The responsibility of driving a heavy vehicle is not your average office job, which is why fleet managers have a unique look at health and safety. Below you will find 9 tips that will help keep your HGV drivers safe on a daily basis.
1) Safety Is the Number One Priority
“Above everything that comes with this job including speed and efficiency, safety outweighs it all including a healthy profit margin” affirms an HGV training instructor at Easy As HGV. When drivers are not safe they are not only risking income and business but lives as well. If your drivers have ideas about safety on the road, it is important to encourage them to speak up. They may have ideas that the safety inspectors are not privileged to.
2) Encourage Regular Vehicle Inspections
When vehicles are regularly checked and maintained, it is possible to stop a problem before it ever happens. In addition, it is one of the most cost-effective ways to keep vehicles running in a safe condition. Have them checked at regular intervals and ensure that the schedule is kept up to date.
One of the best tips you can pass down to your drivers is to ensure that they always do a pre-trip inspection before the start of each job. This is going to help them not get caught off-guard by the small things including not leaving with enough petrol.
3) Remove the Bad Drivers
This is a slightly more difficult task as it is harder to find out who is a serial tailgater. However, there are tools that you can purchase that will allow you to monitor how your fleet is being driven.
4) Drug and Alcohol Testing
You would hope that your drivers are smart enough not to mix illegal substances with their work. However, there are times when things are going on in your drivers’ lives that you are unaware of that might make them make a bad decision.
The solution is to implement a strict drug and alcohol testing regime on your fleet. This will allow you to stop anyone who is under the influence of any type of drug or alcohol from getting behind the wheel and putting not only their life but countless others on the line.
5) Create a Pre-Defined Accident Procedure
You can have the safest drivers in the fleet, yet there is always the chance of an accident on the open road. One of the best things you can do for your drivers is to have them prepared for the incident. There should be a pre-defined accident procedure in place that all drivers should be aware of and follow.
6) Equip All Vehicles With Hand-Free Mobile Capabilities
There are going to be those times that you will need to contact one of your drivers while they are on the road and you want to do so without having them to stop, yet stay safe. Giving your drivers the ability to take hands-free calls will allow them to stay on schedule and stay safe.
7) Proper Route Planning
Route planning is one of the best ways to not only run a more efficient company but to keep your drivers safer as well. This will allow your drivers to have more than enough time to complete the job based on the mileage and driving conditions without the need to rush.
8) Know the Weather
It is important to stay up to date with accurate weather reports. You can have the best route planned, but weather can turn it upside down. One of the biggest concerns should be high winds. If at all possible, try to reroute vehicles as soon as possible when winds are possible.
9) Proper Policies and Training
You should now have a better idea of some of the things your drivers should look out for. However, how do you educate them and put it all into action? You need to have the right policies and training in place as early as possible. When you are implementing drug testing and vehicle inspections they need to be firmly placed in the business policy.
Using these tips is going to ensure that your drivers are safe and will have a much better working condition on the open road.