As the owner of a commercial construction company, safety is the number one priority when your employees are on the road. Avoiding accidents is critical. An altercation could delay your project and potentially lead to injury. Luckily, you can prevent many accidents before they happen by training your teams, maintaining the vehicles, and ensuring the health of the drivers.
Proper Training Is Key
The first step to reducing accident risk is to train your drivers about the rules of the road and the potential issues that could happen so they can be prepared and take the proper action. Remind them of the basics of driving a large vehicle, like checking blind spots before changing lanes, making wide turns carefully, planning moves, and using the turn signal so everyone on the road stays safe.
Your drivers should also follow safe driving practices that keep everyone safe, such as being patient and courteous to other drivers, not getting upset in traffic, and avoiding distracted driving. Remind them that distracted driving can encompass many actions, including changing the radio station or adjusting the GPS. Even talking on speakerphone can distract drivers.
While you’re trying to avoid accidents, you should educate your drivers on what to do in case they’re in a crash. They should call the police so victims can get the necessary care and they can document the scene. Your driver should then contact their manager and report the issue. Finally, your trucking company should establish liability and take the proper steps to make the situation right.
Use Tech To Keep Drivers Safe
Technology can be used to mitigate the chances of an accident and avoid common issues that can happen on the road. For instance, you can improve employee safety by using electronic logging devices to keep track of vehicle inspections to ensure the vehicle is in tip-top shape. Many of these devices can also provide real-time driver coaching tips to help with efficiency and warn drivers of harsh maneuvers.
The use of telematics is also becoming more popular in the trucking industry because it allows managers to keep an eye on the location of every truck in the fleet in case there’s an emergency. The systems also provide communication tools like cellular service so drivers can always keep in touch if they’re in trouble. Management can also install software that can track speeding and unsafe braking practices so they can train the drivers to be more cautious.
Another essential way to keep drivers safe and avoid accidents is to provide regular maintenance and care for vehicles. Vehicles should be inspected before any big project so the driver doesn’t experience mechanical problems. Don’t overload the truck and check the tires to ensure a smooth journey.
Wellness Is Important
Lastly and most importantly, drivers should do their best to stay awake and alert behind the wheel. To avoid falling asleep behind the wheel, managers can instill mandated breaks, so drivers aren’t working excessive overtime behind the wheel. A proper work-life balance is essential, and so is ample time off so your employees can rest.
Management must pay attention and recognize when drivers operating commercial construction equipment aren’t getting enough sleep. Signs can include mood swings, anxiety, and trouble concentrating. Some signs aren’t as easy to spot, such as dry mouth and a sore jaw from clenching it all night. If you notice your employees acting differently, speak to them and see if exhaustion may be the issue.
Finally, if a driver is sick, ask that they stay home and recover before getting behind the wheel. Not only will driving make them more sick, but many cold or flu medications may make drivers drowsy, which could endanger their driving.
These are all the tips management should follow to reduce the chances of a vehicle accident. Be proactive, inspect the vehicles, and check in with drivers regularly to avoid issues on the road.