed limit and taking our time, but providing a successful delivery accurately on time is a huge priority to us. However, it is not our main priority – that is, in fact, the safety of the load, the driver, and the vehicles around the HGV. So whilst we are “taking our time” and “disrupting” yours, we are also taking great consideration into your safety and trying our best to prevent an accident. Thank you…

Please share lay-bys

Us HGV Drivers have strict rules requiring us to have a regulated break after four and a half hours of driving, and when the majority of our journey is taken up on motorways and dual carriageways, usually our only chance of a break is to park in a lay-by and relax. Lay-bys are ideally the easiest option for a large vehicle, as it is probably the most legal and safest place for an HGV to park. Now, we aren’t demanding our own territory here, as other cars and vehicles also have the rights to a lay-by in case of an emergency, but all we ask is to share. Furthermore, often when drivers approach a lay-by, they come across a car parked right in the middle of one, completely obstructing our rights to access. So please ensure you are parked with plenty of room (and more) for other vehicles to get through. Thank you…

Please indicate

distribution and warehousing in Huntingdon

Indicating Vehicle

Finally, please indicate your direction clearly to us. Whether you are in behind, in front or next to us, it is important you communicate with us where you are intending to go, so we can prepare and aren’t introduced to any surprises. Doing this genuinely keeps us at ease when driving, as we have a lot of pressure on us anyway. Failure to do so risks causing an accident or a slight scare for us, so please help us out. Thank you…

Here at Swannells Transport, we are a team of experienced individuals offering distribution and warehousing in Huntingdon and Cambridgeshire. We aim to offer excellent service, customer service and take responsibility for our actions – that is why we want a safe and easy ride, here was our advice to do so.

Thank you for reading.

Our Daily Responsibilities When Working For a Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Our Daily Responsibilities When Working For a Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Looking at the job description, being an HGV driver looks simple as all you have to do is drive and deliver… right? Well there is much more to it than that!

As a Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire, we can assure you that working in the haulage industry is no piece of cake – it requires organisation, concentration, safety, reliability and accuracy.

Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Whether you are just trying to understand or training to become an official HGV driver, we have gathered a few daily responsibilities and factors we have to consider before going on one of our journeys.

Basic Responsibilities

As a basic job template, your daily responsibilities working for a Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire would probably include:

  • Transporting finished, raw, important and fragile goods from point A to point B, to and from manufacturers or retail and distribution centres.
  • Inspecting your vehicle regularly to ensure safe delivery and the prevention of any harm.
  • Absolute safe and legal driving when operating the Heavy Good Vehicles, ensuring no harm comes to the loaded materials, surrounding vehicles and people including yourself.
  • Planning delivery routes and following the schedule accurately.
  • Ensuring all deliveries are made on time, respectfully and professionally – treating our customers with the best customer service possible.

These are just your basic responsibilities as an HGV driver, but there are also a lot of more in-depth responsibilities we need to consider before going on our journeys or even starting our day.

How To Join A Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Obviously, every professional job requires some sort of training and practice, so especially due to the risks and responsibilities of operating an HGV, loading and unloading goods and interacting with customers, you need to be properly acknowledged and experienced. We will just go over the bare minimum for this one, however, if you would like more information on how to join the Haulage industry, check out one of our recent blogs, “Becoming an Official HGV Driver For a Haulage Company”.

Firstly, employers must be able to evidently prove they are over 18 years of age, own a full valid driving license and a Certificate of Professional Competence. These are three incredibly important things to have (apart from experience) when applying for an HGV driver position, as they are legal requirements.

You also need to be skilful for the job, such as responsibility, good time management, respectful, problem-solving, driving skills, the ability to focus for a long amount of time, great judgement etc. Skills are required for any job, they look impressive on your application and they help get the job done significantly.

Finally, and probably most importantly, you need to understand the full risks and responsibilities of your designated job, and how you can manage them. For instance, you need to know how to check your vehicle, your mental and physical state, how to plan and organise a route and delivery etc. put your problem-solving skills to the test.

Checking Your Vehicle

Your HGV should be regularly checked by yourself and a professional – Ideally by an expert on a weekly/monthly basis whereas you should be checking the basics before leaving for a journey. This includes things like tyre pressure, lights, petrol, oil levels etc. just in case of an emergency. After all, your job is running on time quite crucially and running late can affect your clients’ impression on the company quite dramatically, depending on the level of your tardiness.

