Marcos Clowes, Transport and Logistics Expert will deliver his expert view at 8:30am in the Innovation Zone at the Microlise Transport Conference at the Ricoh Arena on 15th May 2019…


Safety, reliability and efficiency are three key concerns for anyone involved in transport and logistics and analysis of the expert data collected by Microlise proves that the M6toll delivers on all counts as well as making sound financial sense for the industry.

The study which scrutinised more than 240 million journeys featuring vehicles weighing 7.5 tonnes and above shows the advantages of using the M6toll compared to the neighbouring main arterial routes.

Journey reliability and growing congestion are critical issues for the logistics industry. The financial cost of missed delivery slots can run in to thousands of pounds and affects both the transport company, the client, supply chains and driver welfare.

Because the M6toll is maintained to a high standard and designed to make entering and exiting the carriageway easier, the traffic flows at a more consistent speed.  Works and maintenance are also scheduled outside of peak hours to minimise any disruption.

The lack of congestion and greater reliability for free-flowing traffic improves driver experience and is shown to reduce the five types of behaviours, including harsh braking and harsh manoeuvring, which can affect accident risk.

Harsh braking also has a direct impact on operational costs, by increasing the cost for repair and maintenance on vehicles, as well as impacting fuel economy.

Overall, HGVs driving on the M6toll have the same or better fuel economy on average when compared with vehicles on the M6.

In addition, the average speed on the M6toll is 52.3mph, compared to 39-51mph on comparable routes, an improvement of up to 33 per cent across the 27-mile stretch.  In terms of average journey time, a recent RHA trial showed an average 25min time saving, and the Microlise analysis reinforced those findings, identifying a 27 per cent reduction in journey time when compared with the M6.

A single missed delivery slot has the potential to snowball and in worst case scenarios creates a huge amount of re-work, and can leave drivers away overnight with a potential security risk for the undelivered loads.

It is unrealistic for the logistics department to be planning journey times based solely on route distance and hoping for the best, whether during peak hours or not. There are so many variables to be factored in, so again this is where the Microlise insight data identifies the M6toll as the most cost-effective solution by far.

In summary, transport planners and logistics experts should be considering the business case for maximising their fleets’ use of the M6toll and recognising the data that shows it delivers improvements across safety, reliability, welfare and efficiency.

About Marcos: Marcos Clowes FCILT, is a transport and logistics experts who has contributed to the Financial Times, FT.com and various trade titles. He has provided consultancy services to companies including Boston Consulting, Unipart Group, M-Files and Volkswagen.

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