safety Archives - Fleet Services Summit
Posts Tagged :

safety

GUEST BLOG: 5 ways to ensure a fleet stays safe on the roads

960 640 Guest Post

By Rebecca, Technician at Dronsfields

If you manage numerous vehicles as a part of your business, you’ll understand the importance of ensuring their functionality and safety – as well as the safety of their drivers!

Here, I’ll explain how to easily keep your fleet safe and running as it should by offering up a few choice tips. By employing these practices, you’ll also keep your costs down and save yourself a lot of hassle.

  1. Make Sure Your Whole Fleet is Regularly Serviced

This sounds a lot more difficult than it actually is. There’s no need to arrange to have every single vehicle checked and tweaked separately – this is very time consuming and can really rack up the costs. 

A better approach is to invest in fleet servicing – something offered by some specialist garages and mechanics which means that all of your vehicles are managed in one group. This only requires one set of paperwork (making life much easier for you!). All units will be checked together, so you won’t have to worry about remembering when each one is due in for a service.

2. Invest in Visibility and Communication Methods

There are systems available that will allow you to track your vehicles’ locations, check for hazards such as roadworks and poor traffic conditions and to see how far each vehicle has to travel for the next job (on the off chance that you can assign it to someone a little closer to reduce wear and tear or fuel consumption).

This method will also help you to stay updated if any of your drivers get into any difficulty, so you can arrange for them to be assisted.

3. Use Telematics to Track Performance and Maintenance

The above features and more can be obtained as part of a telematics system. This is software that can be automated to whatever extent you require in order to help you manage the running of your vehicles.

An additional benefit of telematics is that you can log when your vehicles have last been serviced, and they’ll also tell you when they need maintaining in order to avoid breakdowns and elements of wear and tear becoming exacerbated.

4. Ensure Your Drivers are Fully Trained

It’s a good idea to make sure that your drivers are as knowledgeable about safe driving practices as possible. The software mentioned above can help you to keep an eye on the speeds at which they tend to drive, their fuel consumption and much more besides. However, speaking to them directly about how they as a team can improve their performance will also go a long way towards keeping them safe and ensuring that your fleet stays in good condition.

5. Make Sure Your Fleet is Properly Insured

Fully comprehensive cover is always the best choice for your vehicles – but it’s also possible to arrange fleet cover to ensure that all of your vehicles are insured as a group. Whatever combination of sizes, types and makes you utilise, insuring them all under one plan means there’s no danger of forgetting to renew – plus, it makes the process much more efficient.

So, in conclusion, you should opt for fleet maintenance and fleet insurance as a priority. Furthermore, it’s important to keep on top of driver training – plus, you may wish to invest in telematics and advanced communication software for a little something extra.

Image by Santa3 from Pixabay

Know your limits: A history of the UK’s speed restrictions

110 110 Stuart O'Brien

For the year ending June 2018, 1,770 people had died on British roads, while 25,000 more were seriously injured. Many of these deaths and injuries have been linked to breaking speed limits or driving beyond the means of the weather conditions.

Speed limits, despite often frustrating, are there for a reason, whether it is to control the flow of the traffic, or to ensure the utmost safety. 

Initially introduced in 1861, the UK is awash with speed cameras, approximately 3,000, some of which are designed to implement fines that are 125 to 175 per cent of your weekly wage.

With the rise of black box insurance plans bringing a closer focus on what speeds you can travel, Ford Transit Custom dealers Lookers take a look at what speeds you’re legally allowed to travel and where, as well as speed restrictions on certain commercial vehicles…

Motorways

With 160 deaths in the last 10 years, the M6 is said to be the deadliest motorway in the UK. The M49, which covers the Bristol and Gloucestershire area, on the other hand, was found to be the safest.

70mph is the general speed limit on a motorway in the UK. However, this does differ and drop to 60mph if you are towing a caravan or trailer, driving a bus/coach over 12 metres long, or driving a heavy goods vehicle of over 7.5 tonnes. 

