Fleet News

Driver safety pleas falling on deaf ears

FLEETS have comprehensively failed to respond to Government demands to improve safety standards among drivers. Salary and benefits specialist Alan Jones & Associates, in its report Company Car Survey Report 1999, found that more than 70% of fleets provided no driver training for staff - a situation unchanged since last year.

The apparent apathy among the 163 companies surveyed, with a total fleet of 55,000 vehicles, comes amid demands from the police and Government for the fleet industry to reduce accident rates among their drivers.

Junior transport minister Lord Whitty has warned the fleet industry that it must slash its high accident rate compared to other road users and police forces are warning that companies which are proved to have shown ignorance of their 'duty of care' to drivers on the road will be punished through the courts.

Of the 28% of fleets which provided training, 46% reported a fall in insurance costs with many others saying they had not had time to collate figures. However, even companies which invested in driver training were not free from problems, as half only provided it when staff received a car. Driver training companies say it is vital to offer a rolling programme of training to ensure long-term benefits of low road accident rates.

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