Venson shines light on mental health and driver safety

Published:  06 December, 2018

The connection between mental health and driver safety at work has been examined by Venson Automotive Solutions in a white paper.

Called ‘It’s good to talk: caring about mental health’, the document examines the causes and symptoms of stress in relation to driving behaviour at work and dealing with productivity demands and increasing workloads.

It highlights that employees suffering from stress are 50% more likely to drive dangerously. This underlines the need for employers to consider stress and mental health as a key focus of their driver safety policy.

Mental health problems are the leading cause of absence from work in the UK, accounting for around 70 million lost work days and costing £35 billion. The pressure of an increasingly demanding work culture in the UK, is one of the biggest contributors to stress among the general population.

However, Venson’s white paper outlines that there are other key contributors to stress, such as financial well-being, relationships, moving house, bereavement or the risk of unemployment.

Driving is the most dangerous work activity that most people undertake, ranking as more dangerous than working in the construction industry and being on a par with mining, according to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), the risk management partner of Venson Automotive Solutions.

RoSPA says that employers should include driving for work within the scope of their stress risk assessments and the Mental Health Foundation says that, with van drivers experiencing an increased rate of poor mental health, we need to create a culture in which anyone experiencing problems can ask for help in the knowledge that they will be supported.

‘Managing the driver, vehicle and journey are the main areas employers need to focus on, when it comes to the safety of their drivers but all too often mental health is overlooked,’ said Simon Staton, director of client management for Venson Automotive Solutions.

‘This white paper outlines the challenges facing businesses, and asks them to question if their drivers are sufficiently fit and healthy to drive safely and not put themselves and others at risk.’

The document ‘It’s good to talk: caring about mental health’ can be downloaded from Venson Automotive Solutions’ website at https://www.venson.com/media/ViewWhitePaper/32.

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