Only 11% carry out regular safety checks on items such as tyres, lights, fluids and glass, and more than half admit they would lie to the fleet manager if asked whether they had performed such checks.
A staggering 84% of fleet drivers said they would take better care of their company provided vehicle if they were penalised in some way for damage and unnecessary wear.
The company behind the findings, fleet management firm Total Motion, said the trend of drivers ignoring basic health and safety guidelines was getting worse but few companies were doing anything about it.
Managing director Simon Hill said: ‘This is the third set of results we have published and the trend just keeps getting worse. It appears the only way to change drivers’ attitudes and behaviour is through enforcement and penalties, yet few companies are doing anything about it.’
A lack of effective fleet management leading to the fall in standards is partly to blame for the problem, with the tendency to put the fleet in the hands of the HR or finance department rather than a dedicated, professional fleet manager, Hill said.
He added: ‘Even where there are fleet managers, boards are not giving them the funds to invest in policies and monitoring systems or the power to impose penalties because they don’t see the need.’
The company produced the results in its Total Motion Vehicle Monitor Survey, which inspected 4,768 vehicles and found almost a quarter (23%) used for business purposes unroadworthy and 39% not properly maintained.