How to keep your fleet safe during party season
Christmas adverts have been gracing our screens for months, supermarket shelves are groaning under the weight of mince pies, and fleet managers are considering the effects of cold and congestion on journey times. In other words, it’s party season. And there are many more dangers to your fleet than just drink driving. To help you get ready for the busiest period of the year, we’ve put together a rundown of things to consider.
The morning after the night before
Christmas parties are an opportunity for staff to unwind, and a chance to thank them for another year of hard work. They are also minefields of potentially unsafe driving behavior. Alcohol consumption in the UK rises sharply in December, bringing a higher statistical risk of drink-driving offences. Drink driving is not only dangerous and illegal: it also threatens the smooth running of your business.
Manage the increased risk of drink driving by holding company parties at weekends or before non-workdays, and laying on transport to and from the event. It’s also vital to educate drivers on the risks of driving the morning after a party: according to an RAC survey, company-car drivers are two times as likely to drive the morning after as private-vehicle owners.
Prevent winter vehicle damage
Planned winter maintenance is crucial for keeping fleet vehicles on the road. Service your vehicles to prepare them for the winter, paying particular attention to fluid levels, antifreeze concentration, tyre pressure, and tyre condition. Again, driver education is a must: teach your drivers to warm engines prior to heavy winter use, and you’ll minimise the risk of stress damage to cold metal parts.
Driver knowledge is also key when it comes to reducing the risk of cold-weather accidents. Train your drivers to recognise changes in road and traffic conditions and drive accordingly—for example by using increased braking times or by giving plenty of leeway to other vehicles that are driving erratically.
Stay safer with technology
Telematic solutions, such as those provided by RAC Business or TomTom, can be a valuable asset in the fight against dangerous driving and winter road conditions. Not only can your drivers remain informed about route conditions and weather in real time: you can also monitor the performance and habits of your drivers while they are out on the road. Of particular interest to the fleet manager in winter are data tracking speed and mileage, which can be converted into a meaningful picture of the efficiency and safety of driver behaviour during party season.