Driver Training V Driver Education?
Using a holistic approach to driver training and risk management can be effective. Offering different types of training and interventions can help to communicate what is important to you as a company, engage your staff and encourage a culture of accountability and safe decision making.
Training should include opportunities to make your drivers aware of your policies and procedures.
Making sure that everyone understands safety is your number one priority sends out a powerful and clear message of intent.
Ask yourself how do you make sure everyone understands this message? What do you actually do to communicate, “Safety is our number one priority” to all of your staff? Do you set the ground rules during induction training? Do you communicate this key information by giving out an employee handbook or directing staff to your policies and procedures they may never get around to reading. Is it is so important that it is obvious and taken for granted that everyone understands and is fully on board? Perhaps you already have in place a process to communicate face to face with your staff the importance of safety and you already have conversations which encourage a safety culture at all levels within your organisation.
Focusing on your drivers, what information do you provide them with? How confident are you that everyone understands your expectations as a company? How confident are you that the leadership you are showing is effective in actually promoting safety?
What about questions around over loading vehicles, driver’s on road hours, meeting schedules, weekly mileage, journey planning, vehicle selection, knowing how to use in vehicle technology and the list goes on. What about speeding and license points, mobile phones, drink and drug driving. What about driving under the influence of medication?
What happens when things go wrong? Who has responsibility for doing what and when? Does everyone know their roles? From dealing with reporting an accident, to damage to an alloy wheel, to not knowing what to do when the car’s oil light comes on. All important day to day considerations which are easy to file under the ‘do not know what to do with this. I hope it will go away or someone else will deal with it' list.
Perhaps one of the most overlooked opportunities to reduce risk is provided by near misses. How do you capture this information? Do you capture this information? What do you do with this information when you have it? How do you use it to prevent the same thing happening again? Are near misses given priority? Who investigates them and how. How do you communicate the learning points in real time, to who, when and how? How quickly are control measures put in place following a near miss? Do you know when your last near miss was?
Driver training? We have not even got in the vehicle yet!