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How will the clocks going forward affect your fleet of vehicles?

How will the clocks going forward affect your fleet of vehicles?

With the clocks going forward on the last Sunday of March every year, this year - on March the 25th we can expect lighter mornings and warmer evenings. As this event happens twice a year, we wanted to know, does it influence commuter driving habits to and from work?  And, more importantly, what impact could it have for businesses with commercial vehicles?

Are driver’s speeding up?

Here at RAM Tracking we’ve done some in-depth analysis into some of the UK’s main cities. We’ve been looking into the journeys made at the start and end of the day, one month before the clocks went forward, in comparison to one month after the clocks went forward last year.

Using our vehicle tracking data, the research shows that the change to longer days does indeed impact the speed in which commuters are driving. Below is our speed league table showing the cities that see the highest increase in speeds to the lowest. Manchester commuters see the biggest change with an almost 6% increase in average speed.

Did you know that the clocks going forward could cost your business almost £1500?*

We took a deeper dive into our analysis and found that even with a small speed increase of just 1.5mph it would have a significant cost to businesses with commercial fleets. The table below shows the estimated increase extra fuel costs businesses could face with the increases in speeds. 

According to the article “How many miles do vans clock up on Britain’s roads?” by the Telegraph (*1), on average each van travelled approximately 13,000 miles on UK roads last year. We based the following calculations on the average fleet size being 10, and the pence per mile (ppm) being 0.47ppm (*2) the clocks going forward could cost your business the following:

This is down to fuel efficiency, eartheasy.com report that for every 1% increase in speed = 1% increase in fuel consumption. (*3)

Chris McClellan, CEO at RAM Tracking said,

“We’ve long suspected that clocks going forward/backward has a big impact on road speeds, but we never imagined that the cost associated with this could be so large. A cost of £140 a month for a business could be spent on insurance, training or even our own vehicle trackers. Businesses need to be aware that something as innocent as lighter mornings could harm not just their delivery times but their bottom line as well. Investing in vehicle tracking allows such businesses to plan more efficient routes, provide on-demand ETAs to customers and ensure that drivers aren’t caught out by speeding fines.

Although this analysis showcases the extra costs businesses could face in fuel expenditure with the increases in speed, what it also highlights is that the shift in the clocks changing indicates that drivers are (whether they intend to or not) drive at a slower more safer speed during the shorter days over the winter months.


*1 - The Telegraph

*2 - CommercialFleet

*3 - eartheasy


13,000miles * 0.47ppm = £6,100 a year = £509 per month

58mph (av speed for Liverpool) = 58mph * 3.80% (speed increase for Liverpool) divided by 100 = 2.20 509 (cost per month) x 2.204% = £11.218 (price per vehicle per month) x10 = £112.18 (price per fleet of 10 per month) x 12 = £1346.16

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