Quiet Cities 2014 closes on a high

Day two of Quiet Cities concluded the global summit, providing delegates from logistics operators, logistics customers and policy makers and implementers with solutions to enabling out-of-hours deliveries.

As well as hearing presentations from event partner DHL, the Noise Abatement Society and Volvo Trucks delegates were able to explore a variety of low noise technologies exhibited in the shadow of Twickenham stadium.

Natalie Chapman, head of policy – London – at the Freight Transport Association, also revealed some of the details behind the Retiming Deliveries Consortium in the capital, that has been engaged in out-of-hours delivery trials with Sainsbury’s and Tesco’s in the boroughs of Camden, Richmond and Kensington and Chelsea.

Chapman said that the consortium had faced multiple challenges since its launch in January, ranging from local elections to nervousness about resident complaints, but conceded that moving to retimed deliveries would not be a quick process: “It requires a lot of buy-in at all levels,” she said.

She also revealed that Transport for London would be providing a matchmaking service for London Boroughs and businesses in order to facilitate out-of-hours deliveries. Interested parties should email freight@tfl.gov.uk to find out more.

Tim Slater DHL

Tim Slater, managing director, transport UK and Ireland at DHL Supply Chain (pictured above), said that all stakeholders in out-of-hours deliveries needed to “raise the bar in standards, be it vehicles, training or behaviours” adding  that DHL had “a leadership challenge” and that together, with all parts of the supply chain, “we can shape the future of logistics”.

Gloria Elliott, chief executive of the Noise Abatement Society, posed the question: “Other forms of environmental pollution are not tolerated? So why not noise?” while Per-Uno Sturk, the noise and vibration specialist at Volvo Trucks explained it would require ten trucks built today to make the same amount of noise as one truck built in the 1970s.

Sam Clarke, director of Gnewt Cargo, explained to delgates that the delivery specialist was already handling a large volume of goods seven days a week, and unlocking the out-of-hours delivery window would make up for the absence of an eighth day.

Outside Brigade Electronics; Carrier Transicold; Daf; DHL; Michelin; Moffett; Paneltex,  Transdek and Route Monkey showcased a wide variety of low-noise technologies including DHL’s ‘city-safe, city-quiet’ truck.

Brigade showcased its broadband reversing alarms, while Carrier Transicold showed one of its range of PIEK-compliant refrigeration systems. Mitchelin’s new X Multi D range of tyres have a 5 db reduction in noise levels while Moffett’s electric truck-mounted forklifts run at a noise level below 60 db (A).

Paneltex showed an electric 5.5t Isuzu Forward that runs of Kuehne + Nagel’s contract with Whitbread that has a range of 120 miles while Transdek demonstrated the capabilities of its Double Deck Urban Eco Trailer, that has 100% more load capacity than a typical 18-tonne rigid.

Silent Daf

Daf exhibited the CF Silent, which runs at a noise level of no more than 72 db(A). Engine software limits the torque and engine speed, while gears are changed at a lower engine speed reducing revving.

Route Money outdoors

Meanwhile Route Monkey showed the capability of its planning and scheduling software in a BMW i3 (pictured above). Goodyear, IMS, Jimmy Beam Down Lights and K Hartwall also exhibited in the indoor areas at Twickenham stadium.

Successful start to Quiet Cities 2014

London at dawn

Over 200 delegates at the first day of Quiet Cities 2014 were told that the nature of urban freight must change in order to meet the multiple challenges of the 21st century.

In the first day of the two day global summit, delegates heard speeches from Lord Digby Jones and Sir Peter Hendy, while Stacey Hodge, director of the Office of Freight Mobility at the New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDoT)  joined via videolink.

All were united in outlining the booming population of global urban centres, the demand from those people as consumers for immediate satisfaction, and the need for business and government to deliver solutions to these problems.

Ian Wainwright

Ian Wainwright (pictured above), head of freight and fleet programmes at TfL – which proved that out-of-hours could work during the Olympics in 2012 – said: “London is changing, and so is the way we deliver freight. There is rising demand from more customers, and the population of London will rise by 1.7 million by 2031. Doing nothing is not an option. We have to do something different.”

However he did explain that 47% of HGVs in peak congestion hours were involved in construction, and it would be a major challenge to alter that supply chain.

Jason Andrews, of Croydon Borough Council in Greater London, said that its population had doubled in 20 years, and that the town centre would see a large amount of construction activity in the city centre, with a new Westfield shopping centre set to be built over the next five years.

