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Occupational Road Safety: Why does Road Safety at Work matter?

Emma MacLennan, EASST Director
Emma MacLennan, EASST Director
28 April 2017

EASST Director Emma MacLennan writes about occupational road safety management and the importance of fleet safety.

"Occupational road safety is more important than ever."

According to the International Labour Organisation (ILO) each year around two million people lose their lives through occupational accidents or diseases globally. Not only is this an unacceptable human toll but preventable work-related injuries also cost the global economy $2.8 trillion in lost working hours, medical compensation and rehabilitation.[1]

Occupational Road Safety ManagementHealth and safety at work is vitally important. And this includes road safety.

For many people, driving is the most dangerous thing they do while at work. With one in three road traffic collisions involving people who are driving or otherwise using the roads for work[2] it is unsurprising that this is one of the most common causes of work-related injuries.

Today, occupational road safety is more important than ever. With the growth of online retail, it is becoming a new area of commercial risk for more and more businesses that are taking to the roads to deliver their products.

Yet, as Adrian Walsh highlights in Lecture 1 of the EASST Academy Road Safety at Work: Online Course for Managers, “many business managers do not realise that the single biggest risk to their business is the people they employ who drive for work”.

"A safe fleet is in everyone's interest"

The cost of a road traffic collision involving just one company vehicle could have a significant impact on a company. Commercially, for every £1 recovered through insurance after a crash an additional £8.53 is lost in uninsured expenses. These so-called ‘hidden costs’ might include losses due to late or missed deliveries, absent staff and even brand damage.

The EASST Academy came about as, in partnership with Cranfield University and IRU Academy, EASST wanted to develop a resource based on its experiences that would enable managers to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to reduce road risk and make a difference both in their company and on the road. Because a safe fleet is in everyone’s interest.

This video shows just how EASST’s work with the Chisinau working group to develop effective road safety management and in just one year saw a 49 per cent decrease in public transport collisions and a 52 per cent decrease in injuries.

It is vital therefore for employers to properly understand and prioritise occupational road safety management in their business. Saving money, as well as saving lives!

For more information on the Road Safety at Work: Online Course for Managers visit www.easstacademy.org or click here to sign up.