Safety Principles

Vehicle & Mechanical Services Safety Principles

The Safety Principles document is to give University Community drivers and the University, as an employer, awareness and understanding of their responsibilities under WHS.


To improve work place road safety for the UNE Community.


UNE personnel operating or travelling in any road vehicle while at work, or on their way to or from work, will demonstrate low-risk driving behaviours.

Outcomes will include reductions in:

  • Injury to UNE road users and the public
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Damage to vehicles and property

1. The UNE will provide vehicles that meet accepted safety standards and RTA requirements e.g. Station Wagon type vehicles are fitted with Cargo Barriers. Drivers should not continue driving for a period longer than two (2) hours etc.

2. All UNE drivers are to drive in a manner that minimises risk to self and others as well as damage to vehicles and property.

Drivers are to:

  • Comply with Australian Road Rules (These may change from State to State).
  • Comply with UNE vehicle policy.
  • Comply with vehicle maker's handbook applicable to the vehicle they are using.
  • Drive at a speed that does not exceed the speed limit
  • Not attempt to put a vehicle in motion while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Drivers of heavy vehicles shall not drive while there is the presence of alcohol in their body.

3. All UNE drivers are informed of the UNE workplace safety requirements.

  • Awareness of safe driving behavior is to be provided through the University Motor Vehicle Policy where the drivers should complete questionnaire
  • Additional training needs will be assessed for the work requirements of the positions within the University. (i.e. Four (4) Wheel Drive vehicles)

4. All UNE drivers who may be required to drive a University vehicle as part of their job must meet the following University standards:

  •  Possession of an appropriate current class of Drivers Licence
  •  Evidence to satisfy any other occupational-specific requirements-e.g. Forklift Drivers certificate, Crane Operators Licence
  •  Drive vehicle in accordance with the vehicle policy

5. The University Community must actively manage workloads involving driving to minimise fatigue.

  • Drivers must ensure that they organise their work, involving driving, in a way that minimises fatigue
  • Managers have an obligation to ensure that all drivers receive active support in relation to this requirement

6. Safe driving is the adoption of a low-risk attitude and behavior that reduce the possibility of the driver being involved in a driving incident (including road rage).

Low risk attitudes include:

  • Placing a high value on safe driving
  • Choosing low risk alternatives in spite of other pressures
  • Maintaining motivation to apply low risk behaviours

Low risk behaviours include:

  • Driver preparation: Being fit to drive, route selection, rest breaks e.g. overnight stops, non driving duties, vehicle safety checks.
  • Driver being alert, scanning for potential hazards, managing vehicle speed and position to reduce the likelihood of an accident
  • Reviewing driving to identify ways of reducing risk on future journeys.

Responsibilities - Managers and Supervisors

  • Communicate the Basic Safety Principles of Transport and guidelines to drivers
  • Ensure occupation specific safe driving requirements are met where this is a condition of employment
  • Consult with drivers when resolving driving issues
  • Identify trends in unsafe road use e.g. the use of Mobile Telephone while driving


  • Operate road vehicles in a way that complies with the road laws and the University policy.
  • Plan road trips to minimise safety risks to self, passengers and other road users
  • Participate in initiatives for improving road safety
  • Undertake operation and safety familiarisation of the particular vehicle before operating it for the first time
  • Report any vehicle defect
  • Report all injury and damage incident

Fleet Management

  • Ensure that all vehicles provided conform to uniform safety standards
  • Consult with potential operators in the selection of specialised replacement vehicles
  • Ensure vehicles are maintained according to vehicle manufacturer requirements
  • Maintain records of all maintenance, damage and usage data for each vehicle
  • Ensure that drivers have the appropriate information for the safe operation, and equipment to assist in actions following an incident or breakdown

Insurance/Risk management

  • Collect data on vehicle damage and identify all costs associated with repairs and replacement of damaged vehicles and property
  • Provide regular management reports to show accountability for incident costs in terms of damage to property