Single and duel carriageways

On A roads, 43 per cent of all accidents occur, therefore it’s perhaps important to understand exactly what speed each vehicle can travel. Here, depending on your vehicle, the speed limit differs. For a normal-size car, motorbike or car-derived van, the cap is at 60mph on a single carriageway and 70mph on a dual carriageway. However, if your vehicle has a trailer attached, you must lower your speed by 10mph. 

If your motorhome or motorcaravan weighs less than 3.05 tonnes then you are able to go at the same speed as a trailer-less car, but if they are over 3.05 tonnes in weight, then the 50mph on a single carriageway and 60mph on a duel carriageway limits apply. These lower limits also apply for buses and coaches that are over 12 metres in length, and heavy goods vehicles. It is important to be aware that if a heavy goods vehicle weighs over 7.5 tonnes, the speed limits drop a further 10mph if you are in Scotland: 40mph on a single carriageway and 50mph on a dual carriageway.

Built-up areas

In areas with street lights, you mustn’t go above 30mph, and in many cases nowadays 20mph where stated. The 30mph limit was reintroduced over 80 years ago, but there are calls to lower it everywhere to try to protect us further. When it was introduced in 1934, although there was one-tenth the number of cars on the roads as there is today, the death tolls were four-fold. 

Temporary speed limits

When temporary speed limits are in place, there will be notices, either overhead or along the side of the road, to notify you of the amended limit. These are put in place to help the traffic flow continue, as well as ensure vehicle safety for you, other road users and indeed those working on the road. You must adhere to these signs!

Minimum speed limits

Although a particularly rare sight to come across, minimum speed limits do exist. Usually found inside tunnels, in which driving slowly could exist as a hazard, these limits are displayed on a round, blue sign.

Speed limiters

Vehicles carrying more than eight passengers and those which weigh more than 3.5 tonnes are often fitted with speed limiters. They work by the fuel supply being restricted to the engine once the vehicle reaches its maximum speed. This ensures that the mobile isn’t able to reach — or break —a speed limit. 

Mopeds are restricted to a maximum of 30mph, perhaps less. Meanwhile, buses, coaches and minibuses speed limiters are set at 62mph, HGVs – depending on class – are set to 56mph or 53mph. You can purchase speed limit stickers for your vehicle so that cars behind you are aware of your top speed. 

Although you may drive on a daily basis, as we have previously mentioned, temporary speed limits can be introduced, therefore keeping brushed up on the various speed limits is crucial, to avoid unnecessary penalties! 

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

Changing driver behaviour through telematics: First step, safety culture

960 640 Guest Post

By Nick List, Customer Success Director, Europe at eDriving

Telematics solutions are fast becoming commonplace among fleets. No longer valued only for their “track and trace” capabilities, telematics solutions are now able to provide a vast array of behavioural insights to help fleet managers improve driver safety and wellbeing. 

Fleet managers have the ability to see real-time driver safety performance and promptly identify trends, both positive and negative. However, for behaviour-based telematics to measurably impact on work-related road risk, it’s important for an organisation to already have a solid safety culture in place. 

A commitment to safety

Organisations that introduce telematics as their “driver safety solution” without first having a solid safety culture are less likely to experience a long-term reduction in collisions and incidents. By a solid safety culture, I mean having in place policies, procedures, risk assessments, training, and most importantly, effective two-way communication between the driver and their immediate manager; all in the wider context of an organisation-wide commitment to safety, including senior leadership.

Without policies that detail what is reasonably expected of drivers in terms of their behaviour – in relation to speeding, distraction, braking, cornering, for example – how do drivers know that they need to improve? And, even with telematics data, how do drivers know what behaviours they are aiming for? 

Don’t underestimate the role that line managers play in your safety culture or the influence they have on your organisation’s safety operational balance (i.e. maintaining the same level of importance for safety as for operations). As well as providing ongoing training to drivers, it’s equally important to train managers so that they too fully understand the influence they have in helping keep drivers safe as well as recognising how best to engage with drivers. 

