The youngest and oldest company car, van and truck drivers are not always the biggest accident risk for employers, new research shows.
Figures released this week by fleet software market leader CFC Solutions break down the percentage of drivers with driving licence endorsement points by age, based on the thousands of users of its Licence Link licence checking software.
The aim of the company’s research was to examine the widely held assumption that the youngest and oldest drivers pose the greatest accident risk for fleets, with the findings based on their propensity to have points added to their licence.
In the No points and 1-4 points categories, this assumption held true with the 17-24 and 65+ bands having the most points. However, in the higher risk categories of 5-8 points and 9 plus points, the 25-34 and 35-44 age groups were more common.
Against these figures must be balanced the percentage of drivers with points in each category. The proportion of those with 1-4 points is 14.83% while only 3.29% have 5-8 points and just 0.52% have 9 plus. This means that while older and younger drivers with lower numbers of points are much more common, there are a small number of middle aged drivers who tend to have the very highest number of points.
Neville Briggs, managing director at CFC, said: “Perceived wisdom in risk management for many years has been that the youngest and oldest drivers represent the highest risk and these figures largely confirm that.
“Younger drivers may lack road experience and because of this are poorer judges of road situations, while older drivers will tend to have poorer reaction times and a general decline in awareness.
“This means that drivers aged below 24 and above 65 may require special attention when it comes to employers ensuring that everything reasonable is done to prevent them from being involved in accidents.”
However, Briggs added, the new research and anecdotal evidence suggested that a few middle aged drivers could become a risk management headache by falling into a cycle of gathering endorsement points and waiting for them to elapse.
He said: “While the actual numbers of these drivers is not high – they form a tiny percentage of our overall research – they do suggest that the very highest risk drivers are the ones who should be at the height of their competence and that is perhaps the issue.
“Some of these middle aged drivers in high risk categories are a definite concern for their managers because they suffer from a high degree of overconfidence. For these drivers, some form of remedial action such as training should be considered, before the point is reached where their licence is taken away or a serious accident occurs.”
About Licence Link from CFC Solutions
Free to adopt, Licence Link is designed to help all employers simplify the routine task of regularly checking car and van driver licence information through a web based system – something made essential by the recent introduction of risk management legislation.
Once basic driving licence information is entered onto Licence Link, fleet managers can choose how often automatic checks are made with the DVLA database – for example, annually for low mileage drivers or more often for high mileage, high risk employees.
Risk summary reports will automatically group drivers into different levels of risk group – for example, those with 1-3, 4-7, 8-12 and 12 plus points, and Licence Link can be set up so that those with higher numbers of points are checked more often.
Automatic alerts are sent to the fleet manager if the DVLA checks show changes to endorsements, the categories of vehicle that an employee is allowed to drive or if there are critical licence events such as disqualification or a photo card expiring.
Further features in Licence Link include the ability to upload and store document scans against each driver record, such as an image of each driver’s licence and driver declarations. These files are held online and encrypted for security purposes.
Access to Licence Link is via a credit payment scheme. To run checks, a company buys credits in advance and as each licence check is made, the system displays the credits remaining, providing a constant balance reminder for the fleet manager.
About CFC Solutions
CFC Solutions is the market leader in the supply of fleet, contract hire and workshop management solutions, and has been delivering ground breaking vehicle management software to UK and European blue chip customers for more than three decades.
A Microsoft Gold Certified Partner and a holder of the ISO27001 data protection accreditation, CFC Solutions employs leading edge technologies guaranteed to keep pace over time, providing customers with fleet compliance, time and cost savings.
Further information on products and services from CFC Solutions can be found at www.cfcsolutions.co.uk.