Terms of Reference Between Royal Mail and The CWU In Relation To A Limited Trial To Remap The Engine Control Unit (ECU) For A Selected Number Of Vehicles
Branches will wish to note that there are a number of cost saving initiatives that have been shared with the CWU as part of a project called Drive 250. This approach attempted to introduce new efficiency targets under existing agreements such as Trimble. The project was brought to our attention by Reps in the field where attempts to improve Driver safety scores were being implemented without agreement. Such an approach by Royal Mail Fleet was to contact Drivers directly to seek methods that would re-focus their on-road skills. The initial trial was run with five units in the Midlands and South Coast, via a level of Workplace Coach resource. Safety scores provided by RM Fleet were indicating an increase in all five units on a week to week basis.
Suffice to say that both departments met urgently with Royal Mail Fleet and the Project Leads raised our objection on the lack of courtesy in observing agreed levels of protocols around information share. This resulted in the projects being suspended whilst we reviewed their objectives and means of achieving them. It appeared that Royal Mail Fleet were attempting to usurp current agreements by introducing new and un-agreed measures of efficiencies that had not received a full level of consideration and that the CWU were not able to support Drive 250.
Royal Mail Fleet have since returned to both departments with a new and amended approach called Drive 350 to seek support for an initiative that seeks to save fuel by remapping the engine’s management control unit (ECU). Such an approach is considered by Fleet as complimentary to the decarbonisation journey with the desire to move towards zero tailpipe emissions for a number of our collection and delivery vehicles. The need to improve fuel emissions by reducing our carbon footprint through the reduction of CO and NOx gases will be intrinsic to that journey. A 6-month trial of this process will therefore take place in two postcode areas: BS and B on 116 LCVs and 36 LGVs. Remapping of the engine control unit which is often referred to as ‘re-tuning’ is when the settings of the ECU is altered to improve certain areas of the vehicle performance. The ECU software is overwritten when the customized software is plugged in to the vehicle.
RM Fleet have identified a supplier called Viezu Technologies that has the capability and capacity to remap 200 of our commercial vehicles as a trial, to validate the savings and process. Royal Mail Fleet Technicians will also be trained in the process of remapping which will in turn provide further savings going forward.
The main objectives are:
- To seek improvements in MPG of between 8-10% by using technology to improve driving style.
- Improve Carbon Monoxide (CO) tailpipe output
- Reduce Nitrous Oxide (NOx) tailpipe Output
- Subject to a successful trial to deploy the mapping software to a larger number of RM vehicles.
- LCVs payback period within 16.3 months and for LGVs 1.1 months.
- The best map for the UK ambient temperature will be selected to improve fuel efficiency and reduce some harmful exhaust tail pipe gases.
Wherever possible the bookings will take place outside of normal operating hours to minimise vehicle downtime, with all data being extracted from the telemetry systems and checked against the previous 12 months MPG data. There will be full local involvement of CWU H&S as well as CWU IR representatives in the trial and findings with all the usual protections around release time. The technology will not be deployed as a disciplinary tool or a source of information to be used in conduct cases. This agreement will be the subject of joint review 3 months after deployment and periodically thereafter.
Any queries to the content of the above please contact: Outdoor Department: Mark Baulch, Assistant Secretary, email address: firstname.lastname@example.org, quoting reference: 300 or:-
Processing/Distribution: Davie Robertson, Assistant Secretary, email: email@example.com quoting reference number 214.15
Mark Baulch – CWU Assistant Secretary
Davie Robertson – CWU Assistant Secretary