Updated: Dec 15, 2021
Traffic on our roads is beginning increase again and there is a lot of people in our community suffering from stress and fatigue. These factors can create a high risk environment for professional drivers, and an increase to near miss reporting in a business.
Reporting Near Misses
Encourage your drivers to report their near miss traffic incidents, even if it was
the other drivers fault. This information shows a record of the near miss history,
as well as providing valuable information for training purposes.
If the near miss involves a driver from another company, get in touch with the
company. You should be communicating the incident, sending them the details
of the near miss and advise them that you are looking in to the near miss / have
closed out the incident. Many of these cases is a quick email informing the
company that the incident has been noted.
Rule of Thumb is: A company that have company vehicles, with no near misses
on the road, is a company that is not reporting all incidents.
If your vehicles have a dash cam that
records sound, train your drivers to say out
loud details that could be helpful. These
details could include:
• Vehicle number plate
• Company name if applicable
• What happened to cause near miss or accident
This information can then be played back
and recorded at a later time.
The public is one of the biggest hazards for professional drivers.
It is important for the driver to be alert, have no distractions
and be a defensive driver. Defensive driver techniques focus on anticipating
To do this the driver:
• Looks ahead
• Expects the unexpected
• Is alert
• Distraction free
• Prepared for another driver/ pedestrians actions
• Adjusts speed when required
• Respects and is courteous to other drivers
• Keeps safe following distances
• Adjusts driving for the conditions (weather, traffic flow, road conditions)
• Knows the vehicle and load limitation
Driver Fit For Work
Before starting work, drivers should be asking themselves if they are
fit for work. They should ask themselves the following questions:
• Am I under the influence of drugs (including prescription medicines)
and/ or alcohol?
• Am I distracted in anyway? (cellphone, noise, work pressure, home
pressure, food / drinks being consumed)
• Am I fatigued at all?
If drivers answer yes to any of these, alternative work should be
allocated, work should stop until worker is fit for work or the worker be
given time off.
Vehicle Fit For Use
Before starting work, a vehicle inspection should be carried out. If a
vehicle has mechanical failures or is not suitable for the task (outside
it’s limit / capability or incorrect vehicle for the job) the vehicle should
not be used and the failures reported.
The driver needs to ensure loads are secured both inside the vehicle
and on trailers before setting out on the road
Policies and Procedures
It is recommended that a company have a driving policy and a drug and alcohol policy in place. These policies outline company expectations of employees and provide framework to work alongside in the rare case of misconduct.
To set expectations and safe working practices a company should encourage the following behaviour from their employees:
• Always wear seat belts
• Provide safe, suitable and well maintained vehicles
• Encourage communication on safe work practices, comments and suggestions of improvements from employees
• Manage driving hours and breaks to reduce fatigue
• Limit peak hour driving
• Set in place delivery / collection times to manage workloads
• Collaborate with other businesses to coordinate vehicle movements on sites
(Traffic Management Plan)
• Encourage drivers to walk and assess a difficult to maneuver route on sites
before attempting to drive it
• Provide one-way systems to avoid reversing vehicles
• Prevent overloading of vehicles
• Provide handsfree for mobile devices if they are required for the job
Our team are available if you require assistance with implementing
policies, procedures, inspections, traffic management plans or
assistance with incident reporting.
Please contact us if you require any advice