Interpreting telematics data

The output from telematics can be overwhelming. That’s another reason why a solid safety culture is so important. If you know what your organisation is aiming toward, you can use telematics data to guide drivers towards your safety goals. Most telematics providers will issue manager reports that give insights into driving behaviours such as speed versus posted speed limit, braking, acceleration and cornering. At eDriving, our smartphone telematics programme, Mentor by eDrivingSM, also provides feedback on phone manipulation, whether that be a phone call (handheld or hands-free), text, accessing social media or even just moving the phone to view a notification. 

It’s important that the data supplied by your telematics provider is useful and relevant to your organisation, and that you are supported in acting on this data. eDriving’s Mentor programme does this automatically, prescribing micro training modules within the smartphone app, tailored to the driving behaviours that have been identified; including distraction, speeding, scanning, braking etc. In addition, Mentor’s manager dashboard can automatically identify the 10% of drivers most at-risk in any given month and assign Manager-Driver OnetoOnes®to discuss and develop action plans for improvement. 

Effective regular communication

Communication with drivers is fundamental… Consider this: a driver has telematics installed and regularly triggers warnings about their driving behaviour, If their manager does nothing about these warnings it won’t take long for a driver to realise that they can simply ignore them. Without analysis and discussion, risky driving behaviour will never be changed. 

Again, that brings us back to the importance of a solid safety culture. Drivers need to be aware of the interventions that will occur should they fail to meet the organisation’s safe driving requirements. And don’t forget to address how good driving behaviours will be rewarded as that’s equally important. 

Formal communication (as in the case of Manager-Driver OnetoOnes) will ideally be supported by regular informal communication, whether that be in the form of face-to-face chats, driver emails, newsletters, team discussions or posters. Feedback, feedback and more feedback goes a long way to maintaining a strong safety culture over time. 

Transparency for drivers

One of the biggest concerns drivers have about telematics is their privacy. But, a solid safety culture addresses privacy concerns at the outset. And, the subsequent introduction of telematics will only serve to reinforce your mission of ensuring drivers make it home safely every day, rather than triggering concerns. If your whole organisation is aware of your commitment to safety, drivers are more likely to view telematics in a positive light. Enabling them to see how they’re performing and areas in which they can improve will further boost their engagement. 

eDriving’s Mentor programme has full transparency for drivers and acts like a fitness coach in that it prescribes drivers with their own personal validated driving score that is recalculated after every trip and accompanied by feedback related to specific driving behaviours including acceleration, braking, cornering, distraction and speeding. Drivers can immediately see areas in which they could do better and can even join colleagues in competing for the best scores using the gamification feature, “Circles”. 

To summarise, if you’re considering a new telematics programme, or assessing the effectiveness of an existing one, first look to your safety culture. Could it be strengthened? If so, it’s worth investing your time in creating a solid foundation before focusing your efforts on telematics solutions. Yes, behaviour-based telematics can be a valuable tool for reducing collision and claim rates, but only when deployed into a company culture that truly puts safety first. 

Nick List is eDriving’s Customer Success Director for Europe. 

About eDriving

eDriving helps organisations to reduce collisions, injuries, licence endorsements and total cost of ownership through a patented closed-loop driver behaviour-based safety programme that reduces collisions by up to 67%. The risk management partner of choice for many of the world’s largest and safest fleets, eDriving has served over one million drivers in 45 languages and 96 countries over its 23 years in the industry and has been recognised through 70+ client and partner awards.

eDriving will be exhibiting at Safety & Health Expo in London from 18-20 June and presenting a panel discussion on Using a Closed-Loop Approach to Measure, Manage & Reduce Driver Risk at 2:00-2:30 p.m. on 19 June in the Operational Excellence Theatre. More information.

Visit www.edriving.com.

