Safety around vehicles in the workplace


Vehicles are a major part of thousands of businesses across the UK but, while we might not be able to function without them, they are also the cause of thousands of accidents every year. Indeed, according to safety experts Arco, the statistics are quite sobering.

  • Over 2,500 RIDDOR incidents are recorded every year involving transport in the workplace, with being struck by a vehicle the leading cause of injury.
  • 19% of workplace fatalities are caused by moving vehicles.
  • In Ireland, vehicles were involved in half of all work-related deaths.
  • HSE estimate that 25% of workplace transport accidents involve forklift trucks.
  • On average, a workplace injury can cost a company around £5,000.

These are some shocking numbers but what can be done to ensure that these numbers become a thing of the past and that vehicular safety in the workplace becomes a concern in the months and years to come?

Reducing the risks

A major part of risk assessment and risk reduction comes down to adequately preparing your staff and investing in the latest technology. As far as the former point is concerned, employers should provide workers with good quality personal protective equipment such as hi-vis jackets so they can be seen at all times and these should always be worn in a hazardous area – especially if moving vehicles are present.

When it comes to technology, things have moved on quite substantially in the last few decades as far as vehicle collision detection is concerned. Invest in vehicles that have built-in collision detection and 360-degree camera systems. The latest of these might even include systems that give the driver a bird’s eye view of the car. At the very least, reversing alarms should be a given. Proper workplace training should, of course, also be in place.


As we’ve already established, the average cost of a workplace injury is around £5,000 so you’re not just opening yourself up for a potential lawsuit but could end up substantially out of pocket too. There’s also the so-called “iceberg effect” to consider, which considers the root cause of the accident and all the visible and recoverable costs it results in. There are also hidden costs such as sick pay, lost production time and legal costs and these costs often come right out of your bottom line.

Besides the fiscal cost of vehicular accidents, there is also the impact on the public perception of the company. Public relations filters through all aspects of a business, after all. So, the best way to promote your brand is to prevent workplace accidents wherever possible. It might require a bit of investment but it’s always going to win you more credit, more custom and more kudos in the long run.

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