When working for a Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire, the majority of the time your designated vehicle is your responsibility, so you need to check your vehicle regularly and organise an expert inspection etc. whilst your company just covers insurance, damages or other factors. Again, it all depends on your contract and the organisation you work for.

Failing to check your vehicle at these times can increase the risk of any unexpecting breakdowns or vehicle emergencies. It just wastes time, creates stress and can cause the company to look unprofessional.

Planning Your Journey

Organisation is the true key to a stress-free drive. Being prepared hours before a journey creates relaxation and a happy driver ready for the day ahead. Want to know how you can achieve this, here are just a few ways:

  • Check the weather the night before and when you wake up. This way you can prepare for any dangerous conditions you are going to be driving in.
  • Have a nutritional, delicious meal about an hour before you leave – This way you have the right energy levels and it has time to settle before you leave.
  • What about time management? Work out how long it will take to get there, plan your route and then consider adding extra time to your journey duration in case of any emergencies or traffic that could arrive.
  • Will you need anything for the journey ahead? For example, water? snacks? entertainment (things that aren’t too distracting) such as podcasts or CDs etc.

This might be your job, but it is your journey, so make yourself safe, organised and comfortable ready for the delivery ahead.

Taking Care of Yourself

A huge responsibility you should be doing even if you aren’t an HGV driver is taking care of your physical and mental state. This includes eating properly, sleeping regularly, keeping yourself active and regularly exercising etc. Not being in a fit state can really affect your journeys and personal reliability, causing you to not only NOT enjoy the journeys but also potentially become an unsafe driver.

If this is quite a difficult challenge to you, ensure that you at least do it the night before i.e. have a healthy meal, a relaxing evening, a night of great sleep and an energetic breakfast ready for your journey.

As a Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire, where there are a variety of villages, towns and cities full of busy roads and construction, we understand the risks and responsibilities of loading, unloading and transporting goods to and from relevant locations. We are an excellent, experienced team of individuals that obey these daily responsibilities we have just listed above. If you are looking for a high-quality haulage and transportation service, contact us today!

Thank you for reading.

How To Enjoy A Long Journey

How To Enjoy A Long Journey

Warehousing Companies in Cambridgeshire

Warehousing Companies in Cambridgeshire

As a part of Haulage and Warehousing Companies in Cambridgeshire, experienced and reliable individuals are tasked with long journeys almost every day, with the responsibility of delivering potentially fragile and/or dangerous goods to a client. Due to the weight and the size of the vehicle, and the conditions you have to drive in, allocating the right driver for the job can be a difficult situation because they have to be properly trained and experienced as well as know how to be safe driving a Heavy Goods Vehicle.

For example, your mental health is extremely important to us, and it is essential that you have the right trust in yourself and are in an exceptional state to drive these huge vehicles a long distance. Not only will this build a trusty relationship between manager and worker, but will prevent more accidents involving HGV’s.

At Swannells Transport, we want our trained drivers to enjoy the journey, rather than tolerate it. There can be a real pleasure in driving long distances – despite the potential bad weather, congested roads and the risk of damaging the loaded goods, a healthy state will enjoy the freedom, the scenery etc.

We want to help out our fellow drivers who have to face long journeys daily, here are our top tips on how to enjoy a long journey when working for warehousing companies in Cambridgeshire:

Keep Yourself in Check

You can’t enjoy a journey if you are hungry or tired, it’s also really unsafe! Make sure you have a good nights sleep the night before and a good old breakfast in the morning. The energy will keep you going and focused on your long journey. Also, it might be a good idea to allow extra journey time, in case of an emergency or you need to stop!

Prepare Well!

To make the journey as enjoyable as possible you should have your vehicle checked over before leaving for your long journey, and if you do. You can do this by:

    • Having your vehicle regularly checked.
    • Making sure you have enough petrol, and that you take a route with a petrol station nearby.
    • Making sure your seatbelt works and you wear it at ALL TIMES.
    • Adjusting your head restraint so it is the right height for you – the widest part of the restraint should be in line with the top of your ears. Doing so can help prevent neck injuries in case of an accident.
    • The load is properly secure and spread in your vehicle.
    • You have checked the weight limitations of your vehicle and made sure the load you will be carrying is obeying those limitations.

