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    Improve daily walkaround checks for HGVs

    Daily walkaround checks for HGVs is very important for fleets, they help to keep track of the health of your vehicles and prevent accidents from occurring while your drivers are out on the road.

    Daily walkaround maintenance and safety checks for HGV are mandatory to help spot any issues with the vehicle, from warning lights, obstructions to your mirrors or windows and even measuring the height and weight of the vehicle before your drivers start their day. 

    Here are some tips on how to improve your daily walkaround checks for HGV’s.

    Driver responsibility

    It’s the driver’s responsibility to ensure that the vehicle is safe to drive before starting their shift. 

    Not only do these maintenance checks keep your drivers and other road users safe, but also HGV drivers can be stopped for roadside checks by both the police and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Authority (DVSA). The DVSA check that both the vehicle and driver are operating within regulations and are safe to be driving on the roads, this includes checking the vehicle roadworthiness, tachograph records, safety of the load and the weight of the vehicle.

    Drivers must record the daily walkaround checks of their HGV for auditing purposes. And any defects or errors must be reported immediately and fixed before the driver can use the vehicle.

    It is your driver’s responsibility to be aware of all the details of their vehicle before driving so that if they DVSA stop your driver, they can confirm the height, weight and they have a record of the other checks needed.

    Tips on how to improve your daily walkaround checks

    Fleet technology for instant reporting

    Instead of using outdated form filling that takes a while to fill out and can easily get lost, try switching to fleet management software, which allows drivers to do the vehicle walkarounds and fill out any details via an app on a tablet or smartphone. Using fleet technology means you get instant reports of your drivers and are immediately aware of any issues that need fixing. Keeping track of vehicle inspections and reporting all findings will also help with future audit trails.

    1. Track the height and load weight

    Not only do you need general maintenance and safety checks, but you also need to check the height and weight of the HGV. This so the driver is fully aware of the height of their vehicle so they can look out for any height-restricted routes and go on a diverted route if needed.

    They also need to be aware of the weight of their vehicle so that the driver doesn’t exceed the maximum load weight, which can be very dangerous. The weight and height of the HGV vary depending on the goods loaded onto the HGV. Your driver must measure this each time before they drive.

    2. Make sure drivers know what to check

    Doing daily walkaround checks for HGVs should be relatively simple, but some drivers may miss a few mandatory areas before driving. The driver must be confident they know how to carry proper safety and maintenance checks such as checking car fluids, tyres, and checking all markings and warning plates are intact and visible.

    Ensure all newly recruited drivers have training on what checks they need to do before driving. Make sure that any forms or apps you use are clear and simple for new drivers to understand. Provide refresher training regularly, especially if there are any advancements in technologies and you move from form filling to videos and imagery for documentation of the vehicle walkaround.

    3. Always be prepared

    Ensuring the vehicle is safe throughout the journey is vital. If your driver experiences any issues, the driver must report them as soon as possible so that a mechanic can make any necessary repairs.

    You should also have easy to follow processes and systems in place, so your drivers know what to do and who to report issues to if any arise.

    Conclusion

    These mandatory vehicle daily walkaround checks for HGVs must be carried out properly, and using modern fleet technology allows your drivers to instantly upload reports onto an app from a smartphone or tablet. Keep up to date with new technologies and review your processes as often as required to ensure you operate a safe and healthy fleet.

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