The work health and safety of all workers within this service, including employees, volunteers, and contractors as well as clients and visitors are considered to be of utmost importance. As driving of vehicles is an essential component of many roles this policy outlines obligations of all parties.
EK RECRUITMENT’S Responsibility
- Ensure workers, and volunteers have valid NSW driver’s license and verify annually
- Validate that vehicle pre-use checks are being undertaken
- Assess the nature of road risks in area of vehicle operations inclusive of seasonal extremes
- Review the appropriateness of vehicle types and training to match the risks in their area
- Ensure that there are documented procedures for responding to a vehicle breakdown, for responding to a crash or related incident and for assisting others
- Ensure a roadside assistance scheme is in place
- Review and analyse all vehicle incidents.
- Ensure workers have properly maintained vehicles and all vehicles are checked prior to use.
- Ensure workers are fully trained to meet the levels of risk encountered within their local driving environments
- Escalate to Manager concerns about vehicle and worker capabilities being appropriately matched to the driving hazards
- Ensure all vehicles supplied with equipment such as first aid kits, fire extinguishers (where required), reflective vests, reflective triangles, emergency contact numbers, torch and other required emergency supplies
- Review and analyse all vehicle incidents with the manager.
Workers must apply normal hazard and risk management techniques in their day to day work and whenever driving ANY vehicle and check its condition before starting to drive. Certain driving environments will present a greater hazard than others. Workers must take the following actions to manage the risks:
- Not to drive unlicensed
- Not to drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Conduct pre-use safety check of vehicle
- Ensure client is not sitting behind driver and is secured appropriately
- Follow applicable road rules at all times
- Take regular breaks from continuous driving as required but a minimum of every 2 hours
- Not to drive 2WD in off-road environments
- Report any vehicle accidents immediately
- Always inform your Supervisor/ Manager when entering areas where there is an increasing potential for vehicle immobilisation
- Report immobilisation events including your recovery from bogging as a H&S incident to enable better information to be gathered regarding the suitability of vehicles and the training provided to workers.
Ensuring the safety of people within a vehicle is important. Vehicles driven by numerous different people need to be reviewed to ensure optimum performance and safety.
Following are some recommendations.
- Ensure that you adhere to the manufacturer’s specified service schedule.
- Inspect all external lights regularly – grime can reduce their effectiveness by up to 40%.
- Inspect wiper blades to ensure they clear the windscreen effectively.
- Clean the windscreen and rear window. It may seem clean until you head into the sun and glare makes it impossible to see.
- Check all fluid levels – engine oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, windscreen washer fluid and the radiator coolant.
- Check radiator hose condition and that hose clamps are tight.
- Check tyre pressure and condition prior to use.
- Ensure mirrors are present and oriented correctly for your use.
By law, all occupants of a vehicle must wear seatbelts at all times. If a seat belt is starting to show signs of wear and tear, (frayed, not retracting back) the vehicle needs to be seen by an authorized repairer. A client must have doctor’s approval not wear a seat belt and you must carry this with you when transporting the client.
Do not use a hand-held mobile telephone when driving; there are heavy fines for doing so. Turn your phone to voice mail before setting off. Pull over to receive or make calls or send/receive SMS.
You should only drive at a speed that suits the road, vehicle, weather conditions and your driving experience whilst assuring that you do not exceed the applicable speed limit for the road used.
Transport of clients
A risk assessment should be undertaken to determine if clients can be transported alone in vehicles and the mechanism for transport. Generally clients with behaviours of concern should not be seated behind the driver and must wear a seat belt. Use good manual handling techniques when transferring mobility restricted clients or handling wheelchairs or equipment. Whilst head restraints for clients are not a legal requirement it is a good practice whenever possible.