A Guide to Applying Workplace Road Safety: A Cyclists Take

A Guide to Applying Road Safety Within a Workplace

Workplace road safety is the focus of this guide, or supporting documentation, that bridges the gap between government and road safety research knowledge, internationally endorsed road safety methodology, and assists industry as the end-user which was drafted under contract to the National Transport Commission, (Australia) and Accident Compensation Corporation, (New Zealand). The manual can be download from my Dropbox.

The Essential Messages for Workplace Road Safety

can be summarised as follows (the guide should be read to flesh out these messages):

  • Start out simple and then build complexity
  • Managing to legal requirement is a sound starting point, even through it may be far from achieving a Safe System approach to road safety
  • Build an understanding of road safety and the Safe System approach to road safety throughout the organisation.
  • Assess the ability of the organisation to manage work related road safety.

Organisation’s Workplace Road Safety Responsibilities Towards Cyclists

The guide notes that all those using the road network, either as pedestrians, cyclists or in a vehicle, have a responsibility to act in a safe manner. That said in looking at the application of a workplace road safety approach to work related safety, the guide asks the key question:

Does your organisation identify specific needs and requirements of road users including high risk road users?

The guide then goes on to comment …

The road user has to be one of the most discussed and debated elements of road safety, particularly when it comes to work related road safety within organisations. Typical discussions debate the need
for more driver training, interactive and controlling technology, and administration control.  The principle underpinning safe system asserts that human beings make errors and the system needs
to be forgiving of errors that occur. This is not to allow or tolerate illegal or reckless behaviours, but it recognises realistically that human road user behaviour cannot be perfected. Acceptance that human beings make errors and that the road network should allow for such, should not be used to avoid the need for education, training and up skilling of employees or the need for robust policies and procedures. Many organisations who provide training, coaching and have many procedures instilled into road user processes and activities, particularly to seek reduction in the extent of error, have achieved good road safety outcomes and risk reduction within the organisation.

and that

Dealing with the high risk users has to be a priority in all work related safety issues. If we know that the user, (and this could be a pedestrian, cyclist or vehicle user), is a high risk we need to take action,
not just because of that risk but the legal and moral responsibility to act.

Overall the paper is of course focused on employee and risk management within the organisation but it provides an insight into a workplace road safety approach which should benefit cyclists as vulnerable road users.  If nothing else this is a great reference paper to pass on to organisations you may find yourself interacting within on the road because an employee does not apply a workplace road safety approach, a safe systems approach.  Referring the business to this  manual or  guide can be a reminder of their responsibilities and hopefully an encouragement for  them to re-think their workplace road safety attitude and more importantly their road safety approach to vulnerable road users.

The full reference for the paper is:

Newton, J., Howard, E., Wishart, D. (2013). A Guide to Applying Road Safety within a Workplace : A Bilateral Approach to Organisational Road Safety in Australia and New Zealand. National Transport Commission Australia & Accident Compensation Corporation New Zealand.

One Response to A Guide to Applying Workplace Road Safety: A Cyclists Take

  1. Jerome Carslake 22 January 2015 at 8:13 AM #

    Great to see the guide being used and drawn on by other sectors.

    The National Road Safety Partnership Program (NRSPP) will be running a free webinar with the authors of the Workplace Road Safety Guide should any one be interested. It will provide a chance for those interested to ask advice or clarification on any issues they perceive. We also welcome feedback on the guide so that it can be updated to address these.

    The webinar will take place on the 18 March can be found at:

    Webinar description: Ultimately, road safety, both within an organisation and in the community environment, requires leadership, support and willingness to act. This guide has been developed as learning and enabling tool to support and focus an organisations willingness to act, reduce risk and increase its work related road safety management and culture. The Guide is a collaborative approach work related road safety between New Zealand and Australia. to assisting organisations with reducing the risks The guide was launched on the 5 May 2014 as part of the NRSPP official launch .

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