Transportation in the logistics industry involves a lot of vehicle movements. Transportation is not as simple as just starting the vehicle and driving off. Before any fleet operation there are several inspections that are carried out with the vehicle and the driver to ensure that everything is perfect for the operations. These inspections are done for the safety and smooth execution of the operations. In this blog you will see in detail about the safety checklists of the vehicle.
Why is setting standards mandatory for fleet business?
Fleet business involves multiple operations with multiple vehicles. Such a business needs a regular standard to function efficiently and be productive. Qualitative business is always a better business. For a quality business, setting and maintaining the good standards is mandatory in fleet business.
How to set standards? As said earlier, fleet business involves multiple operations with multiple vehicles in the fleet. All these vehicles are the backbone of fleet business. Hence these vehicles must be monitored on a regular basis in various aspects with a checklist. Keen observation and consistent maintenance of the vehicles helps in setting up the standards of the company.
Operations can be efficient and productive only if the standards are higher by better maintenance and performances of the fleets. It is the responsibility of the fleet management team to inspect the number of vehicles involved in the operations and their current conditions.
History of vehicle maintenance is also important for the management to understand the current condition of the fleets in order to inspect earlier and avoid any malfunctions during the operations. Fleets must be inspected daily about its conditions and given solutions if there is any abnormality.
Now, further we will see how the standards are set with the help of a safety checklist, both pre-check and post-check. These checklists ensure the safety of the vehicle and driver for smooth operations.
Vehicle pre-check importance and checklist
Checklists for your fleets are very important aspects of fleet management despite having all the advancements in the technology. Regular inspection of fleets with checklists will definitely make the fleet operations very much productive by avoiding unexpected expenses with vehicle malfunctions during the fleet operations.
Checklist comprises various aspects like, first the management must note down the details of the inspector or the inspecting agency. Vehicle inspector is the person who examines each and every aspect of the vehicle’s conditions. Hence the name and other bio-data of the vehicle inspector and his qualifications is also important for the better analysis of the vehicle.
Next is the details of the operator. Vehicle operator is the driver. Name, license, insurance and other information of the driver is a must as he is the one who operates the vehicle all the way. Without proper documents of the vehicle operator, border clearances will be a problem which might affect the fleet operations with time delay.
Then the details of the vehicle registration, license plate number are all important to be noted. As there are multiple vehicles in a fleet, every detail of each vehicle involved in the fleet operation is a must for any queries, clarifications and emergencies during the operations.
Vehicle inspection involves various things associated with the vehicle as given below.
- Fluids of the vehicle like, engine oil, washers, transmissions must be checked.
- Fuel levels are checked. Fill up the fuel tanks if required.
- Brakes are an important aspect of driving. Brakes must be sharp enough to control the speed. Including the parking brakes in case of steeps where it is not possible to park without the parking breaks.
- Horn sounds must be tested to be audible.
- Steering and its connections to wheels must be checked.
- Seat belts save lives and they must be in useful condition.
- Interior lights.
- First aid kit in case of emergency is a must in every vehicle, especially in the logistics industry that involves transportation of longer distances for multiple days.
- Fire extinguisher is also an essential need in case of any fire accidents. And most importantly it must be checked whether the available ones are in working conditions. And the knowledge of operating a fire extinguisher by the operator is an important aspect that comes under training of the vehicle operators.
- Mirrors are very important parts of any vehicle that enables the vehicle operators to have a view around 360 degrees.
- Wipers play a vital role during rainy conditions when water droplets on mirrors block the view of drivers. Wipers must be in working condition.
- Lights must be in working conditions including the headlights, indicators,.
- Tyres must be in good conditions with enough grip on the surface. Quality of tyres also has an impact on mileage. Good tyres are always productive with respect to fuel management.
- Exhaust of the engine must be checked along with its emission levels. If the emissions are dark enough and there is too much smoke, it must be given attention.
These are the most important aspects of the checklist to be inspected carefully before the fleet operations. And hence it is called a pre-check. It is the very important part of fleet operation as this ensures the management to go ahead with the planning and executions.
Vehicle post-check and checklist
As much as the pre-check is important for a fleet operation to commence, the post trip inspection is equally important for the maintenance of the fleets. Post trip checklist is an important aspect of fleet management.
Post trip checklist must have the following parts and accessories to be inspected;
- Steering mechanism .
- Medical kit and fire extinguisher.
Documentation of post trip inspection is a must for any fleet management to know the exact conditions of the vehicle after the trip which would be useful for the management to plan further for the recovery and better maintenance of the vehicle in the garage for future operations.
How telematics helps to inspect the safety of your truck?
Telematics solutions with advanced technology of various sensors embedded within the vehicle enables the fleet management to have a continuous monitoring facility over the fleets in operations and alert the driver in case of any abnormality in the behaviour of the driver or the systems of the vehicle.
Modern day operators are very much safe as the telematics systems are along with them all the way. With the help of telematics, fleet managers can identify various threats like hard braking, over-speeding, collision warning, etc.
Hard braking is mostly used in the areas where the traffic congestion is higher. In case of highway routes, hard braking is not used. In few cases like congested areas, hard braking is used to avoid the collisions but unwanted hard brakings are a threat for the safety of the drivers.
Over-speeding is definitely a threat for the vehicle and its operator. Most of the collisions are the cause of over-speeding which makes the vehicle go out of control. Speed limit standards are key for safer operations. If the speed limits are violated, the drivers can be warned and alerted with the telematics systems instantly for their safety.
Collision warning systems are one of the most advanced features in the vehicles that is very useful for the safety of the drivers. Forward Collision Warning (FCW) systems come with a visual and audio signal for the driver to be alert when the vehicle gets too close to any other vehicle or the object.
Forward Collision Warning systems are very much advanced with auto brake systems which can reduce the speed of a vehicle with minimal braking automatically if the driver has not applied brakes to slow down the vehicle.
With a lot more telematics systems to come in the industry, these telematics solutions are a boon for the fleets and the management for a safe and secured business.