The Network of Employers for Traffic Safety (NETS) 2012 fleet safety benchmark study has revealed that the safest fleets have written policies restricting the use of mobile devices and they check mobile phone records after all collisions, regardless of severity.

Traffic crashes remain the No. 1 cause of workplace death and injury, costing employers in excess of $60 billion annually, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The 2012 “Strength in Numbers” fleet safety benchmarking study is the largest examination of fleet vehicle safety ever conducted by NETS. The latest study involved a collective fleet of 521,000 vehicles and 9.8 billion miles traveled. Nearly 50% of participating companies were in the Fortune 500.

Other fleet safety practices found by the study to be common among the companies with the lowest fleet crash-rates include:

  • Tracking completion of ongoing driver training on a fleet safety scorecard.
  • Conducting commentary drives (ride-alongs) with new-hires and high-risk drivers.
  • Communicating fleet safety messages via senior-management presentations at meetings.

“Through this benchmarking process, we’re able to learn about common elements among the leading companies and also have the opportunity to network and discuss specific challenges and share successes with other fleet safety professionals,” said Sandra Lee, director of worldwide fleet safety for Johnson & Johnson and chair of the NETS board of directors.

All survey responses were reported anonymously, with a number assigned to each company to rank its fleet against other study participants.

NETS’ annual “Strength in Numbers” fleet safety benchmark study includes the collection of miles driven and collisions by type of vehicle and by country. Injury data are collected for the U.S. and the U.K. Respondents also are surveyed on more than 25 fleet safety program elements. Examples include cell phone policies, training, post-crash review processes and the use of in-vehicle monitoring technology.

NETS members represent the pharmaceutical, electric utilities, oil and gas, insurance, food and beverage, and other industries. They meet annually to discuss the benchmark results and other key road safety topics.

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