MAJOR new guidance on how fleets should treat drivers as part their duty of care obligations will be unveiled within the next month.
Produced by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), it's generic guidance for employers on work-related road safety and will cover five key issues.
These will be under wide-ranging headings covering legal responsibility for employers, the benefits of managing work related road safety, how to manage work-related road safety, assessing risk management from the road and evaluating the risks.
A spokeswoman said the guide has now gone to print and that the HSE is working towards a date of September 17 for its publication.
References and useful websites will also be included at the end of the guidance for fleets to gain further information from road safety and risk management sources.
Sharan Bains from the Safety Policy Directorate at the HSE first highlighted the executive's plans at the Best of the Best conference, in association with the road safety charity Brake, held earlier this year.
She said that the guidance would be generic rather than specific and would provide fleets with the issues to address when developing and implementing a risk management policy. This would also cover tailored risk management policies.
The HSE has worked in conjunction with the Metropolitan Police and set up a 'memorandum of understanding' to produce the guidance. When developing the guidance Bains said the HSE wanted to create a balance between accident prevention and risk management.
It follows recommendations put forward by the Work-related Road Safety Task Group, which carried out an in-depth study into accident and safety levels among UK fleets and compiled a range of best-practice examples.
Coinciding with the HSE guidance, the Fleet Safety Forum has re-launched its guide, 'Managing Road Risk' to offer fleets additional help when implementing polices on road safety.
The forum's guide covers issues such as training, assessing and monitoring drivers, ensuring vehicles are of a high standard and establishing a road risk policy. It costs £9.75 and is available by calling 01484 559909