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The National Safety Council (NSC) reports that at least nine people die and 100 are injured in distracted driving crashes every day. That’s frightening news for anyone on the road, but for employers, it can be particularly worrisome. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), on average, a distraction-related non-fatal injury crash at work costs the employer $100,310.
During this month, companies pay a lot of attention to the issue of distracted driving. By running an awareness campaign, it’s easy for all drivers–from employers to employees alike–to commit to paying better attention while in the driver’s seat.
But that commitment can wane as time passes and drivers resume their bad habits of reaching for their smartphones or programming the GPS.
Companies with strong safety cultures act year-round by reducing risk in areas that protect their employees and the communities in which they operate. CEOs of leading companies committed to best practices in safety understand that safety is just good business.
Here are four ways companies can reinforce safe driving and protect both employees and your company and prevent distracted driving throughout the year:
Know the Phone and Texting Laws.
Since 2014, it’s been illegal for CMV drivers to text while driving. It’s also been illegal for interstate truck and bus drivers and drivers who transport hazardous materials to text or to use hand-held mobile phones while operating their vehicles. For any workers driving a company vehicle or on company time, it’s important to reinforce both national and state laws regarding the usage of hand-held devices.
Create a Written Distracted Driving Policy.
To fully protect your company, your distracted driving policy may have to extend beyond federal and local regulations. The NSC recommends creating a cell phone policy that addresses all handheld and hands-free devices for all employees, all company vehicles, all company cell phone devices and all work-related communications (even in a personal vehicle or on a personal cell phone).
Make Distracted Driving Awareness an Ongoing Campaign.
Commit to discussing distracted driving throughout the year. Do you have daily driver meetings before pre-trip inspections? If so, add distracted driving to the agenda once a month. Do you have regular safety training or meetings? Add a short reminder of the company’s distracted driving policy.
Reinforce Your Safe Driving Message.
Whether you use workplace digital signage or bulletin boards, capture your employees’ attention where they congregate with quick, effective visual messages about the importance of keeping their attention on the road. Incorporate distracted driving awareness with your company’s total health and safety education process, and even consider ways to reward safe driving behaviors.
At All Star Incentive Marketing, we create effective, award-winning health and safety campaigns. We believe safety-conscious companies understand what needs to change to enhance workplace safety. For the greatest success in building a safety culture, companies must reinforce safe work practices, build team spirit, promote group interaction, foster positive peer pressure, and engage in constant communication. If you properly motivate employees to be safe, safety improves, and safety-related costs go down.