Tag Archive | "Driving"

DRIVING CHANGE: HOW COMPLACENCY CAN KILL

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DRIVING CHANGE: HOW COMPLACENCY CAN KILL


Driving for work is a ‘work activity’ like any other. However, our familiarity and, in some cases complacency, with the activity can make it difficult to manage despite it being one of the greatest risks we face. With the trade running fleets of delivery vehicles, the issue of road safety should be high up on the agenda. Indeed, it’s not hard to find web-hits such as ‘Van driver hurt in crash’ or ‘Truck, lorry and van driver injury compensation claims’.

THE LAW
There is a raft of criminal offences that capture individual drivers who decide to break the law. These include death by dangerous driving, careless driving and driving without a valid licence or insurance. The law recognises that properly licensed drivers have a personal obligation to take care of themselves and others on the road.

However, organisations, managers and colleagues could also be implicated if they are considered to have “aided and abetted” that criminal behaviour. A potential example of this would be where a manager
knew that a driver’s insurance had expired but did not alert anyone within the business or prevent that individual from driving. Organisations often collect vast swathes of information that are relevant to managing driving, but are not used as such. Working time details, health information and job descriptions are all good examples.

Prosecutions for ‘aiding and abetting’ offences remain rare, but a fatal road death may result in a Coroner’s Inquest and the organisation having to answer some difficult and probing questions on behalf of the deceased’s family.

Within the more typical health and safety arena, prosecutions could arise where the culture of the organisation is such that driving for work is not managed properly and individuals are put at risk.

In fatal incidents, under the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007, an organisation can be held liable if “working regimes, dangerous or illegal practices or negligence have contributed to the death”. The police will investigate for the offence of corporate manslaughter and will want to establish the attitude of senior management towards managing driving for work. Were policies in place and enforced, and was there real and visible leadership from the top?

Further, the Health and Safety at WorkAct 1974 states that organisations have a duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety of all employees while at work, and that others are not put at risk by work-related driving activities.

Beyond the broad 1974 Act there are various other health and safety regulations that apply to work activities such as driving. The key action point is to appreciate driving for work as a work activity and treat it as you would any other, providing suitable instructions, information and equipment based on a sound risk assessment process.

CONSEQUENCES
The most obvious consequence of getting it wrong is that an employee or members of the public is seriously injured or killed as a result of your organisation’s driving activities. Organisations recognise the moral reasons for keeping people safe.

In addition, there is the risk of a subsequent prosecution for individual criminal offences or for organisational or management failures.

The potential consequences of getting health and safety management wrong have become all the more severe since February 1 2016, which saw the introduction of a Sentencing Guideline for health and safety offences and corporate manslaughter (among others) and creates the potential for higher fines and prison sentences than we have seen historically. The guideline uses ‘potential harm’ as one of the determinants when deciding upon a sentence; the potential harm associated with driving is obvious.

In addition to a criminal prosecution, you may have to deal with any civil claims brought against the business by individuals who have been involved in an incident. Insurance may be in place for organisations and those that use company cars, but what about those who use their own vehicles? Everyone ‘driving for work’ needs to have ‘business use’ insurance. Without it, insurance policies can be revoked and the individual or organisation is left to pay.

Aside from financial implications, incidents and prosecutions can attract significant negative publicity, which in turn could affect an organisation’s brand and reputation. Many vehicles now bear corporate logos and branding which can have unwanted consequences in the event of a serious incident. The impact of an investigation can also create significant business interruption, with the seizure of vehicles, computers and other records, even if a prosecution does not result.

Driving for work can be a risky business and should be taken seriously by the whole organisation; not just the driver.

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MICHELIN: EASY WAY TO INCREASE YOUR CUSTOMERS’ SAFETY

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MICHELIN: EASY WAY TO INCREASE YOUR CUSTOMERS’ SAFETY


PROMOTIONAL ARTICLE ON BEHALF OF MICHELIN

 

MICHELIN OFFERS AN EASY WAY TO INCREASE YOUR CUSTOMERS’ DRIVING SAFETY

Few factors impact driver and passenger safety more than driver visibility, and the best way to ensure safe driving is to have a clear and unobstructed view through the windscreen.

Studies show that the majority of motorists’ driving decisions are based on how well they can see the road, and driving in poor weather conditions, such as rain, sleet, hail or snow, significantly increases the risk of collision.

That’s where the innovative MICHELIN Stealth Hybrid wiper blade can make the difference between clear and safe – or unclear and unsafe.

