HGV Daily Walk Around Checks
Professional HGV drivers control what can be a potentially dangerous vehicle. A vast majority of operators and conscientious drivers know that it is extremely important for them to take their responsibilities seriously and consider daily walk around checks a vital part of staying safe on the road.
The Driver Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) require a ‘roadworthiness’ check before using your vehicle every time and failure to do so not only endangers the driver, but other road users as well. That is why failure to carry out daily checks can result in fines of up to £5,000 or, in the event of an accident, liability.
Asset Go has produced a handy infographic for drivers & operators alike to refresh their knowledge of what is required during an HGV daily check and you can get yourself a free copy by clicking here. The DVSA also has a comprehensive guide to HGV daily checks and roadworthiness is available here.
There are a number of essential checks that should be completed yet the DVSA understand that drivers are not workshop mechanics so daily defect checks are not as thorough as a Periodic Inspections (usually 6 weekly).
Checks to be aware of include:
Mirrors & Glass – Ensure there are no cracks and vision is not impaired.
Spray Suppression – Check that all spray suppression measures are secure and in working order
Markers – Make sure all markers and signage such as Blind Spot warnings are secure and visible.
Coupling Security – Ensure the vehicle is coupled securely to the load.
Lights & Indicators – Confirm all in full working order with no blown bulbs
Daily Checks Are A Legal Requirement
When performing your daily checks it is worth remembering that it’s a legal requirement and that you should allow a reasonable amount of time to perform the checks. These can be completed with the use of a defect book, but the most efficient way is with a smartphone app such as AssetGo – you can find out more about the benefits of the AssetGo system here.
AssetGo will record the time taken to carry out the checks and will also send a GPS located timestamp back to base when submitted. You also need to ensure that you set your digital tachograph to “other work” , which will record this info for your drivers hours records.
When no defects are found, if using a defect book you can file a nil defect report for your records. The AssetGo app will record a nil defect report automatically for you.
When defects are identified it is vital that you confirm the severity of the issue with your transport manager – and remember if the vehicle is deemed unsafe to drive is a crime and a huge risk for yourself & other road users. You leave yourself and the operator open to prosecution, fines and penalty points.
Best practice will be to also record information on the report such as your name, date, time, mileage and registration details (all of which are recorded on the AssetGo app as standard).
In the event that you are stopped for a roadside check by Police, Highways Agency or the DVSA, the information you record either in the defect book or on the app is your legal record of compliance and can also be used in the audit trail for any identified defect.
To summarise, daily HGV walk around checks help to ensure the safety of all road users. The best way to carry out these checks and have a full, end to end audit trail without all the messy paperwork is with the AssetGo system.