One in ten company car drivers are high risk

Almost one in ten company drivers in the UK has such poor hazard perception, attitude, knowledge and observational skills that they pose a serious danger to both themselves and other road users, according to online risk assessment and e-driver training specialists E-Training World. Analysis from the last ten years found a steady trend revealing that on average nine per cent of company car, van and HGV drivers are high risk, 68 per cent are medium risk and only 23 per cent low risk. The data comes from E-Training World’s extensive assessment and training programme which has been used by major fleet operators in the UK, as well as many smaller companies with at-work drivers. Managing director of E-Training World, Graham Hurdle, said: “While some individual companies show variations to these figures, this trend is based upon average statistics across all drivers. “The aim of…

Certificate reminder for driving company cars abroad

Fleetdrive is urging business drivers to ensure that they have a valid VE103B (or vehicle on hire) certificate if they plan to travel abroad in their car. All EU countries require that a foreign driver travelling in a leased or rented company car carries a VE103B document with them. A VE103B contains details of the vehicle taken from the V5, along with the name and address of the hirer and enables the authorities to verify that the person driving the vehicle has permission to do so. The VE103B is the only legal substitute for the registration document (V5). Photocopies of the V5 or letters of authority are not accepted. Drivers caught without the correct documentation face long delays which can be time consuming and costly. The BVRLA highlights examples in Europe of drivers being stuck at border control for four days while the VE103B…

Companies encouraged to claim against pothole damage

Fleet operators are paying out millions of pounds on vehicle repairs to rectify damage caused by potholes and poorly-maintained road surfaces. On average, fleets are facing bills of £147 per vehicle to get their cars back on the road at a total cost of £215 million. However, campaign group Potholes.co.uk is urging fleet operators to take the time to make a claim against the relevant authority. Warranty Direct managing director Duncan McClure Fisher, who is also the founder of Potholes.co.uk, said: “Fleet managers have the same chance of recouping damage costs as any member of the public. “We created the ‘how to claim’ guide to make things as clear and simple as possible for anyone who’s suffered because of potholes and we hear from many people who’ve followed the steps and made a successful claim.” The number of claims received by local authorities for…

Fewer than 30% of company car fleet operators have speeding policy

The majority of fleet operators do not have a driver speeding policy in place or are ‘unsure’ whether they have one, according to a recent survey. Only 29% of 100 fleet operators surveyed by TrackCompare say they have a driver speeding policy in place while just over a fifth (21%) say they do not have one and half are ‘not sure’. This is despite calls from road safety organisations to tackle speeding. In August last year, Brake, the road safety charity, urged fleet operators to take steps against speeding and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) said ‘inappropriate’ speeds were causing 24% of fatal accidents and 16% of collisions resulting in serious injury. However, nearly half (45%) of the fleets surveyed by TrackCompare that don’t have a policy suggest that speeding isn’t a problem on their fleet. Around a quarter (26%)…

Millions of company cars have brake problems…

A new report from Kwik Fit suggests that Britain’s drivers are sharing the road with cars with defective brakes and are at risk of accidents as a result. The new research shows that over five million motorists (15%) admit to having some sign of brake damage. Worryingly, a third of motorists with defective brakes, some 1.7 million drivers, have known about the problem for at least a month, without getting it repaired. Men are most likely to have neglected any issues – 24% of male motorists with a brake problem admitted to knowing about it for at least three months – compared to just 7% of women. This neglect is all the more worrying when combined with drivers’ experiences. Kwik Fit’s study also found that nearly one in five (18%) motorists have been in a car accident caused by braking errors. However, their responses…

10 minute company car check could save you £1,000s

Fleet managers could save thousands of pounds per year by taking 10 minutes to check the external condition of leased vehicles before they are due to be returned. The cosmetic vehicle repair specialist advises developing an internal lease return inspection protocol. This should involve inspecting bumpers, alloys and paintwork for scuffs, bumps and scratches a few weeks before the official end of lease inspection is due. According to industry figures, 27% of returned vehicles incur a fair wear and tear recharge. This is generally because damage has been left untouched or not repaired to a high enough standard. Large fleets could quickly realise significant savings by checking vehicles and organising appropriate repairs themselves through accredited SMART repairers or bodyshops. Revive advises fleet managers to follow these five ‘10-minute check-up’ tips: Ensure the vehicle is clean and dry: dirt and wet can mask scratches and…

Does your grey fleet pass the MOT test?

Thousands of company cars could be facing an MOT failure from today (March 20) as tough new test standards come into effect. The changes aim to establish minimum technical standards across Europe and include basic checks like the steering wheel lock and driver’s seat adjustment, but mostly reflect modern car safety features, for example, tyre pressure monitoring systems, xenon lights, airbags and seatbelt pre-tensioners. Andy Smith, AA patrol of the year, says: “If you’ve been happily ignoring a warning light because it’s not part of the MOT, these changes mean your car could now be on the MOT scrap heap or you’ll need to fork out on expensive repairs. “While it could have expensive consequences for someone running an old car on a tight budget, these changes are long overdue as airbags, for example, have been widely fitted since the mid-nineties. It’s important that…

Cash for crash warning

Cash for crash convictions in two high-profile cases have highlighted the threat fleets face from fraudsters willing to risk the lives of others for financial gain. In what police describe as a landmark case, three men who deliberately caused a car crash that led to another collision in which a woman died were sentenced to 10 years each. It was the first time that somebody had been killed as a result of a crash for cash scam. The fraudsters had been planning to make a personal injury claim in connection with a staged crash on the A40 in Buckinghamshire. Sgt James Upton, from the Thames Valley Police road death investigation team, said: “The crash for cash culture has become more prevalent in our society, but this is the first known fatality as a result of an induced crash.” In the second crash for cash…

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