Many jobs require employees to drive a company vehicle. While most drivers are cautious and attentive, accidents can occur without warning—even if the operator has years of experience.
When accidents happen, it can be incredibly and costly for employers. According to OSHA, motor vehicle crashes cost employers $60 billion annually in medical care, legal expenses, property damage, and lost productivity. What’s more, just one accident can lead to serious, debilitating injuries for employees.
The biggest tragedy when it comes to motor vehicles accidents is that they are most often preventable. One way to stay safe while you’re on the road is through defensive driving. Being a defensive driver means driving to prevent accidents in spite of the actions of others or the presence of adverse driving conditions.
To avoid accidents through the use of defensive driving, do the following:
- Remain on the lookout for hazards. Think about what may happen as far ahead of you as possible, and never assume that road hazards will resolve themselves before you reach them.
- Understand the defense. Review potentially hazardous situations in your mind after you see them. This will allow you to formulate a reaction that will prevent an accident.
- Act quickly. Once you see a hazard and decide upon a defense, you must act immediately. The sooner you act, the more time you will have to avoid a potentially dangerous situation.
Defensive driving requires the knowledge and strict observance of all traffic rules and regulations applicable to the area you are driving in. It also means that you should be alert for illegal actions and driving errors made by others and be willing to make timely adjustments to your own driving to avoid an accident.
Keeping in mind the above tips will not only keep you safe on the job, but in your personal life as well. Sharing these tips with employees, even those who don’t drive for work, could save a life.
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