Driver Assessments and Defensive Driver Training
We conduct driving assessments and defensive driver training nationwide. It can take place as part of a drivers daily routine to reduce impact on your business, or conducted locally in and around your premises. Both of our expert assessors are highly trained and have over 50 years combined driving experience. They have both trained, assessed and tested members of the armed forces and diplomats in the UK and around the world.
Driver assessments are necessary for a variety of reasons. They can improve driver performance and reduce company costs. Drivers are too often recruited without any form of validated assessment. Whilst they have the necessary licence to drive the proposed vehicle, this does not verify their actual skills, knowledge and legal obligations involved in their day to day activities.
Due to ever-changing regulations, transport companies must protect themselves by knowing that the drivers they hire have the working knowledge and understanding of their legal requirements; not just that they can drive and have a licence to do so; otherwise they may be putting their operating license at risk.
Transport companies also have to be confident that they can trust the driver with their equipment, for example a 44 tonne artic carrying a full load (the value of which could exceed £100,000 on the road). They need to be comfortable that this is being done legally and whilst carrying the reputation and legal responsibilities of the company. They need to know that this is being done safely, securely and legally.
A driving assessment normally takes 1 to 2 hours per driver and is conducted similar to a vocational driving test. The focus is on assessing the driver’s basic day to day skills and knowledge required by law and the company they are representing and not a measure of the driver’s CPC.
The suite is applicable to both the recruitment of new drivers and existing drivers and has been developed to cater for all employment scenarios such as full time, part time, agency and owner drivers.
The assessments are not designed to “catch out” but to provide the business with practical, demonstrable assessment records of drivers’ knowledge before “commitment to employment” or “hire” when recruiting and/or the identification of training needs and knowledge gaps thereafter.
We recognise that during the recruitment process for new drivers whether directly or through agencies, employers are exposed to unnecessary risks in a number of areas that could be easily mitigated.
Coupling and Uncoupling:
Following the correct procedure can be a challenge, many trailers are dropped every year when drivers don’t follow the correct process. Assessments can often reduce costs and down time for companies and improve driver performance.
Slow Speed Manoeuvring:
Many drivers spend hours mile after mile driving forwards and less than 1% of time reversing. 60% of all accidents happen when reversing. It costs the industry thousands each year in repair costs and down time.
Defensive Driver Training
This course is part theory and part practical assessment for drivers of heavy goods vehicles up to 44 tonnes. While it is preferable to deliver this training away from the driver’s normal job to ensure their full focus, it may be possible to provide on-the-job training to reduce time off the road, as long as we are able to determine a route that meets the requirements for the course.
This two hour session reviews the company’s claims record to identify the most common incidents if available, together with a discussion on health and safety, and road risk.
The candidates will then be engaged in a discussion about defensive driving, and will explore through their own driving experience what they believe are the main issues they face on the road. We will review the most common situations resulting in an accident, looking at causes and potential ways to avoid or mitigate these.
Another area we discuss is best practice in manoeuvring and parking, two areas which tend to generate a lot of insurance claims for transportation companies.
The in-vehicle practical training sessions begin with a vehicle inspection and eyesight check. We then conduct an assessment drive with each candidate to establish their ability. The BLT instructor will then provide a demonstration drive with expert narrative to show how to pre-plan for any hazards as you drive. This follows the principles of the police driving manual “Roadcraft” and its systematic approach. Drivers will then be given a second opportunity to get behind the wheel and put into practice what they have learnt. We can also incorporate any specific requirements you have, such as specialist manoeuvring exercises.
The training day completes with a review of the day and another opportunity for delegates to ask any questions or provide feedback.
The practical element can be provided for two delegates in a three seater cab, or one delegate in a two seater cab, for a full or a half day.