Employees working on-the-road face a variety of dangers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were more than 5,000 work-related fatalities in the United States in 2018. Of these deaths, 20 percent were transportation related. Being on the road is one of your employees’ most dangerous activities as part of their job.
As an employer, you must do everything possible to minimize your risks. Taking some simple precautions can help keep your employees safe and reduce your liability in the event of an accident. Here are five ways to protect your employees working on the road.
Conduct Regular Safety Meetings
One of the best ways to protect your employees is to ensure they’re always up-to-date on safety procedures. Hold regular safety meetings to review basic safety protocols and discuss any changes or updates. Touch on topics like distracted driving, speeding, seatbelt use, and defensive driving. If you have drivers who operate vehicles with special features or in hazardous conditions, make sure to cover those topics as well.
At these meetings, you should review basic safety procedures and remind employees of the importance of following protocol. You should also encourage them to speak up if they see something unsafe or have any concerns. In addition, you should provide refresher training on things like defensive driving and proper vehicle maintenance. Taking these steps can help reduce the risk of accidents and keep your employees safe while working on the road.
Get in touch with a lawyer
Sometimes, having the proper knowledge is what’s going to help your employees the most. If you’re unsure about a specific policy or need help navigating the trucking industry’s complex regulations, get in touch with a truck labor lawyer. They can help you understand your obligations and ensure you comply with all relevant laws. They will help you develop policies that protect your employees and your business.
You can also ask a lawyer to explain to your employees their rights and obligations under the law and what to do if they’re ever involved in an accident. Doing so will help ensure that your employees are prepared to handle any legal situation.
Require Defensive Driving Courses
Defensive driving courses teach drivers how to anticipate and avoid accidents. These courses teach drivers how to be alert and aware of their surroundings, avoid potential hazards, and react appropriately if an accident happens. As a result, employees who have completed a defensive driving course are less likely to be involved in a collision. And if they are involved in an accident, they’re more likely to walk away uninjured. For these reasons, requiring defensive driving courses is an effective way to protect your employees when they’re on the road.
Perform Regular Maintenance Checks
Regular maintenance checks are essential for keeping vehicles in safe operating condition. Before each trip, have your employees perform a basic safety check of their car. They should check the oil, tire pressure, and fluid levels and look for any visible damage to the vehicle. If they notice any problems, they should report them to you immediately so you can have them repaired before they become a hazard on the road. This is especially important for commercial vehicles, which are subject to more wear and tear than passenger vehicles.
In addition to regular safety checks, you should also have your vehicles inspected by a qualified mechanic regularly. These inspections will identify potential problems, so they can be fixed before they lead to an accident.
Invest in Telematics
Telematics systems use GPS tracking to provide real-time information on vehicle location and speed and data on driver behavior, such as hard braking and acceleration. This information can be used to improve fleet safety by identifying risky drivers and routes and can also be used to assist in the event of an accident. As businesses become increasingly global and mobile, telematics will play an essential role in protecting employees working on the road.
Purchase Adequate Insurance Coverage
Insurance is vital for protecting your business against liability in an accident. Ensure you have adequate insurance coverage for all your vehicles, including business cars, vans, trucks, and other commercial vehicles. You should also consider purchasing uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage in case one of your employees is involved in an accident with another driver who doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance to cover the damages.
By taking some simple measures to protect your employees working on the road, you can help keep them safe and reduce your liability in the event of an accident. Conduct regular safety meetings, require defensive driving courses, perform regular maintenance checks, invest in telematics, and purchase adequate insurance coverage to help protect your business against liability if an accident does occur down the road.