How many people risk their own and other road users’ safety every day by not following the simple rules that we all know about? The Highway Code is the ‘bible’ for vehicle drivers and riders but it seems that not everyone remembers what those rules are.

Deaths on the road are catastrophic and cause severe pain and heartbreak for all involved, and the worst thing – they are usually unnecessary!

Should the Transport industry and every driver be doing more to reduce vehicle collisions and safety incidents whilst driving for work?

The deathly facts…

Road Transport is arguably the most dangerous industry to work in. The Department for Transport estimates that more than 500 people are killed in road collisions every year by a vehicle being used for a work-related journey.

How a fatal collision will affect your business

Should one of your drivers be found to cause death or a serious injury, not only will they potentially face imprisonment of 14 years, an unlimited fine, the loss of their job and points on their license. You as the operator and business owner will face the Police, DVSA, and Traffic Commissioners becoming involved in checking your procedures, training, and company records.

You could even be called to a hearing, with the HSE then taking over.

How do you help drivers manage the risks that lead to fatal collisions?

Create Good Practice

Ensuring your drivers are well informed of your company policies, and reminding them regularly on the below will help to reduce their risk and stay within the law.

  • Speed limits – remind them to stay below them and to not see them as a target
  • Tailgating – the importance of remembering the 2 second gap for cars 4 seconds for HGVs (with it increasing to at least double this during severe weather conditions)
  • Reading the road ahead – staying alert and not going into autopilot mode is important to avoid potential risk, including weather conditions
  • Hazards – remind them that even the vehicle in front is a hazard
  • Giving way – being considerate to all road users is vital
  • Reversing – carrying out manoeuvres carefully and slowly – always use a trained banksman when available
  • Obstructing the road – vehicles should not be used as weapons to cut in and obstruct other road users

It is important that your drivers start their journeys with the right mindset before they start to drive, one key factor is to make sure they and your traffic office have allowed enough time for the journey.

You can also make sure that drivers have a copy of the highway code.

Road Skills Online Professional Development Plan

We believe that regular relevant Toolbox Talks can help to improve driver’s behaviour on the road, helping you to save ££££’s on your bottom line. Our monthly bite-sized 36-month programme covers Driving at Work extensively with a module on the Highway Code, covering the driver’s responsibilities, the consequences of breaches of safety rules and some common rules and techniques to improve safety for them and other road users.

Let our e-learning help you deliver your driver professional development with ease. Click on the banner below to book your 30 minute demonstration.

Sources| Department of Transport 2017 | Highway Code | https://www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/penalties

Published| March 2021