San Antonio – Training and technology are important components of a successful municipal fleet management program, according to experts who spoke Monday at the Public Risk Management Association’s annual meeting.
However, leadership and management buy-in are also critical, they said.
“The most successful programs I’ve seen are the ones where the most prominent person is all behind it, living it and preaching it. It really works,” said Tiffany Allen, territory manager for public sector services at Monroe, North Carolina, for Travelers Cos. Inc.
Vehicle crashes are the leading cause of workplace fatalities and are also the costliest work-related claims, Ms. Allen said, citing data from the National Safety Council.
Exposures can run the gamut from flooding to cyber exposures, said Sarah Sylvis, risk/benefit manager for the city of Franklin, Tennessee, about 20 miles south of Nashville.
She said risk managers need to think about the types of vehicles on the road. Franklin, for example, has officers on bicycles and motorbikes.
Other vehicle types could include 12- and 15-passenger vans and even golf carts, which pose a potentially greater exposure threat as they often lack the safety systems and equipment of other larger vehicles. , Ms. Allen said.
Training, including clear definition and objectives, is fundamental to successfully managing risk.
“Do you do driver safety training either annually or as part of corrective behavior,” Ms. Silvis said, perhaps following an accident or other incident. “How do you handle and investigate accidents? »
Telematics, sensors and other equipment capable of recording driver behavior and variables such as speed and braking can also be a valuable part of a fleet risk management program, Ms Allen said. “We like that people have them,” she said, adding that such on-board systems have become much more common in fleets.
A fleet management program should have a safety manual that is detailed and specific and includes items prohibited by law, such as wearing seatbelts, Sylvis said.
“Even if it’s against the law, you still have to put it in your safety manual,” she said.