Before the festive period, many fleets take on extra staff to cover the increased workload. If you have taken on extra staff, alongside making sure they understand your business needs and rules, ensuring these new drivers are prepared for the ever-congesting roads is also imperative.
No matter how pressured you are to get your drivers out on the road, it’s important to keep in mind and run through the following checklist with any new drivers, or remind anyone who may have forgotten. And if, after the festive holidays, you decide to keep any of your new fleet members on, setting these guidelines now will mean they understand how your business runs in the long term:
- Check driver’s licences, ensuring that non-UK licence holders are qualified to drive your vehicles.
- Remind your drivers how many hours they are entitled to work in a specific vehicle. In addition, if the vehicle lacks a tachograph, ensure they know the daily ratio of driving to rest.
- Make sure a driver is familiar with your health and safety and duty of care strategies around the workplace and out on the road.
- Reinforce your zero-tolerance policies*.
- Emphasise that vehicle spot-checks will be undertaken by the company on a regular basis, daily checks should be undertaken on all key safety items and to stay on top of servicing and MOTs.
To keep on top of your deliveries, you and your drivers will need to think ahead and plan your routes. Making sure that you all spread your knowledge and memory about traffic updates and pinch points from last winter can help you and your drivers avoid any likely congestion pains.
Making sure your journeys also include fuel stations is important to ensure your drivers are as efficient as possible. You can make sure that your drivers can fill up using our Station Finder. You can also download the Station Finder App through the Microsoft Store, Google Play or the Apple store.
If you can, the best thing to do is to try to schedule deliveries at times where there is less traffic generally. Not only will it mean your drivers have a better journey, it will increase your vehicles’ efficiencies, saving you money in the process.
Keeping your new drivers and all your vehicles moving and on the road will ensure that your run up to the festive season remains easy and you can continue to supply everywhere and everyone. And by making sure you know where to fill up, you and your drivers will remain hassle-free.
*For some sobering advice about dink driving the morning after indulging in a little ‘winter warmer’, see the Government’s alcohol limit guidelines.