This article was originally published by Fleet News.
Driving for Better Business has launched a free driver app to help fleet operators manage the safe return of furloughed staff who normally drive for work, and their unused vehicles, following the COVID-19 coronavirus lockdown.
It has been created to support a national campaign asking drivers if they are #ReadyfortheRoad? coordinated by the National Roads Policing Operations and Intelligence group.
The Driving for Better Business ‘Ready for the Road?’ package, created by fleet software specialist FleetCheck and including a detailed 20-point checklist devised by Mercedes-Benz Vans, will take drivers through the process of ensuring their car or van is fully roadworthy after being left unused for weeks or months, as well as showing them how to sanitise the vehicle effectively.
Simon Turner, campaign manager at Driving for Better Business, said: “Cars and vans that haven’t been used for many weeks because businesses have been non-operational can’t simply be put straight back on the road, and need a thorough inspection.
“Tyres could very likely have lost pressure, a small leak could have drained fluids, and even rodents could have caused problems by chewing through the vehicle’s wiring. As the lockdown is lifted, employers need to make sure vehicles are roadworthy before they’re driven again to avoid breakdowns and the increased risk of accidents.”
App features include:
- Cloud-based manager dashboard to monitor compliance
- Elimination of paper checklists with associated chasing and filing
- Thorough digital safety check for mothballed vehicles including photographic evidence of defects or damage
- ‘Fit to drive’ driver declaration including COVID-19 symptoms
- Essential driver support information
- Daily vehicle sanitisation checklist
- Robust audit trail of all legally required actions
- Push messaging to reinforce safety messages and driving for work policy
Completed driver safety checks can be viewed via a management portal where the employer can then deal any vehicle maintenance or repairs that are needed, as well as communicate changes in policy, such as handwashing and vehicle cleaning.
The portal also includes links to the latest government guidance relating to vehicles as well as resources exclusively created for the Driving for Better Business COVID-19 Transport Toolkit.
Peter Golding, Founder and Managing Director of FleetCheck, said: “One of the most important things about managing driver and vehicle safety is the need for a robust audit trail – ensuring all necessary checks are made, nothing gets missed, and everything is recorded. With the many unique challenges fleets are now facing, we’re delighted to have the opportunity to work with Driving for Better Business and help develop this valuable resource to support fleet operators through what is an incredibly challenging time.”
The complete package of management portal and driver app is completely free to use for businesses with 10 or more vehicles and can be downloaded from: www.drivingforbetterbusiness.com/ready.
The campaign is additionally supported by ARRM, DfT, DVLA, DVSA, Highways England, MIB, MoD, NFCC, NRPOI, PACTS, Police Scotland, Road Safety Trust, TyreSafe and UKROEd.