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Posted August 31, 2015

severe weather

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The job of a fleet manager is one of the most important parts of a successful company, however, once your drivers set out on the road, your options are limited to ensure their safety.

One of the biggest fleet safety issues encountered by drivers is severe weather. In many cases, being on the road in a storm is a very real possibility. To prevent accidents and keep people safe, a comprehensive approach must be taken by fleet management and employees.

To help with this important goal, here are four smart solutions you can implement today to prepare your fleets for severe weather:

1. Get ready before hitting the road
Once on the road, safety falls on the shoulders of the drivers. However, you can take some important steps ahead of time to get your fleets ready for anything. For example, you can follow weather reports and change schedules and routes to avoid the worst storms. Or, you can make sure that the right equipment is in each vehicle, including extra clothes, snacks and first aid kits. Also keep all vehicles as clean as possible to increase visibility and top off the tank in case the trip is longer than expected.

2. Tell drivers to take their time on the road
In some cases, drivers are under pressure to make deadlines and reach their destinations as quickly as possible. As a fleet manager, you can be an ally during severe weather by telling them to take it slow. Remind them of the hazards and stress that speed isn’t the best decision at this moment. Once out there, drivers need to leave plenty of space between vehicles and drive slower.

3. Avoid debris and other hazards
In severe weather, it is common to see trees, branches and power lines down on the roads. Remind your drivers to steer clear of all these hazards, and tell them to stay vigilant for any flying debris in the middle of high winds. Flood waters can also pose a problem, as even a small amount of rain can make some roadways impassable.

4. Don’t drive at all
A lot of times, your drivers will want to hit the road no matter what. Instead, fleet management needs to sometimes step in and cancel all planned trips. Some weather is too dangerous for vehicles, especially those with trailers or even vans. If the storm is severe, the best scenario could just be to wait it out.

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