Fleets need to keep ‘walkaround’ checks interesting to fight driver complacency
Fleets need to adopt a range of strategies to keep driver ‘walkaround’ checks
interesting otherwise complacency quickly sets in, according to FleetCheck.
The fleet software provider reports that it regularly
sees examples of businesses where the risk management effectiveness of the
checks has declined over time because of familiarity.
Peter Golding, managing director at FleetCheck, said: “The walkaround check is
very much at the frontline of risk management for fleets, whether it is a
simple tyres, levels and lights check for a company car driver or the more
formal and controlled checks that commercial vehicle drivers have to complete
under Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency regulations.
“What these checks have in common is that they are prone to complacency over
time, that drivers start to tick the boxes without really looking properly at
the areas they are supposed to be inspecting. It’s simply a case of
overfamiliarity - a very human problem.”
Mr Golding said that the solution lay in a combination of incentives and
enforcement, ensuring that driver interest was maintained.
He explained: “At one level, managers need to underline from a corporate point
of view that the checks are part of the responsibilities of each driver and they
are taken very seriously. Failing to carry them out should be a disciplinary
offence and there should be an audit system.
“At another level, interest to the checks can be added by using communications
such as e-mail and social media to remind drivers why it is important to carry them
out, and the safety issues that can arise as the result of a failure to do so. The
whole subject needs to be kept fresh.”
FleetCheck has just launched its own Walkaround Check
App, which is claimed to provide a robust way of carrying out essential
commercial vehicle safety checks. Designed for HGVs, vans, buses and coaches,
it creates the means to schedule, carry out, confirm, follow-up and audit all
kinds of inspections from daily walkarounds to formal weekly or monthly checks.
The Walkaround Check App integrates with FleetCheck’s fleet management
software, which is in use by more than 500 customers operating 50,000 vehicles.