September 2014 Newsletter

ScORSA St Andrew’s Seminar

Our next St. Andrew’s Seminar will take place at Radisson Blu Hotel, 80 High Street, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH1 1TH, on Tuesday, 25th November 2014.

A third of all road crashes involve someone who is driving for work purposes so it makes good business sense to manage occupational road risk. More employees are killed in “at work road accidents” than in all other occupational accidents combined.
By attending you will:

  • Gain information on how to manage occupational road risk and to take advantage of free advice and support available and also know more about:
  • MORR Policies and Standards
  • The Operational Advantages of MORR
  • The Introduction of Telematics – Avoiding the pitfalls to maximise the benefits
  • Driving for Work – What keeps you legal
  • Driver Health Check - Mandatory and essential policies to keep the workforce healthy, legal and safe.
  • Liability – Who’s responsible and for what?
  • The Face of Road Safety in Scotland – A Guide to resources and responsibility
  • SQA Qualification – the benefits of the MORR module to your business
  • Take advantage of a tremendous networking opportunity

There is no cost involved for you – this is a free event.

We would like delegates to bring along someone from out-with their organisation either from their supply chain, sub contractors or clients to help broaden the safety culture.

You can download the application form from Scottish Road Safety website and email it to ScORSA.

SQA Road Safety

This qualification, which is unique at this level in UK, will provide everyone coming into road safety with the same basic grounding in road safety knowledge, information and resources. There is also the potential for these SQA courses to be delivered within approved establishments across UK. The course is for candidates with a professional or personal interest or involvement in road casualty reduction in UK.

Management of Occupational Road Risk

This unit will provide an understanding of the Occupational Road Risk in Scotland and allow the opportunity to explore this in a global or UK context or simply at more local level.

The candidates will gain an understanding as to what accidents occur, where and when they happen, why and how they happen, the legal background involved in MORR.

More importantly, the candidates will have an opportunity to implement an effective management system.

Email us at to register your interest.


The Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC)

New Drivers

All those who are new to professional driving and want to drive a lorry, bus or coach must get the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) initial qualification.

This qualification comprises of 4 parts:

  • part 1 - theory test (this includes 2 separate tests - multiple-choice and hazard perception)
  • part 2 - Driver CPC case studies test (computer-based exercise with 7 studies based on real-life situations - e.g. driving in icy conditions)
  • part 3 - driving ability test
  • part 4 - Driver CPC practical demonstration test (this takes 30 minutes - you will need to show you can keep your vehicle safe and secure, eg loading your vehicle safely)

The candidate must pass all 4 parts to get your Driver CPC.

Existing Drivers

Those who are already a professional lorry, bus or coach driver will have acquired rights, which means that their experience is counted as the same as taking the Driver CPC initial qualification.

The conditions for ‘acquired rights’ are:

  • to be a lorry driver who got his/her vocational licence (C, C1, C+E and C1+E) before 10 September 2009
  • to be a bus or coach driver who got his/her vocational licence (D, D1, D+E and D1+E) before 10 September 2008 - this includes a restricted vocational licence D(101) issued after 1991 and D1(101) issued before 1997 (though you should by now have completed periodic training)

For those who meet the conditions above, there is still a requirement to do 35 hours of periodic training every 5 years to keep your Driver CPC.

The deadline for all drivers operating an LGV over 3.5 tonnes to have completed their Driver CPC training, which is a legal necessity of 35 hours of training every five years expired on 9th September 2014.

A fine of up to £1,000 for driving professionally without Driver CPC will be applied. This means that technically the driver holds an incorrect licence. Therefore, their insurance could also be void.

For more information visit Department for Transport website.

Drivers ‘should receive’ post-accident training

The Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) and Driver First Assist (DFA) carried out a survey with 2,198 participants about training to deal with aftermath of an accident.

The results show that:

  • 84% of respondents think more drivers should be trained in the skills needed to deal with the aftermath of a road traffic collision.
  • 50% said they would like to participate in such training themselves,
  • 34% said they were interested in finding out more about the topic.

When asked about stopping and helping in a road traffic collision:

  • 79% said that they would stop and help if they arrived at a road traffic collision (RTC) before the emergency services,
  • 44% said have done so already, with a further 10% said they would have done it if they had received the correct training.

