In order to respond to driving-related incidents, a basic emergency response system should include:
- a suitable first aid kit
- procedures for responding to a vehicle breakdown
- procedures for responding to a crash or related incident
- procedures for assisting others
- emergency contact numbers
- equipment such as high vis jackets and reflective triangles
- distress Alarms or EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon) for remote drivers
Recovery and reporting
Following an incident, support should be provided to an employee who may have been involved in a crash or witnessed a crash.
Depending on the severity of the incident, support may be provided by work colleagues via a buddy system or through the use of professional services, such as counsellors provided through an Employee Assistance Program. Employees may also wish to seek support through their own GP or health practitioner.
An incident reporting system should be in place which enables employees to report an accident and ensure that completed forms are forwarded to the person that is responsible for investigation and taking the required follow up actions.
Driving accidents that meet the criteria for notification should be reported to WorkSafe within 24 hours.
Once reported, incidents should be investigated and a review of risk control measures should be undertaken to prevent future accidents. If necessary, control measures should be revised in light of this review.
Work-related driving incidents and near misses should be reviewed by a person in consultation with Health and Safety Representatives, if any, and employees to recommend a remedy to any problems identified. As a minimum, if no incidents occur, employers should review employee vehicle operation and driver safety systems of work on an annual basis.
The following method provides one to review risk controls associated with driving:
- List all the risk control methods in place for driving and people who do the driving. Consider the following:
- Can someone still get injured or does the risk remain?
- If an incident was reported, what didn’t work, what didn’t go to plan, why, when, how, under what circumstances?
- Consider what systems are in place that are designed to ensure that the risk control measures work and are reliable – did any of these not work or go to plan, were there any barriers to systems working as planned?
- Review the current risk control measures against the current state of knowledge, for example, consider what is most effective at controlling risk associated with driving, maintenance records, incident reports, vehicle checks and feedback from drivers about issues that may impact on safety.
- Review risk control measures to ensure they are most effective. Consider the following:
- Do the proposed risk control measures eliminate the risk or hazard at the source?
- Do the proposed risk control measures give employees the highest level of protection?
- Is the highest level of risk control reasonably practicable?
- Are there any potential unintended consequences of introducing the proposed risk control measures?
If you plan to introduce new controls, new controls can be implemented in consultation with employees.