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Irish TV campaign focuses on employers’ road risk duties

The Republic of Ireland’s Road Safety Authority (RSA), Health & Safety Authority (HSA) and An Garda Síochána, the national police service, have launched a national TV campaign to remind employers of their legal responsibility to safeguard employees who drive for work.

Irish TV campaign focuses on employers’ road risk duties
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The campaign organisers estimate that every year one-in-three collisions on Irish roads involves someone who is driving as part of their job at the time of the accident. This means that about 63 fatalities on the road could have been due to work-related collisions in the Republic of Ireland in 2016.

Many Irish employers do not have driving for work policies as part of their safety and health management systems. The campaign’s road safety message reiterates the importance of putting measures in place and directs readers to a website with resources such as employer guidelines and a responsibilities factsheet. The site also includes a driver’s handbook to help drivers understand and manage driving risks, vehicle check information sheets and good practice case studies demonstrating examples of effective work driving policies.

“People who drive for work are 40% more likely than other drivers to be involved in a collision,” said Moyagh Murdock, RSA chief executive.

Michael Finn, assistant commissioner for roads policing at An Garda Síochána, added: “At best in the event of a collision, you are risking your reputation as a fair and compliant employer – at worst you could have to live with the guilt of being responsible for someone’s serious injury or even death.”

Finn emphasised that the benefits of implementing a driving for work programme greatly outweighed the costs. The benefits included increased employee loyalty and enhanced public image, reduced likelihood of employee injury or death and subsequent sickness and dependency costs and increased productivity.

“For every one euro claimed on insurance, arising from work-related road incidents, companies may have to pay a further eight to 36 euros for uninsured losses,” he added.

The campaign partners have developed a free online course on “Managing driving for work”, to educate employers about the work driving risks and how to manage employees, vehicles and work-related journeys to prevent collisions.

 

Nic Warburton is acting editor, IOSH Magazine

 Nick Warburton is acting editor of IOSH Magazine. He is a former editor of SHP and has also worked on Local Authority Waste and Recycling and Environmental Health Practitioner

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