WorkSafeBC, through its Road Safety At Work initiative, is campaigning to reduce the number of lives lost in on-the-job vehicles accidents. The agency says workplace accident risks involving motor vehicles are significantly higher now than in 2014. This is underscored by the statistics that show fatalities caused by work-related vehicle accidents in 2018 accounted for 38% of all occupational deaths.
The Road Safety at Work campaign is focused on the need to limit crash-related injuries and deaths. Reportedly, more than 65% of employers in British Columbia employ drivers to operate company or private vehicles. While drivers must follow the company’s road safety programs, procedures and policies, understand traffic laws and obey them, employers play a significant role in preventing vehicle accidents.
It is the task of employers to identify the road safety risks their drivers will face and develop procedures, policies and programs to mitigate the risks. Moreover, implementing the programs must involve adequate safety training and instructions for vehicle operators, and also ongoing supervision and monitoring to ensure compliance with safe driving protocols. Employers are also responsible for scheduling regular inspections and maintenance to confirm that vehicles are safe to use.
Unfortunately, not all business owners prioritize employee safety. In any event, a victim of a vehicle-related workplace accident is typically eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. A British Columbia lawyer with experience in this field of the law can assist with the benefits claims process. Legal counsel can also advocate for the surviving family members of those who lost their lives in crashes while on driving duty.