Holidays bring increased vehicle traffic…along with celebrations. Workers who drive as part of their job may share the roads with fatigued or impaired travelers, and in dangerous weather conditions. Many workers are themselves holiday travelers, and some may be driving a company vehicle approved for personal use.
Every winter NIOSH shares ways that employers can keep their workers safe while working in cold weather conditions. Use the following tips for on- and off-the-job driving.
- Give workers information about: road construction/closures, bad road conditions, and other driving dangers.
- Provide workers with a driver emergency kit checklist that includes: ice scraper, blanket, flashlight, batteries, flares, jumper cables, first aid kit, bottled water, and nonperishable snacks.
- Set policies that allow drivers to consult with their supervisors to adjust driving hours if they have trouble seeing at night, and to stop driving if they are too tired or the weather is bad.
- Set policies that prohibit operating a vehicle under the influence of substances that could affect the ability to drive safely.
- Give workers general information about the possible effects of prescription and over-the-counter medications on their driving.
- Remind workers:
- Buckle up: every trip, every person. It only takes a second.
- Do not drive if you are fatigued. Stop and take breaks as needed.
- Keep alert and aware of your surroundings. Other drivers may be impaired, fatigued, or rushing to reach their destinations.
- Tell your supervisor when you expect to arrive at a destination, and contact your supervisor to confirm your arrival.
The bottom line: Don’t let safety take a holiday.