The current economy being what it is, streamlining, cutting costs and increasing efficiency is a high priority for many industries, and the logistics sector is no different. Interestingly, new practices for urban centres have been recommended by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT), titled Maintaining Momentum: Summer 2012 Logistics Legacy Report.
The report has been published following an in-depth analysis of the service industry’s performance during the 2012 Summer Olympics held in London. Of all the measures put in place for the event, night-time deliveries were – among some others – high on the list for raising efficiency and reducing costs. While improved communication between all parties and consolidation of loads into fewer vehicles helped to reduce disruption and maintain great service, the ability to run deliveries through the night resulted in nearly 15% less large delivery vehicles over 3.5 tonnes during morning peak traffic than there were the previous year at the same time.
In addition to reduced traffic, the clearer roads meant a three to six per cent drop in fuel consumption and a whopping twenty per cent reduction in driver hours. The report highlighted that out-of-hours deliveries, together with the Quiet Delivery Code of Practice established during the run up to the Olympics, demonstrated that not only could night-time deliveries be successful without inconveniencing local residents and businesses, but it could also prove more cost effective for urban areas with heavy traffic build-ups at peak hours, and lower emissions due to reduced fuel consumption.
CILT believe that maintaining the measures put in place for the Olympics could also help increase road safety if adopted permanently, a concern for many with 300-500 vulnerable road users killed each year in Europe due to accidents involving trucks.
Graham Inglis, CILT president, and DHL Supply Chain CEO Europe, said: “The lessons learnt by the logistics industry and highlighted in this report, including the beneficial effects of alternative urban solutions and the collaborative effort of the whole industry, have the power to change the future of logistics across the UK.”
“We must now take advantage of this ‘London 2012 effect’ and put some of the lessons learned into practice on a permanent basis for the sake of all road users, especially for cyclists and pedestrians, to make the capital city a more pleasant place to live and work.”