Employee Speed Limiters: Infringement of Rights?
The growing trend of employers fitting speed limiters to company cars and vans is somewhat of a controversial topic. There are valid reasons on both sides for both rejoice and discontent. Open communication is key. If both employers and employees understand where the other is coming from, it can help foster a friendlier work environment.
What are Speed Limiters?
Speed limiters govern top speeds of vehicles. Most modern vehicles already have built-in speed limiters. Parental control of car speeds is an example of these devices in action. Companies who want to prevent employees from speeding in work vans use them. If your vehicles are old and don’t have one available, you can buy and install them.
The devices monitor speeds and cut off the fuel supply to the engine when a predetermined speed limit is crossed. There are both programmable and fixed speed devices available.
The Benefits of Speed Limiters
- Increased Safety: Studies support the idea that higher speed leads to more accidents. In Britain, 1 km/h increase in speed has shown to increase the number of accidents by 1% to 4% in urban areas and 2.5% to 5.5% in rural areas. Limiting speeds can help employers prevent accidents. So, it makes sense to implement the solution as a risk mitigation strategy.
- Fuel Efficiency: High speeds can decrease the fuel efficiency of vehicles. Limiting speed can help companies save money on fuel.
- Less Pollution: Burning less fossil fuel results in less pollution. It’s good for the environment. So, advertising that your cars and vans are using speed limiters can work in your company’s favour. You can build a reputation as an environmentally friendly business.
The Potent Risks of Speed Limiters
- Road Safety Issues: Drivers have to change their driving habits to accommodate the limits. If you noticed two trucks moving at the same speed side by side blocking the road for others, speed limiters might be responsible. It’s harder to overtake other vehicles with these devices installed which can have safety issues both for drivers who are not used to the limiters and also for other road users who become frustrated.
- Employee Dissatisfaction: Employees using vehicles fitted with a speed limiter might feel as though they are not trusted by management and might consider the restrictions a kind of micromanagement. This can lead frustration and to employee dissatisfaction and therefore to high employee turnover.
- Hostility Towards your Brand: The discontent mentioned above can go beyond the company and its employees. If your company vehicles are increasing congestion due to slow overtaking speed and bottlenecking, people will start taking notice. It can build up hostility toward your brand. You need to make sure that your speed limits don’t adversely affect your company’s reputation.
Employers who are considering the addition of speed limiters to their company cars and vans should first talk to their employees to fully understand their concerns. Employers should also educate employees about the reasons for using the devices which can help to win them over.
For employees, it’s important to understand the business benefits of using speed limiters. It’s an environment-friendly device that will keep you safe on the road.
If both employers and employees communicate and cooperate, speed limiters can be a cost-effective and environment-friendly solution for the business.