Bedford BC Balances Contract Hire With In-House Provision

2012-02-28 16:43:13


Bedford Borough Council is engaging the services of vehicle contract hire and fleet management experts, Specialist Fleet Services (SFS) to supply and maintain a new fleet of Refuse Collection Vehicles (RCV’s), operating alongside the authority’s existing in-house fleet.

Tim Cockayne, Fleet Engineering Services Manager, Bedford BC: “We structure the elements of our vehicle provision and maintenance to meet the needs of our service. Across the authority we have some 300 vehicles in operation. We strike a balance between the optimum utilisation of our in-house resources, with the specialist skills and knowledge of companies like SFS, to deliver the best value for money.”

“SFS are helping us to introduce operational efficiency improvements, such as out of hours maintenance, which reduces Vehicle Off Road (VOR) time, increases vehicle availability and mitigates service disruptions.”

The four new vehicles will be used to collect both trade and domestic waste, and comprise: 2 x Scania (6x4) chassis/Heil Powerlink 21 cubic metre bodies with Heil Universal trade lifts; 1x Scania (6x2) chassis with Dennis Olympus 21 wide body with Terberg OmniDEL Xtra Bin lift; and 1 Scania (8x4) chassis with Dennis Olympus 27 wide body with Terberg OmniDEL Xtra Bin Lift.

All the vehicles have been fitted with Vehicle Weighing Systems Load Cells, the latest LED lighting package, front directional beacons and a rear view camera monitor.

Cllr Charles Royden, Portfolio Holder for Environment & Transport and Deputy Mayor of Bedford said: “We are continually looking for new and better ways of working.  SFS are valuable partners, helping us to streamline our service and provide the best value for money for our residents.”

A member of the Rothschild Banking Group, SFS provides contract hire and fleet management services to local authorities and the private sector. The SFS team are experts in all aspects of vehicle and fleet provision including contract hire and lease arrangements, maintenance, workshop management, compliance and testing, service scheduling, support and technical advice, accident management, breakdown support, TUPE transfers, staff training and vehicle disposal. SFS also runs a network of workshops on behalf of local authorities, and an in-house facility to keep its own hire fleet and customers’ vehicles running smoothly. 

Bob Sweetland, Managing Director, SFS: ”We have been supplying Bedford Borough Council with refuse vehicles since 1998. The key to our longstanding relationship is that we operate as an integrated part of the authority, with access to all the information we need to deliver exactly the right vehicles and make service improvements.”