“Congestion risk is one of our biggest priorities,” he said of planning the challenge of such large scale construction activity. The Borough is expecting 14,000 HGV vehicle movements a month over the next four years.

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Richard Fleming, logistics director at Sainsbury’s, said that the retailer now had more convenience stores (676) than supermarkets (595) and that was providing a specific urban logistics challenge, particularly as 50% of its convenience stores were subject to planning regulations.

“The consumer wants to shop more, and shop more frequently. That means we need to go [into city centres] more often with smaller loads,” he said, adding that its logistics operation – which comprises of more than 2,000 vehicles, needed to minimise mileage in distributing to this channel of retail.

“We take the ‘Silent Night’ approach. We need to respect communities,” he said.

Stacey Hodge, New York Dept of Transport

Hodge (pictured above) , of the NYC DoT, concurred: “We see opportunities for residents… and benefits for industry.”

Out-of-hour delivery trials have taken place in the city since 2007, with the 2008 recession slowing progress. The first tranche of trials involved retailers Foot Locker and Whole Foods, alongside food distributor Sysco – with drivers reporting that they felt more safe delivering at night in lower levels of traffic, and businesses reporting that vehicles spent less time being stationary, meaning more deliveries could be made by the same driver.

Now the NYC trial involves over 400 companies, including 72 of 121 Dunkin Donuts stores in Manhattan.

The global summit continues today.

DHL launches ‘city safe, city quiet’ gas-powered concept vehicle at Quiet Cities

DHL has launched a compressed natural gas (CNG) concept truck, a Euro-6 two-axle rigid Scania P-280, at the inaugural Quiet Cities global summit in Twickenham today.

The bespoke truck has been designed to be safe, clean and quiet. It runs on a blend of natural and bio-gas, with the capability to run either fuel independently. DHL said that by running a blend of gasses in the engine it will see a 68% reduction in particulate matter (PM) and a 39% reduction in nitrogen oxides (NOx) compared to an equivalent diesel Euro-6 vehicle over the life-cycle of the vehicle.

DHL door

The low-entry cab is fitted with additional side-windows to improve visibility, alongside a four-camera, 360-degree camera system, with an in-cab screen and hard-drive image recording to improve safety.

DHL tail liftNylon components and pneumatic technologies have been used on the roller shutter of the trailer, to reduce noise levels, while a Noise Abatement Society and PIEK-certified tail-lift, run on a motor operating between 60 and 65 db(A) also reduces noise. Furthermore, a directed, tonal, alarm – which allows noise outside the hazard zone to dissipate quickly, has been fitted, running at 5db(A). The tear-drop trailer was supplied by Don-Bur.

Tim Slater, MD, transport at DHL Supply Chain UK & Ireland, said that the truck was part of the operator’s commitment to making transport “safer, cleaner and quieter”.

“While I truly believe this vehicle will be transformational in driving industry towards a better future, DHL will continue to invest in innovative vehicle technology, alternative fuels, accident-prevention systems and driver training to ensure we’re always delivering the best service for our customers and supporting the UK’s environmental health.”

DHL 1

 

Viewpoint from DHL: Transport’s challenge


Consumers and businesses take freight and transport for granted. It an essential part of daily life and keeps the country running, writes Tim Slater, MD of transport, DHL Supply Chain UK and IrelandDHL-Transport3Jun14-460

While transport is ingrained in our routines – it would be fair to acknowledge that we are not yet close to a perfect system with a number of challenges still facing our industry on a daily basis.
Congestion is a problem that every driver can relate to whether from a commuter or commercial driver’s perspective. And besides the frustration that jams cause, the impact of vehicle fumes on our environment is damaging our surroundings and o
ur health. City centres are particularly being targeted for improvement and this is further enforced by legislation for emissions, with a number of UK cities being vulnerable to heavy financial fines for missing targets.

Safety is paramount

Safety is always a primary concern and top of all of our agendas, especially in urban environments where there are other vulnerable road users like cyclists and pedestrians. Freight vehicles are often bigger, heavier and noisier than the average vehicle, and in densely populated urban centres, noise pollution is a particular concern.
We need to address these challenges, so at DHL we’re aiming to make all our operations, safer, cleaner and quieter. By focusing on vehicle innovation, new urban solutions, increasing collaboration and improving safety performance, we can provide the most sustainable and efficient service for our customers and play our part in addressing some of the key challenges for our industry.

