Safety attitudes and behaviours in work-related driving – Stage 1: Analyses of crash data

Monash University Accident Research Centre - Report #232 [2005]

Authors: Mark Symmons and Narelle Haworth

Full report in .pdf format [500KB]


The overall aim of the project was to examine safety-related attitudes and behaviours in workrelated
driving to assess their contribution to crashes and to identify potential approaches to
improving the safety of work-related driving. Stage 1 analysed crash and registration data supplied
by the NSW RTA to examine the role of risky driving behaviours (speeding, fatigue, drink driving
and not wearing seat belts) in crashes of fleet and non-fleet vehicles.

Fleet vehicles had a higher crash rate per 10,000 registered vehicles per year than non-fleet
vehicles. Crashed fleet drivers were less likely to be speeding, driving while fatigued, or driving
with an illegal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) than crashed non-fleet drivers. Fleet drivers
were less likely to wear seatbelts but this may reflect the lack of a requirement in NSW for taxi
drivers to wear seatbelts and low seatbelt wearing rates by truck drivers.

The crash rate of emergency vehicles was double that of other fleet and non-fleet vehicles and
speeding was twice as common in crashes of emergency vehicles. In contrast, fatigue and drink
driving were less common in emergency vehicle crashes, than for all fleet crashes. Non-wearing of
seatbelts was most common for drivers of fire brigade and tow truck vehicles where the vehicle is
likely to be larger than a car.

For each type of vehicle, illegal blood alcohol levels were less common among drivers of fleet
vehicles than among drivers of non-fleet vehicles in crashes. However, the prevalence varied as a
function of type of vehicle, with the highest prevalence among drivers of (fleet and non-fleet) light
commercial vehicles and the lowest among drivers of taxis and emergency vehicles.

More than half of all fleet vehicles belonged to a fleet of one or two vehicles and smaller fleets had
older vehicles. There was no clear relationship between crash involvement and fleet size. Fleet
vehicles were newer than non-fleet vehicles and relatively more fleet than non-fleet cars were large
cars, commercials and 4WDs. However, differences in vehicle characteristics are insufficient to
explain the differences in crash severity.

Potential higher levels of reporting of non-casualty crashes by fleets are unlikely to have markedly
affected the results.

Sponsoring organisation - Baseline Research Program - Department of Justice, Transport Accident Commission, VicRoads