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Major leasing company ALD Automotive joins the Driving for Better Business campaign.

30 June 2010

By achieving a crash reduction of almost a third, ALD Automotive, one of the UK’s leading contract hire and leasing companies, has become the 47th organisation to become a Driving for Better Business champion.

The company, which manages a UK-wide fleet of over 52,000 company cars and vans, has done this by implementing a wide range of comprehensive safe driving policies.

Crucially, ALD Automotive, which has operations in Bristol, Northampton and Milton Keynes, has used its internal experience to create a menu-driven suite of risk management services that enables customers to implement similar best practice at-work driving safety solutions.

ALD Automotive managing director Keith Allen said, “Proactive management of work-related road risk is a key element of risk mitigation with regard to corporate manslaughter and the effective delivery of our duty of care to both our employees and others affected by our work activities.

“The promotion of a safe driving culture has long been valued within ALD Automotive and is a principle we promote both internally and externally. Becoming a business champion for Driving for Better Business is another opportunity for us to promote this message to a wider audience but also to learn from others who are innovative in this area and to continually improve our knowledge and processes in this arena.”

Campaign director Caroline Scurr said, “Businesses that rely on the expertise of contract hire and leasing companies for fleet advice expect them to already be at the forefront of best practice.

“Given ALD Automotive’s standing as one of the UK’s largest providers of company cars and vans we are delighted that the company is promoting a zero-harm attitude to at-work driving both internally and externally.”

Through a comprehensive safe driving policy that includes online driver risk assessments, driving licence checks, a ban on mobile phone use, driver health assessments, monitoring of employee accidents with post-crash interviews carried out, targeted individual guidance and driver training, ALD Automotive has significantly reduced its incident rate.

Mr Allen said, “Our objective is to reduce to a minimum, damage, injury or ill health that our employees and others might suffer whilst driving on work-related journeys. We aim to achieve this through a structured programme of risk assessment as well as ongoing awareness and training.

“Irrespective of blame, most road accidents are preventable and all risks can be contained. Consequently, we operate a policy of zero accident involvement. As a vehicle user drivers are not only responsible for their own safety, but are also responsible for the safety of others who may be affected by their actions. Therefore employees are required to operate their vehicle, at all times, in a manner that is safe, responsible and without accident.”

In the last five years, the company’s accident rate has been cut from 64% to 39% and is largely composed of parking and manoeuvring incidents.

Mr Allen said, “In 2009 whilst 40% of our accidents were identified as at fault accidents, over 50% of these were minor parking and manoeuvring accidents. So whilst we have seen an overall reduction in our company accident rate, clearly we have further work to do to improve on this.

“But the policy we have adopted provides assurance that our monitoring and reporting systems are effective and are making a difference to our work-related road risk, especially when benchmarked across UK business in general.”

To help customers implement at-work driving safety measures, ALD Automotive offers DriveSafe Solutions - a comprehensive suite of services designed to establish a lasting risk reduction programme for all employees who drive on business. It includes licence checks, driver profiling, safety workshops, driver training, vehicle maintenance, accident management, journey profiling, grey fleet management, tyre safety and insurance checks.

Mr Allen concluded, “As a result of our experience both internally and through the provision of DriveSafe to our customers we are acutely aware of the ever present dangers involved in work-related driving. We must be vigilant and rigorous in our application of our occupational road risk policy and this must be continually updated in line with new research and legislation".

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