Vehicle innovation

Innovative design and technology within vehicles can simultaneously address a number of the challenges the industry faces, including safety, noise and efficiency.
DHL has invested in redesigning vehicles, reducing the power and fuel needed, for example efficient designs including aerodynamic tear-drop trailers, are now widely-used across our fleets.
Also by including vehicle telematics we have ensured our drivers are aware of how to reduce their fuel consumption. Similarly, we have developed mobile apps that support driver training, make fuel usage transparent and therefore encourage more efficient driving. As a result, our fuel economy has improved month on month for the past two years.
DHL’s global GoGreen commitment aims to reduce C02 emissions by 30% by 2020 and so we need to look to how we reduce our reliance on diesel.
As part of this commitment, we operate the largest dual-fuel fleet in the UK, alongside other innovative technologies including electric and hybrid vehicles to help improve our overall environmental impact.
Electric vehicles are also the quietest type of vehicle, and as such are likely to play a greater role in future urban logistics – especially as government is backing electric and hybrid vehicles with a £40m investment in rapid charging networks and this has the potential to make electric vehicles a suitable city centre transport solution.

New urban solutions_ISM0130

Growing cities are challenged to provide world-class living spaces and passenger transport while maintaining a vibrant economy. Achieving these aims simultaneously requires new approaches to urban transportation.
DHL is establishing consolidation centres throughout the UK to combat urban congestion and reduce vehicle numbers. Consolidation centres, sited outside of urban centres, ensure final-mile deliveries are achieved in the most efficient and safe way, using the most appropriate vehicles. Our experience shows that these operations can reduce deliveries and emissions by up to 65%.
The vast majority of urban customers want their goods in the morning, and at DHL we are increasingly performing out-of-hours deliveries as an excellent method of achieving this while at the same time avoiding peak-time congestions and separating freight transport from other road users. With the correct equipment these deliveries can be conducted in a quiet and sensitive manner. DHL is working with the authorities to create an industry standard for out-of-hour deliveries that will satisfy all stakeholders.

Increasing collaboration

Operating half empty lorries still remains commonplace in the transport industry, despite being a highly inefficient practice. In fact, the most recent figures reveal that 27% of lorries were making journeys with empty loads. Both internal and external pressures are pushing the industry towards improving this rate to 17% by 2050.
One way of driving progress towards this target is greater collaboration between businesses; by sharing transport resources businesses can cut their costs and their carbon footprint.
At DHL, we are continuously seeking to support our customers in achieving their sustainability goals and financial targets. As part of this work, we have identified potential collaborative partners (companies from the same or different sectors) and introduced them to each other supporting this new approach to sharing resources. One great success story from this is our partnership between Nisa and BP. Nisa now shares BP’s journeys for delivering groceries, resulting in £5.5m worth of savings since 2010.

Improving safety performance

DHL has also invested heavily in driver training. We do not settle for basic minimum qualifications, and believe continuous training is vital. In addition to the 35 hours of approved training every five years, we also train our drivers in Smith System Defensive Driving.
This world-leading programme has a proven five-step approach to considerate and safe road use. Our investment in this area has led to a 17% reduction in accidents and collisions over the past two years.
In September, DHL added an additional Driver CPC course called ‘Sharing the Road’. The module was designed by our Training Solutions team and was specifically aimed at raising awareness of vulnerable road users.

The future

At DHL, we’re already making progress on our safer, cleaner and quieter goals. DHL is really excited to be launching a new concept in the coming months as part of our work around the Quiet Cities Summit in November in association with TfL, Route Monkey and Motor Transport.
DHL will continue to invest in innovative vehicle technology, alternative fuels, accident prevention systems and driver training. We are particularly interested in developing new solutions for increasing city populations. This is incredibly important to us as we continue to ensure that DHL is a company both fit for the future and supporting the UK’s future economic and environmental health.

Hushing it up

Out-of-hours deliveries were introduced for the London Olympics and, while not without challenges. were so successful that several firms have continued them. Louise Cole reports

There are many reasons why urban deliveries should be conducted between late evening and early morning. Traffic levels are at their lowest, so the largest vehicles on the road can move without contributing to or being delayed by congestion. Some 80% of road fatalities in London are vulnerable road users, with cyclists the most affected by HGVs – yet 75% of London cyclists cycle during the day. Parking is also less of an issue at night.

The London Olympics & Paralympics compelled many logistics firms to give a powerful demonstration of how out-of-hours urban deliveries could be carried out. According to Transport for London, 15% to 20% of the commercial vehicles typically driving in London between 6am and 6pm disappeared from the roads – 10% of these went to night time deliveries (source: FTA Logistics Legacy).

