How to improve safety within your fleet

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According to the HSE (Health & Safety Executive), up to a third of all road traffic accidents involve someone working at the time. That accounts for more than 20 deaths and 250 serious injuries every week. If one of your drivers is the cause, that could lead to either them being prosecuted or you, as their employer, being prosecuted instead.

As a fleet manager, you are responsible for the safety of your drivers, vehicles and other assets. However, to ensure a safe fleet environment, you need to be proactive in taking a number of preventative measures.  These may include implementing new policies, investing in technology, training drivers, and monitoring driver behaviour. With these strategies in place, fleet managers can reduce risk factors such as speeding, distracted driving, and fatigue-related accidents. 

However, ensuring the safety of your fleet is not a one-time fix, but an ongoing task that involves all employees to help you tackle the risks effectively. By taking a proactive approach to safety within your fleet of vehicles, you can help improve the overall efficiency of your operations.

Here, we have outlined some key ways to educate drivers, improve processes, and motivate employees to ultimately increase your fleet’s safety.

Create a safety policy

Having a safety policy in place is the best way for employees to better understand the various risks and hazards they may have to deal with.

This begins with setting standards and expectations for your drivers and assets as well as how you keep up with inspection records, licensing and registration renewals.

A good starting point when developing your fleet safety policy is to explore how your drivers use your vehicles and equipment, as well as how you keep track of them. 

The policy should contain all the measures implemented for safety reasons, in addition to any consequences drivers may face for not complying with them. Once you have created your fleet safety policy, it should be distributed to current and new employees ensuring they fully understand it and allowing them to enquire about any points that need clarification. It’s equally important to regularly communicate the importance of safety to your drivers along with any compliance updates.

It’s especially important for commercial fleets to adhere to safety measures to maintain DVSA compliance which can easily be measured through your fleet management software system using the fleet vehicle maintenance and inspection history.

Monitor and reward driver behaviour

Once you’ve ensured that your drivers are fully aware of the safety measures in place, it’s a good opportunity to encourage them to put these into practice when on the road. 

Driver monitoring can help you track their day-to-day routes to ensure fleet safety and productivity. Alerts can be triggered when unsafe driving such as speeding or harsh braking occurs which can, in turn, help you rectify issues and incentivise safer driving.

It is good practice to instil a good safety culture among your drivers and this can be done by motivating them and rewarding those who consistently perform safer driving behaviour.

Choosing the right vehicles for your fleet

As a fleet manager, your responsibility lies in protecting the safety of your drivers and assets. Whilst educating your drivers and teams on legislation and safety protocols is a main factor in ensuring fleet safety, selecting the right vehicles for your fleet should also be a key consideration. 

Before deciding which vehicles are the most suitable for your fleet, it is worth considering vehicles with high safety ratings in addition to adopting vehicle technologies which can help enhance safety and reduce the likelihood of accidents.

If you have limited technical knowledge of vehicles, a good option might be to consult with a fleet specialist who can advise on the most suitable vehicles with high safety ratings, safety features and other beneficial components that could increase the safety of your fleet.

Implement safety training and awareness initiatives

Drivers need to constantly stay safe behind the wheel. Continuous safety education and training can help prevent and avoid accidents and enhance driving skills. 

A number of safety and awareness courses can be used as part of new employee inductions and ongoing driver training programmes designed to minimise the risk of dangers on the road which can significantly benefit fleets of all sizes.

When choosing the right training course, it’s important to take specific drivers’ needs into consideration ensuring they will genuinely benefit from the relevant training programme.

Preventative maintenance for vehicles

All vehicles are subject to wear and tear. That’s why prioritising preventative maintenance is crucial for all vehicles, regardless of the type of vehicles in your fleet. Regular maintenance and routine inspections can reduce the likelihood of mechanical failure and help to ensure vehicles are operating safely and efficiently. 

By keeping vehicles in optimum condition and taking preventative measures, drivers can feel more at ease and reassured. Preventing issues before they happen saves on costly repairs as well as ensuring vehicles are roadworthy and drivers are protected at all times.

Use vehicle technology 

Digital transformation has significantly helped streamline all areas of fleet operations. Investing in the right tech equipment can make a visible difference to the safety and performance of your fleet.

Tools and devices such as telematics help fleet managers access real-time data across vehicles and drivers by monitoring driver behaviour and tracking fleet vehicles and using this data to make more informed decisions and enhance fleet safety. 

By automatically synchronising odometer readings with your fleet management software, fleet managers can obtain crucial information about the health of their vehicles, such as diagnostic trouble codes (DTC) and stay up to speed with preventative maintenance needs.

Keeping your fleet safe with Prolius

The safety of your fleet is your top priority. However, maintaining the safety of your fleet is an ongoing process that requires constant monitoring.

Leveraging the DVSA-approved Prolius Fleet management software system for completing inspections, scheduling preventive maintenance and monitoring vehicle and driver behaviour can significantly improve your fleet safety plan.

Get in touch to schedule a demo and find out how you can keep your fleet safe on the road.

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