As any employer whose business involves courier workwill know, logistics companies shoulder a significant amount of responsibility every time a fleet goes out on the road. The practice of the business takes place on public highways, where fellow drivers are put at risk by anyone driving irresponsibly or under the influence of alcohol.
This should not be a daunting prospect: courier workcan be made safe by various practices that are simple to implement and are effective at cutting out unsavoury incidents. By putting in place some basic measures, businesses can have a significant positive impact on the safety of the nation’s roads.
Make Safety a Priority
The most foolproof method of preventing drunk driving in courier work is to install in-vehicle breathalysers in company cars. These smart contraptions force the driver to provide a breath sample before the vehicle will start. If the sample comes back showing the presence of alcohol, the vehicle is immobilised, eradicating the possibility of irresponsible driving. Although this may seem extreme and even disruptive to everyday operations, this is a very effective method, as it helps avoid even entirely unintentional cases of drunk driving, when even trustworthy employees undertake courier work while carrying a trace of festivities from the night before.
Not all companies will be in a position to fit in-vehicle breathalysers; not least because these days it is rare for a logistics company to own all of the vehicles used to carry out courier workon the ground. However, if you are not able to install alcohol detection equipment in all vehicles, your business can still have a positive impact on road safety. One simple alternative is a handheld breathalyzer, similar to the kind police use in roadside checks. These are easy to get hold of and have already been used for years by motorists in France, where carrying a breathalyser is a legal requirement. Although they cannot immobilise a driver, they allow for quick and convenient checks to reliably detect the presence of alcohol.
Enforce Regular Testing
Drug testing kits are a quick and non-invasive way to detect any traces of substances such as cocaine and cannabis. A swab is taken from the inside of the cheek, which comes back with a reading to indicate the presence of anything untoward. Enforcing regular checks of this kind acts as a powerful deterrent to illegal substance use, resulting in a safer environment for everyone on the road.
Always Be Vigilant
Alcohol use in the workplace has the potential to pose an issue in any industry, but in courier work, the potential for things to go wrong as a result is undoubtedly greater. However, this needn’t cause sleepless nights: by building trust with your drivers through watertight procedures like those detailed above, you can rest assured that they are out on the road making a positive contribution to the safety of the nation’s roads.
Norman Dulwich is a correspondent for Courier Exchange, the world's largest neutral trading hub for same day courier work in the express freight exchange industry. Over 5,000 member companies are networked together through the Exchange to fill empty capacity, get new clients and form long-lasting business relationships.