We’ve been in this business long enough to know that one of the main things insurance providers, claims specialists and risk management consultants look at during your fleet’s renewal process is your driver training programs. Even a plaintiff’s attorneys will request a fleet’s training records during the deposition process to really dive deep into what the fleet has done to ensure drivers are ready, willing, and able to be on the road.
However, while they may find training programs in existence, another question arises: Were these programs ever implemented? Without proper records stating that the training actually took place, courts and insurance companies will simply assume that it didn’t.
So, how do you position your fleet in a way that ensures you get insured at the best possible rate?
Company Track Record
While accident history is an obvious indicator of whether or not you’re a high risk fleet, insurance companies also take into account what you’re doing to prevent accidents from happening in the first place.
During your renewal period, risk consultants will review your organization’s track record as well as what you’ve been doing in all other areas of safety -- think ongoing maintenance, training for technicians, onboard safety technology, and the like. These consultants consistently look at a company’s driver training initiatives and provide all their data and findings to underwriters who then have to price the risk.
Creating A Solid Driver Training Program
Building a high-quality driver training program starts at orientation. Support your drivers right from the get-go and don’t just stop there. Consistent, ongoing training keeps drivers in the right frame of mind to continue thinking about safety long after orientation is done. Thanks to a plethora of online programs on the market, monthly and quarterly training assignments are simple and easy to deliver. These assignments can combine safety and regulatory basics (since everyone could do with a refresher of the basics), company equipment protocols, customer-specific information, as well as address seasonal issues before they happen. For example, winter driving strategies can be introduced in the fall, construction and pedestrian awareness in the spring, school bus and student awareness in late summer, and so on.
We recommend incorporating training in a myriad of forms including online, classroom, and practical training so that driving staff can experience the content in different ways. Ongoing training keeps drivers on their toes. It keeps content fresh in a driver’s mind and, in the long run, sets your fleet up for ongoing safety and success. What are you doing to put your fleet in the best position for lower premiums and rates?