Warehousing Companies in Cambridgeshire

Warehousing Companies in Cambridgeshire

Take Advantage of Your Radio

Depending on what vehicle you have can depend on the features provided for you. You can enjoy some musical entertainment by putting on the radio, you could download a podcast on your phone then listen to it in your vehicle using an AUX cable (although you need to have an AUX plug) or you could even listen to an audiobook! When you are driving a large, heavy vehicle you need to keep focused at all times, and these three activities are easy to set up and will keep you entertained for a few hours.

Stop Regularly

Like I said earlier, you will have to allow extra time by leaving earlier, but making time to stop driving, whether it is just a stretch and a walk or enjoying some food in a cafe, can really make all of the difference. You might just be sitting down and moving your arms for a few hours, but everyone can understand the struggle of a long journey, especially as you are constantly focused on the road and not damaging the load inside.

Keep Hydrated

On top of all of that, you should also have plenty of water and snacks close by. Driving can not only be exhausting, but your constant focusing can cause you to become hungry and dehydrated, and not having food and drink with you can make you quite irritable, where you, therefore, can’t enjoy your long journey. Keep yourself refreshed and energised with some food and drinks in arms reach.

At Swannells Transport, we aren’t just one of those warehousing companies in Cambridgeshire, we are an experienced, leading team of individuals ready to deliver the highest standards of professional service we could possibly provide. Contact us today for more information

Thank you for reading, enjoy your journey!

Preparing For a Long Journey in Your Lorry – Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Preparing For a Long Journey in Your Lorry – Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

We are a Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire, hoping to help you prepare you and your HGV for a long journey…

As an official HGV driver taking on a long journey, it’s important you are prepared both physically and mentally for it. Whether you are a qualified driver or training to be one, everyone should know the risks of driving (or driving nearby) a Heavy Goods Vehicle. Not to worry, as we have collected a few tips and protocols you can use to prepare for your long journey.

Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Loading The Vehicle

As the driver, it is your responsibility to be aware of the load you are carrying, including the weight and fragility of it. You also need to make sure the load is secure in the correct manner, in order to prevent any damage to the products and an unhappy customer. As a general rule, it would be an effective idea to distribute the weight of the load evenly to increase the stability, with the centre of gravity of the load kept as low as possible.

Overall, there are lots of things to think about and the information you need to know about when loading your vehicle, such as:

  • Calculating the payload.
  • Knowing the weight limit of your vehicle.
  • Is the load fully secure?
  • Does the load need to be covered? (in case of weather conditions etc.)
  • Consider harsh braking or any sudden acceleration.
  • Are you going to stop for a break? If so, it would be a good opportunity to check the load when you stop.
  • Know about the load – the vehicle operator MUST give you information on the load, including procedures to take in case of an emergency.
  • Be prepared to lift loads safely – there is a chance you will be lifting and doing some manual work before/after your journey, so making sure you have the right knowledge, equipment and health to do so, you can prevent an injury.

Are You Fit Enough To Drive?

Whether you are driving on a holiday with your family or travelling alone in a lorry, you need to make sure you are fit enough to drive. All it takes is one mistake to cause injury, damage to your vehicle, mental health issues or even death, so is it worth it? As an official HGV driver, you should know the correct conditions to be in in order to be fit enough to drive, and what to do to avoid your wrong state approaching.

In order to keep yourself fit enough to drive, there are many long-term and short-term procedures you can take to ensure safe journeys. Regarding short-term, this involves having a healthy dinner and a great sleep the night before, as well as making sure you have no alcohol or drugs in your system and you have the right essentials in the vehicle with you such as water, snacks, tissues etc. Small little things can contribute to how you feel in the morning, so ensuring you have the right energy and motivation levels will make your journey a lot more fun and most importantly, safe.

On the other hand, long-term factors include getting regular medical checks and physiotherapy (if you have an injury) will give you the complete green light that you are healthy enough to make this journey. Even before you become an official HGV/LGV driver you need to hand in an up-to-date medical report with your application. This is to prevent any companies hiring someone unhealthy, as these jobs are no walks in the park.

