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Towards a new culture of at-work road safety across Georgia

Dmitry Sambuk, Managing Director, EASST Academy
25 November 2019

The launch of our EASST Academy Road Safety at Work: Online Course for Managers in Georgian along with company pledges towards a new culture of at-work road safety hopes to reduce road casualties across Georgia.

Last week EASST Academy launched the official Georgian-language version of its Road Safety at Work: Online Course for Managers in Tbilisi as part of a two-day training programme for fleet and transport managers in Georgia. The training was organised in partnership with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), EASST, Partnership for Road Safety Georgia, the University of Greenwich and the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH).

Over the past decade, 6,608 people have been killed on the roads in Georgia with 85,946 sustaining serious injury.[1] It is estimated that globally 1 in 3 road casualties involve people driving for work. Developed together with Cranfield University and IRU Academy, our fully accredited ‘Road Safety at Work: Online Course for Managers’ is designed to give managers and businesses the skills needed to deliver and sustain a robust road safety management strategy and reduce at-work road casualties.

The training programme in Georgia was based on a blended model of using online lectures by world leading experts in fleet safety management, translated into Georgian, and face-to-face discussion and exercises led by EASST’s Dmitry Sambuk. The course covered the fundamentals of setting up an effective occupational road safety system, the role of the fleet manager, important aspects of driver and vehicle management, eco-driving as well as a special session dedicated to the safe waste fleet management and operation.

There was also a special module on road risk and safety management of waste collection vehicles led by Dr David Thomas Vice Chair of the IOSH Environment and Waste Management Group and the University of Greenwich. David wrote a fantastic day-by-day blog on his time with us in Georgia for the IOSH website which you can read here.

Over the two days fifty-two fleet, transport and waste managers from Tbilservice Group, Tbilisi Transport Company, Batumi Bus, Rustavi Bus and Tbilisi Bus companies took part in the training and received certificates of completion. A number of fleet managers, including the Heads of regional Transport Departments in Tbilisi, Rustavi and Batumi as well as those representing the Tbilisi Transport Company, Tbilservice Group, and the UK Embassy, signed pledges committing their companies and institutions to fostering a culture of road safety - ensuring that all company vehicles are as safe as possible and that employees adhere to international best practice.

One fleet manager who took part said:

“The training was very interesting and raised an important issue for us – how to manage and work with the drivers in a more effective and productive way. Drivers are the main and important asset for us so we are happy to learn from this training about new ways of driver management”.

Fleet safety management isn’t just about saving lives – although this is the most important reason for adopting a safe driving culture – but it is also about better business. A company with a good road safety strategy will also see increased productivity by eliminating costs associated with delays, lost staff time, reputational damage, and repairs.

Speaking about the project EASST’s Emma MacLennan said:

“We are grateful to the EBRD for their support and for making this training in possible. The EBRD has a number of important infrastructure projects in Georgia aimed at improving public transport, energy infrastructure, waste and water management and other investments where public and private fleets play an important role in delivery. Without good fleet management these investments could be impacted, and the lives of both employees and the general public could be put at risk.”

The Georgian-language version of the course is now available online at https://easstacademy.org/geo/fleetsafety

It is compatible with laptops, tablets and smartphones and is accessible 24/7 with no geographical boundaries.

Through a series of 10 video lectures, quizzes and reading materials, the course uses real-life examples and case studies to give those who manage road safety at work the competencies and skills they need to safely manage a fleet of vehicles – awarding them at the end with an accredited certificate of completion.

 

[1] Data from the Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs

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