Although many companies have proper procedures in place to meet their duty of care responsibilities to cash-for-car drivers, many are still confused about the role they have to play.
Members of the Fleet Safety Association (FSA) say they are becoming increasingly concerned over the situation and recommend that companies implement some form of mechanical inspection on a regular basis to ensure such vehicles are always in a safe condition.
The association, which represents training and associated suppliers for making business drivers safer, says most cash-for-car drivers accept that service intervals have to be adhered to but often ignore regular, safety-related checks.
FSA spokesman Steve Johnson said: ‘As far as we are concerned, the regulations make it quite clear that employers certainly do have an obligation to ensure that vehicles driven for business reasons, irrespective of how they are funded, are fit for purpose and entirely legal. Responsibility cannot just be passed off on to the individual employee.’
The association recommends that companies contact their fleet management supplier to see if they offer some form of mechanical inspection service on a regular basis.
Johnson added: ‘It is not sufficient for a well-meaning amateur to carry out a casual visual check, which is highly likely to miss something crucial.
‘Without checks like this taking place as a matter of routine, employers really are not only risking their reputation but also falling short on their corporate governance obligations.’
Simple safety checks regularly neglected by drivers, the FSA says, include the condition and inflation of tyres, topping up washer bottles and checking that lights are working properly.