Fleet Driver Training and Management of
Occupational & Work Related Road Risk (WRRR)
Nearly all companies and organisations use vehicles in one way or another but very few follow their Driving for Work Policy correctly or in some cases, do not even have such a policy.
There can be many reasons for this including:
- Not including work-related driving within the overall health and safety policy of the company.
- Insufficient expertise to deal with managing occupational road risk by Health and Safety Advisors and /or managers.
- Insufficient policies to deal specifically with driver and vehicle risk, ranging from incorrect documentation and driver licensing checks through to unrealistic scheduling and inappropriate vehicle use.
- Driver assessment and training strategies being conducted by staff or advisors who have no formal driver training qualifications. E,g, are they on the DVSA Fleet Instructor Register?
Compliance to Health & Safety legislation is a major part of any company employing any number of people. The need to address work-related road safety comes from various laws and regs, and they apply to any employee from those whose main job is driving, to those who only drive occasionally for work. They also apply equally to those who use company-owned vehicles and those who use their own vehicles for work-related journeys.
In Sept 1993, the DfT and the HSE published ‘Driving At Work’ which states that “health and safety law applies to on-the-road activities, and risks should be managed within a health and safety system”. ‘Driving at Work’ also states “some employers believe, incorrectly, that provided they comply with certain road traffic law requirements, e.g drivers hold a licence and vehicles are MOTd, that this is enough to ensure the safety of their employees, and others, whilst they are on the road”.
The Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 requires employers to ensure, so far as reasonably practicable, the H&S of employees while at work. Employers also have a responsibility to ensure that others are not put at risk by their work-related driving activities.
Under the Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999, employers have a responsibility to manage H&S effectively. They need to carry out risk assessments of the risks to the H&S of their employees, whilst they are at work, and to others who may be affected by their activities. This includes any driving activity on the road. The regulations require the risk assessment to be reviewed periodically to ensure it remains valid. Employers should consider the risks to employees on the road in the same way as for those in a workplace.
There are also sections of the Corporate Manslaughter & Homicide Act 2007 that were brought in to make it possible to prosecute companies or other organisations should their management procedures, or lack of them, have been found to cause a death. The first company to be convicted by this act received a £385,000 fine.
The true costs of accidents to organisations are nearly always higher than just the costs of repairs and insurance claims. The consequences of an accident with small businesses are likely to be proportionately greater than on a larger business with greater resources. The benefits to you from managing work-related road safety can be very worthwhile, no matter what the size of your business.
- It allows you to exercise better control over costs, such as fuel, wear and tear, insurance premiums, legal fees and claims from employees and third parties.
- It also allows you to make informed decisions about matters such as driver training and vehicle purchase and helps you identify where health and safety improvements can be made.
- Case studies and research have shown that benefits from managing work-related road safety and reducing accidents include:
- Fewer days lost due to injury
- Reduced risk of work-related ill-health
- Reduced stress and improved morale
- Less need for investigation and paperwork
- Less lost time due to work rescheduling
- Fewer vehicles off the road for repair
- Reduced running costs through better driving standards
- Fewer missed orders and business opportunities so the reduced risk of losing the goodwill of customers
- Less chance of key employees being banned from driving, e.g. as a result of points on their licence.
Promoting sound health and safety driving practices and a good safety culture at work may well spill over into private driving, which could reduce the chances of staff being injured in an accident outside work.
Our training and development programmes include the following:
- License & Entitlement checks
- New driver assessments (pre/post-employment)
- Existing driver development and assessments
- Specified risk assessment as required
- Eco-friendly driver training
- Accident prevention and management courses
- Refresher training on Highway Code issues
With all businesses, there is no “one size fits all” and so our training courses are “needs-based”, ensuring that your business, and drivers, gain maximum benefit aimed at providing real financial savings for the business and a better work environment for the staff.
After an initial consultation, we will be able to advise you of any recommendations to your management of work-related road risk strategy and set out a plan of action to address any issues.