By Gina Forsyth
Marine Harvest employees can depend on safe and reliable transportation to and from work, thanks to the company’s commitment to a carpooling program introduced in 2008. Not only does it provide peace of mind for managers and employees but the environmental impact of many dozen fewer cars and trucks on the road is also significant.
We looked into a bus service and Rideshare but after considering all the options, employee carpooling was the most cost effective, said Gary Knowles, Purchasing Manager at Marine Harvest. The crew vehicles leave from a predetermined central point, decreasing the amount of travel for each employee.
“Consumer Reports is an impartial source of information and provided the information we needed”. After much comparison shopping and number crunching, it was determined that Toyota provided
the best deal not only in terms of fuel efficiency but maintenance as well.
The total number of trucks in the fleet is 50, with 18 reserved for crew runs, which each average four to six people virtually every week day. The Toyota Tacoma works well for the smaller runs while the Tundra easily accommodates a larger number of employees. Marine Harvest and Campbell River’s Strathcona Toyota have developed a solid working relationship over the years, said Gary.
Each area – Klemtu, Quatsino, Broughton, Campbell River, and Port Hardy – have specific vehicles assigned for crew runs – and each is in charge of having the maintenance done on their vehicles as needed. Every vehicle is assigned a specific fuel card that travels with the truck.
Tracking of mileage on each truck is part of the ongoing management of the program. Vehicles used for crew runs averages 60,000 kilometres annually – a total of more than 1.1 million kilometers a year for crew transportation alone.
Social media plays a key part in the coordination of the program. A Facebook group for the Broughton was set up to communicate logistics such as who has keys to who needs a ride. The wide spread availability of Facebook means that the necessary details are handled easily and through a central location that everybody can access.
The program is really popular with our site employees because not only do they save money on gas but it cuts down on wear and tear on personal vehicles. Travelling together provides a chance for people to get to know each other too, said Gary.