Skip to the content

Reading Truck Announces the Acquisition of General Truck Body [Read More]

How to Improve Work Truck Safety

Home / How to Improve Work Truck Safety

If you operate a work truck or manage a fleet of vehicles, safety should be the top priority — and safety can be improved by implementing proper protocols and standards that work truck operators follow completely.

The first step is having a plan you can communicate with others and follow yourself. As you develop a truck safety checklist, consider the following tips.

Truck Fleet Safety Tips

As you prepare drivers to join your fleet, there are a few ways you can get them ready for being out in the field. Drivers who are responsible for service trucks must be appropriately trained, and companies must take steps to make sure drivers are set up to succeed.

Below are some of the top truck fleet safety tips.

1. Online Training

As you prepare your drivers for their first day behind the wheel, the first place you should start is an online driving training course. This training can include videos, tests and interactive programs to help drivers learn best practices for driving their truck. By putting employees in these programs, they will become more knowledgeable about safety information before they hit the road.

2. Run Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) Checks

Before you let a potential driver get behind the wheel of a company vehicle, you’ll want to run a motor vehicle record (MVR) check first. An MVR check is fairly inexpensive and provides great value to employers.

Companies use these checks before they even hire an employee who will be using a company vehicle to complete their work. If the MVR shows that the applicant has a DUI/DWI conviction or a record of poor driving, the company may decide not to hire them. These sort of checks can help companies avoid hiring employees who will likely be a liability. Even after an employee is hired, MVR checks may be run to ensure they are still driving safely.

3. Behind-The-Wheel Training

Along with doing safety checks and making drivers complete online training, employees should always have behind-the-wheel training before they are allowed onto the roads. Though employees may be proficient drivers already, they can still benefit if they have never driven a service truck before and are unaware of the differences in operating that kind of vehicle.

For companies on a tighter budget, they can require driving training for those who have had a DUI or a number of preventable accidents on their driving record. Once a driver is out on the road for your company, you can also require different training sessions if they get into an accident.

For example, for the first accident, they may need to complete online training again, while a second preventable accident will result in the driver having to take behind-the-wheel training. Many companies will revoke driving privileges after a driver’s third preventable accident occurs.

4. Use Newsletters and Emails to Spread Safety Messages

Part of safe driving is to keep safety at the forefront of employees’ minds. One great way to accomplish this is by sending out regular safety updates in newsletters and emails that all of your employees will receive. If there are any updates to your policies for driving policy, you can include them.

In addition to updates, you can use the newsletters to include situational information. As it gets close to winter, for instance, you can devote time in your newsletter to discuss how to drive safely in the snow or ice. This sort of situational information can also be useful if there are have been a batch of similar accidents, and you want to help drivers know how not to make the same mistakes.

For enhanced readability, make your messages short and to the point. A good rule is to keep a newsletter somewhere between one or two pages. Set your employees up for success by making their learning as easy as possible.

5. Reward Good Driving

People respond well to positive feedback. Not only does it make them feel valued by your company, but it can also provide an incentive to continue the behavior — in this case, practicing good driving habits.

Some companies will offer financial incentives to recognize good driving. Some might offer a cash reward to drivers who do not get into an accident over a period of time. Others may reward paid time off to drivers who reach certain driving goals. Though these incentives do cost the company money, they can ultimately be a money saver, as they can prevent drivers from driving recklessly and opening the company up to liability costs.

Safety in the Field

With drivers sufficiently prepared to go out into the field, you’ll also need to have protocols and standards that keep workers safe while they’re doing their job:

Safety on the Road

Anyone who gets behind the wheel of a vehicle needs to have the proper training and knowledge to operate it effectively. However, proper safety is even more necessary for your drivers as they will likely be driving a vehicle with a lot of power that could do damage to other vehicles and drivers on the road. Additionally, you don’t want your drivers to open up the company to liability issues due to their poor driving.

Having rules in place and explaining those rules to drivers set the tone that unsafe driving practices will not be tolerated. Driving safety starts at the top, with fleet managers making it clear to drivers that they should take driving safety seriously.

Below are some work truck safety tips that every driver in your fleet should follow:

Upfitting Options for Increased Safety

Truck ergonomics play a significant role in driver safety, but many work trucks — from big rigs to everyday service vehicles — have room for improvement. Finding the right customization options for you during the upfitting process can be a game-changer. Upfitting your trucks can make them more aligned with the drivers’ needs and help to prevent accidents.

Below are a few of our favorite options that can increase safety and prevent accidents from occuring:

Want to Make Your Work Trucks Safer?

If you’re interested in implementing any of the options listed above or exploring more of your safety options, Reading Truck Body can be of assistance. First established in 1955, we have experience working in all types of industries and can expertly handle your needs.

To make changes to your trucks that keep the drivers safer, find your local Reading distributor. One of our representatives will be happy to speak with you about your options.

Keep Reading