Calderdale Council becomes latest "business champion"
The 52 business champions are used to promote the financial, legal and moral benefits of occupational road risk management to public and private sector organisations across the UK.
The Council runs a diverse fleet of 214 vehicles and more than 1,600 employees drive their own cars for business purposes.
Over the past 24 months the council has upgraded and implemented a new driving at work policy. The assessment of systems and procedures embraced by the policy, which has resulted in the award of business champion status, has been the result of a team effort initiated and led by former North Yorkshire Police chief superintendent David Short, the Council's road safety projects manager.
Leader of the Council, Councillor Janet Battye said: ‘The aim of the policy is to identify and minimise risks and to encourage safe driving so we can reduce the number of collisions. Additional benefits are improved public image; higher employee morale; reduced staff absenteeism; an increased awareness of health and safety issues across the council and improved business performance.
‘The council is working continuously to reduce the number of accidents. The effect of monitoring accidents and continuous improvement in training drivers and management teams has seen a reduction in incidents.’
The strategy has seen the council's fleet insurance premiums reduce from £61,576.95 in 2009/10 to £53,611.05 in 2010/11 equalling a reduction of 12.8% representing a saving to Council ratepayers of £7,965.89.
Michael Parish, Driving for Better Business programme consultant, said: ‘Calderdale Council's recruitment to the Driving for Better Business campaign means that the policies and procedures it has implemented are ones that we would recommend that all public and private sector businesses follow to ensure they have an auditable safe-driving strategy in place in the event of a vehicle being involved in a road crash.’