When a fleet vehicle breaks down, it isn’t just a minor inconvenience. You may have to delay shipments, reschedule jobs, or lose the work entirely. Plus, you have to rearrange your future schedule to make up for the loss. It’s bad for your bottom line and a nightmare for your dispatchers. Vehicle malfunctions also increase the risks your drivers face on the road.
You may not be able to completely eliminate breakdowns, but there are several ways to catch problems early on. Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports (DVIRs), for example, can help drivers identify small issues that may grow into bigger problems. Along with being required by the FMCSA, these reports are a good practice to follow for any fleet.
In this blog, we’ll give you three easy ways to improve your DVIRs and better maintain your fleet.
3 Ways to Improve Your DVIRs
1. Help drivers understand their vehicles
The more familiar your drivers are with their vehicles, the quicker they can spot a problem. During employee training or when you assign a new vehicle, have drivers thoroughly examine their vehicle. Make sure they understand any quirks, including things to watch out for. Have them drive the vehicle for a few days before their first official work trip. You should also walk drivers through their DVIRs to ensure they follow your procedure.
2. Create a standard inspection process
The FMCSA has developed standards that drivers must meet with their reports. For compliance and safety purposes, it’s critical that your employees are meeting these requirements. That said, you may want to add your own items to the DVIR checklist. Once you’re happy with your DVIR requirements, create a process that covers these items. This procedure should be clear and easy to follow, no matter the type of vehicle. For greatest ease, consider using a telematics solution that offers standard, ready-to-use vehicle inspection reports.
3. Audit your driver inspections
Since drivers are checking the same items every day, they may rush through their reports or skip parts of their inspections. This is bad for compliance and creates unnecessary safety risks. Conduct random, unannounced audits of your vehicles to make sure your employees are being thorough. You can also shadow drivers during their inspections to review the ways that they are evaluating their vehicles.
How do you keep vehicles in top shape with driver vehicle inspection reports?