LAS VEGAS– Ensuring the safety of employees who drive as part of their job responsibilities is often far more difficult to do than protect workers under direct supervision. Occupational vehicle accidents account for one of every four worker fatalities nationwide, according to the Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics.

However, according to Arthur "Skip" Thomas of the Lockton Companies and Kurt Narron of Rural/Metro Companies developed a highly effective fleet safety program for emergency response vehicle drivers. Both spoke at the recent American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) Safety 2008 conference held in Las Vegas.

Narron's company was able to reduce its vehicle accident rate from 58 incidents per 100 vehicles in 2002 to seven incidents per 100 vehicles in 2007 through implementation of an effective fleet safety program. As a result of the fleet safety program, the company also reduced its accident insurance costs from $45 million in 2002 to $22 million in 2007.

Steps to a Successful Fleet Safety Program

Here are the seven steps they took to create and implement the fleet safety program at Rural/Metro:

Step 1: Identify the costs of current conditions.

Step 2: Determine the criteria for making program implementation decisions.

Step 3: Form an Internal Fleet Safety and Health Advisory Group

Step 4: Develop a standardized fleet training program.

Step 5: Identify technology to monitor causes of accidents, monitor trends in accident rates before and after training, compile data for program ROI calculations, and help assess liability in collisions.

Step 6: Institute a refresher training program.

Step 7: Enhance the motor vehicle record (MVR) program.

Originally posted on Automotive Fleet