The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently announced that roadway fatalities fell by 1.2% in 2019. While this is great news, the report also showed that the number of fatal accidents caused by large trucks increased last year. For fleet managers, particularly of large vehicle fleets, this report emphasizes the importance of driver safety.
Roadway accidents are always a possibility, no matter who is behind the wheel or how safely they drive. You can’t eliminate your fleet’s potential accidents, but you can train your drivers to limit the danger and improve the outcome.
In this blog, we’ve provided tips to help you train drivers to know what to do before and after an accident.
Before an Accident
The key to avoiding accidents is to focus on preventative measures. Though you can’t affect the actions of other drivers, you can empower your employees to drive as safely as possible.
Prioritize Safe Driving Training
Comprehensive training is the most effective way to keep your drivers safe. Develop strict policies on speeding, texting while driving, and other dangerous behaviors. Focus on accident avoidance, showing employees how to react in deadly situations. Your drivers should also be familiar with your vehicles and the specific safety needs of each one. Training should be mandatory throughout the year and for new drivers.
Utilize a Telematics Solution
Driver monitoring is necessary for optimal safety. Install telematics solutions into each of your fleet vehicles to gather both vehicle and driver data. Track speeding infractions, harsh braking, and distracted driving. Use this information to address safety issues and improve overall driver performance.
After an Accident
When one of your drivers is in an accident, no matter who’s at fault, it’s important to follow a set procedure. Use the tips below to develop your own accident policies, limiting liability and improving driver safety.
Create an Accident Report Form
After an accident, your drivers need to gather information about the incident and the other people involved. An accident report form lists the information needed to ensure nothing is missed. Include contact information, vehicle descriptions, insurance info, etc. You can also add a space for drivers to diagram the accident.
Train Drivers on Post-Crash Actions
Along with information, your drivers should know who to call and what actions to take. Train your employees to call both 911 and the right person in your company after an incident. Make sure drivers know to never admit liability or vacate the scene of the incident. Unless the vehicle is blocking traffic, it should remain where it is until pictures and documentation have been taken. If your fleet vehicle is towed, drivers need to remove all items from the vehicle first.
Analyze Accident Data
If you have a telematics solution or dash cam in place, make sure you save and review the footage. This information can help prevent liability and improve accident understanding.
How do you manage fleet accidents?