It’s easy to become distracted or complacent with all the excitement of the holiday period. That’s why it’s important to check in with our colleagues and loved ones to remind them to slow down and stay safe.
In the lead up to Christmas, we will be providing tips on how we can ensure we’re operating safely both at work and at home.
Week 2: DRUGS AND ALCOHOL AWARENESS / HYDRATION
Centurion has a zero tolerance policy towards drugs and alcohol.
It’s not worth potentially losing your job let alone the impact to health.
We also encourage all of our staff to stay hydrated with regular breaks and refrigerated water stations installed on our sites.
Tips for Keeping Hydrated at work:
- Carry a water bottle with you.
- Have a drink of water with your meals and snacks throughout the day.
- Keep fluids cool, this encourages drinking.
- Add some strawberries, lemon slices or mint leaves to a jug of water for flavour boost
- Try to drink water during optimal times: first thing in the morning, before taking a bath, thirty minutes after eating and just before going to bed.
During the holiday season, make sure to plan some alcohol-free days. Grab a juice mineral water or iced tea instead. It is recommended that you drink no more than 2 standard drinks and day and no more than 4 standard drinks on any single occasion for adults.
How to avoid binge drinking during the holidays:
- Eat before, and while, you are drinking.
- Set yourself some goals. New Year’s is a great time to think about cutting down the amount of alcohol that you consume.
- Avoid drinking on an empty stomach.
- Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
- Look out for your family and friends.
- Pour your own drinks so you can be sure of how much you have consumed.
For more detailed information on drugs, alcohol and hydration awareness, click here
Week 3: VEHICLE / PUBLIC INTERACTIONS
At work and At Home
If you are involved in a crash, the faster you are travelling, even if within the speed limit, the greater the risk of injury to you and your passengers.
R U 2 Close?
When the vehicle ahead of you passes an object, count, ‘1001, 1002’. You should take the full 2 seconds it takes to say this to reach the object. If you get there before, you are too close. Slow down until you are at least 2 seconds behind the vehicle ahead.
Keep your speed down, make sure you have plenty of room for lane changes and let people pass when they clearly wish to get in front of you.
Lay off the horn
Your vehicle’s horn is there for emergencies, not just for making noise!
Noise doesn’t make traffic move any faster. Your hands are more useful on the wheel or the gear stick rather than unnecessarily alarming others.
Focus on traffic instead of drivers
Remember, every second your eyes are on another driver is a moment that your eyes are off of the road and off the traffic.
Give yourself time
If you’re running late, you’ll be more likely to suffer road rage at the simplest incidence of annoyance.
To avoid higher levels of stress on the roads, give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination.
How to Avoid Road Rage:
- Plan ahead: Give yourself plenty of time on the road
- Calm yourself: Listen to music you enjoy, relax your grip
- Let them go: Move over if someone is tailgating you
- Don’t engage: Avoid eye contact with angry drivers and give them space
- Be the grownup: Ignore obscene gestures
- Practice polite driving: Lay off the horn
- It’s not you, it’s them: Don’t take an angry driver’s aggression personally
- Don’t go home: If an aggressive driver follows you, drive to the nearest police station
For more detailed information on about how to ensure safer driving interactions, click here
Week 4: STOP RUSHING THE TRIP
Your well being comes before meeting deadlines.
Everyone within the supply chain is responsible for meeting compliance. Why you shouldn’t rush your load:
- Loads that aren’t restrained properly can injure or kill and can cause significant property damage.
- If the load falls off it endangers the lives of other road users through a direct collision or by causing other drivers to swerve to avoid it.
- If the load moves forwards it can pierce the cabin and injure or kill the driver or passenger.
- If the load makes the vehicle unstable it can cause an incident, especially when taking corners.
Planning the Load
- Understand your load.
- Choose a suitable vehicle for your load type and size.
- Use a restraint system that is suitable for your load.
- Position your load to maintain vehicle stability, steering and braking.
- Check your vehicle structures and restraint equipment are in good working conditions and strong enough to restrain your load.
Loading (and unloading) the vehicle
- Make sure your load is stabilised
- Make sure you understand and use safe work practices when loading and unloading a vehicle.
- Make sure you use enough restraint to keep you and others safe.
Driving according to the load and driving conditions
- Allow for changes in vehicle stability, steering and braking when driving a loaded vehicle.
- Check the load and its restraint regularly during your journey.
Ways to cope with stress on the road
- Try to Plan Alternatives to Driving Every Day: Try and take different routes and figure out which one works best when travelling in rush hours.
- Remember That Driving Isn’t a Competition: There are many factors that we don’t know about, there’s a lot to be said for showing other road users the same courtesy you expect from them.
- Ensuring you are on time: Ensuring you don’t need to rush / speed to be on time for an event.
- Switch Off Your Phone: It’s worth just switching it off as soon as you get in the car.
- Look Further Down the Road:By looking further down the road and being aware of upcoming hazard spots, you’ll be better placed to deal with these moments of madness, keeping your heart rate down and your stress at a minimum.
Ways to Keep Your Kids Busy on Road Trips
- Turn your backseat into a movie theatre.
