Up to a third of all road traffic accidents involve somebody who is driving for work purposes. This totals around 20 fatalities and 250 serious injuries every week.
Often it’s only repairs and insurance claims that we think about when considering the cost of an accident. However, preventing accidents and managing road safety in the work environment can be of considerable benefit in other areas too. These include:
- Fewer injury days
- Reduced running costs due to better driving standards
- Less chance of important employees getting a driving ban
- Employers are legally responsible for employees who drive for work purposes. To meet this duty of care and to keep employees and others safe, employers, managers or supervisors of employees who drive or ride a vehicle while at work should consider the following guidelines.
- Provide all drivers with a handbook and guidance.
- Ensure that all employees driving on behalf of the company are competent – how can you assess this?
- When choosing vehicles to be used on behalf of the company, they should be entirely suitable for their intended purpose and installed with sufficient safety features.
- Vehicles used on behalf of the company need to be regularly inspected and strictly maintained using the manufacturers recommended guidelines. Drivers should also make further checks themselves – Are they aware of this?
- Check whether a road journey is really necessary – and encourage the use of alternative modes of transport where possible. Do you have a system in place to monitor this?
- Ensure that journeys are scheduled to a realistic timetable and take into account the essential need for rest periods.
- Assign an authority figure the specific responsibility for managing driving at work.
- Incorporate a driving at work policy into your existing Health & Safety policy.
- Undertake regular risk assessments which deal with all aspects of driving at work, including driver safety, vehicle safety and journey planning.
- Every incident involving any vehicle driven on behalf of the company should be recorded.