Small fleets are failing to perform the most basic of safety checks on their drivers - meaning up to a million cars used for company business are not properly monitored.

A new survey quizzed 1,300 companies with fleet sizes above five vehicles and found that at least 22% of respondents were unaware of the Health and Safety Executive’s Driving at Work guidelines. And the 78% who claim to be fully or partially aware of it are still failing to perform the most basic checks.

The study, carried out by fleet software and occupational road safety company Jaama, also found that 42% of respondents had no road safety policy in place. The research also showed that 53% of companies do not have a nominated individual responsible for road safety. In addition, 15% do not check driver’s licenses or enforce eye tests, 78% do not monitor their drivers’ hours, 63% do not check for DVLA notifiable medical conditions and 50% admit to not being able to identify at-risk drivers.

Of the 68% of respondents who let employees use their own cars on company business, 74% were unaware whether those vehicles require an MoT, 22% did not check their drivers were insured for business use, 78% do not check V5 documents and 85% admit they never inspected any aspect of the vehicle’s condition.

Jaama managing director Jason Francis said: ‘When conducting our research we deliberately set out to gain an accurate picture across a broad range of UK companies, not just those who are clued up enough to read fleet publica¬≠tions. ‘While there has been a significant amount of road safety publicity within our industry press, our research shows there’s a huge lack of awareness among smaller fleets, and this is where road safety policies are less likely to be in place.’

The company behind the study suggests that schools, colleges and small businesses are among the worst offenders when it comes to neglecting even the most basic checks. Francis added: ‘The results could mean there are up to one million vehicles on our roads used for business that are not properly managed.’

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