Letters to Fleet News’ editor Martyn Moore.
‘Strange’ cars can add to driver risk
I am fascinated by the approach taken by Shelagh Swift of Forticrete (May 1) to ensure that the organisation is not exposed with regard to insurance and corporate manslaughter claims when staff are on business travel.
Banning employees from using their own cars and insisting that they use a company car instead is just replacing one set of risks with another.
Using an unfamiliar vehicle which may be larger/smaller, or more/less powerful than their own familiar vehicle will need to be considered in any robust risk assessment.
In a previous employment we observed that virtually
all business travel crashes involved drivers using unfamiliar vehicles.
In many instances, business travel may involve a journey on an unknown route, to a previously unvisited location.
Surely adding a further dimension of a ‘strange’ vehicle only compounds the problems?
Let staff stick with the car they know best – their own.
Overtaking ban would ease congestion
Since driving in Germany, one of the things that struck me is the prohibition of HGVs from overtaking on hills on their motorways.
It has often struck me during my regular travels along the M1 that at peak times two HGVs are overtaking at a net speed of less than 5mph on a hill causing a tailback, an empty road in front and an empty inside lane as cars move towards the outside lane waiting to get past.
And as the overtaking HGV returns to the inside lane it then appears to release pent-up tension with car drivers speeding to make up the time in what appears to be an open road.
With the increase in cameras (not speed) and matrix signs, it seems relatively easy to improve traffic flow from the comfort of a control room by the simple remedy of prohibiting HGVs from overtaking on hills
I am sure HGV drivers will object.
However, with congestion at peak times costing time and money this could increase capacity, reduce speed, ease tension and stop non-HGV drivers forcing themselves into the outside lane trying to get past, possibly leading to minor rear-end shunts.
Fleet manager, Druck
Misfuelling is no joke
I read your column pouring scorn on the hapless driver that managed to fill his diesel vehicle with petrol twice and actually felt quite sympathetic towards him.
While it has not happened to me (my vehicles are petrol), I know it is something I could easily do and it has, in fact, happened a number of times to our drivers.
I also know of many friends who have managed to do it.
Surely it is time that fillers on cars were made so that this cannot happen.
You cannot put diesel in a petrol vehicle. It must cost drivers/companies an enormous amount of money.
How about a sensor on the pump nozzle that detects whether the tank has diesel in it and provides an audible warning?
It shouldn’t be beyond the wit of man to devise something to prevent the problem occurring – and do something to conserve our scarce resources at the same time.