The annual cost of accidents on Australian roads is estimated at some $17 billion dollars a year. This sum includes everything that happens on (and off) the road: fatal and non-fatal accidents, the human costs such as hospitalisation and workplace disruption, as well as vehicle and other costs, such as the provision of emergency services.
The sgfleet Accident Management Benchmark shows an average incident rate of 44% per annum, which means each and every fleet vehicle is involved in some sort of incident causing damage every 27 months. The same measurements show that fleet customers spend an average of $1048 per vehicle on vehicle repairs. Using an average cost to run a large size fleet vehicle of $18,000 p.a this results in incident repair costs being 5.8% of running costs. This is a figure that all fleet managers should know, yet few actually do. Unfortunately motor vehicles accidents are one aspect of vehicle management we have no control over. That is why accident management is so important.
sgfleet outsources accident management to Australian Fleet Services (AFS) for passenger vehicles and light commercials and to ISS First Response for heavy commercial vehicles. This enables all fleet vehicles to be fully managed from the scene of the accident to delivery of the repaired and detailed vehicle. This allows drivers to be back on the road as soon as possible with sgfleet liaising with not only AFS and ISS First Response but the insurance company appraisers and repairers as well.
In order to reduce the accident incident rate, repair costs and driver down time it is imperative that all fleet operators have a professional Accident Management program in place. This can be tailored to suit the exact requirements of each fleet, but as a base should at least see the development of a Motor Vehicle Safety Policy. Added to this should be driver consultation and training, risk assessment and regular formal reporting in order to have a complete Accident Management program which will not only reduce fleet costs but provide drivers and employees with a safer working environment.
The motor vehicle as a workplace is responsible for more deaths than any other workplace, and is more likely to cause lost time and injuries than any other activities in most businesses. As the workforce is becoming more mobile, vehicle safety policy and OH&S procedures will become much easier to facilitate via the chain of command in the workplace. Moving forward this will be acknowledged as best practice within the Australian business community. A collaborated effort is currently being advocated by key industry officials within the fleet management industry in the interests of achieving vehicle safety compliance laws with OHS policies.
While vehicle accidents are unavoidable, sgfleet works to ensure that a full service is available from accident scene to assessment, insurance and repairs. It is also imperative that fleet managers control the risk by working with sgfleet to keep drivers of fleet vehicles informed of safety procedures and the accident program that is available to them.
For more information on creating an accident management program or for accident assistance, contact sgfleet.