By Paul Harrop, sales & marketing director, Daimler Fleet Management
The Corporate Manslaughter Act becomes law on 6 April 2008.
After this date a company can by found criminally liable for death caused by work-related driving.
Such an incident is where avoidable vehicle defects contribute to a fatality.
Alongside unlimited fines if found guilty are two further penalties.
A remedy order (ordering particular improvements) and a publicity order (publicising conviction details).
Publicity orders could be catastrophic if work disappears through damaged reputation.
But what does this actually mean to you as a small business owner running vehicles?
Corporate negligence examples include:
- No regular maintenance checks
- Vehicle(s) being used with a known defect
- Substandard repair permitted
- Inappropriate working/driving hours without rest periods.
Developing effective strategies
Vehicle condition is highly important; vehicles must be regularly serviced, maintained and repaired (sometimes referred to as SMR). Employers are legally responsibility for ensuring roadworthiness and that maintenance is undertaken – which is one of the benefits of adding maintenance to a contract hire agreement.