The safety of both the drivers and the vehicles is one of the top challenges faced by fleet managers today. Around forty percent of all motor vehicle accidents are work-related, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Most drivers in the US travel between 12,000 and 15,000 miles each year. However, this is significantly increased for fleet drivers, who cover an average of 20,000-25,000 miles annually, putting them at a greater risk of being involved in a collision. Because of this, it’s crucial that fleet managers prioritize safety and accident prevention.
Commitment to Safety
A real commitment to safety is key when it comes to preventing fleet incidents, rather than only highlighting the issue when the reputation of the company is at stake. Choosing to work with training companies that partner with the Center for Transportation Safety, for example, is an effective strategy that will help to implement a culture of safety in the fleet, shape drivers’ attitudes, and keep safety at the forefront of all decisions.
Working as a fleet driver is not always easy, and stress is often the number one cause of fleet accidents. Fleet drivers are not only often responsible for driving safely but also have to juggle tasks such as same-day deliveries, while having to be connected to and communicating with the company at all times. Working under these conditions can undoubtedly lead to stress for drivers, which is why stress management should be a top concern for fleet managers who want to prevent accidents. Reducing multitasking requirements for drivers, prioritizing rest breaks, and communicating with drivers to learn more about what they need to stay focused and stress-free on the road will greatly reduce the risk of being involved in a collision.
Incentives and Rewards
While many fleet drivers will take steps to be safer on the road because they know that it is the right thing to do, fleet managers can take things one step further to prevent accidents and continue a culture of safety by offering some forms of rewards and penalties for drivers depending on the actions that they take. Drivers are more likely to continue making safer decisions on the road when they are rewarded through financial bonuses and other incentives for making smarter, safer choices.
Some drivers have poor habits that might take some time for them to crack. In some cases, drivers might not even realize the bad habits that they have behind the wheel, which may be causing them to be unsafe on the road when it does not have to be that way. Fleet managers can use a range of telematics devices and systems to monitor driver behavior and gather data that can be used for future training and employee development programs, with training that is tailored to what each driver needs.
Fleet drivers cover more miles than the average driver, putting them at a greater risk of accidents. Fleet managers can implement a range of strategies to improve the safety culture, provide driver support and training, and keep the risk of accidents low.