Level 2 Award in Safe Driving at Work

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1 Level 2 Award in Safe Driving at Work Student notes (sample) Membership Training Qualifications Audit and Consultancy Audit and Policy Consultancy and Opinion Policy Awards and Opinion Awards

2 A1 Why drive safely? Did you know? More than a quarter of all road traffic accidents involve somebody who is driving as part of their work. Moral responsibility Driving is the most dangerous task that most employees undertake while at work. In the UK, four times as many people are killed while driving for work than any other industrial accident. With so many deaths and serious injuries associated with driving at work, employers have a moral obligation to safeguard the health and safety of the people involved. In turn, employees have a moral obligation to drive safely. Legal compliance Employers have a legal duty to keep employees safe and this duty extends to situations when employees are asked to drive as part of their work. In turn, employees have a duty to co-operate with their employer on health and safety matters. This includes adhering to rules in relation to driving at work. Drivers are required to follow the Highway Code. Failure to comply with the mandatory rules in the Code is a criminal offence. Breaches can lead to fines, penalty points on licences and drivers losing their licence. In the UK, the police treat a fatal road traffic accident as an unlawful killing and, if appropriate, may interview the driver, managers and directors. If the company s actions or inactions are deemed to have contributed to the accident, the driver, managers or directors may be charged with manslaughter. Financial sense The savings from properly managed driving at work can be significant: Fewer accidents Fewer vehicle repairs Improvements in fuel consumption Less time spent on investigations Less lost time Reduced insurance premiums More reliable service to customers In short, safe driving is good for business. 3

3 B2 Factors that increase risk Fact Between 800 and 1,000 people are killed each year in work-related road traffic accidents in the UK. The vehicle Failure to maintain the vehicle, particularly brakes and tyres Failure to carry out basic pre-journey checks Using a vehicle for a purpose for which it was not intended The driver Failing to concentrate Driving too fast for the prevailing conditions Driving too close to the vehicle in front Not being in full control of the vehicle (e.g. eating when driving) Being distracted (e.g. by passengers or satellite navigation systems) Not anticipating the actions of others (e.g. children running across a road) Getting agitated by the actions of others Lacking experience in certain conditions (e.g. driving in fog) Making a phone call or texting when driving Being too tired to drive, perhaps through working long hours Being unfit to drive because of a medical condition Being unfit to drive through the effect of alcohol or drugs The nature of the journey Becoming complacent when driving along a familiar route Making mistakes on unfamiliar routes (e.g. being in the wrong lane) Driving under time pressure The environment The time of day The amount of light Weather conditions Busy, built-up areas Rural areas where roads may be narrower and visibility reduced Motorways (when the driver might mentally switch off ) Off-road driving which may mean a very different surface Company sites where space may be limited and there may be additional hazards 6

4 C1 Reducing the risk Fact About 0 people are killed in the UK each year as a result of someone falling asleep at the wheel. About 4 in 10 tiredness-related crashes involve someone driving a commercial vehicle. The company can: Have a clear policy on driving at work Carry out risk assessments Ensure that company vehicles are kept safe and well maintained Check that drivers hold the correct licence for the class of vehicle Check that proposed journeys have been properly planned and that drivers are allowed time for breaks (at least 15 minutes per two hours driving) Provide training and refresher training as required React quickly when problems are reported The driver can: Plan the journey and allow enough time for breaks Carry out pre-journey checks Get comfortable, adjust the seat and check the mirrors Be in full control of the vehicle at all times Make sure there are no distractions (e.g. mobile phones) Look ahead and try to spot potential hazards Check mirrors at regular intervals Signal in good time if changing lane or direction Maintain a safe distance from the vehicle in front Not exceed the speed limit Adapt to any changes of conditions, e.g. failing light, rain Adapt to other road users Concentrate and remain calm Use defensive driving techniques as necessary Not drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs Take a break when tired (especially on motorways) Take a mobile phone in case of emergency or other problems Report any problems 9

5 C3 Adapting to conditions Fact On average, 65% of all company vehicles will be involved in an incident within the next 12 months with the average repair costs ranging from 7 to 4,0 per claim. Road conditions When driving in heavy rain, snow or fog, speed should be reduced and braking distance adjusted. Particular care should be taken when there is a risk of ice on the road. In extreme weather, it is safer to pull in and wait until conditions improve. Care should be taken when driving on steep gradients or round sharp bends as there is a greater chance of a load becoming unstable or a vehicle overturning. When driving off-road (perhaps on sand or gravel), steering and braking may well be different. Traffic In urban areas, the higher volume of road users, particularly pedestrians and cyclists, presents its own problems. In rural areas, locals tend to know the road and their speeds can be higher. Roads may be narrower, visibility may be reduced due to (for example) hedges and there is the chance of encountering slow moving agricultural vehicles or animals. While motorways are statistically the safest type of road, the sheer speed of the traffic means that any incidents that do occur can be serious. Always maintain a safe distance between yourself and the vehicle in front, in case you have to brake suddenly. Other road users Be aware of what is happening around you and try to look as far forward as you can. This will help you to anticipate problems much earlier. For example, a sudden flurry of brake lights in the distance may indicate that something is happening that you need to be aware of. When traffic backs up, people get frustrated and start to try and find ways to avoid the problem. This can result in sudden, unexpected movements of vehicles around you. Lorries may have restricted views from their mirrors and can t always see a vehicle immediately behind them or on their nearside. Cyclists and motorcyclists tend to weave their way through traffic and can be difficult to spot. Particular care needs to taken around schools, particularly at dropping off and picking up time. Children have limited road sense and limited peripheral awareness. 11

6 C4 Highway Code The Highway Code is a set of rules, guidance, advice and information for road users in the UK. Failure to comply with the mandatory rules is a criminal offence. Four of the most important sections relate to speed limits, braking distances, signals and signs. Speed limits Built-up areas Single carriageways Dual carriageways Motorways Types of vehicle MPH MPH MPH MPH Cars and motorcycles (including car derived up to 2 tonnes maximum laden weight) Cars towing caravans or trailers (including car derived vans and motorcycles) Buses and coaches (not exceeding 12 meters in overall length) 70 Good vehicles (not exceeding 7.5 tonnes) 70* Good vehicles (exceeding 7.5 tonnes maximum laden weight) 40 Built up areas If you are unsure of the speed limit on a particular road where it is built up and there are street lights, assume that the speed limit is mph. If the speed limit is above mph there will be repeater speed limit signs at regular intervals. Dual carriageways Dual carriageways in built-up areas may have reduced speed limits of mph, 40mph or even mph to ensure the safety of road users. A saloon car may be driven at 70mph. A transit van, being a goods vehicle and not a car derived van, is restricted by its class to a speed limit of mph. Motorways * The speed limit for goods vehicles not exceeding 7.5 tonnes is mph if the vehicle is articulated or towing a trailer. 12

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