Many of those who delivered out of hours during the Olympics have carried on doing so – but challenges remain. The London Lorry Control Scheme is still too rigid; logistics firms must often seek individual agreements with local authorities over parking; there is widespread education needed – and hearts and minds still to win –among local authorities, residents and customers.

The key message that needs to be communicated is that HGV deliveries, even of noisy goods, are rarely disruptive – and that out-of- hours deliveries serve all our other policy priorities such as clean air, less congested roads and safety.

DHL Tradeteam

Like many logistics companies, DHL Tradeteam was forced by the 2012 Olympic Games to reschedule as many deliveries into central London as possible. It first ran an out-of-hours trial with Transport for London, the FTA, Noise Abatement Society and Southwark Council, bringing forward deliveries of beer kegs and other drinks to the Swan at the Globe, a central London restaurant. Normal licensing restrictions mean the Swan cannot take delivery of alcohol before 7am, so special dispensation was needed for the trial.

The major problem was identifying and eliminating sources of noise. “Rolling an empty beer keg is like rolling a bell,” says Tradeteam regional operations manager John Crosk. “But a lot of the noise residents hear is the vehicle pulling up, idling engines, talking and so on. So we looked at the whole process and not just the delivery.”

Crews were taught to communicate without speaking: “Eye contact is the important thing,” says Crosk. Radios are turned off on approach, engines on parking. The team tried rubber mats to suppress keg noise but this was only partially successful, so they switched to barrows with pneumatic tyres.

The Swan takes consolidated deliveries, including up to three tonnes of beer (approximately 40 kegs) at each drop. Throughout the whole trial, only one noise complaint was lodged.

Despite the success of the trial, the Swan cannot maintain out-of-hours deliveries. “It doesn’t have any benefit for us as a customer; we are restricted by licensing legislation to post-7am deliveries and earlier drops would require us to pay our teams for an extra hour,” says Carol Dean, project and facilities director at the Swan.

It is important to note the customers for whom this kind of change is untenable long term. However, DHL Tradeteam has continued to service hundreds of accounts between 5am and 7am in London, with 20 routes running out of Enfield (as well as two very late routes) and up to 15 out of Gatwick.

Crosk says the major obstacle is the London Lorry Control Scheme, which forces unnecessary mileage on fleets, wasting fuel and 
raising emissions. “It needs reviewing urgently,” he says.

DHL Supply Chain for JD Wetherspoon

DHL Supply Chain runs a 24-hour operation for JD Wetherspoon, with over one-third of 
all deliveries made before 6am or after 6pm. DHL services more than 900 sites across the UK and Ireland.

It had already identified problems with conventional roll-cages, both in terms of noise and safety, when the pressure for out-of-hours deliveries increased during the Olympics.

“There are a lot of injuries with roll-cages on this kind of high street delivery. The standard security cage also makes about 100dB of noise,” says John Anderson, national transport manager for the Wetherspoon account at DHL.

Anderson and his team started to redesign their cages, adding operator safety features and taking out 5kg in weight by replacing steel elements with low-noise polymers. Wheels became rubber and hinges became plastic, and the six places where metal clanged against metal when nested were identified and modified. The cage now makes 77dB of noise, which Anderson notes is a huge achievement.

Anderson is confident that DHL and its supplier will now make DHL’s ‘Olympic cage’ the first full-security cage to meet the Piek standard for ambient noise, which is 66dB.

The Olympic cage has become standardised across DHL accounts globally, so that kit can be transferred across accounts easily. The Olympic cages also have longer lifespans, improved from three-to-four years to 10, due to the use of high-﷯tensile steel and the plastic/polymer components, which can be easily and economically replaced.

“The roll cage itself is more expensive,” says Anderson. “But the 5kg weight saving gives us an extra 225kg payload on a standard 13m trailer or 370kg on a double-decker.”

Having a cage manufactured in and then imported from China creates 120kg of CO2. The DHL cage, however, can be refurbished to give an extra five years of life, with a carbon cost of 20kg and for half the original purchase cost.

FM ConwayFM Conway Tipper

Infrastructure services company FM Conway routinely repairs London’s roads at night, and demonstrated its skill at doing so quietly when tasked with lifting 34 pedestrian islands to facilitate the Olympic cycle road race. These islands through Hammersmith and Fulham had to be lifted each morning of the two-day race and then re-laid for night-time traffic control.