GUEST BLOG: Effectively managing driver risk by making safety part of every day

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

By Andy Cuerden, Managing Director, Europe, eDriving

What do you do if a customer calls your company employee while they are driving?

An eDriving client recently shared a story about a customer calling their customer services department from a mobile phone while driving.

The customer services representative politely informed the customer: “I’m sorry, it is against our company policy to talk to customers when they are driving. Please call back when you’re not driving.” 

For eDriving, a risk management company with over 23 years of experience of working with fleets on a global scale, this story is an excellent real-world example of a safety culture successfully becoming part of an organisation’s DNA. Especially when you consider that, with a non-driving role, a customer services rep would not typically be part of a company’s road safety programme or subject to their mobile phone while driving/ distracted driving policies.

It clearly demonstrates that safe driving is top of the company’s agenda, across the whole organisation. And, despite the customer not being too impressed, the employee was fully supported by her line manager and leadership. 

The reason for sharing this story is to demonstrate that, while risk management might officially be the responsibility of your company’s health and safety, risk or fleet management departments; safety is in fact everyone’s responsibility. And that includes leadership. Regardless of job title, everyone wants to make it home safely at the end of every day and everyone therefore has a shared responsibility for your organisation’s safety mission. 

At eDriving we talk about working towards a crash-free culture®. That’s a culture in which risk  reduction efforts are at the forefront of your organisation’s activities and one that does not accept crashes as an inevitable part of driving for work. 

Making safety part of every day

Safety should be part of daily discussions, activities and meetings. It should also form part of performance reviews, annual conferences, etc. Any opportunity to bring safety to the table should be taken, so that it’s never seen as a “campaign”, or “tick-box” exercise. It must become a way of life. 

Driver policies, risk assessment and routine training should be standard, but these should be supplemented and supported by ongoing safety messaging that maintains or guides safer driving behaviours and quickly addresses risky behaviours before they become habits. In the digital age it’s relatively straightforward to communicate your safety goals, missions and objectives regularly. Think of different ways to engage employees; from email signatures to prizes for best performance, it all helps to keep the focus firmly fixed on driver safety. 

Start at the top

If creating a crash-free culture was easy, everyone would be doing it. It does take effort, but it’s worth it. Securing leadership backing is crucial for the messaging and commitment to work its way down – and across – your organisation’s hierarchy. 

Make sure all managers are on board and engaged, and give them the tools they need to communicate with their teams. Involve your customers and employees’ families wherever possible, who might include authorised drivers of company vehicles. Set goals, targets and produce analytics to measure progress. In-house attitude surveys will keep you on track, as well as informal discussions wherever possible.

It goes without saying that dialling into conference calls, sales or product development meetings while driving needs to become a thing of the past for ALL employees – yes you might experience pushback on this but if it’s company policy it’s important for everyone, at all levels, to live and breathe it.

And, interestingly, many of our clients report an increase in productivity, wellbeing, creativity and profitability when they prohibit the use of mobile phones while driving. 

Make use of actionable intelligence

While telematics data alone will not change driver behaviour, telematics data can provide helpful insights into how your crash-free culture and wider risk management programme is performing.

Acceleration, braking, cornering, speed vs. speed limit of the road, and distraction events data, combined with your drivers’ crash and licence endorsement history can help you to identify your most “at-risk” drivers for further support and coaching.

Similarly, this combination of data helps you to review the progress of your risk management programme and ensure that driver safety remains where it should be on your list of company priorities: right at the top, every day. 

About eDriving
eDriving helps organisations to reduce collisions, injuries, licence endorsements and total cost of ownership through a patented closed-loop driver behaviour-based safety programme that reduces collisions by up to 67% and provides ROI of 20-40%. 

Mentor by eDriving’s comprehensive systemprovides behavioural insights and actionable intelligence to help organisations build a total view of driver risk within a company-wide crash-free culture to ensure that all drivers return home safely to their loved ones at the end of each day. 

eDriving is the risk management partner of choice for many of the world’s largest and safest fleets, having served over 1 million drivers in 45 languages and 96 countries over its 23 years in the industry. eDriving’s programme has been recognised through 70+ client and partner awards around the world.    

