Ensuring that employees are fully trained is crucial to organisations not only to ensure their safety but to minimise the risk of prosecution under the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act in the event of a fatality. The Act applies to all businesses requiring employees to drive for work purposes and any organisation guilty of an offence is liable for an unlimited fine, recommended to not be below £500,000.
It makes sense that people who drive for their job are exposed to the risks of the road more often than people who don’t. In fact the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) estimates that up to a third of all road traffic accidents involve a person that is driving for work.
Obviously, this includes people who work as bus or HGV drivers, delivery drivers, and taxi drivers, but it is also important to remember that even people who drive for work less frequently, company representatives or maintenance workers for example, are still at risk whenever they’re on the road.
Employers have duties under health and safety law to manage the risks faced by their workers on the road, and also a moral duty of care to protect their employees, the general public, and the reputation of their company. Organisations should ensure that a clear driving for work policy is in place and that sufficient driving training has been given prior to asking employees to drive for work purposes to improve road safety and reduce risk.