Keeping in touch with your fleet on the road

Photo credit: Bison Transport

Photo credit: Bison Transport

How can employers share key safety messages when their workers are on the road? This can be challenging for trucking and transport employers who can’t always hold a pre-shift meeting.

“Many drivers are on the road before a supervisor or dispatch can communicate with them,” says Jimmy Sandhu, occupational health and safety advisor with SafetyDriven, who wrote this newsletter story on the topic.

To find out more, I got in touch with Christian Tardi, workplace health and safety leader for Bison Transport. The company employs 2,600 professional drivers and staff, supported by a large terminal network throughout Canada, including one in Langley, BC. It was established in 1969 and is based in Winnipeg Manitoba.

“Consistent reinforcement and communication on important safety topics is one important piece to building an organization’s safety culture,” Christian says. “The more informed and trained your people are, the better equipped they are to deal with a safety sensitive situation, and the more likely they are to choose the safe way!”

Christian says key safety-related information is sent twice a week to all drivers using direct-to-truck satellite messaging.

“Updates regarding policies and procedures are sent to all drivers as update sheets for their Driver Reference Guide, which drivers are required to carry with them at all times,” Christian says. “A monthly safety memo as well as other informational updates are sent to all drivers using our Intranet website which all drivers have access to from anywhere through the web.”

He says all Bison drivers are required to participate in annual safety training courses and/or reviews. New drivers attend a three-day driver orientation that includes instructor-led training, computer-based online training, and practical training on a driving simulator.

“All major Bison terminals have safety counsellors who are assigned to speak with drivers who have experienced safety issues,” Christian says. “Driver development instructors and/or safety counsellors are available to answer questions and provide training when necessary.”

All Bison’s online training courses are available to retake or review as needed by the drivers. The company also has posters and informational bulletins posted on their bulletin boards, driver entrances, and exit doors.

Congratulations to Bison on winning the “Best Committee Involvement” award in Winnipeg on Septempber 15, 2015 at the annual NAOSH Week awards luncheon. The award was presented by Manitoba Heavy Construction, showing recognition (for the second year in a row) from the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering for commitment to safety and prevention, and for “making a safety a habit.”


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