Knowing & Following Drivers’ Rules

When you are driving in any vehicle you should ALWAYS be obeying the law i.e. no dangerous driving, following the speed limits and no driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. However, when you are driving a Heavy Goods Vehicle, you also need to follow a few more laws, such as the Drivers’ hours rules.

Furthermore, having an accident in a car can be fatal, but having an accident in an HGV can be catastrophic! That’s why there are official rules that prevent professional drivers working for a haulage company from being in control of their vehicle for too long, in order to prevent serious accidents. It has been reported that one in six serious accidents are caused by a driver falling asleep at the wheel, so these rules are put in place to decrease that rate. Fail to follow these rules and you (and your employer) could face a punishable fine and the potential risk of losing your HGV license.

On your long journey, make sure you take regular breaks to get your energy levels back up, even if it’s overnight!

As a Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire, we have a team of experienced professionals all trained with the right knowledge and control of our heavy good vehicles all to provide you with great customer service and a safe time on the road. Let us deliver you with the best service by contacting us today!

Thank you for reading, stay safe!

Simple Ways You Can Help The Environment – Haulage Companies in Cambridgeshire

Simple Ways You Can Help The Environment – Haulage Companies in Cambridgeshire

If you work somewhere in the haulage industry, you should know the dangers and risk of driving in and nearby HGV’s (Heavy Goods Vehicles). Furthermore, not only does the heaviness and size of the vehicle give smaller ones a potentially life-life-threatening risk, but it’s contribution to pollution levels aren’t exactly good to the environment, either.

HGV’s are incredibly useful and beneficial to organisations, especially those that make frequent deliveries. Because of this, we highly doubt we will see the number of large vehicles on the road decrease because of the environmental issues it causes. It is easy to forget how some of the little things can have a major impact on the environment – and there are many small effortless actions you can take to help the environment. Regarding haulage companies, here are a few things you can do that can be more environmentally friendly as a professional driver:

Haulage Companies in Cambridgeshire

Haulage Companies in Cambridgeshire

Plan Your Route – Planning your journey route before you leave will ensure you make the delivery on time and improve the efficiency of the company you are representing. By using the right technology (if you have access to it) such as a Sat Nav, the right journey route can be made for you, by avoiding bad weather or trafficking that will add driving time. This will help improve the environment because less mileage is being driven due to the awkward directing, so less petrol is used and pollution levels aren’t as increased.

Reduce Idling Time – If you aren’t planning on moving, turn your engine off! Same goes lights, computers, TV’s and the radio; it saves money and energy dramatically. Take advantage of places such as truck stops to save you on petrol and emitting greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere pointlessly.

Make Several Distributions – If you have more than one delivery to make, and you have enough room to merge the loads, then it only makes sense to make all the deliveries in one stop, right? This maximises trucking efficiency and saves petrol, further reducing vehicle emissions. In addition to this, ensure that the extra load you take doesn’t go over the weight limit of your HGV, is organised into the correct deliveries and isn’t filled up to cause damage to the load.

Relocate – If you have the money for it, and are really looking to reduce your carbon footprint, owning one central distribution centre could have a less environmental impact than a dispersed distribution system. This point mainly goes for companies that make and receive deliveries to and from warehouses.

Reduce Your Speed – Driving at 50mph uses 25% less fuel than 70mph, so slowing down will not only make your journey safer but will keep the air cleaner too.

Thank you for reading, be safe!

Becoming an official HGV driver for a haulage company

Becoming an official HGV driver for a haulage company

HGV (Heavy Goods Vehicle) drivers are responsible for the transportation of goods between suppliers and customers. It is a significant job that requires a wide amount of knowledge and awareness. You probably pass these huge vehicles every day but have you ever considered what it takes to be qualified to be behind the wheel of one? If so, that is precisely what we are talking about today.

HGV Drivers

Haulage Company in Cambridgeshire

Before you become an official HGV driver…

Employees must provide valid evidence that they:

  • Are 18 years old or more.
  • Have a full driving license.
  • Have a Certificate of Professional Competence.
  • Have completed a training course/apprenticeship relevant to the job (this only applies to some jobs.

