Author: Jay Krishnan, Vice President, Automile
In a word, yes. Because safeguarding your drivers and vehicles saves lives. And don’t you want to keep your employees, customers and community out of harm’s way? Out of the courtroom?
Crash, Boom, Bang on the Bottom Line
Consider the impact—pun intended—of just one traffic accident. In Guidelines for Employers to Reduce Motor Vehicle Crashes, OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), NHTSA (National Highway Transportation Safety Administration), and NETS (Network of Employers for Traffic Safety) reveal that motor vehicle crashes cost employers $60 billion annually in medical care, legal expenses, property damage, and lost productivity.
That means the average crash costs an employer $16,500. What’s more, an on-the-job crash resulting in an injury costs an employer $74,000 and when there’s a fatality, costs can exceed $500,000.
If you need more convincing, check out Fleet-Central’s Accident Costs Calculator and find out how much extra sales revenue your company needs to generate to make up for the profits lost as result of fleet accidents.
What might hurt the most is there are safety threats around every corner. According to the most recent safety statistics from Fleet Financials, here are the top 5 accident descriptions reported by fleet drivers in 2014:
- 11.9% - damage while parked/other party
- 9.8% - other party hit rear or driver
- 7.9% - driver failed to observe clearance
- 8.3% - parking/backing
- 8.3% - other party failed to yield
The fact is many accidents from slips to crashes are largely preventable. And that’s exactly why risk management is a big focus for businesses operating fleets. HireRight reports in its annual 2016 Transportation Spotlight that 35% of the 3,500 carrier personnel surveyed say they’re now offering safety and accident prevention programs which educate drivers on operating vehicles properly, driving defensively, and eliminating distractions.
(About those pesky distractions, an article on AutomotiveFleet.com says driver distraction contributes to 25-30% of all fleet-related accidents. Obviously, cell phones and other mobile devices are major culprits, but so are the actions of adjusting climate controls, eating and drinking, and moving objects around in the vehicle while driving. These are just the types of things you need to make your drivers aware of. Now, back to the article!)
And TruckingInfo.com reminds us that in addition to traffic accidents, other on-the-job risks include loading and unloading cargo, handling heavy trucking equipment, and various slips, falls and strains from entering and exiting cabs. Awareness of these hazards is just as important for smaller businesses, whose drivers sit behind the wheels of sedans and vans and share the roads and walkways with other vehicles and pedestrians.
Take Control With Tech
By keeping business owners and fleet managers in-the-know about driver behaviors and vehicle condition, technology is informing the important decisions behind these initiatives. Fleet management technology give you insights into your fleet so you can address your specific safety and security risks—and actually help prevent accidents. With tools like geo-fencing and timely alerts on speeding and harsh driving, you get 360-degree visibility into your vehicles’ locations and drivers’ events. Learn best practices from business owner of Nagle Athletic Surfaces on how he uses telematics technology as a safety and security feature for his workforce on wheels.
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