Any fleet manager can tell you that HGVs are very expensive to operate. Petrol, maintenance, and tax costs can get out of control fast, so it’s essential to create the most efficient route possible. Through smart planning, you can optimise your routes for faster deliveries and fewer surprise costs.
This article will explain the difference between HGVs and LGVs, and give you helpful tips for planning cost-effective and streamlined routes for your HGV vehicles.
What’s the Difference Between HGVs and LGVs?
When conducting your HGV route planning, you may hear HGV (Heavy Goods Vehicle) and LGV (Large Goods Vehicle) used interchangeably. They basically mean the same thing: vehicles over 3500 kg.
Heavy and light vehicles are taxed differently, and because LGV could be confused with “Light Goods Vehicle”, the name was switched to HGV. Ultimately, HGV and LGV both refer to any vehicle exceeding 3500 kg.
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HGV Route Planning Made Easy
Get the most out of your fleet with these top 5 tips to improve your HGV route planning:
- Install Fleet Management Software
→ Investing In Fleet Management Software Is The Single Best Way To Streamline Your HGV Routes
GPS trackers like Vimcar’s Fleet Geo give you a detailed route history including stopping time and speed. You can analyse your journeys and traffic trends, and armed with that data, design the most efficient routes. Plus, you can easily track your vehicles’ mileage and upkeep, so you never fall behind with your vehicle maintenance.
- Over time, GPS trackers more than pay for themselves, with the average digitalised fleet saving 60% on time and 15% on costs– not to mention 30% improvement in productivity!
Read More: What Is Fleet Management Software?
- Check Traffic Updates
- Idling in traffic drastically increases your fleet costs through increased petrol use, wasted driver time, slower deliveries, and higher vehicle mileage.
Check traffic updates throughout the day so you can make adjustments accordingly. The time it takes for HGV route planning is well worth it in reducing hours spent on the road!
- Watch for Weather Updates
Weather can change driving conditions fast, and HGVs are particularly vulnerable. Large vehicles become difficult to maneuver and more accident-prone in poor weather. Even with expert drivers, heavy winds and rain can derail heavy trucks.
When you check for traffic updates, look at weather conditions, too. If you expect windy or wet conditions, factor in extra driving time. When conditions are quite stormy, it may be better to reschedule deliveries for another day if possible.
- Allot Sufficient Time
With busy fleets, it’s tempting to squeeze in as many deliveries within a day as possible. However, rushing your drivers encourages risky driving and increases the risk of accidents.
→ Play It Safe, And Allot A Realistic Amount Of Time For Drivers To Safely Complete Routes
Make sure you factor in some additional time in case something goes wrong. After all, it’s better to impress your clients with a faster-than-promised delivery time than disappoint them with a delayed delivery!
- GPS tracking software simplifies time allocation: you can see your vehicle location in real time, give your customers up-to-date delivery times, and prove delivery.
Read More: What Is GPS Tracking?
- Drive Sustainably
Efficient HGV route planning isn’t just good for your wallet. Economical driving also reduces pollution. To do your part for the planet, your HGV route planning should consider:
- Delivering during low-traffic times
- Shutting off the vehicle instead of idling
- Avoiding Clean Air Zones (CAZ)
Utilising fleet telematics helps you reduce your footprint, because you can’t make informed fleet management choices without accurate data.
Read More: What Is Fleet Telematics Defined As?
Don’t waste unnecessary resources through poor HGV route planning. Plan to drive in low-traffic times, drive as sustainably as possible, and ensure you factor weather and traffic into your daily trip coordinating.
And don’t forget the best HGV route planner: fleet telematics. Without GPS trackers, you are left to guess if your routes are really working for you. To learn how Vimcar’s fleet management tools can save you serious company money and time, contact our customer service team today.