As of January 2015, there were an estimated 2.8 million commercial cars and trucks in service. While we often think of large fleet operators like Waste Management, Cintas Corp. or First Energy, we can’t forget about mid-size companies that rely on their vehicles to provide their goods and services.
I’m talking about businesses such as landscaping companies and local auto repair franchises. Although they don’t have a fleet of thousands or even hundreds on the road, their driving skills and habits have a big impact on our lives.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), every five seconds a car crash occurs in the United States. Yes, some of these are minor bumps and dings in your local Starbucks parking lot, but far too many car crashes involve fatalities – vehicle accidents are the number one cause of work-related deaths today.
The average traffic accident costs around $21,000, and costs to a corporation can rise to over $70,000 when you factor in employee medical bills. If a fatality is involved, the cost can skyrocket to well over $600,000.
Does a smaller fleet need driver training?
Yes, absolutely. Driver distractions are on the rise and in-vehicle technology continues to evolve. It’s imperative that employers place an emphasis on safety while employees are delivering goods and services.
A well-managed corporate driver training program can reduce motor vehicle crashes by 15 – 45%. When drivers are properly trained, they become more confident on the road, leading to less stress and a more positive experience for your customers.
For mid-size companies, the cost of a single accident might cost five times as much as the cost of training. If your budget is tight, you might consider starting with shorter classes or clinics to start educating your employees on the importance of safe driving.
Benefits of driver training
Benefit #1 – Save on auto insurance
Many auto insurance companies provide insurance discounts when a driver training program is implemented.
Benefit #2 – Prevent crashes
According to Automotive Fleet, the most popular time of day for accidents to occur for service drivers is between 3:00 and 4:00 PM, and for sales drivers it is between 11:00 AM and Noon. Also consider that in 2014, 79.2% of accidents occurred during clear weather – only 6.8% occurred while it was raining.
Benefit #3 – Reduce Repair Expenses
Car and van repairs can get pricey, plus you might need a rental vehicle to keep the business up and running. You’ll save money in the long run without these types of expenses.
Want to learn more? Contact us to learn more about corporate driver training.
I loved your tip to keep up on training your fleet even if it means stretching the budget. If you can keep up on training then your fleet will be up to date with safe driving procedures. Requiring a certain amount of training per year would help ensure everyone is always up to date.