With the world now returning to ‘normal’ the roads are getting busier again and this may be impacting everyone’s journeys. As a transport manager, or fleet owner, you have a responsibility to ensure your staff comply with either Tachograph driving hours, or they take regular breaks when conducting longer journeys. With the increased traffic we are sure to see back on the road in the coming months, now is a great time to reassess journey times and put in place new plans that accommodate these changes.
Getting your Fleet back on the Road
For those businesses that operate fleets or grey fleets (staff with car allowances or those using their own vehicles for business use) it may have been some time since they last undertook a lengthy journey or navigated a busy city centre. Planning journeys is imperative for the safety of your staff and other road users. Journeys that could have been done easily in the past may not need to be broken down as staff once again adjust to the working pattern of travelling.
Staff driving on their own insurance will have renewed their policy since they were last on the road and many may have made changes to their cover, especially if their vehicle has not been used much during the pandemic. Before staff are put back on the road, it is important to check that they have the correct insurance in place, with the correct level of business use.
If your business has only conducted meetings remotely since the beginning of the pandemic and are now looking to return to on the road, face-to-face meetings other Health and Safety implications need to be considered. A full risk assessment is recommended to address whether a person’s health may have changed during this extended break from driving duties, along with licence checks which are essential and required by your insurance policy.
Stuck in a Jam
Haulage businesses may have managed to complete more drop offs or collections during lockdown. With significantly less cars on the road, many haulage drivers could cover greater distances between their required breaks. This may all be about to change, as a return to ‘normal’ may mean the return of the daily traffic jams. The law dictates that all drivers must take their required breaks or risk being fined and it is important to put new plans in place to account for less distance travelled between each required stop.
At present there is a national shortage of HGV drivers, causing businesses to either turn to agencies or potentially employ people with lesser experience.
Some insurance policies exclude drivers who:
- have less than 2 years’ experience on each licence type
- are of a certain age
- have a different licence type.
These should be checked against your policy prior to commencing employment. If you previously did not use agencies and now do you should advise your insurer.
Speak to your Broker
If your business is getting back on the road, or changing how you conduct travel, speak with your broker to discuss whether these changes may impact your cover.
Safe and Insured are an award-winning motor insurance broker, and our team are at hand to advise or look at alternative quotations. Please call the team on 0808 161 7008.