3 ways to make your fleet safer
Poor driver behavior, such as harsh braking and acceleration, speeding and excessive idling, can all be managed using a fleet management solution. Onboard computers track incidents that increase the likelihood of an accident, and generate reports for analysis and preventative action.
In addition to its negative impact on fleet safety, poor driver behavior can also increase insurance premiums and the possibility of fines. Certain driving habits such as excessive speeding or braking, and accelerating too harshly, increase fuel usage and maintenance costs (due to wear and tear).
Ultimately, how your employees drive affects your bottom line while also impacting safety. Monitoring and improving driver behavior is in the best interests of both your company and your drivers.
Discover how Carey Worldwide Chauffeur Services reduced the number of accidents in their fleet by using telematics to monitor and improve bad driver behavior.
We value human life above all else and this solution has certainly helped in ensuring our drivers arrive home safely every day. The MiX Telematics fleet management solution gives us a window into our fleet's performance and assists in our total cost of ownership models.
Based on this data, it can also help determine what type of targeted training each of your drivers require. Providing relevant, timely driver training offers a significant return on investment while also helping your drivers gain a deeper understanding of any bad habits they are engaged in and giving them the defensive driving techniques to improve it.
In addition to targeted training, telematics data can be used to generate performance scores for your drivers. These scores are perfect to use in incentive or rewards programs, and highly effective in furthering driver engagement. This approach to training is proven to increase the overall performance of fleets versus those that don’t have much buy-in from their drivers.
When you provide your drivers with the right tools and incentives to improve their behavior on the road, it strengthens fleet safety and performance. It also saves you money by lowering insurance premiums and reducing the risk of collisions.
Our white paper shows you how to create a telematics policy that guides your drivers through the rules of safe road use, the risks involved in not adhering to these rules and how to reduce these risks.
Your fleet’s safety can be vastly improved through the implementation of relevant training that highlights bad driver behaviors and gives drivers the tools to improve.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the development of a successful, comprehensive driver safety policy includes:
Advances in fleet management software have made it all the more easier to implement and monitor effective driver safety policies. Telematics devices monitor WHERE your vehicles are driven as well as HOW your vehicles are driven. These two important features will help you analyze current driving standards, highlight dangerous and risky behaviors, and devise methods to eradicate them in order to keep up with the safety standards created through your policies. Driver buy-in is achieved by implementing scoring and then offering incentive programs and specialized training on defensive driving using the data collected.
A complete safety policy is essential to increasing safety awareness in your fleet. Fleet management software simplifies the process of developing one that fits your unique needs.
Safe driving is the lynchpin of a fleet safety culture, and that means focusing on driver training. Making it clear to drivers what driving behaviors they should and should not be doing is a fleet safety policy must.
But let’s be clear. Drivers do know what safe driving is. They know that they should drive defensively, obey traffic signs, drive the speed limit, yield the right of way, and, of course, not drink and drive. It’s pretty much common sense and rules of the road that everyone must follow. However, when fleet drivers are in a hurry and worried about meeting scheduled stops, checking messages, and returning calls, safe driving sometimes falls by the wayside.
Fleet managers can fight this with safe driver training paired with a deeply-rooted safety culture for their fleet. Drivers should be aware that their safety is vital to the fleet and that their actions play a role in it. Once the safety policy is clearly communicated, fleet safety management services from MiX Telematics can help you keep track of driver behavior and create training programs that help them improve.
Communication is the foundation for a successful fleet safety culture. Drivers do better when they know what is expected of them and when it is regularly reinforced. There are several ways fleet managers can stress the importance of fleet safety in their daily communications, such as:
Repetition of the safety message emphasizes its importance and increases awareness, and reinforces fleet safety culture.
A detailed fleet safety policy gives drivers a guide to refer to and also underscores how essential fleet safety is to the entire business. A fleet safety policy should cover topics such as:
The clarity and details in a fleet safety policy document will demonstrate the importance of safety to your business and how seriously management takes it. Is safety just another item to cover on a checklist, or is the document evidence of a deeper commitment? In order for the safety policy to get results, every element must be clearly defined, and any consequences must be clearly delineated.
Developing a seat belt policy is the cornerstone of a safety policy. All drivers and passengers in all feet vehicles must have their seatbelts on before the vehicle goes anywhere. Highlight the safety of wearing a seatbelt, not just for drivers but for their passengers and others on the road.
When drivers take their eyes off the road and their hands off the wheel to text or engage in other activities, they automatically increase the chances of a crash. When you establish and implement a no distracted driving policy, you have increased the safety of your fleet and others on the road.
With MiX Vision, you can alert drivers when they engage in risky behavior, such as whether or not drivers and passengers are buckled in. You can also alert them about distracted driving. This demonstrates to drivers your commitment to their safety.
Since safety is considered a part of the job, drivers should be recognized and rewarded for their achievements in this area. You can determine the events you want to recognize, such as years of no accidents or traffic violations.
Ways to recognize safe driving include:
When your drivers see that safety is rewarded, they will know that the company takes safety seriously.
One of the best ways to improve driver safety behavior is to offer training customized to each driver’s needs. Real-time training combined with classroom instruction gives your drivers the practical skills they need to reduce risks and help avoid crashes on the road.
MiX Telematics offers telematics tools that can supercharge your driver training. You can share driver behavior statistics one-on-one or gamify the training program to foster friendly competition among your drivers.
When vehicles are well-maintained, they are automatically safer. This helps eliminate crashes and accidents due to vehicle breakdowns. Fleet telematics can provide metrics that help you schedule fleet vehicle maintenance in advance, helping to keep your fleet running efficiently and safely.
Choose your fleet vehicles with safety top of mind. You can pull stats on things like crash tests for the vehicles you choose and let your drivers know what they are to demonstrate your commitment to a safety culture further. And that you expect as much from yourself and the business as you do from your drivers.
You can’t improve what you don’t measure and track. There are several safety-related statistics that a MiX Telematics solution can help you measure to improve fleet safety, including:
Drivers should understand the costs and consequences to themselves and their company, when they are involved in an accident. Any metrics that demonstrate the effects of safe driving will help build a safety consciousness in all drivers.
An MVR policy can demonstrate your commitment to fleet safety. An MVR review should be a part of your hiring criteria and a condition of employment for new drivers. A record of violations suggests the possibility of risky driving that could cost your business. Your current drivers should also know that their MVRs will be checked annually for violations.
Keeping your drivers accountable to you and themselves, other fleet drivers and employees, other drivers on the road, and customers not only while on the job but elsewhere, reinforces the importance of a safety culture. Communication about safety should be general, not only in the context of work hours but also during personal time.
For instance, a seatbelt policy should incent drivers to wear seatbelts when driving on their own time. Likewise, a distracted driving policy should do the same, whether on the way to a job site or service call or taking kids to the movies.
By encouraging drivers to extend safety into their lives, they will not only be safer but more likely make safety a habit during work hours as well.
All employees take their cues from the top, so when leadership speaks, employees pay attention. Getting support and ongoing involvement from leadership can amplify your efforts in creating a safety culture for the fleet. For instance, when the safety policy is rolled out and implemented, an announcement from leadership underscores its importance and is taken seriously.
To achieve long-term fleet safety, fleet managers have to continue to highlight the importance of safe driving behaviors. If safety is only brought up every once in a while, it won’t have any real effect. To keep safety at the forefront, keep records of the safe and unsafe driving behaviors of all drivers. With MiX Telematics, you can pull reports and sort by driver, vehicles, or events to get a complete picture of your fleet’s driving behavior. Contact us today to learn more about our fleet safety management services.