- Bring kid friendly books.
- Have fun car games to play on the trips such as I spy.
- Pre plan healthy meals and snacks & pack plenty of water.
- Make sure to plan ahead frequent rest stops to allow the kids to move around.
Entertaining the Kids: What to do and Bring Along:
- Wear relaxed clothing, comfy shoes
- Music Playlist
- Pre planned road trip
- Travel size cooler
- Garbage bag
- Car emergency kit
- Toilet paper
For more detailed information on how to stop rushing the trip, click here
Week 5: FATIGUE
Fatigue may increase the risk of incidents because of a lack of alertness. It may also result in a slower reaction to signals or situations and affect the ability to make good decisions, particularly when driving vehicles or undertaking critical tasks that require a high level of concentration.
Here are some ways to manage your fatigue in the work place, at home or on long driving trips.
- Consulting workers, Managers, Supervisors about the impact of workloads and work schedules, including work-related travel and work outside normal hours.
- Examining work practices, systems of work and worker records, for example sign in-out sheets/ driver trip sheets and start and finish times.
- Take regular breaks
- Share the driving whenever is possible
- Eat healthy snacks to boost energy
- Don’t travel for more then 8-10 hours a day
- Don’t travel at times when you’d usually be sleepy
- Take a 15 minute power nap if you need if you feel yourself becoming drowsy.
For more detailed information on how to manage fatigue, click here
Week 6: SEATBELTS, SPEEDING & DISTRACTIONS
We have significant interaction
between people, trucks, vehicles and
forklifts on our site.
Added to the risks are loads extended on forklift tines, heavy objects at height & tines sticking out.
- Seatbelts must always be worn on forklifts.
- With many people and vehicles moving around in all directions, we cannot afford to be distracted.
- Stick to the site speed limits
Wearing a seatbelt is one of easiest ways to protect drivers and passengers in a vehicle. You are 10 times more likely to be killed in a road crash if you’re not wearing a seatbelt!
- Always ensure your seatbelt is properly adjusted and securely fastened.
- The sash should be placed over the middle of the shoulder and diagonally across the chest.
- The lap belt should sit snugly over the hips.
- Never share a seatbelt with a child on your lap.
You decide your speed. Physics decides the rest.
The faster you travel, the longer
it takes to stop as well as considerably more energy is imparted to the
occupants the higher the speed.
You can’t argue with the science and the physics of speed. Drivers need to acknowledge that driving to the road and weather conditions is more crucial to safety, than travelling at the posted legal limit.
Tips to help avoid distractions:
- Turn off your mobile phone when driving or put on do not disturb.
- Adjust all vehicle controls before setting off.
- Don’t fiddle with your music player while you’re driving.
- Take a break rather than eat, drink, smoke or groom yourself while driving.
- Ask passengers to be quiet if you are having difficulty concentrating while driving.
- Ensure pets are properly restrained in the vehicle.
- Recognise what makes you distracted and avoid that activity when driving.
- Make sure the vehicle’s windscreens and mirrors are clean and unobstructed.
For more detailed information on seat belt safety, speeding and avoiding distractions click here
Week 7: PRE-STARTS
Completing vehicle pre-starts is the final check to ensure that your vehicle is fit for the upcoming journey.
- Prior to operating our vehicles, drivers complete visual assessments, checks levels, indicator lights and any signs of damage.
- The pre-start checklist ensures the driver assessments are recorded and saved – this acts not only as a verification that checks are done, but also an accountability measure for drivers to take responsibility for their vehicle.
Here are the top 5 vehicle checks you should perform before you begin your journey this holiday season:
- Are all your lights operating correctly?
- Are your headlight lenses clear, clean and not faded?
- Are your headlights aiming accurately?
- Are stop lamps clear and in operation?
- Are your parking lights working correctly?
- Are your trailer or caravan connections working?
- Are the air pressure in all of your tyres correct?
- Are your tyres worn?
- Are your tyres within legal specification?
- Are your wheels aligned?
- How old are your tyres?
- Do you have a spare tyre in good condition?
- Do you have a jack and wheel nut for changing tyres?
- Have you checked your engine oil, power steering fluid, transmission & differential fluids?
- Have you checked your coolant levels and windscreen washer fluid?
- Have you checked your brake fluid?
- Brakes, Steering and Suspension
- Has a professional taken a look at your brakes, steering and suspension recently?
- How old is your battery? A battery on average lasts between 2-4 years
- Visually check the condition of your battery for cracks, damage, or acid leaks
- Has a mechanic done a current (load) test recently?
For more detailed information on pre-starts and vehicle checks, click here
This information intended for information purposes only. The information is derived from independent research and does not replace any road traffic rules, codes, laws, acts or regulations. Centurion and its affiliated companies do not warrant or represent that the information contained in the “7 Weeks to Christmas Safety Campaign” is complete or suitable for the reader, recipient or driver’s purposes. Readers must exercise their own independent judgement, care and skill. Centurion (and its affiliated companies) assumes no risk or liability in the event of any loss, death, injury, damage or claim in relation to any persons or property arising as a result of any reliance on the information contained on this page, including any conclusions that may be derived from it.