7 Fleet Safety Tips
Originally uploaded on September 11, 2020
Fleet safety should be a top priority for any fleet manager. A proper program protects your drivers, improves efficiency, and creates safer roads. Improve and hone your fleet safety strategy with our 7 fleet safety tips.
What is Fleet Safety?
A large part of fleet management is fleet safety. Effective safety administration requires enforcing protocols and policies that increase the security of your fleet, as well as protecting the wellbeing of your drivers and others on the road. The range of protocols is vast, but will generally involve well-laid-out fleet policies, training for drivers, and systems to monitor vehicle health.
Putting a comprehensive safety program in place is the most efficient and cost-effective way to ensure the high standard of safeguarding required from fleet managers is met.
Why is Fleet Safety Important?
Fleet safety is an important practice when it comes to reducing accidents and keeping those on the road safe. According to recent government statistics, between June 2021 and June 2022, there were a staggering 137,013 casualties of all severities and 1,760 fatalities related to road collisions in the UK. Even the best and most experienced drivers can make mistakes, and vehicle faults can be unpredictable and potentially cause accidents. The unpredictable nature of driving on the roads makes fleet safety a highly challenging task but also highlights how important these procedures are.
How Can Fleet Safety Be Improved?
Fortunately, there are easy-to-accomplish ways that you can protect your fleet and business.
These safety-improving measures range from maintenance for your fleet and fuel consumption monitoring.
1. Formalise and share a detailed safety policy
As a fleet manager, you have a duty of care for your drivers, so take the time to formalise a detailed safety policy. Clearly explain every aspect of fleet safety that your drivers need to understand, including the limit on driving hours and collision policies. Ensure all drivers have read and signed this safety policy before they head back out onto the road.
2. Implement a fleet safety course
The next of our tips is to implement a safety course. Initially, this may incur added time and costs, but it will save you massively in the long term. You can even ask existing drivers to retake the safety course as a refresher.
3. Monitor fuel consumption
Data regarding your fleet’s fuel consumption is a safety assessment asset that is often overlooked by fleet managers. It’s been well-documented that aggressive driving – where drivers accelerate quickly and brake harshly – is an easy way to waste fuel! It’s also a dangerous driving style that safe drivers shouldn’t be practising.
Equipping your drivers with fuel cards allows you to track your fleet’s fuel usage quickly and easily and identify if fuel is being wasted. If you find it is, this may be due to aggressive driving, and speaking to your team about avoiding this driving style may resolve this.
Using a telematics system alongside fuel cards to identify these behaviours and track fleet safety is even more effective. Integrating the two can provide ‘actual’ MPGs based on driving style, type of fuel, and mileage.
4. Stay on top of fleet maintenance
Fleet managers need to stay on top of fleet maintenance if they want to keep their drivers as safe as possible. Don’t skimp on regular maintenance checks and work just to cut some costs in the short term. It’s irresponsible and will probably catch up to you down the line due to more dangerous and less fuel-efficient vehicles. Prioritising fleet safety and maintenance also shows your drivers that you take their wellbeing seriously.
A digital walk-around vehicle check is an effective way to stay organised with fleet maintenance. Traditional walk-around checks use a lot of paperwork and are therefore at risk of being filled out hastily, misplaced, or completely forgotten. With telematics, these walk-around vehicle checks can be logged digitally and neatly. Not only is this a more effective method, but these digital checks are always time-stamped and instantly accessible.
5. Reward safe drivers
Introducing a rewards scheme for safe drivers is one of the most cost-effective fleet safety tips. Recognise drivers who drive safely in a way that suits your team, for example with bonuses, extra holidays, or gift cards. Be sure to lay out the details of this scheme to new drivers, so they are incentivised from the start. You could even promote healthy competition via a leaderboard highlighting the best driver behaviour.
6. Keep your drivers up to date
Another important solution is keeping drivers in the loop. Provide regular safety updates to your team; this will show how much you value their safety and keeps protocol at the top of their mind. For example, you could provide monthly fleet safety reports with relevant, up-to-date information. Perhaps feature the safest driver of the month and highlight dates for the next vehicle inspection.
7. Reinforce the message
The most important piece of advice is for you to reinforce the message. Through regular contact with your drivers, outlining the measures you’re taking as a manager; you’re emphasising how seriously you take fleet safety. Remember to highlight the benefits of keeping safe as well as the reprimands for not.
Fleet Safety Advice
Overall, managing fleet safety is one of the most important responsibilities for a fleet manager. Our tips and advice are here to help you evaluate and develop your company’s protocols.
For advice regarding your fuel consumption or how to implement telematics effectively, get in touch with our team today.