Driving To and From Work Safely

By Fiona Burns
03 Dec 2020

At the end of September 2018, there were 38.4 million vehicles licensed for use on the roads in Great Britain, of which 31.6 million were cars.

With more and more cars on the road there will inevitably be delays on the road. This can lead to anxiety and drivers rushing to make up lost time.

It is important to plan ahead and leave time to arrive safely.

Don’t react to bad drivers and aggressive behaviour but remain calm and try to drive defensively.

Be courteous to other road users and give way when able. Don't rush through small spaces or overtake when you get the opportunity.

Be aware of all other road users and be vigilant for pedestrians that may not have seen you.

Adverse or inclement weather and Issues to consider during the winter months

You need to take action whenever freezing temperatures are forecast. Keep up to date by visiting a weather service site such as the Met Office or the Highways England.

Winter driving

Be aware that ‘dawn frost’ can occur on dry surfaces, when early morning dew forms and freezes on impact with the cold surface.

It can be difficult to predict when or where this condition will occur.

Be extra cautious of pedestrians walking on roads who are unable to walk at their normal pace. This is especially dangerous in heavy snow where it is difficult to see where the pavement edge is.

As a general rule, avoid sharp acceleration and braking in snow, ice and extreme rain. Drive to the conditions and reduce your speed.

Severe weather conditions

In severe weather – consider if your journey is essential

Ensure you have full visibility – clear all snow and ice from the vehicle

Prepare for you journey – Croner recommend keeping the following items in your vehicle:

  • Tow rope
  • A shovel
  • Wellington boots
  • A hazard warning triangle
  • De-icing equipment
  • First aid kit (in good order)
  • Torch
  • Blanket
  • Warm clothes
  • Emergency Rations (including hot drink in a flask)
  • Mobile Phone (fully charged)

If you get caught in a snow drift:

  • Don't leave your vehicle.
  • Call your breakdown service or the emergency services and let help come to you.
  • Don't run the engine to keep warm

Vehicle safety

In winter it is even more important to ensure your car or vehicle is safe and in good condition. To ensure vehicle safety, check the following item more frequently:
  • Washer bottle fluid level and concentrated washer solution. DON'T use Water as this WILL freeze on screen during extreme cold
  • Cooling Water and Oil Levels
  • Lights including fog lights all fully working 
  • Wiper Blades. These should be working and in good condition with no visible damage
  • Tyres. These should be in good condition with good treads and pressures set correctly  

The big thaw

Avoid driving into flood waters wherever possible. Drivers can easily become trapped by rising flood waters.

It only takes six inches of water for a driver can lose control of a small vehicle. This level of water can cause damage to the vehicle or stop the vehicle running which can leave you stranded.

Avoiding contact with flood water due to pollution and contamination

During any such weather you should monitor the local forecasts and consider the expected conditions in order to plan and prepare.

Don’t get caught in the headlights…

Speak to a Croner expert if you have any health & safety concerns regarding your workers driving to and from work, or driving for work.

Contact a consultant today on 01455 858 132.

About the Author

Fiona Burns

Fiona Burns has practical experience in Health & Safety and Risk Management having worked for major insurer prior to joining Croner.

She has gained extensive helpline experience offering competent advice and timely support to large number of clients, in various industries and at all levels.  Completed the NEBOSH General Certificate, also passed NEBOSH Environmental Diploma Unit A, (IOSH Managing Environmental responsibilities). NEBOSH Fire and Risk Management Certificate, FPA Advance Fire Training, NCRQ Diploma – Distinction currently completing IPD and volunteering for Community project in Atherstone also as a Dementia support worker with CWPT.


Fiona Burns

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