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Driving for work update welcomed by D.tec International

23 September 2021

THE HEALTH and Safety Executive (HSE), working in partnership with the Department for Transport (DfT), has published updated guidance on work-related road risk (WRRR) for employers and workers.

For the first time, HSE have asked employers to remind workers that they must not drive under the influence of drink or drugs, including prescription drugs.

In 2019, the most recent year that statistics are available, there were 7,860 drink driving related collisions resulting in 280 deaths – the highest number in a decade and an increase of 15% from the previous year.

In the same period, 92 people were killed and 672 were seriously injured in collisions where a driver was impaired by drugs. The true figure is likely to be much higher.

Driving under the influence of drink or drugs significantly increases the risk of death or serious injury and with 74% of substance abusers stating that they are in full-time employment, it stands to reason that HSE would align their guidance with challenges in society. 

Ean Lewin, managing director for D.tec International, provider of drug and alcohol testing services and equipment for safety critical employees, as well as all 43 police forces in England, Wales and Scotland, welcomed the announcement.

He said, “This is a step in the right direction. All drivers and riders have a responsibility for their compliance to road traffics laws. However, when driving for work, their employer has legal responsibility for their employees’ health and safety which extends beyond making sure they do not drive for an excessive number of hours and ensuring their vehicle is properly maintained”.

He added, “The statistics demonstrate a worrying and fast-growing trend that will only be reversed if employers help to embrace the issue and ensure their own compliance by educating their employees and having robust policies in place to tackle drink and drugs in the workplace”.