Design that drives excellence
MICHELIN Stealth Hybrid wiper blades are durable, high-performing and quiet, bringing together the best performance components of traditional and frameless blades.

They combine the latest in wiper blade technology with MICHELIN’s unique ‘Smart Flex’ technology, to create a blade that adapts to the windscreen’s shape for superior contact and clear vision.

MICHELIN Stealth Hybrid wiper blades incorporate five key design features to deliver superior performance, time after time:
1. Riveted smart hinge delivers optimum wipe performance by holding down each end of the wiper on the windscreen.
2. Smart Flex secondary system ensures better windscreen contact across the entire length of the wiper blade.
3. Spring-loaded technology provides enhanced responsiveness across the windscreen.
4. A durable cover protects the blade from ice, snow and road debris, helping to extend blade life.
5. EZ-LOK connector system means blades are quick and simple to install in minutes – so driver safety is never compromised.

Improve sales – and satisfaction
Specifying MICHELIN Stealth Hybrid wiper blades is a powerful opportunity for garages to maximise both sales and customer satisfaction.

As more and more OEMs move to hybrid blades, MICHELIN is the brand that consumers know and trust to deliver superior performance and quality. The sleek, modern styling of the Stealth Hybrid wiper blade appeals to consumers, making it a smart choice for customers and a more profitable opportunity for garages.

 

For more information call: 01206 808158

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IAM ROADSMART LAUNCH BITE-SIZE DRIVING COURSES


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Following on from the charity’s 60th anniversary, IAM RoadSmart has begun phase two of its business strategy by launching a range of bite size safety sessions for drivers in the B2B and B2C sector.

A total of six one-to-one courses are available to motorists, fleet managers and their employees of all ages (17-85+); lasting up to two hours to help them develop skills in a particular area of concern, while in the comfort of their own vehicle. The new modules include: Driving on Motorways, Rural Roads, Urban Roads as well as Vehicle Management, Overtaking and Confined Space Manoeuvring.

Sarah Sillars, CEO of IAM RoadSmart said: “We are trying to make sure we stay true to our charitable aims but actually modernising ourselves to become more engaged with a much greater number of people”, she continued: ‘We have changed the messaging by coming up with a different style and approach, which is to become a friend and supporter of the driver but helping them to enjoy riding, build more confidence and by default, reduce the numbers of killed and seriously injured on our roads”.

After carrying out a survey with 7,000 drivers that weren’t actively part of its 92,000 plus membership, most respondents said that training for business drivers was important with online delivery being the preferred choice of development for consumers as well as training that didn’t take employers and staff away from the workplace for more than two hours.

“We know targeted training, which integrates with existing driver risk management programmes is vital when making decisions on how to improve the skills of your drivers and deliver ROI for the business as well as helping to fulfil obligations to comply with the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974”, said IAM RoadSmart’s Commercial Director Leslie Upham. “We are looking to help fleet managers and drivers by moving into this space of being a business partner rather than a supplier right at the beginning”.

With 34,000 business drivers using the charity’s services last year, the firm believes these advanced courses will prove a valuable asset to employers and staff, while seeing an increase in uptake of its services going into the new year.

The driving modules will be available to the trade and general motorists in early 2017.

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Sillars airs views on 4-1-1 ahead of IAM rebrand


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Sarah Sillars OBE

Sarah Sillars gives her verdict on the four-year MOT as charity becomes IAM Roadsafe

The boss of road safety charity IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists) has voiced her opinion on the four-year MOT.

“I answered this question the last time around as the head of [the IMI]” said Sarah Sillars OBE. Now I’m wearing a road safety hat you might think the argument would be even stronger. I have a slightly different view now, which is ‘should it really be the MOT that picks up worn tyres, broken lights or whatever – or should there be more responsibility is on the driver to make some basic checks on the vehicle’ as is the case in many European countries”.

Sillars expanded: “The evidence says that if the service happens before the MOT, it becomes a validation. Because we have a lot of people in this country who use the MOT as the primary safety check it is very hard to argue for a change in the law”. The Chief Exec was speaking on the day that the charity launched a new and ‘less authoritarian’ logo and rebrand as ‘IAM Roadsmart’ and announced a switch away from promoting the advanced driving test as it’s core function, instead focusing on a number of ‘modular products’ such as motorway and night driving courses to help drivers upskill and fleet managers negate risks.

The organisation has a number of high-profile members who talk to the media about its benefits. Nigel Mansell has been promoting the re-brand, while Paddy Hopkirk champions the Older Driver Assessment course, notably at the recent CAT Awards.

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