Welcome to the courier health and safety centre!

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Getting started on the road



๐Ÿ‘‹ Introduction

Welcome to the courier health and safety centre; this hub should act as a resource for our courier partners to help them operate safely and responsibly.

Any recommendations provided are for illustration purposes, as ultimately it is each courierโ€™s responsibility to ensure that they comply with their own health & safety obligations. This said, please let any one of the Stuart operations team know of any incidents or safety concerns to assist Stuart to comply with its own obligations.

As an independent courier, you have an obligation to take all reasonable care for yourself and others.

This includes complying with:

  • Road Traffic legislation

  • National road/traffic codes (e.g. the Highway Code in the UK)

  • Local Business and other site traffic and visitor rules whilst at a clientโ€™s site.


๐Ÿ“„ Insurance

As a partner courier, you use your own vehicle. If you use a motorbike or car, you are responsible for maintaining your own business use insurance cover.

๐Ÿ’ณ Driving licence

Drivers should have a current valid driving licence and be able to show it at short notice. We recommend having your insurance details and licence with you whenever youโ€™re on the road.

Getting started on the road

You are responsible for driving safely and being aware of others around you. Here are some practical tips to help you keep yourself and others safe whilst on the road.

๐Ÿš— Cars and motorbikes - vehicle check

Completing a simple 6 FLOWER checks before your journey can ensure you are safe on the road. We recommend doing these checks at the start of your day.

FLOWER stands for Fuel, Lights, Oil, Water, Electrics, Rubber.

  • Fuel - Check you have enough fuel for the day.

  • Lights - Your lights help other road users to see you. Make sure your brake lights, indicators and headlights are all working properly.

  • Oil - When your vehicle is cold, check your oil levels. Top it up if it is too low before heading off.

  • Water - Check your vehicleโ€™s water levels to ensure it runs smoothly. This includes water fluid levels and coolants.

  • Electrics - Battery issues are one of the most common reasons for a breakdown. Check your vehicleโ€™s battery is fully functioning. If your vehicle takes longer to start, it could be a sign that you might have a battery issue.

  • Rubber (Tyres) - Ensure your tyres are inflated to the correct pressure and check your tyres have sufficient tread depth to maintain a grip on the road. This is especially important during wet or icy weather conditions.

๐Ÿšฒ Bikes - vehicle check

  • Tyres - Check your tyres are fully inflated to the correct pressure. You can do a quick check by pressing firmly on the top of the wheel, and how much the tyre bulges against the ground. For a more accurate check, use a pump with a pressure gauge.

  • Brakes - Ensure your brakes are firm and hold without slipping or squealing.

  • Chain - Ensure your chain is correctly in place and is lubricated. If the chain is
    covered with grease or grime you can use an old toothbrush to give it a clean.

It is an offence to ride a bicycle without two effective brake systems, one operating on the front wheel and one operating on the back wheel, both independent from each other.

Please remember to wear a helmet and ensure that it is properly fitted.

๐ŸŽ’ Equipment check

โœ… Thermal bag is clean

โœ… Suitable clothing (dependant on the weather)

โœ… Helmet and hi-vis (for bikes and motorcycles)

โœ… First aid kit and hand sanitiser

โœ… Portable phone charger


๐Ÿ“ฆ Food or package damage

  • All packages need to be handled with care and transported safely.

  • Clean thermal bags with a wet cloth and soap before taking new packages to avoid cross-contamination of food or of getting packages dirty.

  • Drop-off times when delivering food are important. Ensure proper temperature control is maintained and return the package if the cold chain has been broken.

  • Make sure that packages are secured for transit. Organise your bag in a way that does not let the package slide easily while you are transporting it.

๐Ÿง Posture and handling loads

  1. Check the position of the package. Is there anything in the way for you to pick it up? Is the path for moving it clear of hazards?

  2. To start, position your feet shoulder-width apart.

  3. Squat to the floor by bending your knees. This way you will avoid using your back.

  4. Take hold of the package firmly, make sure you use both of your hands.

  5. Distribute the weight evenly.

  6. Begin standing up by straightening your legs, keeping the package as close to your body as possible. This way you will not hurt your back and you will only use your leg muscles.

  7. Raise up slowly until you are fully standing. Now you can proceed walking with the package to your vehicle.

๐Ÿ” Security

  • Never leave your engine running or keys in the ignition when making a delivery. Make sure you remove your keys and lock your doors.

  • Don't leave mobile devices visible or unattended in vehicles.

  • For bikes and motorbikes, ensure you have parked safely, and have locked your bike with secure locks.

  • Consider fitting an approved vehicle tracker or installing a dashcam.

  • If you feel something does not look or feel right or there is a threat to your life or someone else's life, call 999 immediately.

๐Ÿšฆ Journey management

  • Prioritise safety over delivery speed. A successful journey is getting there safely!

  • Avoid driving when tired and take regular breaks.

  • Handheld mobile phones and other electronic devices should not be used on moving vehicles.

  • Carry weatherproof clothing with you to be prepared if weather conditions worsen.

  • Carry a first aid kit and drinking water with you. Consider carrying a torch and appropriate emergency repair kit as well).

  • In the event of an accident or breakdown, carefully assess risks to determine the best course of action.

  • In the event of an accident follow this protocol.

๐Ÿค Anti-harassment

At Stuart, we aim to create an inclusive environment free from harassment, bullying and threatening behaviour.

  • If you have experienced or witnessed any such behaviour, we encourage you to report it to us by email: partners.uk@stuart.com.

  • Donโ€™t participate in or encourage poor behaviour. We will investigate reports of harassment, bullying and threatening behaviour which can lead to partnership termination. If we find evidence of violent acts, this will be escalated to the police.

  • If you feel there is a threat to your life or someone elseโ€™s life, call 999 immediately. Police reports help Stuart identify people who commit violent behaviour.

We take the welfare and safety of the members of our community seriously. Please ensure that respect and courtesy are shown to other couriers and those you interact with whilst delivering.

โ„น๏ธ Related article: Equal Opportunities Policy


โค๏ธ General health

Couriers should not log on to the Stuart platform under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

More broadly, couriers should ensure that they are physically and mentally fit to drive and if not fully confident should seek advice from a medical professional.

๐Ÿ˜ท COVID-19

We have a separate article about staying safe during Covid-19.

All deliveries are currently contact-free to protect your health and the health of store staff and end customers. See guidance for completing contact-free deliveries here.

Stuart demands high standards of safety and reliability from all its stakeholders and takes your safety very seriously. Please let us know of any incidents or safety concerns.

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