Most fleet managers dream of finding new and exciting ways to reduce downtime for their fleet drivers. It might sound like a tall order, but there are steps you can take that will help minimize downtime allowing you to enjoy greater productivity from drivers and higher overall profits.

According to Fleet Answers, vehicle downtime costs between $400 and $700 per day, per vehicle. The less interruptions you face for your fleet, the better. Not only are days on the road costly, but small increments of time can be as well as they lead to unnecessary overtime for drivers, fewer deliveries in a day, and dissatisfied customers and drivers. Use these tips to enjoy a marked reduction in downtime for your fleet.

Reduce Accidents by Addressing Driver Behaviors

Accidents and breakdowns account for the longest-lasting and costliest downtime incidents for your fleet. Reducing the risks of accidents for your fleet involves one or two things. Improving the condition of your vehicles to avoid mechanically related accidents or changing the behaviors of your drivers.

This involves creating policies that encourage safe driving practices, providing training on safe driving practices, and developing ways to recognize negative driving behavior and to enforce new policies for safer driving (GPS, which we will discuss later, can be instrumental).

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Most U.S. States ban the use of mobile phones altogether while driving. Some states only ban the use of cell phones for new, or inexperienced, drivers. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has enacted very strict restrictions on mobile phone usage by commercial drivers to promote safety on the road for all drivers. But, your organization needs to establish rules of your own, in the form of a company-wide distracted driver policy.

What Should Your Policy Include?

  1. Commitment to Safety

The first thing the policy should do is communicate your overall commitment to driver safety — and share the message with your drivers that this is part of that commitment to make the roads a safer place for them.

If they are reluctant, remind them that in 2016 there were 3,450 deaths from distracted driving and there were 391,000 injuries from accidents caused by distracted driving in 2005, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

  1. Definition of Distracted Driving

Second, your policy needs to define what constitutes distracted driving according to the scope of your policy. This includes things like:

  • Using mobile phones for talking, texting, viewing social media, or getting directions while on the road
  • Adjusting the radio
  • Working on computers
  • Reading documents
  • Filling out paperwork

Essentially, anything that distracts your drivers by taking their eyes or their minds off what’s going on on-the-road, is a distraction. One that can take lives.

  1. Consequences for Distracted Driving Violations

Finally, your policy must include a specific set of escalating consequences for violations of your distracted driver policy. While it’s great to think that everyone will be on board for safety’s sake, humans do not embrace change well.

Hopefully, the consequences will offer sufficient deterrent. However, you must follow through in order to convey your commitment to these new safety standards for your organization.

How Can You Enforce Your New Commitment to Safety?

There are several tools you can use that will help you promote safety while putting an end to distracted driving for your company. One of the first things you might want to do is invest in GPS fleet tracking for all your fleet vehicles.

This system will notify you directly if certain signs of distracted driving are displayed (swerving, weaving, veering out of lanes, speeding, and hard braking, for instance.) It will also eliminate the need for mobile phones to provide directions or communicate with dispatch.

Another option is to require all drivers using mobile devices to install devices that disable texting and other features while driving and only allows voice activated dialing and answering of calls.

These things won’t eliminate all distracted driving. But they do offer an excellent start within your organization.

Visit Liveviewgps.com and check out the many GPS fleet tracking options we have available that can help with distracted driving. You can also call us direct at 661-294-6805.

According to the Huffington Post, July and August are two of the deadliest months on the road each year with summertime crash statistics much higher overall. For fleet drivers, it means one thing, you need to be more alert during this particularly lethal time of year than normal.

These tips will help keep your fleet drivers safer during dangerous summer driving.

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About Live View GPS

We specialize in real time GPS tracking systems. GPS tracking, GPS monitoring and management for vehicles, assets, equipment, property and persons. Whether your needs are consumer or commercial based, personal or business related we have a cost effective GPS tracking solution for you. Locate in real-time and on demand vehicles, people and property from any web based computer. View these locations on our systems integrated maps. Our GPS devices are the real deal, they are tested and proven, they work.