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NIOSH gifts holiday driving tips to workers on and off the job

Workers may share the roads with fatigued or impaired travelers

Posted December 11, 2017

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) reminds workers and employers that driving in cold weather conditions can be hazardous. Workers who drive as a part of their jobs may face increased vehicle traffic during the holidays, and may end up on the road alongside fatigued and impaired drivers.

NIOSH points out that many workers are themselves holiday travelers, and even may be driving a company vehicle approved for personal use.

The agency offers the following tips for employers on ways to keep employees safe while driving in cold conditions – both on and off the job:

  • Give workers information about road construction or closures, bad road conditions, and other driving dangers.
  • Provide workers with a driver emergency kit checklist that includes: ice scraper, blanket, flashlight, batteries, flares, jumper cables, first aid kit, bottled water, and nonperishable snacks.
  • Set policies that allow drivers to consult with their supervisors to adjust driving hours if they have trouble seeing at night, and to stop driving if they are too tired or the weather is bad.
  • Set policies that prohibit operating a vehicle under the influence of substances that could affect the ability to drive safely.
  • Give workers general information about the possible effects of prescription and over-the-counter medications on their driving. (Your company’s health and wellness program may be able to help you locate and distribute this information.)
  • Remind workers:
    • Always use seatbelts.
    • Do not drive if you are fatigued. Stop and take breaks as needed.
    • Keep alert and aware of your surroundings. (Other drivers may be impaired, fatigued, or rushing to reach their destinations.)
    • Tell your supervisor when you expect to arrive at a destination, and contact your supervisor to confirm your arrival.

OSHA Compliance for Transportation ManualJ. J. Keller's OSHA Compliance for Transportation Manual is designed specifically for the transportation industry to aid in OSHA compliance.


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