Public safety and utility fleets
Utility fleets are mostly light to medium vehicle fleets operated by State entities and Private companies for the purpose of conveying staff, material and tools-of-trade.
Most of these vehicles are not required by the NRTA to comply with Operator Card registration. This leaves these fleets vulnerable to abuse and neglect, especially in small private enterprises and municipal State Owned Enterprises (SOEs), and therefore a potential danger to public safety.
Should more attention be paid to these fleets?
The role of utility fleets in service delivery
As SA’s economy rapidly crumbles, Utility Fleet Operators, (especially SOEs) are being seriously challenged to space out vehicle replacements; which seriously affects fleet operating cost, availability and roadworthiness.
Capex budgets are being shelved and VSMR budgets are the worst hit - facing up to 20% cuts in spending not to mention the effects of losing competent staff as they leave for more secure jobs.
What can be done to restore this degrade in service delivery due to dwindling fleet support?
No (measurable) value.
As Utility fleet managers continue to face formidable challenges endeavouring to extend fleet replacement cycles, against sharply increasing VSMR expenditure, the problem lies in that they often fail to relate the service provided by the fleet in terms of Value delivered.
In other words, their key Value Metric is totally ignored.
Crews: Transport or warehousing costs?
Driver and crew costs are usually included in HCV Fixed Cost analysis however they also perform goods handling functions [loading and off-loading] – which are not, strictly speaking, related to vehicle costs.
This can inflate vehicle expenditure and create disinformation of vehicle operating cost. Should crew costs be considered a warehousing cost?