Employers could be
held responsible if their staff drive dangerously and crash their company
vehicles under proposals being studied by health and safety officials.
A Government-appointed task force
is considering ways of using existing legislation to take directors to court
where they could be fined or even jailed.
Independent research commissioned
by the Health and Safety Executive for the task force showed that 25-33 per
cent of serious road accidents involve someone driving in the course of their
job. The discussion period for the task force proposals, which were outlined in
a document published last week, will last until 25 May.
Colin Hague, head of personnel and
training services for the Borough of Poole, welcomed the debate. He said, “It
is appropriate that employers take responsibility for seeking to ensure drivers
have working conditions that protect the safety and lives of drivers and the
Richard Dykes, task group chairman
and managing director of Mail Services, which is part of the Post Office, said,
“The estimate that up to 1,000 people die on the roads in incidents that are
connected to work is startling.
“This discussion document is an
essential way to gather views.”