Adult day care agencies often provide pick-up and drop-off services for clients. While this service can go a long way in increasing customer satisfaction, it can also put the agency at risk. Any time one of your employees gets behind the wheel, your company takes on liability. This is true whether your employee is driving a company vehicle, a personal vehicle or a client’s vehicle. Take steps to protect your adult day care agency from auto risks.
Know the Risks
Car crashes happen every day. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 6,452,000 police-reported crashes in 2017, resulting in 37,133 fatalities and 2,746,00 injuries. Certain behaviors could increase the risk of your employees being in a crash.
- Distracted Driving: Traffic fatalities have increased in recent years, and distracted driving may be part of the cause. In 2017, 9 percent of all fatal crashes were linked to distracted driving. Many states have passed laws that prohibit texting while driving. Make sure your employees do not use their phones while they are driving.
- Drowsy Driving: In 2017, 91,000 motor vehicle crashes involved drowsy driving. Employees who have long hours and irregular shifts may have a higher risk of drowsy driving.
- Speeding: In 2017, 26 percent of traffic fatalities were linked to speeding. Employees who are in a rush to follow a schedule may be tempted to speed.
Protect Your Agency
As an adult day care agency, you have a duty to protect your clients, your employees and your bottom line. This includes doing everything you can to manage auto risks.
- Check driving records. Run motor vehicle reports with background checks for all employees whose duties will include driving. This can be done during the hiring process and then repeated annually to ensure that no employees have events on their driving records that could disqualify them from your company’s coverage and put your agency at risk.
- Implement a driver safety program. A good program will educate employees on driving laws, safe driving practices, vehicle maintenance and other key issues. It may even qualify your agency for insurance discounts. Heffernan has a web-based program that includes training in driving safety as well as other key issues. You can also hold staff meetings to discuss safety issues or send out emails and flyers with important safety tips and reminders.
- Encourage good habits. Do you expect employees to respond to calls and texts while they’re driving? Then you’re encouraging distracted driving. Do you insist that employees follow tight schedules that don’t provide enough travel time? Then you’re encouraging speeding. Telling employees to drive safely isn’t enough. Establish policies and procedures that promote safe driving habits.
- Purchase hired and non-owned auto insurance. You may know that you need commercial auto insurance coverage for any vehicles owned by your agency, but don’t forget about vehicles owned by your employees. Your company can be liable for any accident that occurs during the course of business operations, even if it doesn’t involve a company vehicle. If employees use personal vehicles to transport clients or run errands, protect your agency with hired and non-owned coverage.
If you have questions about coverage or our safety platform, contact the team at Heffernan Insurance Brokers today.