The Fleet Safety Forum, a division of road safety charity Brake, has published new guidance for fleet managers on grey fleets (privately-owned cars used on business).
The guidance, sponsored by Romex, provides advice on how to minimise the risks and maximise the safety of grey fleet drivers.
Managing the grey fleet is a key safety issue fleet managers need to address. In the UK, employee-owned cars used for business are nearly seven years old, on average, and therefore do not benefit from the latest safety technology.
This compares unfavourably with company cars which leave service on average after four years.
Research by Brake has found that even among companies that subscribe to its Fleet Safety Forum, nearly one in three (32%) report their policies on vehicle checks and maintenance do not extend to grey fleet vehicles.
The guidance provides advice to help managers reduce risks associated with grey fleet drivers. It highlights the importance of providing alternatives to grey fleet use in the first instance, and if drivers do have to use their own vehicles for work purposes, subjecting them and their vehicles to the same rigorous safety checks and risk assessments as other company drivers.
It features a best practice case study of an operator that has taken steps to successfully mitigate the risks associated with grey fleet drivers.
Roz Cumming, professional engagement manager at Brake, said: “Employers have the same level of responsibility for the safety of grey fleet drivers as they do for those driving company vehicles. Managers must approach this proactively, minimising grey fleet use wherever possible.
“If grey fleet is used, managers need to ensure drivers using their own vehicles are risk assessed and receive the same training as other company drivers, as well as taking steps to ensure vehicles are appropriately serviced, checked and insured.”
The guidance is free for Fleet Safety Forum subscribers, or can be purchased for £5 by non-subscribers.