Posted: November 2017
RTS Waste is a leading provider of integrated waste management and skip hire that services London, Kent and Somerset. With a mixed fleet of 40 vehicles, ranging from 3.5-tonne caged vehicles up to 44-tonne roll-ons, skip lorries and articulated vehicles, safety is a serious concern.
RTS Waste’s entire fleet is fitted to the highest safety specification with Brigade Electronics full suite of systems including Backeye®360 for a birds-eye view around the vehicle, in addition to a four-way camera system which is recorded by Brigade’s MDR. The nearside of the vehicle is fitted with Sidescan® sensor system which is ideal for detecting cyclists in the blind spot when a vehicle is turning left and then alerting the driver with an audible warning to look at his monitor. Backchat® provides a real speech warning to the cyclist or vulnerable road user “caution this truck is turning.” Going one step further than silver FORS requirements, RTS Waste also have Sidescan® and Backchat® fitted to the right-hand side of the vehicle for the ultimate safety specification. Finally, Brigade’s bbs-tek® white sound reversing alarms are fitted to the rear of the vehicle to warn pedestrians that the vehicle is manoeuvring without causing a noise nuisance.
Matt Jeffrey, Transport Manager at RTS Waste said: “Brigade’s products are excellent quality but what really cemented the relationship for us was the service we received from one of Brigade’s fitting and supply partners, Advanced Vehicle Alarms based in Lee High Road, South East London. They provide retail installation on a commercial vehicle and they treat all the Lorries with the greatest care. They don’t cut back on quality or service, are always willing to help and try different ways of doing things. They really are an asset to the safety and compliance of our business.”
According to Matt the drivers also appreciate the safety systems. Matt said: “The driver’s love it. If they haven’t done anything wrong it protects them and even if they have done something wrong, it helps them to learn not to do it again. We review the recordings for driver training purposes and the cameras have witnessed a theft from the vehicle proving that this system is invaluable.”
RTS Waste has also reaped huge benefits from costs savings associated with fitting Brigade’s products. Three years ago their insurance premiums were excessively high and they were paying out for disputed claims. Now their premiums are down and pay outs have been reduced. In short, the Brigade systems have more than covered their own cost.
So as FORS silver members with a fleet of really safe vehicles, what does Matt think about the Mayor’s Direct Vision Standard? Matt said: “Any measures that ensure vulnerable road users safety are a good idea, extra glass and more vision will help, however, low cab vehicles are not ideal in construction or on a landfill. With properly installed kit including double Sidescan® and 360® the blind spots are greatly reduced- I think it is about time Mr Khan started putting the pressure on the cyclists.”