The pandemic has seen a shift in the behaviours of drivers on a macro scale with many forced to work from home and many switching industries to meet the increased demand for logistics-based roles. These changes have led to many companies having to rethink their driver safety strategy in line with changing trends in 2020 and into 2021.
Looking specifically at the UK, reduced lockdown measures over the coming months mean there could be an increase in those driving for work who may be somewhat out of practice. This has implications for those commuting to offices or using their own vehicles (grey fleet) for any business purpose.
What is grey fleet in driver safety?
Grey fleet refers to vehicles that are owned and driven by an employee and driven for business purposes. What many companies fail to realise is that any vehicle used for work purposes carries the same responsibilities for employers as company-owned vehicles, as explained by global driver risk management leader, eDriving℠.
“A common misconception around grey fleet use is that a switch to personally-owned vehicles carries less liability for an organisation. In fact, if a personally-owned vehicle is being used for business purposes, there is no reduction in the organisation’s level of duty to ensure the vehicle, the driver and public are safe – and that relates to ANY vehicle.”
What must employers do when managing grey fleet?
When it comes to managing your grey fleet from a health and safety perspective, employers must follow health and safety legislation put in place to keep workers safe. The legislation that needs to be followed includes but is not limited to:
- Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
- Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999
- Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007
- Driving at Work: Managing Work-Related Road Safety (HSE Guidance)
Best practice often stipulates that a competent person is assigned responsibility of the grey fleet to allow for proper health and safety management. Beyond that, having a section in the contract of employment that requires employees using their own vehicles to abide by the same rules as company car drivers will help keep you secure from a compliance perspective and give you good footing on which to instigate grey fleet management procedures.
Where can I go to learn more about grey fleet management?
As shown, employers have a responsibility to manage the risks and hazards associated with the operation of grey fleet vehicles. The general responsibilities of the employer imposed by legislation such as the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 still apply to individuals when they are driving for work.
A recent eBook from eDriving looks at grey fleet management more carefully, detailing everything you need to know about managing driver safety in grey fleet vehicles including issues relating to the driver, the vehicle and the trip being conducted. Feel free to download the eBook below and get in touch if you would like us to connect you with a member of the eDriving team.