So what do you want to know about your so called ‘grey fleet’? Perhaps there is another question you may want to ask first, “How much do I need to know?”
There is, you may be pleased to learn, a bottom line: If someone is driving on company business their employer has a duty of care for recording, providing information, risk assessing and giving appropriate training, under the Health and Safety at Work Act 19\4.
This duty applies when employees are undertaking driving for work, the grey fleet! So if you have a grey fleet, you need to start considering the risks involved with them driving on behalf of your company.
It’s that ‘r’ word again! As Head of Training for IAM Fleet and Drive & Survive I find that action is often taken when the “suddenly’s” have queued up like busses and all come at once, which is a shame, as it really can be avoided.
Each year thousands of people are killed or seriously injured while driving on company business and could result in legal disputes, particularly since the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act came into force in 2007. When you look at it like this, it really is worth addressing, now!
It seems to me that even though there’s been a lot of media attention about grey fleet, many organisations are still failing to get the message across to their own
employees using their own cars for business’ that they have a legal responsibility for ensuring that any vehicles driven for business are legally compliant. There is still very much an ‘out of sight, out of mind’ culture and this needs to change.
I’d urge Fleet Managers to conduct a grey fleet analysis and implement policies governing grey fleet. You never know it could even reduce insurance claims dramatically.
There are several tool kits out there that can help. The trick is to choose one that can be followed later by an intervention that can change behaviour. After all why create more admin if it doesn’t change behaviour?
And if none of that has convinced you, then let me leave this with you. Right now hundreds of cars will be on the road today being driven with dangerously low engine oil levels, illegal and dangerously bald tyres, perhaps even driving without and MOT or no hands free kit. All these can pose a serious threat to the safety of driver, passengers and other road users. Really all these drivers are ticking time bombs, question is do you really want a ticking time bomb in your fleet?
IAM Fleet and Drive & Survive www.iam.org.uk 0870 1286500
Author: Simon Elstow, Head of Training IAM Fleet and Drive & Survive