When asked specifically about first aid:

  • 75% would consider stopping to give medical assistance to someone who was injured.
  • 25% answered that although they hadn’t received any training they still felt they knew enough to make a difference and save someone’s life
  • 50% of respondents had received some level of training and felt they would be confident enough to put in into practice
  • 18% answered that they wouldn’t get involved in first aid because they’d be afraid of not knowing what to do or doing the wrong thing.

For more information visit IAM website.

New Insight into Van Driver Crashes

Road Safety Analysis have partnered with AXA Business Insurance to explore the trends surrounding van driver collisions in Great Britain.

The research is primarily based on STATS19 collision data collected by police forces and reported to the Department for Transport, then supplied to RSA for inclusion in the web based analysis tool MAST Online.

MAST Online was used to analyse 1.34 million motor vehicle drivers involved in injury collisions between 2008 and 2012, with just over 65,000 crashes involving van drivers.

The results show that:

  • Van drivers are more likely to be in their early 40’s than any other age group, although the differences are quite slight, other than for very young drivers under the age of 25 and those aged 60 or over where numbers are low.
  • Within the 25 to 54 age range we see that van drivers are crash-involved between 14 and 24% more than expected based on trends seen for all drivers of other vehicles. This is likely to reflect increased exposure on the road as they drive much greater distances than other drivers. Van drivers are more likely to come from lower-income households, with higher crash rates than those seen for drivers of other vehicles from similar backgrounds.
  • Van drivers are more likely to crash on Primary roads (motorways and dual carriageways) than expected, and much less likely to be crash-involved on urban roads of all type.
  • Van drivers are less likely to be involved in crashes at junctions (except slip roads) than other drivers, especially roundabouts.
    The total number of crashes involving van drivers by region shows that in London vans are crash-involved at a rate 22% higher than other vehicles, with the North East (18%) and West Midlands (13%) also showing increased crash rates.
  • There is much greater crash-involvement rates on weekdays, although with a noticeable different trend on Fridays which is lower than Monday to Thursday.
  • Van drivers are 14% more likely than drivers of other vehicles to be involved in a crash in the first four days of the working week.
    Monthly trends show little if any difference to all other drivers although hourly rates are significantly changed. Mornings (6am – 12 noon) show crash-involvement rates over a third higher than other vehicles.

Read the full report here.


iWatch and Road Safety

Apple’s smart watch which road safety campaigners fear will prove too distracting for drivers, could be too dangerous for drivers and lead to more deaths on Britain’s roads, motoring groups have warned.

The Apple Watch has a tiny 38mm by 42mm screen operated by a button on the side. It allows users to make and receive calls, check their messages and monitor their health by operating the device on their wrists.

However, the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) has warned that engaging with a gadget while driving could significantly impair driving performance, cause distraction and result in hazardous situations.

Existing research conducted by the IAM simulator study on Smartphone use between 2006 and 2010 found distraction from a mobile phone was a contributory factor in 1,960 road accidents which resulted in injuries, including 110 fatalities.

The think tank has warned that with a wristwatch linked to a mobile phone, the temptation for the driver would increase, diverting his or her attention away from the road ahead towards the constant alerts on the gadget.

Unlike legal hands-free devices, operating the wristwatch requires the driver to use both of his hands. As a result, the driver may accidently leave the lane, exceed the speed limit or react to dangerous situations with a considerable delay.

The Department for Transport has announced that using an iWatch while driving will carry the same penalty as using a hand-held mobile phone of three penalty points and a £100 fine. Your case could also go to court and you could be disqualified from driving or riding and get a maximum fine of £1,000. Drivers of buses or goods vehicles could get a maximum fine of £2,500.

As per the Crown Prosecution guidelines, however, where a motorist uses a mobile phone causing death by dangerous driving a harsher sentence of two years imprisonment is enforced.

“An iWatch has the potential to be just as distracting as any other Smartphone device,” said Neil Greig, IAM director of Policy and Research said. “Indeed more so if you have to take your hand off the wheel and your eyes off the road to interact with it.”

Greig believes that police won’t face much difficulty to prove whether a driver involved in an accident has been reading messages on his iWatch as laws exist allowing the police to seize and examine a device in case of any suspicion.

“The very device that distracted you also has the power to convict you,” he added.

For more information, click here.


Vehicle tax changes

Changes in legislation means that from 1st October 2014, the paper tax disc will no longer need to be displayed on a vehicle. However, to drive or keep a vehicle on the road you will still need to get vehicle tax and DVLA will still send you a V11 or V85/1 renewal reminder when vehicle tax is due to expire. This applies to all types of vehicles including those that are exempt from payment of vehicle tax or have a nil rate of Vehicle Excise Duty (VED).