Failure to provide this will result in your application being rejected. Not only do you need these significant requirements, but you need to be well informed on the job you are applying for, especially for this industry. This meaning, you need to understand the dangers and benefits of entering the profession. For example, balance the facts that although you will become acquainted with different parts of the country, whilst meeting new people, representing the brand AND getting paid simultaneously, you will also be driving a huge vehicle containing important, fragile goods, all in various weather conditions and surrounded by pedestrians and other much smaller vehicles.

The whole team at Swannells Transport are fully educated and qualified to drive our heavy goods vehicles and are fully aware of both the benefits and dangers of this profession.

Responsibilities of an HGV driver:

According to The Telegraph, the daily responsibilities HGV driver’s may have to face every day are:

  1. Plan and take delivery routes that provide the best journey productivity.
  2. Coordinate and organise drop-offs and pick-ups with customers.
  3. Supervise the loading and unloading of deliveries.
  4. Ensure products are safe and secure in the vehicle.
  5. Check routes for alterations i.e. traffic, accidents, roadworks.
  6. Inspect lorries thoroughly before leaving for journeys.
  7. Logging hours and filling in delivery forms.
  8. Responsible for any maintenance of the vehicle.
  9. Reports any accidents or issues with the company dispatcher.
  10. Be polite and respectful to all customers, represent the brand.

Skills of an HGV driver:

For any job in any industry it’s important you have some sort of skills to expose in your application or portfolios. For an HGV driver, some of the typical (and obvious) skills you may need are:

  • Excellent driving skills.
  • Road safety knowledge
  • Independent work.
  • Concentration/alertness.
  • Customer service skills.
  • Manners and politeness.
  • The ability to complete paperwork on time and accurately.
  • Good physical stamina.
  • Time management.

After you have become an official HGV driver…

So we have discussed what you need to do before you become an official HGV driver, but what about after you have become qualified?

Well, HGV drivers can continue training to obtain qualifications such as an Advisory Dangerous Goods by Road (ADR) Certificate – meaning that they can handle more hazardous materials and drive a tanker.

You can also work your way up the career ladder, upgrading to higher paying positions such as an LGV instructor or maybe even the manager of an HGV company.

Here at Swannells, we are a group of confident, educated and qualified drivers, contact us today or visit our careers page to find out more!

Thanks for reading.

How New Haulage Safety Technology Has Saved Lives…

How New Haulage Safety Technology Has Saved Lives…

In 2015, HGV’s were involved in more than 400,000 accidents, that resulted in 4,000 deaths and 116,000 injuries. As devastating as that sounds, Lorries and large transportation vehicles are highly significant to companies and the distribution industry, and as the numbers continued to rise as the years have gone by, the safety standards have risen as well.

Well, companies and organisations, over the past few years have been developed, or have developed, amazing new technology that has been proven to make driving HGV’s easier and even save thousands of lives. I mean, these numbers above were unacceptable, and whilst these new devices aren’t going to completely stop fatalities or serious injuries caused by large vehicles, decreasing the numbers is a good start.

Some of these new advanced technologies include:

  • Lane Departure Warning Systems – a Mechanism designed to keep the vehicle in the lane, and preventing it from drifting out in harsh weather conditions or by mistake. There are lots of different levels of this technology; ranging from a noise as an alert to get you back in the lane to steering the car back into position automatically, it’s incredibly clever. Analytics has shown that installing these systems on all large vehicles can prevent 6,372 crashes, 1,342 injuries and 115 deaths each year.
  • Video-based Safety Monitoring Systems – cameras and sensors that help monitor the driver’s performance, and can give feedback to the driver to suggest actions for a safer, easier drive. Analytics has shown that installing these systems on all large vehicles can prevent 63,000 crashes, 17,733 injuries and 293 deaths each year.
  • Volvo Trucks New System – Volvo Trucks have developed a new system that does a 360-degree scan around the vehicle to monitor anything happening around it. It will then suggest actions or alert the driver to avoid any incidents and make the journey safer for everyone. This was mostly created to protect pedestrians and cyclists, so hopefully, it’s enough to save more lives.
  • Self-Driving Lorries – This is the latest breakthrough in haulage technology, out of the 4. Furthermore, up to 3 lorries will travel in formation, as a test, where acceleration and braking will be controlled by the leading vehicle, whilst steering is controlled by the human driver.

