The Department of Transport have reported that there were 1792 reported road deaths in 2016 which is an increase of 4% on the previous year. It has also been estimated that a third of road casualties involve someone who was driving for work purposes. Autumn and Winter, with their adverse weather conditions and longer periods of darkness, make driving more hazardous and place extra demands on a vehicle and a motorist’s driving skills.
Accidents, however serious are very disrupting and costly for a business, therefore it is imperative that fleet managers have a winter driving policy in place. Vehicles should be prepared for the winter driving conditions to avoid emergency repairs and to keep downtime to a minimum. The policy should also detail what a driver should carry in their vehicle for unexpected situations and what they should do in in event of an emergency.
Tyres should be checked and changed before the tread gets too low. Consider fitting winter tyres.
Bulbs should be inspected to ensure they are working and headlights should be clean, so drivers can see clearly and be seen.
Windscreen wipers should be fully operational to ensure the windscreen can be cleared easily.
Drivers should get up 10 minutes earlier in the morning to have time to fully de-ice their vehicle. Windscreens should be clean and free from obstructions to vision.
Screen wash should be topped up and antifreeze used in the correct concentration.
Drivers should keep a pair of sunglasses in the car to aid vision when the sun is low and there is a glare.
Vehicles should be kept topped up with plenty of fuel in case the driver gets stuck in a traffic jam or has to take a detour.
Drivers should keep warm clothes and a blanket in the vehicle in case of a breakdown.
Incident management awareness
Drivers should understand what they need to do in the event of an accident and the reporting procedures. It is important they report accidents immediately so that costs can be kept to a minimum (Click here for our tips on what fleet drivers should do in the event of an accident).
With the right preparation and education, companies can keep their drivers safe, optimise fleet usage and manage repair costs.
Find out more about Autofinity Assist and how we can help your company manage costs following a collision here or call a member of the team on 0330 2020 573.