Over the last few months, fuel prices have significantly increased. As a result, many businesses that are dependent on fuel for transport are experiencing significant increases in operating costs, adding further pressure onto an industry that has already been hit badly by Brexit and the coronavirus pandemic.
Experts warn that petrol prices could still reach even higher records of up to £2.40 per litre of petrol and £3 per litre of diesel. But why are fuel costs so high and how can businesses save on fuel costs? Let’s take a look.
Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and the sanctions of Russia's oil exports, the cost of cruise oil increased, causing petrol prices all over the world to spike.
Crude oil rose to more than $105 a barrel in the early days of President Putin’s invasion, with Brent crude climbing to almost $139 per barrel on 7th March as new sanctions were imposed on Russian oil exports.
The price of oil directly impacts petrol and diesel prices as well as wholesale fuel prices, because crude oil is used to make petrol and diesel. With many European countries relying on Russia’s oil and gas reserves for its supplies, Western leaders pledged to cut their supplies from Russia and source them from other countries.
This has meant that the demand for petrol has skyrocketed, so even though only 8% of the UK’s oil imports come from Russia, we’re still seeing price increases on all petroleum products.
Whilst prices for fuel are so incredibly high at the moment, it’s absolutely crucial for businesses to reduce their fuel consumption wherever possible in order to keep operating costs down.
One of the best ways to do this is by implementing vehicle tracking devices in your fleet. Here’s how fleet vehicle tracking could help cut your fuel costs.
Did you know that driving style can have a significant impact on the amount of petrol or diesel a vehicle consumes?
According to Confused.com, running your engine at idle consumes a great amount of fuel in the long run and for every minute spent idle, the driver could be burning between 1.077 to 2.13 ounces of fuel, which adds up to around half a gallon to a gallon of fuel every hour.
Additionally, drivers who accelerate and brake harshly and rapidly consume more fuel than those who drive smoothly.
Fleet tracking is an incredibly useful tool that allows you to get a full picture of your fleet vehicles at any given time. Fleetsmart vehicle tracking provides real-time GPS updates, routing, vehicle reports and journey replay which can be used to analyse driving styles and identify any inefficient or dangerous driving techniques, such as where drivers are speeding or being too heavy on the pedals.
This information can be found in our detailed vehicle reports, which show idle time, speeding alerts, start and stops and much more.
With the information received about your drivers’ behaviour and habits, you can take action to give your drivers extra training, where needed, to reduce instances such as harsh braking, setting off too quickly and speeding, all of which make your vehicles less fuel efficient.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, through higher productivity and increased vehicle utilisation, operating costs can fall by 10% every year and fuel use by 15%!
Fleetsmart vehicle tracking utilises Advanced Mapping that allows fleet managers to plot specific journeys on a map, making sure their drivers are taking the quickest routes possible so that they aren’t wasting time and fuel (and therefore money) by taking longer routes.
Not only can you plan routes, but you can also ensure that your drivers are sticking to them via live updates that will notify you as soon as a vehicle comes off its set course.
Additionally, if your driver is approaching the site of an accident or heavy traffic, you can also use GPS tracking to divert them via a less busy route, saving time and fuel that would otherwise be wasted queuing in traffic.
Whether you manage 10 or 10,000 vehicles, it is important to look out for where you can make savings within your business, starting with fuel costs. Fleetsmart offers the most flexible fleet and asset monitoring solutions available and are guaranteed to reduce fuel costs, improve service and boost productivity.
Reach out to our team of fleet experts today to discuss how we can help your business save money.