These were just a few examples, as there is so much more technology that has been developed/is in development that has similar aims – to make the roads much safer for drivers.

technology

It is awfully scary driving next to an HGV, especially because the vehicle is more than triple the size of yours. However, driving the vehicle is just as scary as driving next to one, as it is the driver’s responsibility to be aware of his surroundings, and to distribute the delivery safely and on time.

What we are trying to say is, as dangerous as these vehicles are, you yourself should stay alert at all times and be aware that:

  • They have larger/more blind spots.
  • If you can’t see them, they can’t see you.
  • You should leave a safe distance.
  • You should watch out for indications.
  • Just because they have this safety technology, doesn’t mean you still shouldn’t be alert of these heavy vehicles.

Thank you for reading.

Being Smart and Safe on a Motorway

Being Smart and Safe on a Motorway

Every year, almost a quarter of injuries/accidents, caused by heavy goods vehicles, result in fatalities or serious injury – and given the nature of HGV crashes, it’s no wonder the government and the FTA (Freight Transport Association) have joined forces to offer efficient safety training for drivers who travel on smart motorways.

By ‘smart motorways’ we mean certain motorways that are designed to reduce congestion, by adding significant capacity to much-needed areas and improve the reliability of journey time. The 8 hour, single-day course covers both the history and future of smart motorways, including signals, driver behaviour, motorway laws and traffic officer roles etc. and as hauliers are the most frequent users of these types of motorways, and also one of the most dangerous vehicles on the road, this course would be ideal for any individual that works in the haulage industry.

Lorries and any other HGV’s are incredibly large and heavy, also making them incredibly dangerous – so it’s important you take precautions when driving them/close by one, for instance:

Driving an HGV:

  • Ensure you are healthy, both physically and mentally, enough to drive a large vehicle. Going onto the road in any vehicle unconfidently can potentially cause a major accident, so think about yourself in order to keep others safe.
  • Ensure you understand the laws of the road and haulage industry i.e. the highway code etc.
  • Inspect your vehicle before you leave. Make sure you have the right documents (and even your driving license), wheels are healthy, and that you have a spare one in case of an emergency, your vehicle isn’t breaking any weight restriction rules.
  • When on the road, you don’t attempt to overtake another vehicle, whether that is a haulage, commercial or basic vehicle, on the motorway. It can be highly dangerous and should only be done if completely necessary and observations are safe and clear in other directions.
  • When on the road, you don’t attempt to tailgate other vehicles, especially smaller ones. It can be rather intimidating for smaller vehicles to be closely followed by a much larger vehicle, decreasing their concentration and observation and thus increasing the chance of a severe accident caused.
  • Observe at all times! You need to constantly remind yourself that you are in a much bigger vehicle than others on these motorways, so you are therefore a lot more lethal. Observing everywhere ensures you are safe and decreases the chance of a potentially fatal accident.

Driving close to them:

  • Do not drive closely behind a large vehicle – if they have to break in case of an emergency it can cause very serious consequences for you and the passengers in your car, and they may not be able to see you.
  • If you plan on overtaking an HGV on a motorway, don’t mess about; stick to the speed limit but ensure the process is done quickly and safely, and avoid driving next to them for the longest time, as this can be quite intimidating.
  • Similar to the first rule, leave a time gap of a couple of seconds when driving behind an HGV, especially in particular weather conditions. This ensures you enough time to prepare in case of an emergency stop or action from the driver that causes you to react.
  • Be patient, it is a large, very heavy vehicle containing important goods… it’s their job, so think about each other’s safety, and don’t attempt to do anything that could possibly worry or confuse the driver.

motorways

Back to the topic of the available course, Malcolm Bingham, the Head of the Road Network Management Policy at the FTA believes that this course is ‘the right way forward’, that ‘providing drivers with true guidance on how to use the network and not adding confusion about which parts of the road they can use and when’. Any company or worker that wants their staff to sharpen up their skills on motorways or HGV’s, in general, should take this course into consideration, as the safety on the road is a huge problem that is overlooked.