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Do your Employees drive at work? Are you breaking the law?

Do your Employees drive at work? Are you breaking the law?
16th August 2011 Run Your Fleet Blog

Ignorance is no defence as small businesses lack awareness of duty of care to employees driving at work

Run Your Fleet provides risk management services to help organisations meet their legal requirements

Despite the fact that about a quarter of all vehicle miles travelled currently on Britain’s roads are for work purposes (excluding commuting) less than 5 per cent of small businesses in the UK have a person designated to fleet management, let alone a dedicated fleet manager.  This has led to a striking lack of awareness among small businesses, and many medium sized organisations, of the responsibilities they shoulder for their business drivers, regardless of whether they are driving a company or privately owned vehicle.  This is why we’ve introduced risk management services as part of our low cost company car services package, to help companies of all sizes meet the legislation requirements.

The issue is a massive one with 3 million company car drivers and a further 5 million drivers carrying out work-related journeys in their private cars.  In fact, 20 of these drivers die every week on our roads. That’s quite a surprising statistic and one that may be passing many employers by.

You, as the employer, have a moral and legal obligation to ensure the safety of your drivers, which is where we can help.

Investigations show that the Police and HSE will jointly scrutinise accidents, considering how both employees and employers will be involved in any resulting prosecutions. For comprehensive guidance, business owners should download the HSE guide to managing work related road safety

Steve Whitmarsh, our MD, comments “People driving on company business are considered to be at work, their cars being their place of work.  Many companies encourage their staff to drive their own cars believing that this would be more cost effective and would reduce their liabilities.  In truth, the associated risks are higher than ever as businesses have less control over vehicle condition and insurance.

In the eyes of the Health and Safety Executive there is no distinction between someone driving a vehicle on business and someone operating a machine tool in a factory.  So, companies need to implement some form of risk management system for driving at work.  We don’t suggest for a moment that all small businesses take on a fleet manager.  That would be costly and wasteful.  However, they do need to be aware of their legal responsibilities towards employees driving for work purposes and take steps to address them.  We offer companies of all sizes the services they need to meet the requirements of legislation in a cost-effective, efficient and compelling way.  They ignore their responsibilities at their peril!”

Our customers pay a low cost monthly membership fee per vehicle (starting from only £5 per vehicle) which gives them access to the following:

  • An online fleet management system
  • Free AA breakdown
  • Free Accident Management
  • Online risk management solution
  • Specially negotiated rates on hire cars
  • Massive discounts on servicing at over 6000 main dealer and independent outlets
  • Vehicle contract hire and leasing

Do you have a Fleet Manager on staff who looks after this for you, or could you do with some help in managing your legal responsibilities when it comes to your staff driving their own cars for work?

 

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