Driving through mobile phones policies could up profits

Companies
that ignore impending legislation banning the use of hand-held mobile phones
while driving could be missing an opportunity to increase profits and improve
customer services.

Vehicle
risk management specialist Risk Answers claims that organisations can reduce
mobile phone charges by as much as 60 per cent by implementing comprehensive
mobile phone policies.

A
recent audit of one company netted savings of more than £128,000 a year on
mobile phone costs.

Risk
Answers’ operations director Chris Howell said that policies should include how
calls are answered dealt with in offices as well as procedures for making calls
while out on the road.

“Businesses
are wasting thousands of pounds a year because they do not have a comprehensive
mobile phone policy for company car drivers. Too many ‘lonely’ drivers are
using in-car mobile phones as an excuse to hold lengthy conversations with
friends and colleagues. ‘

To
encourage companies to comply with forthcoming legislation – currently under
consultation following a Department of Transport review – Lord Chief Justice
Woolf recently ruled that fleet drivers who cause a death by driving when using
a mobile phone or falling asleep at the wheel should receive tougher jail
sentences.

The
proposals currently under consideration include:


a £30 fixed penalty notice


a fine on conviction of up to £1,000 or £2,500 for divers of goods vehicles or
larger passenger transportation (more than eight passengers)


penaly points and/or disqualification

Employers
will be liable for prosecution if they ‘cause or permit’ the use hand-held
mobile phones by staff. And using a hand-held mobile will only be permitted if
a vehicle is parked, with the engine switched off.

Hands-free
mobiles will be exempt.

www.riskanswers.com

By Tony Pettengell

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