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Weather Conditions - Your Legal Responsibilities

28 November 2023

Driving for Better Business and Woodfine's Solicitors remind operators of their legal responsibilities in different weather conditions .

The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 require every employer to carry out an assessment of the risks to the health and safety of their employees, or themselves, while they are at work, and to other people who may be affected by their work activities. This includes any driving activity on the road.

As well as drivers being competent and capable of doing their work in a way that is safe for them and others, and having maintained vehicles, the HSE recommends that journey planning should:

  • take account of appropriate routes.
  • incorporate realistic work schedules;
  • not put drivers at risk from fatigue;
  • take sufficient account of adverse weather conditions.

Fleet managers should therefore consider the impact of the weather, regardless of the season, and have a driver handbook / training that requests drivers to adapt their driving behaviour based on the potential influence adverse weather may have on their vehicle and other road users. There is of course a legal obligation on any driver to comply with road law and have good driver behaviours, but as an employer, setting out your expectations and seeking to take account of adverse weather conditions is advised.

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