27 May Reducing emissions with LSTs
The UK Department for Transport began a trial of longer semi-trailers (LSTs) for articulated vehicles in 2012. The trial, which was initially scheduled to run for 10 years was set up to reduce CO2 emissions, congestion and collision risk, with overall economic benefits estimated at £33 million. In 2017 the Government agreed to increase the number of LSTs by an additional 1,000 and to extend the trial by five years to 2027. Participation in the trial is voluntary.
Gray & Adams also operate trailers to carry goods and materials required for manufacturing. In 2017, we realised the benefits of utilising increased length trailers for our operations, for the safer movement of our panels, floors and roofs. We therefore invested in the maximum six trailers allowed as part of the trial. These 15.65m LSTs provided space for four extra standard UK pallets compared to 13.6m. Gray & Adams opted for curtain-sided trailers which offer improved ease of access, loading and protection whilst in transit.
When the Government provided an opportunity for businesses to increase their LST fleet size in 2019, Gray & Adams was able to add a further two trailers to the fleet giving a total of eight LSTs. As part of the trial, Gray & Adams made a commitment to track and provide all trailer usage data. From the data gathered to date it is apparent that we are seeing, not only the aforementioned benefits, but also our contribution to reducing emissions.
Analysis shows that on a yearly basis we have (on average) reduced our journeys by 26% and are saving on fuel consumption by almost 2700 litres of diesel, which equates to approximately seven tonnes of CO2. The introduction of LSTs to our fleet is a truly welcome addition that continues to maximise on the safe, secure and environmentally conscious delivery of our products, across the group.