Fort Wayne has been recognized as the best fleet in North America by Fleet Equipment magazine. Mayor Graham Richard today accepted the award at a ceremony at the City'€™s Fleet Maintenance Building. Mayor Richard was joined by Public Works and City Utilities leaders, Fleet Maintenance staff and First Vehicles Services representatives and employees.

Fort Wayne won the top award based on several accomplishments:

* The City'€™s Fleet Department is the first municipality in Indiana to receive the Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) award through the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). OSHA recognizes companies that take extra steps to ensure worker safety. The program is voluntary and promotes proactive safety activities and awareness.

* Earlier this year, First Vehicle Services (FVS), the city'€™s fleet contractor, received ISO9001:2000 certification, a top honor in the fleet profession. FVS is the only fleet maintenance company in North America to be ISO 9001:2000 certified in comprehensive fleet maintenance services.

* The City and FVS use Lean Six Sigma to improve work processes and employee productivity. The City also received recognition for the use of biodiesel and ethanol fuels, hybrid vehicles and a new bid process for vehicle purchases. The savings total more than $500,000.

“Public-private partnerships assist us in our efforts to provide excellent services to residents,” said Mayor Richard. “We appreciate the great work of our team to use innovation to reduce costs and enhance fleet operations.”

Fort Wayne has their priorities right. The rewards for exceptional performance are always greater than any penalties for failure,” said Tom Johnson, author and one of the judges for 100 Best Fleets in North America. “They lead by example. Their ranking as the best fleet in North America demonstrates how deep change and significant performance improvement can be achieved in the public sector.”