Since London 2012, FM Conway’s night-time work has steadily increased, almost doubling as a percentage of its overall workload. “We are currently doing a lot of work on Putney Bridge, where we have a high concentration of equipment in an extremely small area,” says Richard Carson, plant and transportation director at FM Conway.

The company made large modifications to its fleet before the Olympics, with rubber linings in the cargo bay for quiet loading and unloading, rubber seals on tail-lifts to stop banging, and hydraulic clamps that compress the body to stop rattling when the vehicle moves. The vehicles are also fitted with white noise reversing alarms and electric sheeting systems, both for noise reduction. It has also invested in driver training for all its employed drivers and subbies, which includes education about noise control.

Its quiet delivery measures won it the Noise Abatement Society’s Enterprise in Quiet Transport Award in 2012.

Since then the company has invested in Euro-6 vehicles for quieter running. “In some instances they cut noise by 10dB against the Euro-5s,” says Carson.

Night-time road repair is essential to prevent huge road congestion during the day. Carson says there are two more crucial benefits: the first is that road repair is extremely dangerous for operatives, and his men are much safer at night when there is little surrounding traffic. And, second, they get 30% more work done when traffic levels are low.

“The public response to night-time working is much more positive since we have focused on communicating with the public, our ‘macro’ client, and not just with our immediate client,” says Carson. “If people understand the benefits, and we in turn understand their needs, it becomes a positive experience for everyone.”
Carson urges TfL and London borough councils to review the London Lorry Control Scheme, both on the grounds of safety and efficiency. “We want our people to be able to work in maximum safety. Plus we often have to do three times the necessary distance to collect asphalt because we cannot drive through central London. This creates more pollution and makes public road repairs more expensive.”

Clean Linen Services

Laundry service Clean Linen Services supplies more than 500 restaurants and hotels in London, and 3,000 nationally. Its fleet travels approximately two million miles a year using more than 600,000 litres of fuel.

During the Olympics, it anticipated higher volumes of product and traffic, so brought morning deliveries forward by three hours 
and pushed late afternoon services back by three hours.

While not without its challenges, the Olympics experience was so positive that the company has continued running out-of-hours deliveries in the capital wherever possible. Group transport manager Peter Cox says: “Overall this is making our business more efficient. We now estimate 40% of our deliveries in London are outside peak hours.”

Cox says the benefits for the company include improved customer service, journey times, turnaround of goods and fuel economy, as well as altogether smoother operation and parking, and savings from Congestion Charge exemptions. The benefits to the city are less pollution, congestion and noise, and improved road safety.

Since its successful Olympics trial, Clean Linen has invested in quieter, more fuel-﷯efficient Mitsubishi Fuso Canter diesel-electric hybrids. Quieter tail-lifts and the addition of rubber strips to roll-cages also help.

There are still challenges. The capital has shrinking kerb space and unforgiving parking rules. Noise abatement orders can be raised from a single complaint, regardless of the hundreds of non-disruptive deliveries that are carried out. “We have recently had to amend our methods again in one road where we have five long-term clients, in response to a single complaint,” says Cox. “There are also still curfew issues and problems that local authorities could address. We want to carry on with what we are doing and it would be helpful if the restrictions in London were lifted.”

Europe to see more electric vehicle recharging/refuelling points

The European Parliament has approved rules forcing the establishment of more electric vehicle recharging points and alternative fuel stations on the continent.

In a vote on 15 April, it agreed to implement a new directive that will oblige member states to submit minimum proposed levels of refuelling and recharging stations, with EU-wide standards including the use of common plugs for electric vehicles and standardised refuelling equipment for hydrogen and natural gas.

Under EC proposals, just under 800,000 publicly accessible electric vehicle recharging points, all using a common plug, will need to be established before 2020 – including more than 120,000 in the UK. EC figures show there were just 11,749 points across the Union in 2011, including 703 in the UK.

The EC also wants LNG refuelling stations to be installed every 400km along the roads of the Trans European Core Network, and for CNG refuelling points to be available Europe-wide at maximum distances of 150km by 2020.

EC vice president Siim Kallas said: “This is a milestone in the roll-out of clean fuels in Europe. This vote sends a clear signal that Europe is putting clean fuels at the heart of its transport policy and the drive to develop a transport system fit for the 21st century.”

The DfT told MT this time last year that it supported the EU’s efforts to harmonise technical standards for alternative fuels but that it was “not convinced that setting targets for the deployment of technology-specific infrastructure is the most effective way of building consumer confidence in new technology”.