The application to tax or SORN can be done online using your 16 digit reference number from the vehicle tax renewal reminder (V11 or V85/1) or 11 digit reference number from the vehicle log book (V5C).

In addition, when buying a vehicle, the vehicle tax will no longer be transferred with the vehicle. A new vehicle tax is necessary before the new owner can use the vehicle.

You can tax the vehicle using the New Keeper Supplement (V5C/2) part of the vehicle registration certificate (V5C) online or by using our automated phone service. Alternatively, you may wish to visit a Post Office® branch.

Those who sell a vehicle should notify DVLA. They will automatically get a refund for any full calendar months left on the vehicle tax. The refund will be sent to the name and address details held on DVLA records.

For more information visit Department for Transport website.

RAC warns of tax evasion

RAC warns that the ending of the need to display a car tax disc could lead to tax evasion costing the economy £167million a year, even though offenders will be caught by a network of Automatic Number Plate Recognition cameras linked to the database.

The RAC said problems with uninsured drivers should serve as a warning. There is no requirement to have visible proof in the windscreen that a car is insured - and there are about 1 million motorists without insurance. According to RAC, the number of tax-dodgers could equal the number of those who try to avoid paying motor insurance.

Last year the Department for Transport estimated that 0.6 per cent of traffic - or 210,000 vehicles - were not taxed, costing the Treasury £35million.

But the RAC said if the new change led to as many untaxed as uninsured motorists the loss would be another £132million or a total of £167 million. This would be more than 16 times the £10million savings predicted from not having to post out paper tax discs.
For the vast majority of law-abiding motorists the new rules will make very little difference, and the option to pay by monthly Direct Debit from November will make it easier for many to budget for the payments.

An RAC survey of more than 2,000 drivers showed 38% of respondents were unaware of the change and about half did not know when it takes effect.

And 44 per cent said scrapping the highly visible paper discs stuck to the windscreen will encourage drivers to break the law by not paying for their road tax.

The poll also showed that 63 per cent feared there would be a rise in the number of untaxed cars on the road, while 44 per cent reckoned the change would actually encourage people to break the law.

The Department for Transport said motorists will get reminders in the post and by e-mail when their road tax is due for renewal.

A DVLA spokesman said that there is absolutely no basis to these figures and it is nonsense to suggest that getting rid of the tax disc will lead to an increase in vehicle tax evasion.


Fleet managers unaware of tyre checks

The UK-based tyre pressure monitoring solution provider WheelRight conducted a poll with Fleet News of more than 100 fleet managers which revealed some concerning statistics around tyre pressure monitoring.

The results show that:

  • Nearly half (44.1%) of fleets only check their tyres once a quarter
  • Almost a third (29.4%) of fleet managers do not know how often their drivers are checking their tyres

Tyres lose pressure at a rate of about 0.69 bar or 1 psi per month and the tyre industry advises a monthly check.
The poll of fleet managers, conducted in association with Fleet News magazine, asked how often they think drivers check their tyre pressures.

The full results were as follows:

  • Weekly – 8.8%
  • Monthly – 17.6%
  • Quarterly – 26.5%
  • Yearly – 17.6%
  • Don’t know – 29.4%

In addition to saving money, the right tyre pressure can also reduce the risk of accidents and maintain, or even improve, the service levels offered to customers, as well as reducing environmental-impact.

Correctly-inflated tyres can reduce petrol consumption by up to 5% and tread wear by as much as 40%.

Incorrect tyre pressure can compromise cornering, braking, vehicle stability and, in the worst-case scenario, lead to serious accidents.

For more information go to Fleet News website.

FREE ScORSA A3 Desk notepads with 2014 calendars and A6 driver notepads

The Scottish Occupational Road Safety Alliance (ScORSA) still has a number of A3 desk pads and A6 note pads, featuring road safety messages, to give away free of charge.

The pads are designed for small and medium-sized firms but have relevance to anyone who drives for work purposes or manages those who drive for work purposes. They remind managers of their responsibilities in terms of health and safety legislation and ask them to consider safety issues relating to the journey, the vehicle and the driver. The A3 desk pads include a 2014 calendar.

The pads are available in bulk to organisations across Scotland. Email us place an order.

For more information about ScORSA or to become a member, please visit our website.