EU backs new vehicle safety standards

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

The European Parliament has given the green light to new minimum EU vehicle safety requirements that will come into force from 2022.

The vote by the full parliament, at its last session of this mandate, follows a provisional deal reached by the EU institutions last month.

According to the final deal on the legislation, new cars, vans, lorries and buses sold in Europe will be fitted as standard with a range of new vehicle safety features such as Automated Emergency Braking which can detect pedestrians and cyclists, as well as overridable Intelligent Speed Assistance.

New lorries will be required to have improved levels of “direct vision” to give drivers a greater chance of seeing vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists around the vehicle.

The legislation also tackles drink driving, making it easier to retrofit an alcohol interlock device – a technological solution for tackling repeat drink driving in use in a number of EU Member States.

New vehicles will also be fitted with Electronic Data Recorders. But only data from a few seconds before, during and after a collision will be recorded, in order for analysis to take place that could help prevent future collisions.

Commenting on the vote, Antonio Avenoso, Executive Director of the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) said: “Thanks to this legislation, the latest safety technologies will be fitted as standard on new vehicles in Europe. It’s a massive step forward that could prevent 25,000 deaths on our roads within fifteen years. Importantly, the new requirements will also improve the safety of all road users, not just vehicle occupants. Lorry drivers will have better visibility of pedestrians and cyclists around their vehicles, all drivers will find it easier to keep within the posted speed limits, and automated emergency braking systems will be able to detect people, not just other vehicles.

“We would like to thank MEPs from across the political spectrum that have supported a number of important road safety measures over the last five years. Thanks to their commitment, many lifesaving measures have been agreed, including automatic emergency calling (eCall), cross-border enforcement of traffic offences, improved road infrastructure safety standards, and finally the world’s most advanced vehicle safety standards. These are major achievements that Europe can be proud of.”

Ford using ‘big data’ in London to predict traffic incidents

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Ford claims it has come up with a means by which so-called ‘big data’ could potentially help cities identify locations most likely to be the scene of future traffic incidents.

Its Smart Mobility division has spent the last year recording 1 million kilometres of vehicle and driver behaviour in and around London.

The company tracked vehicle journeys in the city and logged detailed driving data from driving events such as braking, the severity of that braking, and where hazard warning lights were applied.

This helped Ford to identify what it calls “near-misses”, which were then cross-referenced against existing accident reports, using an algorithm to determine the likelihood of where future incidents might occur.

“We believe our insights have the potential to benefit millions of people. Even very small changes could make a big difference – maybe cutting back a tree that has obscured a road sign – whether in terms of traffic flow, road safety or efficiency,” said Jon Scott, Project Lead at City Data Solutions, Ford Smart Mobility.

This concept was identified in the Ford City Data Report, which took its findings from more than 15,000 days of vehicle use, from 160 connected vans in the city.

Ford’s fleet of vans covered more than 1 million kilometres, the equivalent of 20 times around the earth, and delivered 500 million data points – each vehicle in the study was equipped with a simple plug-in device that recorded the journey data and then sent it to the cloud for analysis.

Data scientists from Ford’s Global Data Insight and Analytics team were then able to analyse the information through an interactive dashboard. Ford says the technology could be applied in any road environment, not just in cities.

The report also investigated other opportunities, such as how scheduling delivery van journeys for earlier in the day, before peak times, could benefit all road users, and how using journey data could help to identify the best locations for electric vehicle charging points.

“The Ford City Data Report is a showcase of what we at Ford can do with connected vehicle data, smart infrastructure, and our analytical capabilities. We are calling on cities to work with us to collectively solve problems that they can become even better places to live and work in,” said Sarah-Jayne Williams, director, Ford Smart Mobility, Ford of Europe.

For the full report, visit citydatareport.fordmedia.eu.