In our previous blog post about 5 Health And Safety Issues In The Transportation Industry, we talked about the importance for long-distance drivers to take the necessary safety precautions before they hit the road and during the route. A large part of these can be covered by reporting and performing regular checks on the vehicle and equipment.
This time we will dive a bit deeper into the topic from an incident reporting side, and will cover the types of incidents that not only drivers could be reporting, but also the types the administration should be aware of and handle as they occur.
Reporting incidents is important to not only keep people safe but to ensure a high quality of work. By reporting all relevant incidents, people in the transportation industry can address any issues and prevent these incidents from happening again.
Here are 11 Incident Categories we see most important in the transportation industry
Accidents and injuries
Accidents and incidents within any situation are often preventable. Whether a driver slips on ice while getting into their vehicle or someone injures themselves using heavy equipment, it’s important to note both how and why these incidents happened.
By reporting them, employers and managers can get a clear picture of the current state and put procedures in place to prevent these cases in the future.
A near miss, also known as a close-call, is an unintended and unplanned event that had the potential to cause an injury, harm or illness, but did not.
Even though these cases caused no harm at the time, it's important to understand the underlying root causes, as they could end up resulting something worse in the future. In order to protect the personnel, equipment, vehicles, goods, and other property in the company, reporting the near misses is therefore extremely important.
Safety observation reports are a great way to ensure a safer environment for all. Doing proactive checks and reporting things that are out of place on the go helps to identify and handle hazards quicker and more effectively. This helps organisations resolve potential threats before they result in e.g. an injury to a worker.
Keep in mind that safety is everyone's responsibility, so for a better safety culture it's essential to engage all employees to report safety related observations.
Incidents caused by the weather
These incidents can include things like bad weather, flooding, cyclones, earthquakes, or a hazard within the work environment. It is essential to report these incidents in the transportation industry so that drivers can take the proper precautions. This could mean driving slower in bad weather or not driving at all to mitigate the risk of an accident.
Transportation professionals also need to ensure that the work environment is safe. This means proper maintenance of all vehicles, machinery, and equipment. Reporting poor environmental conditions helps contribute to this.
Non-conformity reports (NCRs)
Non-conformity reports are essential for quality control in the transportation industry. By reporting these, transportation professionals can identify why and when the work didn’t meet the standards, and what could be done differently to avoid these mistakes.
Reporting these types of incidents help organisations not only to prevent these problems in the future, but also ensure that their practises stay compliant.
Cargo related damages
These damages could be a result of many things including dropping the cargo, having scratches on the shipped items, wet conditions, infestation, pollution, and more.
It is crucial to report these occurrences so that managers and workers in the logistics chain can identify exactly what happened to damage it and take the necessary actions in preventing similar occurrences in the future.
Sometimes there are failures in the deliveries, and anyone working long enough in the transportation industry will be able to testify to this happening.
In order to prevent delivery failures from reoccurring because of same reasons, it is important for employees to report on them when they happen. This enables companies to put better systems in place and create transparency to prevent future failures that could lead to unhappy customers.
Fleet related damages can cause large setbacks as they can create an unsafe environment for driving or even prevent the whole business from running. In the worst case scenario, these damages can result in accidents that can be fatal. It is therefore crucial to report any damages so that they can be fixed accordingly.
One way on ensuring that these damages are caught and handled is to require pre-drive vehicle inspections from drivers.
Claims happen when there are damages, losses, shortages, hidden damages or hidden shortages of the goods being transported. These types of incidents should be reported on the spot when a freight is delivered if possible.
Getting the claims in this way will enable immediate actions from the people who need to handle them, and get a faster close-out process. Additionally it also helps the drivers understand whether the freight was damaged during their transport, so that they can possibly correct their driving in the future to prevent it from happening again.
Ideas and initiatives
Regardless of industry, new ideas and initiatives should be always welcomed to improve the safety and quality of the operations.
New initiatives could lead to safer and more efficient processes, that not only benefit the drivers but the entire company as well. And new ideas can contribute to previously overlooked areas of improvement before, during and after the drive.
Incidents happening in the transportation industry can often have a high importance to the health and safety of the drivers, goods, vehicles, and the company as a whole. By being aware of the most common types of incidents, and tracking reported incidents as they happen, it's possible to not only improve the health and safety functions but also create a process in which everyone in the organisation can feel responsible for these matters.
Reporting is the first step to ensure that problems get solved and similar incidents do not occur in the future. It is also by far the best way to learn from mistakes, share best practices and engage all employees to create a better safety culture in your company.
If you're looking for an incident reporting platform that is easy-to-use, boosts two-way communication, has customisable workflows, vast integration possibilities and more, have a look at our incy.io product and contact us for more information.
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