Safety Road Map Tips For Driver Selection

truck driver standing next to semi holding CDL license

Screening driver applicants is one of the most crucial functions for any motor carrier. Selecting the right person requires due diligence because the consequences of making a bad hire could scar the organization for years to come. Taking the time to thoroughly vet applicants by investigating their backgrounds, evaluating their skills, and interviewing them to ensure they are a good fit for the company culture are necessary steps on the front end to save the company time and money on the back end. For this reason, Great West created the Safety Road Map, a simple tool to help motor carriers develop their own driver screening and selection processes.

To get started, go to the Safety Road Map website (https://info.gwccnet.com/roadmap) and click on the ‘Driver Selection’ icon. This section has four tasks, which are listed below. Read each task and ask yourself if there are areas of your operations that can be improved upon.

1. Establish your company’s driver selection standards. Defining and applying the standards by which all drivers will be measured ensures equality, consistency, and objectivity. Before drafting formal driver selection standards, review Parts 391.11-15 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSA) pertaining to driver qualification and disqualification. Great West agents can also provide a list of characteristics typically found in a Great West insured driver to help you get started. Be sure everyone involved in the driver screening and selection process understand the company’s guidelines and adheres to them. Before implementing driver selection standards, consult legal counsel. After the changes are approved, train employees on the new standards.

2. Road test all drivers. It is recommended that every driver applicant should be road tested in the equipment he or she will be expected to operate, if hired. Use pre-determined criteria to evaluate each applicant’s knowledge and skills behind the wheel and around the truck. Great West provides insureds with a Road Test Evaluation form. It can be downloaded for free on the client portal.

3. Screen applicants using the Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse. All motor carriers are required to use the FMCSA’s Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse. Employers must run a full query on each driver applicant as part of the pre-employment drug and alcohol
background check. Links to the Drug and
Alcohol Clearinghouse website and a two- page informational flyer are included with this task on the Safety Road Map. Note, until the clearinghouse has three years of data, motor carriers must continue to check with past employers regarding an applicant’s drug and alcohol testing results.

4. Order PSP reports for all driver applicants. Motor carriers can subscribe to the FMCSA’s Pre-employment Screening Program and receive reports with a driver applicant’s five-year DOT- recordable crash history and three-year history of violations. Motor carriers are encouraged to compare the driver’s PSP report against other documentation, such as the driver’s resume, job application, MVR, etc.

CALL TO ACTION

  • Define the company’s driver selection standards and require all employees involved in driver screening and selection to adhere to this standard.

  • Subscribe to the FMCSA’s PSP service and use the results to screen driver applicants.

  • Road test all drivers.
 
 

Note: These lists are not intended to be all-inclusive.

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This material is intended to be a broad overview of the subject matter and is provided for informational purposes only. Joe Morten & Son, Inc. does not provide legal advice to its insureds or other  parties, nor does it advise insureds or other parties on employment-related issues, therefore the subject matter is not intended to serve as legal or employment advice for any issue(s) that may arise in the operations of its insureds or other parties. Legal advice should always be sought from legal counsel. Joe Morten & Son, Inc. shall have neither liability nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to any loss, action, or inaction alleged to be caused directly or indirectly as a result of the information contained herein. Reprinted with permission from Great West Casualty Company.

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