More emphasis on the mental health and wellbeing of drivers can be key to safety and risk management within a fleet, says Matt Hammond, head of fleet at Altrad Services.
Hammond says although telematics data ‘plays a big role’ in driver safety, focusing on the driver before they get in the vehicle, can potentially prevent accidents from happening.
He said: “What are the demands fleet managers are putting on the driver, have they looked at the driver’s wellbeing? Are there any external influences that need to be considered when drivers drive? Have they got a new baby at home or a sick relative that's going to affect how they might sleep or how their home life is?
“All these things that add to the to the overall risk of that driver and of that journey, I think need to be considered rather than just looking at who's driving fast, harsh braking acceleration, the usual matrix. It just takes you slightly out and makes you look at the bigger picture of fleet management.”
Altrad Services, winners of the 2020 Fleet News Safe Fleet Award, operates some 1,200-plus cars and vans.
Hammond says engaging with drivers to understand any issues they are facing can help fleet managers better design their fleet to suit the needs of both the driver and the business.
He said: “Businesses regularly change, demands change, and you take a vehicle on a three- or four-year lease by the end of that lease, it's not the same vehicle that you need, going into the next lease. And I think fleets are at risk of not engaging with the drivers.
“Drivers are the people who are sitting all day long, they know what the nuances are and what's good, bad and indifferent. You need to get that feedback from them, so you can look to rectify issues.”
Hammond will be speaking at this year’s Virtual Fleet & Mobility Live, on the final day of the three-day event (November 19).
In his session at 10:00AM, ‘Running a safe fleet’, he will be revealing Altrad Services' risk management and safety policy and provide fleets with key insights to help them make their own improvements in safety.
Hammond said: “In my session, I'm hoping we can bring a different slant to how we look and how we manage risk within the fleet. I think a lot of businesses will look at risk and they'll think of just the actual vehicle of the incident.
“What I've tried to do is look at it from a psychology viewpoint from the driver and more about incident prevention.
“It's about the ethos within a business about driver safety, as opposed to how the driver drives the vehicle.”