Infrastructure is key to low-carbon vehicles

Dual-fuel vehicle usage may increase following the DfT’s £11.5m funding, writes George Barrow

The uptake of gas-powered trucks has increased, with several high-profile operators, including DHL, Howard Tenens and United Biscuits, adding dual-fuel vehicles to their fleets.
Away from the large fleets, uptake has been slow, and that has largely been due to the scarcity of refuelling stations in the UK, where gas road fuels – CNG, LNG and biomethane – are in short supply at retail and wholesale levels. The lack of infrastructure has been seen as a major stumbling block for those unable to house and fund gas filling stations, but seed corn funding is beginning to generate interest in the technology. This has come in the shape of an £11.5m contribution by the DfT – administered by the Technology Strategy Board – to the Low Carbon Truck Trial aimed at encouraging the uptake of low-carbon CVs.

On trial

Thirteen consortia, including hauliers, universities and testing facilities, are involved in the trial, which hopes to generate evidence of the benefits of low-carbon vehicles, increase understanding, and develop the technology. It should also initiate a publicly accessible refuelling network in the UK.
A total of 354 vehicles will be involved in the trial: 339 dual-fuel vehicles, five dedicated gas trucks and 10 powered by used cooking oil. Among the 13 active trials, there are 85 trucks reporting data, covering more than 1m km per month and consuming, on average, 900,000 litres of diesel, 527 tonnes of natural gas, 48 tonnes of cooking oil and 41 tonnes of biomethane. The majority are fuelled at private depots with refuelling stations, but 26 public-access fuelling stations are scheduled to be created, with 18 new sites and upgrades to eight stations.
Several suppliers, including CNG Services, Gasrec and the Gas Alliance Group, plan to increase the availability of renewable biomethane gas, with a number of new plants and refuelling sites. Fifteen biomethane generation projects are scheduled for this year by CNG Services with 20 planned for 2015, while LNG specialist Gasrec – which liquefies methane from anaerobic digestion in landfill – has six open access sites planned this year and four for 2015. These are in addition to its 10 refuelling sites in operation and will help supply the 60kg of biomethane used on average by each truck per day. “A year ago we were fuelling about 40 vehicles,” said Ben Sawford, Gasrec commercial officer. “Now we are fuelling about 500.”
Ed Carter, National Grid commercial relationship and development manager, said supply is key to the growth of gas-powered trucks. National Grid’s Isle of Grain LNG facility is the largest terminal in Europe, with a 15 million tonnes/year capacity. “LNG has potential as a clean, cheap fuel,” he said. “Qatar is a main source of LNG, and the quality of the methane is well within the requirements for the truck market. Next year looks like a turning point, with potentially a large supply coming from Africa, Australia and the US.”
Availability and infrastructure in the UK transport sector is set to expand as the trial continues. The last trial will finish in early 2016, but the government’s decision in December to maintain the duty differential between diesel and gas road fuels for 10 years will add a financial argument to the increasing practicality of running dual-fuel or gas-powered vehicles for the long term. However, Jon Horsley, lead technologist for low carbon vehicles at the Technology Strategy Board, said the differential should not be seen as a permanent crutch, but that the more evidence gathered in the trial, the more likely it is to inform future interventions.

Compliant vehicles

If dual-fuel vehicle usage takes off, converters and OEMs will have to create Euro-6-compliant vehicles as supplies of Euro-5 units for conversion dry up. Dual-fuel conversion suppliers Hardstaff and G-volution will have Euro-6 compliant versions this year, while Iveco and Mercedes-Benz are working on products, with a range of CNG/LNG Iveco products expected this year.
Nick Blake, Mercedes-Benz sales engineering manager, said while it is the role of manufacturers to develop technologies, legislation will govern policy. “We develop for a world market, so have to bear that in mind while looking to future legislation.”

Industry reaction

As part of the Low Carbon Truck Trial, a study was conducted by Cenex, the Department of Business Innovation and Skills’ low-carbon centre of excellence, to gauge users’ reactions to the low carbon vehicles.
The study showed that driver acceptance is significantly higher than their pre-trial perception of gas trucks, with an overwhelming majority believing they were better than they thought they would be. 80% of drivers said they were proud to be part of a fleet exploring new technology.
Operators also noted the wider acceptance of the vehicles by their staff, reduced CO2 emissions and lower operating costs. However, many pointed to a lack of infrastructure and reliability in fuel supply.