This information has been issued by the Asbestos Removal Contractors Association (ARCA). It highlights that driving for work is the most dangerous activity most employees ever undertake. Employees who drive on business are more likely to be killed at work than those employed as deep-sea divers or coal miners, it suggests. This is down to the fact that there are hundreds of thousands of injuries on the roads every year and literally millions of collisions that result in expensive damage to vehicles and property. Around a third of these are thought to involve drivers who were at work, and almost all are avoidable.
In the hazardous industry of asbestos abatement, the risks from driving are often insufficiently addressed, says ARCA, perhaps because most of the focus is on controlling site risks and not the risks of getting to site and going home again.
However, organisations have a legal duty to put in place suitable arrangements to manage health and safety. This is a wide-ranging requirement and includes driving for work, for which the HSE encourages a common-sense and practical approach. It should be part of the everyday process of running an organisation and part of good management generally.
The document references the HSE's ‘Plan, Do, Check, Act’ approach to help organisations put suitable arrangements in place to address driver risk. It also explores driver risk assessments further and reiterates that to get workers to and from sites safely is an equal priority and legal obligation as it is to keep them safe whilst at their workplace. It makes good business sense, as well as being morally correct.
The document is available here.
ARCA July 2021