The pandemic forced fleets to reconsider their existing safety practices as they encountered new and evolving challenges. For instance, drivers may opt to ride solo rather than as a duo. Even if drivers travel alone, they still have to perform enhanced sanitization for shared fleet vehicles. Here are several evolving issues affecting fleets:
- Safety training. How fleets conducted safety training wasn’t a significant cause for concern in a pre-pandemic era. Many shifted to a virtual platform to maintain social distancing. Virtually onboarding new drivers is also becoming the norm.
- Telematics-based decisions. Fleets that implemented telematics technology have a plethora of safety data to help improve their safety efforts. Interestingly, the presence of the technology doesn’t deter drivers from engaging in risky driving behaviors. However, fleets can identify these drivers and implement additional training or penalties to curtail these dangerous driving habits.
- Marijuana legalization. Concerns about recreational marijuana use or transport in company vehicles are on the rise, as most states have decriminalized it. Fleets need to implement company-wide regulations to ensure drivers know they cannot use marijuana while operating fleet vehicles.
- Reconsidering in-cab technology. Distracted driving isn’t diminishing despite ongoing efforts to combat it. Fleets are reconsidering how many devices drivers need in the vehicle with them. Ironically, some of the technology meant to improve driver safety can cause distractions. For example, some warning systems require drivers to look at their dashboards to identify the hazard. Taking their eyes off the road can be just as dangerous as the risk the system was trying to warn them about.
- Preventable accidents. The average accident rate for fleets is around 20%. Of those accidents, 40% are preventable. Accident repairs consume a considerable portion of a fleet’s budget. Using telematics data and enforcing safety procedures can help reduce preventable accidents and recoup those expenses.
Improving fleet safety reduces costs, accidents, injuries, and deaths. Contact the experts at Interstate Motor Carriers to learn more about improving safety within your fleet.