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Driving for Work

Driving for Work

Did you know that between a quarter and a third of all road traffic collisions involve someone driving as part of their job?

Employers have duties under health and safety law for on-the-road work activities. These duties also extend to employees who use their own vehicle to make work related journeys.

Employers must, as far as possible, make sure that neither employees nor anyone else is put at risk by work related driving activities.

Employers should:

  • prioritise and control risks
  • consult with you and provide information
  • make sure relevant departments co-operate with each other on work-related road safety
  • make sure vehicles are inspected and serviced
  • make sure health and safety issues are communicated to employees
  • provide adequate training
  • monitor the performance of the health and safety policy
  • encourage all employees to report all work-related road incidents
  • regularly revisit the health and safety policy
  • make informed decisions about any changes

Driver’s responsibilities include:

  • having the right licences to drive the vehicle
  • checking that the vehicle is roadworthy
  • being aware of the law and requirements under the Highway Code Fitness to drive – tiredness, taking medication or alcohol can impair judgement
  • being aware of the weather conditions when planning journeys
  • keeping your mobile phone switched off and where it cannot distract you when driving

There’s advice on Safe Driving for Work on nidirect. Or check out this guide. It aims to reduce the numbers of road traffic collisions and injuries and raise safety standards by providing practical guidance for those who drive for work and their managers.

Project EDWARD (Every Day Without A Road Death) has been running a week long Road Safety Campaign, focused on road safety for those who drive for work, which comes to a close this weekend.

As part of the campaign, ‘One Road, One Week’ forces across the UK including PSNI, have been running enforcement initiatives focusing on those who drive for work. Some of the key offences by people who drive at work include:

  • Speed: Particularly van drivers who are normally subject to lower speed limits than cars on single and dual carriageway roads.
  • Maintenance: 5 million MOTs have been missed during lockdown and around a third of these vehicles, while officially legal, are likely to have safety critical faults such as worn tyres and brakes.
  • Driver Behaviour: The ‘Operation Tramline’ HGV cabs will be patrolling the motorway network looking for drivers who are not in proper control of their vehicles with regular offences including use of mobile phones and not wearing seatbelts.
  • Fatigue: Police have identified over 25,000 offences linked to drivers’ hours in England (over the last 3 years using equipment provided by Highways England).
  • Loading: Commercial vehicle drivers who have overloaded their vehicles, or mailed to properly secure their load, will be a particular focus.
  • Towing: A recent compliance event found 94% of those stopped while towing were doing so unsafely with offences including incorrect hitching, no emergency brake cable, and the wrong licence.

Further information is available on the Project Edward website.

We all share the road. We all share the responsibility.

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