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Mock trial encourages safer driving for work

Through the Mind Your Business project, Wirral Council’s Road Safety team invited Wirral businesses to a mock trial held at Wallasey Town Hall Chamber.

The mock trial, of which 75 business representatives attended, demonstrated potential consequences a company can face if they fail to fulfill their duty of care obligations if one of their drivers is involved a collision.

Cllr Liz Grey, Wirral Council Cabinet Member for Environment and Climate Change said: “I am pleased that events like this are delivered to promote the importance of staying safe on our roads – and delivered not just to drivers themselves but to local businesses through the Mind Your Business project.

“Every effort made to improve the safety of residents on our roads, whether that be driving for work or otherwise, is invaluable.”

The aim of the event, funded by the Road Safety Trust, was to highlight the responsibility of businesses to make sure their drivers are as safe as possible on the roads.

Jane Kennedy, Merseyside Police & Crime Commissioner, who opened the trial, commented: “I’m pleased to support Wirral Council as they work with employers to make our region’s roads safer.

"Every death or serious injury on the roads of Merseyside is one too many.  Here on Merseyside, too many people are involved in accidents, knocked off their motor bikes and cycles, or are injured in their cars every year.

The trial acknowledged that this, or a similar scenario, could happen to any business. The causes of road traffic collisions, how businesses can make mistakes and how businesses need to manage company policy and procedures were all addressed.

Following the trial, the possible penalties that could be faced, by both the employee and the employer, were further discussed and each person at the event said that they would recommend the event to colleagues and other businesses.

Jane Kennedy continues: “There have been significant improvements since I made ‘improving road safety’ a policing priority back in 2016. There has been a 10% reduction in the number of people or killed every year since. But there is still much more that can be done, and work-related collisions are an area where improvements can certainly be made.

"I am delighted to see companies working in partnership with the police and local authorities, after all, owners and managers are legally required to ensure the safety of their own staff – it is not optional - so this initiative is very welcome.”

John Lawrence, Independent Specialist Fleet Risk Advisor and Frank Rogers, Head of Just Motor Laws at Kirwans Solicitors presented in the mock trial and leading industry expert Ian Thomas, a Fatigue Risk Management Specialist also spoke at the event.

For further information on the Mind Your Business project please email Wirral Council Road Safety team.