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If your company uses a fleet to conduct its businesswhether it be for delivery or a service like waste managementyou likely know how costly an accident or personal injury can be. If you don’t take the necessary precautions when it comes to your drivers and company vehicles, you’re putting the welfare of your employees and business at risk. That’s why it’s essential to foster a safe working environment by specifically designing a safety program for your fleet. Keep reading for must-have elements to strengthen your fleet safety program and protect against liability from accidents.

Carefully Identify and Screen Your Fleet Drivers

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the road is one of the most hazardous places for your employees. Drivers should be screened and selected carefully, as your team is only as road-ready as the least experienced driver. You want to build a team of reliable drivers who have a positive long-term safety record. You should establish hiring standards in your fleet safety program. Not only should you be vetting your fleet drivers, but you should also identify everyone who drives on behalf of the business, even employees using non-owned and rented vehicles, to account for all driving liability.

Develop a Commitment to Driver and Fleet Management

An efficient fleet safety program relies on management fostering a culture of safe driving. Protecting your business from personal injury or property damage claims does not fall solely on the driver. You should train your management to do the following:

  • Train Drivers: Develop a training process that gives your drivers access to defensive driving strategies, encourages distraction-free driving, and ensures they understand the vehicle safety requirements outlined in your program.
  • Invest in Technology: Hands-free mounts, company phones with GPS, and improved logistic and communications applications can go a long way in diminishing distracted driving.
  • Manage Accidents: There’s no way to fully prevent accidents. If an accident should occur, managers should work to mitigate the costs of the accident, properly report the claim, and discover how to reduce the risk of similar losses.
  • Schedule Maintenance: Establishing a plan for the inspection, repair, and maintenance of your fleet vehicles will help avoid unexpected breakdowns, reduce accidents resulting from faulty equipment, and reduce overall costs.

Not only will having clearly defined policies and procedures set consistent expectations, but it shows that upper management cares about the well-being of their employees.Man buckling his seat belt

Create an Official Fleet Seat Belt Policy

Telling your drivers to wear a seat belt may be a no-brainer, but according to the National Safety Council, a lower percentage of commercial vehicle drivers wear seat belts than passenger car drivers. A study by the National Library of Medicine noted a direct correlation between long-haul truck drivers not using a seat belt and the absence of a formal seat belt policy. Enforcing a mandatory seat belt policy will ensure your employees remain safe in the event of an accident and will lessen the risk of a work-related injury.

To strengthen your fleet safety program, you will need to provide support to your drivers and give them the tools and education they need to drive safely. However, despite all the precautions, accidents will still happen, which means you need to have the proper business policies in place to protect your employees and your company. World Insurance Associates will ensure your team is well supported with a workers' compensation policy and protect your business from liability with commercial vehicle and business insurance.



This article is not intended to be exhaustive, nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel or an insurance professional for appropriate advice.

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