BT halves collision rate and cuts costs by £10+ million per annum

BT, which operates one of the largest motor fleets in Europe, has recently revised and updated its occupational road risk policy and programs - in part to allow for improved privacy management and detailed data integration through its Driver Index and risk data warehouse.

To date the company has cut its collision rate from over 60 per thousand vehicles in 2001 to 30 in 2009, reducing costs by approximately £12 million per annum in the process.

This has been achieved through a range of initiatives including:

• Policy and communications based on the latest research from around the globe.

• Management development and engagement.

• Europe's biggest ever driver risk assessment, monitoring and improvement program touching over 65,000 people.

• Improved vehicle selection and management.

• Effective journey planning and management.

• Community engagement through its family and friends road safety initiative.

• Thought leadership though participation in fleet safety benchmarking, government initiatives, industry events and best practice programs such as Driving for Better Business and the NIOSH global road safety for workers project.

Tony Holt, BT's Travel Safety Subject Matter Expert said:
'We have made great improvements in our fleet safety performance over the last eight years as a result of this program. In the last 12 months the collision rate reduction has reached a plateau, which has led us to further enhance our program through the ongoing development of our innovative risk data-warehouse and risk data warehouse which has been run and managed by Interactive Driving Systems® these past 8 years, collision data, Driver Index and a renewed push on our Starting Point driver risk assessment, monitoring and improvement project'.

We are now in the process of re-launching the BT road safety program, with a new improved MIS and online OneToOne process for line and safety managers, and several revised and updated risk assessment, monitoring and improvement modules for drivers.

Detailed case studies of BT's program can be seen at: (see NIOSH, cases and awards)

PhD and other research involving Edinburgh Napier and Loughborough Universities is also ongoing to further evaluate and enhance the program.

A good example of a recent paper is:
Wallington D, Murray W, Darby P, Raeside R & Ison S. Work-related road safety: Case study of British Telecommunications (BT). Edinburgh Napier School of Accounting Economics & Statistics research paper series. RP048 / 2011, February 2011.

Please contact us for a copy.

BT risk assesses 50,000th driver

British Telecom has recently risk assessed its 50,000th driver using Virtual Risk Manager® validated RoadRISK™ assessment tool by Interactive Driving Systems®.

BT's Fleet Risk Management program, which has been rolled out at a rate of just over 10,000 people risk assessed per year since the initial trials took place in 2002, has been a great success, with collision rates and costs reducing by approximately 40% during that time.

As well as risk assessing more than 50,000 drivers, BT has also undertaken targeted training - with more than 30,000 drivers having completed One More Second®. Some other key outcomes from the program include:

• Almost 15,000 completions of Virtual Risk Manager® RoadSKILLS™ program covering urban, rural, motorway and general driving.

• 6,000 drivers received in-vehicle training.

• 32,000 drivers have signed BT's Road Safety Pledge since its launch in November 2005.

• 2,000+ first line managers have completed the Whose Risk is it Anyhow employee development course.

This program represents occupational road safety on an unprecedented scale, with the total solution being controlled, allocated and monitored online by BT and Interactive Driving Systems®. Most recently BT has added the sophisticated Virtual Risk Manager® OneToOne process to the system, which allows first line managers to access detailed information on all their drivers, send them task-alerts and monitor their collisions as well as organise, undertake, record, review and sign-off appropriate road safety improvement actions.

Interactive Driving Systems® ongoing work with BT is providing detailed visibility on its collision data using Virtual Risk Manager® CrashCOUNT module, which in turn will lead to the creation of a Driver Index that to help managers target their most 'at-risk' drivers. As part of this program, BT is also rolling out Virtual Risk Manager® across its 7,000 European-based drivers in a range of languages, and developing a Risk Foundation program to ensure that all drivers understand and comply with safety critical policies and procedures.

BT's Group Risk Manager, Dave Wallington, said: 'Given our scale and scope, Virtual Risk Manager® has allowed us to assess and reduce the risks faced by our people when they are out on the roads in the most cost effective way. The results achieved so far have repaid our investment several times over and the ongoing system development will allow us even better visibility and linkages of all our risk assessment, training, collision and hopefully licence data streams'.

BT has also successfully used One More Second®, Virtual Risk Manager® attitude and behaviour focused driver development tool to provide family members and friends with a safe driving program. Wallington continued: 'We are delighted by the take up from family members and friends, but are still encouraging a wider participation in this program, which we think could eventually effect the safety of more than 100,000 people in the communities in which we operate'.

Interactive Driving Systems® helps BT improve it's road safety performance by 30%

A recent study by Napier University has validated the ability of Interactive Driving Systems® Virtual Risk Manager® to identify at-risk fleet drivers. The study found that 5% of the sample were responsible for 45% of the crashes. It also found drivers with the worst scores were at least three times more at risk than those with the highest scores.

The on-going study is being carried out on 13,000 van and company car drivers from BT's fleet using Virtual Risk Manager®, winner of a Brake Safety Forum Award.

The university applied a logistic regression analysis to the sample measuring driver attitude, behaviour, knowledge, hazard awareness and personal exposure and then compared it to drivers reported accident rates. The study was able to demonstrate a clear link between high risk drivers and accident involvement.

Since the study, BT has put a further 12,000 of its 70,000 driving staff through the Virtual Risk Manager® assessment. 'A conventional approach to defensive driver training is unrealistic for the number of drivers we employ. We needed something that could filter those drivers assessed as being at high risk' said Dave Wallington, BT's Group Safety Advisor. 'We can then look at the identified areas of weakness and tailor courses. Virtual Risk Manager® offers us a cost-effective solution to driver assessment, rather than the usual generic approach of on-road training'.

Dave Wallington said BT's accident rate had reduced by 30% over the past four years as part of an on-going commitment to improved driver safety. Wallington said Napier University was also undertaking a much bigger study based on BT's historical data. 'Results suggest there is a strong correlation between driver scores and accident rates, so we're correct in using Virtual Risk Manager® as a tool in accident reduction'.

Andy Cuerden Managing Director of Interactive Driving Systems® (UK), developers of Virtual Risk Manager® and sponsors of the research commented: 'The Napier Study shows that you can take steps to identify at-risk individuals before they get into the vehicle. We see this being particularly relevant to large organisations who want to be able to identify their 'at-risk' drivers for further support and training. Virtual Risk Manager® is also very helpful for establishing the training needs of new recruits and will help organisations fulfil their health and safety obligations'.

We recently published the following research paper describing the BT work-related road safety program in detail. For a free copy, please contact Dr Will Murray.

Murray W, Darby P, Ison S & Wallington D. Sustaining work-related road safety in the supply chain: Case study of British Telecommunications. Paper presented at the Logistics Research Network Conference, Harrogate, 8-10 September 2010.

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