As a fleet manager, it goes without saying that commercial vehicle safety is (and should) be a primary concern for you and your fleet. Fleet-related accidents can be incredibly costly, and when one of your drivers gets into an accident, you’re dealing with not only vehicle downtime but also driver downtime- assuming that an injury occurred.

The overall cost of this situation can add up quickly. According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the average cost for a single fleet-related accident is around $70,000, making fleet vehicle accidents among the most costly injury claims for a business. With an effective fleet safety program, you stand a much better chance of avoiding a devastating and costly accident.

Today, Triad Diagnostic Solutions will be discussing the elements of an effective fleet safety program. When you know what a fleet safety program should include, you can put one in place for your company and immediately reap the benefits. Here’s what you need to know!

Elements of a Fleet-Safety Program

1. A Strong Screening Process

One of the most important parts of an effective fleet safety program involves an in-depth audit of how you hire new drivers for your fleet. Without a rigorous screening process, you can’t have full confidence that your drivers are safe and responsible. We highly recommend using the following four phases of a screening process to evaluate any potential new hire:

1. Pre-screening
2. Core Screening involving drug/alcohol violation history, criminal history checks, and Motor Vehicle Reports
3. Conditional Screening including physical examinations and pre-employment drug testing
4. Ongoing screenings to ensure long-term safety, such as random drug and alcohol testing, regular driving record reviews, and monthly Motor Vehicle Report monitoring

2. Know Your Drivers

A crucial component of an effective fleet safety program also involves knowing your drivers. You need to know how your drivers use your vehicles both on and off of the clock. When you know your drivers like the back of your hand, you can make more informed decisions surrounding overall safety measures and driver training procedures. Ask yourself the following questions about your drivers:

    • Do you have a way of gaining real-time insight into their driving habits?
    • Do your drivers use your vehicles both commuting to and from work?
    • What types of licenses and certifications do your drivers hold?
    • Do you ever subcontract drivers? What is the screening process for these drivers?

3. Monitor Driver Behavior

Poor driver behavior can not only be dangerous, but it can also be costly in terms of finances and your company’s reputation. Hard braking, for example, is among one of the biggest contributors to fleet-related fuel waste. Additionally, this type of behavior is bad for the environment. We highly recommend using a software tool to monitor driving behavior on an ongoing basis. With this type of software, you can analyze drivers’ data in real-time and use this information to create a plan that corrects poor driving behavior and keeps fuel costs as low as possible.

4. Train All of Your Drivers Effectively

It’s a simple fact: adequate training prevents dangerous accidents. When you enforce the proper driver training procedures, you can effectively standardize the processes used to communicate safety regulations, general rules of the road, and effective driving habits. There are a number of resources available for your use, including sites like SharpDrive and Instructional Technologies. These websites offer a series of interactive driver training modules. You can also download training resources from the Business and Legal Resources (BLR) website.

5. Implement a Routine Inspection Process

Finally, another essential element of a fleet safety program involves the implementation of a routine inspection process. This prevents accidents and unexpected breakdowns resulting from poorly maintained parts or faulty equipment that could have been uncovered ahead of time otherwise.

In short, your routine inspection process should be three things: simple, accessible, and mobile. These inspections should be easy for anyone to complete on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. Additionally, your drivers should be equipped with a software solution that allows them the ability to perform inspections on the go. Finally, routine inspection data should be made easily accessible to any mechanic, driver, and you, as the fleet manager.

Jaltest Diagnostic Tools: A Powerful Part of Any Fleet Safety Program

Now that you know how to build an effective fleet safety program for your fleet, you need tools to make processes such as routine inspections as easy and straightforward as possible. Here at Triad Diagnostic Solutions, we are the preferred provider of diagnostic tools equipped with highly-praised Jaltest software.

Our Jaltest Commercial Vehicle Full Kit, for example, provides all of the features you need to perform highly accurate dealer-level diagnostics on all of your fleet’s vehicles. Jaltest also includes the GRP (Garage Resource Planning) diagnostic reporting system. We also offer convenient financing options to ensure that you get the tools you need for your fleet at a reasonable price point. Feel free to contact us with any questions. We’ll be happy to help you!

Photo by Tomas Horak on Unsplash
Unsplash+In collaboration with Getty Images

truck driver checking order