The Department for Transport (DfT) have recently revealed the 2-year road safety action plan, which includes 74 points and proposals to increase driver wellbeing, particularly amongst the following:
- Young road users
- Old road users
- Rural road users
It is hoped these new measures will significantly reduce the number of deaths and injuries occurring on the roads – but who will it affect you and your fleet?
The road safety action plan highlights that employers have a
“major potential role to play in improving safety on the roads through ensuring that their staff are properly prepared and motivated to drive and ride safely, and that they are using safe vehicles”
This is in part due to the statistic that one out of three injuries from collision will involved people working during that time – that could be a bus driver; someone using their moped to deliver food; and it could also be a pco driver.
It is hoped that these new measures will impact the driving community, within and without the context of work.
Existing work Certificate of Professional Competence
How will this change work?
There are a few ways in which your work will be required to abide by these developments in road safety:
- You should be aware that new questions were added to Module 4 of the driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC), earlier this year. These questions cover bridge strikes and disability confidence
- Adopting the National ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Recognition) Service (NAS), a new technology that will replace the existing national and local ANPR systems across the UK. This will improve the enforcement activities on driving offenders
- Working with the Driving for Better Business (DfBB) programme to identify and promote good practice in road related safety
- Work with the Health and Safety Executive to review work related road safety with a focus on rural lands
Here are some of the additional proposals which are likely to affect your day-to-day fleet management.
No Seatbelt = Penalty Points
Not wearing a seatbelt already incurs an on-the-spot fine of £100 – but alongside penalty points, it’s more likely that repeat offenders will lose their license. This, the DfT hopes, will strongly encourage drivers always have their seatbelt on.
This change is very important, considering that over 27% of driving deaths in 2017 involved people not wearing a seatbelt.
Dash Cam and Public Photos used as Evidence
A lack of full-time officers on the roads has unfortunately led to more motorists committing offences, without fear of being caught. It is hoped that the standards of digital recording will now act as a valid addition of evidence, helping to identify offending drivers and the motors they operate.
This is a potential milestone in protecting innocent, law-abiding road users, and initiatives like Operation Snap and the National Dash Cam Portal will no doubt be pleased with the DfT empowering the everyday driver to take action.
New Drivers Banned at Night
As mentioned in a previous article, the DfT are considering restrictions on new drivers – banning them from driving at night, or with passengers under a certain age, are already in discussion.
Some EU countries have already adopted a similar scheme, so it wouldn’t be something new to Europe – and with one in five new drivers being involved in a collision during their first 12 months on the road, it certainly seems like a solution.
Concerns for the freedom and accessibility of young drivers are still in place, however, particularly for those in rural areas where public transport options are limited, alongside the fact that young drivers already feel penalised with higher insurance premiums.
Alcolocks to Prevent Drink Driving
Alcolocks are devices which can essentially stop you from running your car, if you fail a breath-test.
Drink driving is a serious offence which is very high, across the UK. Such a device would significantly reduce accidents involving alcohol – between 8,000 and 9,000 deaths or injuries occur each year in which of the victims was over the speed limit.
Advisory Committees to Tackle Rural Road Dangers
This proposal would give much needed focus on UK’s rural areas, normally overlooked for city and motorways – important when we consider that many serious collisions occur on rural roads.
Such discussions will likely include
- Learner drivers getting more practice on rural roads
- Night-time driving advice and practice
- Road design standards
- Improved speed limits
The government is discussing a ban on all tyres aged 10 years or over from buses, coaches, and lorries – something to consider if your fleet includes larger vehicles.
Overall, these new measures will undoubtedly improve the standard of driving, including your workspace; your organisation may always already endorse safety and professionalism, but there’s enough people out committing these offences to make it a genuine threat to you and your employee’s safety.
Hopefully, these new policies reduce accidents across the UK a great deal. Keep reading Cubit Minicab for developments to the UK driving infrastructure as they happen.