8 March 2022
Our Ref: V4/22
To: All Branches
Royal Mail Group (SHE) Safety Flash FY22 06 – Serious Road Traffic Accident:
Overview, Background, Description and Effect:
Following a recent, very serious, road traffic collision involving a Royal Mail vehicle in which a CWU member driver was seriously injured and remains hospitalised, the Royal Mail Group Safety Team have issued the attached SHE Flash to remind all drivers of some basic but key road safety driving techniques.
The Royal Mail driver was waiting at a junction when a heavy goods vehicle ran into the back of the Royal Mail vehicle at speed, pushing the Royal Mail van across the junction and into a collision with another vehicle. The Royal Mail driver was thrown out of the passenger side door of the Royal Mail van receiving serious injuries. The occupants of the other vehicle were also injured in the impact. The Royal Mail driver remains in hospital at the time of writing.
Key Messages And Learning Points:
This incident is a reminder of the devastation that road traffic collisions can cause, and for most of us driving is the most dangerous work activity we will undertake. Our priority must always be to ensure the safety of our drivers and the public.
We can’t control everything that happens on the roads but the SHE Management System contains all the approaches that are in place to keep the workforce safe whilst driving.
The Following Key Points Are Important:
Observation – actively look for hazards by scanning left, right and centre, and near and far. Check mirrors regularly. Check blind spots before completing manoeuvres e.g., pulling out, turning or overtaking.
Anticipate – think about hazards you can’t see and how they might affect you. For example, oncoming traffic around blind bends, doors opening on parked cars, or vehicles approaching from behind.
Plan – for what might happen. Are you going slow enough to stop? Do you need to give more space? If waiting to turn right across traffic, keep your wheels facing forward until you are ready to go. If you are hit from behind this may avoid you being pushed into oncoming traffic.
Be Aware Of The ‘Fatal 4’:
Speed – increases the likelihood and severity of a collision. Drive at a speed which is appropriate for the road and conditions and always within the speed limit.
Alcohol/Drugs – never drive under the influence of drink or drugs and be aware that some prescription drugs can also impair driving.
Seatbelts – always wear your seatbelt, even for short distances or at low speed. At just 6mph, the forces in a crash are too high for the average person to restrain themselves without a seatbelt.
Distractions – driving requires your full concentration. Royal Mail Group prohibit the use of mobile devices whilst driving, including hands-free use. Do not try to read addresses whilst driving.
Only drive vehicles that you are licenced to drive and have received the required training for, as set out in RMG SHE Instructions.
Never drive an unroadworthy vehicle – ensure that you complete your daily vehicle check and that defects are reported and repaired.
Always drive in accordance with the Highway Code, The Driving Safe System of Work and your training.
Always ensure that you are fit to drive – conditions which may affect your driving must be disclosed and an OH appointment may be arranged. Have regular eyesight tests and always wear eyesight correction if required. Ensure that you are properly rested.
Managers must ensure that this SHE Flash is delivered to all drivers.
RMG SHE Safety Flash FY22 06 – Serious Road Traffic Accident.
Dave Joyce National Health, Safety & Environment Officer