Driving is one of the most dangerous activities that we undertake daily. Whether it’s for social or professional purposes, driving requires full concentration from the driver. Driving is a risk not only for drivers but also any passengers, cyclists, motorcyclists and members of the public.

The nature of many businesses is that driving is a main activity. The Health and Safety Authority defines driving for work as any person who drives on a road as part of their work either in a vehicle provided by their employer or in their own vehicle and receives an allowance or payment from their employer for distances driven. Commuting to work is not included as a driving for work activity.

The statistics for 2015 reveal that 1 in 5 drivers involved in fatal collisions were driving for work and 1 in 10 drivers injured were driving for work. In February 2017 the HSA, RSA and An Garda Siochana launched a campaign focusing on employer’s road risk duties. They have developed a short e-learning course on managing driving for work which would be beneficial for both employers and employees.

Employers have responsibilities to manage driving for work. Although the driver is ultimately accountable for how a vehicle is driven on the road, the employer has a substantial influence on the driver and the vehicle. Under the Safety Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) Regulations 2007, the employer has a duty of care to their employee by ensuring that the risks related with driving for work are suitably controlled. These include:

The Vehicle

  • Selecting the safest company vehicle (NCAP rating), equipped with the most up to date safety features, aimed at reducing the possibility and/or consequences of an accident
  • Provide breakdown cover
  • Provision of insurance, tax and NCT
  • Ensure that the vehicle is fit for purpose and suitable for the nature of work
  • Planned maintenance checks. Both weekly and daily by the vehicle driver and a planned maintenance schedule i.e. annually or after 10,000 km or in line with manufacturers
  • Provide the vehicle with a fire extinguisher, first aid kit, hi-vis vest, flashlight, spare wheel, tyre kit and warning triangle

The Driver

  • Select the appropriate employee for driving activities
  • Ensure that the employee holds the correct licence type
  • Staff who drive for work should have an eyesight test every two years
  • Carry out driver induction when an employee begins with the company
  • Provide instruction, training and information
  • Review driver behaviour i.e. any previous penalty points or prosecutions
  • Develop a driver handbook. It should explain how to drive safely and the company’s rules and procedures

The Journey

  • Managers must consider employee travel arrangements and ensure employees have sufficient time to complete any journey
  • Eliminate or reduce the journeys where possible
  • Consider other substitutes such as video conferencing
  • Where possible promote the use of public transport
  • Set out clear limits on maximum driving per day and driver hours

In collaboration with our certified partner ALERT DRIVING from Toronto, Canada, CMSE Training offer a suite of world class advanced Alert Driving E-learning courses.

These courses are customised according to country – including UK, Ireland, France, USA and many more. Courses can be delivered in many languages.

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