Fleet News

'Accidents just part of business motoring'

COMPANY car drivers are the worst motorists on UK roads, twice as likely to be involved in an accident and twice as likely to have points on their licences for speeding compared to private motorists, according to a new report.

The RAC Report on Motoring found company drivers were far more likely to admit to breaking the speed limit and causing accidents than private drivers, an alarming situation given the Government's determination to improve the safety of fleet drivers.

Gary Spellins, managing director of RAC Business Solutions, said: 'Company car drivers are twice as likely to be involved in an accident, even on a pro rata mileage basis, and more honest about admitting it because they do not have to pay the cost of the repair or insurance premium.

'Accidents are seen as just part of the cost of business motoring. Few companies have adopted risk management strategies to drive down these costs.'

The Government-sponsored Work-related Road Safety Task Group called on employers to take more responsibility for the demands they place on their drivers, and for the behaviour and safety of those drivers. Directors who fail to take action in this area could face jail.

The RAC report found that 58% of company car drivers admit to speeding on motorways (compared to 41% of private motorists), 48% of company drivers speed on main roads (private 37%); 21% of company drivers have points on their licences (private 10%); 37% of company drivers admit their last accident was their own fault (private 24%); and 75% of company drivers left their employers, insurance or accident management companies to handle the repair process.

'Most companies know a duty of care extends to cover high risk business drivers, but all too few responsible companies have been quick to act.

'It is evident that waiting in hope of driver attitudes changing, without companies themselves taking appropriate risk management initiatives is folly,' said Spellins.

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