03 Sep Implementing Truck Fleet Safety Programs
For any fleet operator, on-road safety is undoubtedly a primary concern. Yet the implementation of truck fleet safety programs has been largely absent from many commercial operations.
To ensure drivers are consistently operating at a safe and efficient level, there is increasing pressure on freight and transport industries to introduce specific fleet safety programs.
These kinds of structured safety procedures assist drivers to better understand best practice within their industry and help them to retrain what are often unconscious habits on the road. They’re also a fantastic way to reduce road-related costs and minimise the potential for vehicle damage.
But what makes an effective truck fleet safety program? And more importantly, how can you implement one within your company?
Understand your drivers
Knowing who your drivers are and understanding exactly how they use both company and personal vehicles is the first step in developing a fleet safety program. To ensure you’re able to implement the right processes for your company, consider whether:
- You subcontract to external drivers during busy periods or only use in-house staff
- Your drivers use their personal or fleet vehicles to drive to and from work
- You have evidence of the licenses and certifications held by your drivers
- You have a good insight into on-road driver behaviour
The point here is to fully understand your drivers and how they utilise your company vehicles in order to tailor the most appropriate fleet risk management solutions.
Review your hiring process
Ensuring you have the safest possible fleet on the road requires a rigorous screening process before hiring and during the employment of a driver.
Think about what processes you go through when on-boarding new staff.
Do you conduct pre-screening including things like employment history and reference checks?
Do you look into their criminal history for any driving or drug and alcohol offences?
In essence, how can you be confident that the drivers in your fleet will be responsible on the road?
If processes such as these are omitted from your hiring process, consider how you could introduce them to encourage a safer working environment and culture among your drivers.
Once a driver has been hired, it’s also recommended that you conduct physical examinations, medical tests and pre-contract drug and alcohol tests to ensure the validity of the information provided during the interview phase. This should be conducted again throughout their employment, including after an accident and at random intervals.
Upskill / educate your drivers
Would you feel safe going to a doctor who had done no further study since graduating? Probably not, and the same should be true for your drivers. As well as keeping them up to date with safety regulations regarding your vehicle types, standardised education is a simple way to keep everyone on the same page regarding company requirements.
It’s also a really good time to review any incidents, discuss why they may have occurred and retrain risky driving behaviours before they lead to a serious incident.
Monitor driver habits and behaviour
Risky driving habits can cost your operation big time. Think about the increased cost of insurance, the cost of insurance claims, the cost of fixing minor damage and the cost to your reputation when your business is called out for unsafe behaviour on the road.
Now think about the costs of a serious accident to the lives of your drivers and other commuters on the road.
By implementing a system like DriveCam™, you can track driving patterns, identify risky behaviours, notify drivers of sudden risks and identify ways in which they could improve their on-road safety.
Optimal driver safety with DriveRisk
Keeping on top of driver behaviour is critical to ensuring everyone can return home safely. At DriveRisk, we’re dedicated to delivering innovative driver technology backed by a team of behavioural experts to ensure the safest, most effective driving fleet. Learn more about our road safety solutions.