Driving of bicycles, motorbikes & other vehicles on Stuart company business
- YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES -
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.
Health & safety recommendations when logged on the Stuart platform
When working on the Stuart platform and delivering for clients, courier partners have their own legal obligations as independent businesses to respect high standards of health & safety.
This document is intended to provide a reference guide of these obligations for courier partners, along with some recommendations as to ways to comply with the same.
Any recommendations provided are for illustration purposes, as ultimately it is each courier’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 client’s site.
Please be aware of areas which require cyclists to dismount.
These restrictions are usually in busy areas. For example when passing though 'Grand Avenue' in Smithfield Market in London cyclists are legally required to dismount when passing through. This is due to safety concerns during busy hours of the market. The restriction applies outside of trading hours as well.
In addition, the guidance set out in this document is recommended to minimise risks of:
- Breakdown of vehicle
- Personal injury
- Theft or damage of vehicle or contents.
Drivers should be in possession of a current valid driving licence and be prepared, at short notice, to show it for validation.
As couriers use their own vehicles, they are personally responsible for maintaining their own business use insurance cover.
Couriers should not log on the Stuart platform under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
More broadly, couriers should ensure that they are physically & mentally fit to drive and if not fully confident should seek advice from a medical professional.
Couriers are responsible for taking due care and attention and maintaining control of their vehicle.
In the next sections, you will find specific suggestions on health & safety guidelines when accepting work from clients on the platform.
MAINTENANCE OF VEHICLES
Every vehicle owner has a legal responsibility for maintaining their vehicle in a roadworthy condition. The following are minimum obligations for any driver or cyclist conducting deliveries in the UK
- Ensure vehicle is serviced according to the manufacturers’ recommendations.
- Maintain internal and external cleanliness of the vehicle – i.e. fit for“customers”.
- Carry out periodic checks (e.g. brakes, oil, tyres, horn, windscreen washer) as recommended by the manufacturer.
- Key safety features such as brakes should be checked daily before starting work.
- Ensure remedial work is carried out without delay on defective lights,brakes, steering and any other defect that may increase risk.
- Ensure vehicle is fit for winter driving (e.g. the correct concentration of windscreen wash and antifreeze/proprietary coolant in the cooling system).
- Ensure that others who have permission to drive your vehicle when delivering for clients hold current valid driving licences and will take the appropriate journey management measures listed below.(It is recommended that you keep a copy of this statement in your possession as a reminder).
JOURNEY MANAGEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS
- Prioritise driving safety over delivery speed. Define a successful journey as getting there safely.
- Plan the journey carefully. Be aware of safety implications of long journeys. Determine the route, allow sufficient time with rests if necessary, and assess the fuel level. Do not drive when tired.
- Avoid driving when exhausted. Take regular breaks when connected to our platform and it is advised not to log on for more than 10 hours each day and/ or 56 hours a week.
- Carefully plan return journey from any overseas travel to avoid driving when tired.
- Carry water/ wind proof clothing and wear during poor weather.
- Carry a first aid kit. Consider carrying a torch, drinking water, and appropriate emergency repair kit.
- In event of accident or breakdown carefully assess risks to determine the best course of action.
- Carry warning triangles where required.
- Park only in designated parking spots and ensure you do not cause an obstruction to others.
- Avoid unnecessary stepping on to the highway (e.g. to pick-up parcels from top-cases).
- Drive with constant anticipation of what can go wrong - i.e. constant risk assessment thinking to deal systematically with hazards.
- Take extra safeguards when travelling in remote or high altitude regions in winter (e.g. de-icer, shovel, extra clothes and footwear, food and drink
- Cyclists and motorcyclists to wear appropriate safety gear, helmet and high visibility top or reflective bands and use back & front lights in poor light and during lighting up periods.
- Keep valuable items out of sight at all times.
- Avoid carrying large amounts in cash. £50 should be more than sufficient.
- Park with personal safety & vehicle security in mind.
- Ensure secure, robust locks are used whenever vehicle is left unattended.
- Hand held mobile telephones and other electronic devices should not be used on moving vehicles. Stuart recommends that you use a cradle to avoid falling foul of this legal restriction.
- Sending, receiving texts and surfing should only be carried out when the vehicle is stationary and parked in a safe, legal position.
- A ringing telephone demands instant attention irrespective of road conditions – so calls should only be taken when you are sure it is safe to do so. Furthermore, it would be preferred that calls to hand held phones should only be taken through headphones.
FOOD / PARCEL DAMAGE
- Clients want their parcels to be treated with care. Keep all equipment in clean, good condition. Pay special attention to backpacks and thermal bags.
- Clean bags before taking new parcels to avoid cross contamination of food or of getting parcels dirty.
- Drop-off times when delivering food are important. Ensure proper temperature control is maintained and return package if cold chain has been broken
- Wherever possible parcels should be securely fixed in (e.g. to bike bags/ top case) so not to be loose or exposed to damage
POSTURE & HANDLING LOADS
- Maintain good posture and take care when handling heavy packages.Avoid stretching, twisting and bending the back.
- Move using your feet not your back. Bend your knees and not your back.