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Tracker offers winter driving advice

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Tracker, the fleet telematics specialist, is urging businesses to reduce the risks for their drivers during Car safety Week.

Harsh winter weather can create hazardous driving conditions, but businesses can harness the power of telematics to help identify risk and meet their duty of care requirements.

Car Safety Week runs from January 27 to February 2 and is designed to highlight the safety solutions available to drivers everywhere in order to protect themselves and their vehicle.

Although it focuses on winter safety, it also includes more general safety advice for driving all year round.

Tracker supports Car Safety Week by reminding businesses that different seasons create different driving challenges, so it pays to be prepared to keep their fleets safe and keep them moving.

“Car Safety Week is a great time for companies to focus on ensuring their drivers understand the risks of driving in wet, icy, foggy or even snowy conditions,” explains Stephen Doran, managing director of Tracker.

“UK weather is unpredictable, especially in recent years where it has taken drivers by surprise. With extreme weather, visibility tends to be poor creating slow moving traffic, therefore impacting on the time it takes to get to a destination. Drivers can also suffer from fatigue more quickly due to sustained periods of concentration.”

Fleet tracking technology can provide up-to-the-minute data on where vehicles are at all times, allowing businesses to monitor conditions and offer the best advice to drivers, says Tracker.

Using the latest technology, routes can be pre-planned and once on the road if weather conditions suddenly change for the worse, an instant message can be sent to the driver to re-route or even stop their journey.

“It is vital that businesses educate their staff properly, allowing them to deal with adverse weather conditions,” said Doran.

“This is especially important if a company relies on its vehicles for the day to day running of the business.

“By implementing telematics like Tracker Fleet it means businesses can monitor driver behaviour, highlighting high risk driving, especially in treacherous weather. This way, firms can stay in control, while meeting their Duty of Care obligations and keeping their drivers moving all year round.”

Top tips

Tracker’s ‘Top Winter Driving Tips’ encourage drivers and businesses to carry out basic winter motoring preparations and adhere to safer driving – something it believes many overlook despite the ease of which they can be implemented.

• Is the journey necessary? – the best way to stay safe in bad weather is to stay off the roads and use alternative means of travel.

• Check forecasts and traffic news – both local and national.

• Consider your route – country roads are treacherous in icy weather and some roads are more susceptible to flooding and strong side winds than others.

• Check your emergency kit – a shovel, boots, torch and a blanket are winter essentials.

• Check tyres – tread depth should be at least 3mm to be safe in wet or icy conditions and tyres should be inflated to the pressure recommended by the manufacturer.

• Check lights and wipers – ensure they are fully functioning.

• Clean windscreen, windows and mirrors –clear snow, ice or steam before moving.

• Stay in control – avoid harsh braking and acceleration and carry out manoeuvres slowly and with extra care.

• Use lights – put lights on in gloomy weather.

• Slow down – stopping distances increase significantly in wet or icy conditions.

• Pack sunglasses – low hanging sun is a major winter hazard.

• Drivers should use sunglasses to reduce glare.

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