Fleet News

Survey shows up lazy fleet drivers

COMPANY car drivers are failing to carry out the most basic safety checks on their vehicles – and a quarter claim to have received no guidance at all on using mobile phones in cars, a new survey has revealed.

It found that a fifth of fleet drivers had never undertaken routine maintenance, such as checking tyre pressure or oil and water levels, and a third of those that did only carried out such checks on a quarterly basis.

And although 72% said their company had advised them it was legal to only use a handsfree mobile phone while driving, the remaining 28% said no guidance had been issued on the mobile phone law, even though it came into force in December 2003.

The nationwide survey of more than 180 drivers was carried out by Kwik-Fit Fleet.

Nigel Davies, the company’s UK fleet sales director, said: ‘Health and safety has consistently featured as the number one fleet industry issue in recent years, yet our survey shows that in terms of routine vehicle maintenance basic checks are being ignored by many drivers.

‘This may be a laissez-faire attitude among company car drivers or the fact that they have not read the manual informing them about basic maintenance or have not been advised by fleet operators.’

Davies said carrying out monthly checks on tyres and fluid levels as well as lights and windscreen wipers should be a standard procedure among company car drivers.

He added: ‘It is clear that while many fleets and their company car drivers have adopted best practice advice in respect of tightening health and safety regulations, in respect of at-work driving there are a significant number that must tighten current practices.’

Fact file

  • 61% of drivers are not given a reminder by their fleet manager, leasing company or fleet management provider when their car is due for a service
  • 73% said they had not undergone any driver training since passing their driving test
  • 63% said the introduction of speed cameras had influenced their driving style
  • 56% believed speed cameras had contributed towards a reduction in accident rates
  • Half claimed their employer failed to keep them informed of new legislation, such as benefit-in-kind tax changes
  • More than half admitted to never having read the driver’s manual issued with their company car Source: Kwik-Fit Fleet Driver Survey
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