Driving for Better Business is launching a free driver app and management portal to provide a robust way for employers to safely get drivers and vehicles ready for the road again after the COVID-19 lockdown.
The Driver App includes information on what to check on a vehicle prior to driving it again after it has been sat idle for a long period of time – the 20-point list was devised by Mercedes-Benz Vans. In addition, the app shows a driver how to correctly sanitise a vehicle.
A series of 12 short animations included in the app aim to help drivers get to grips with the changes in road use post COVID-19 and understand the challenges, such as the potential for higher volumes of traffic caused by people avoiding using public transport. The driver declaration form included in the app will confirm their awareness to managers as well as their fitness to drive (free of COVID-19 symptoms) and their acceptance of new policies such as vehicle sanitisation.
For fleet managers, the app sends completed checks to a management portal where any vehicle can be managed for maintenance or repairs needed, and communicate any changes in policy such as hand-washing and vehicle cleaning direct to drivers. The management portal includes links to the latest government guidance relating to vehicles during COVID-19, as well as resources exclusively created for the Driving for Better Business COVID-19 Transport Toolkit.
The app was developed in collaboration with fleet management company FleetCheck and is completely free to use for employers with more than 10 vehicles. Employers with less than 10 vehicles are still able to download digital versions of the checklists and animations to distribute to their drivers.
Simon Turner, campaign manager, Driving for Better Business, said: “With many businesses non-operational during the COVID-19 lockdown, their company vehicles may not have turned a wheel in weeks. As the lockdown is lifted, employers need to make sure vehicles are roadworthy before they’re driven again.”
“Drivers, too, will have to make sure they’re ready. Having been used to no more than the occasional trip to the shops on an empty road, traffic will start to increase to more normal levels.”
“That’s where we can help. Working with our partners including FleetCheck, TyreSafe and the engineering team at Mercedes-Benz Vans, we’ve created a free tool to support employers and their drivers in getting ready for the road as the lockdown restrictions are lifted.”
FleetCheck founder and managing director, Peter Goulding, added: “One of the most important things about managing driver and vehicle safety is the need for a robust audit trail – ensuring all necessary checks are made, nothing gets missed, and everything is recorded.”
The “Ready for the Road” package will be available for free via the Driving for Better Business website: https://www.drivingforbetterbusiness.com/ready/