The Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF) has released a new report, Distracted Driving & Workplace Safety Policies: A Business Case for Employers, from its Canadian Coalition on Distracted Driving.
The report was developed in consultation with The Co-operators, Drop It And Drive®, the trucking industry, and workplace health and safety representatives. It focuses on the importance of distracted driving policies in the workplace to protect employees.
“In addition to the immeasurable costs for communities and families who experience death and serious injuries due to distracted driving, these collisions have significant costs and consequences for employers,” said Robyn Robertson, President & CEO, Traffic Injury Research Foundation. “In several Canadian jurisdictions, motor vehicle collisions account for almost 1/3 of persons killed in traumatic workplace incidents.”
Key findings from the report include:
- Investment in safety translates into less turnover and higher retention rates of qualified and skilled drivers in an industry with a shrinking pool of potential candidates.
- The cost to implement standard prevention training for all new employees is still less than the cost of post-incident training for the small number of employees that may require it.
- A pattern of collisions and claims is an indicator of risk and ultimately results in much more expensive insurance costs.
“The trucking industry in Canada is committed to eliminating distraction by working proactively on a number of fronts. Efforts identified in TIRF’s business case and used by Canadian Trucking Alliance members provide real-world examples of proactive steps taken by our industry,” said Geoff Wood, Senior VP, Policy, Canadian Trucking Alliance. “We continue to work cooperatively with governments and share innovative approaches to address distracted driving as part of our 10-point safety plan which also promotes the importance of driver training.”
This business case describes the costs of prevention programs and compares them to collision costs. It illustrates the value of integrating distracted driving policies into workplace safety programs and reinforcing them in day-to-day safety practices. It also contains a call to action for employers in this industry to implement distracted driving policies as a standard component of workplace safety programs.