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Who does it apply to

Who does it apply to

Who does it apply to

All employees who drive as part of or all of their work.

This includes those who use their own vehicle to make any work-related journey.

Health and Safety law does not apply to people commuting to and from their usual place of work. If the driver travels to a location which is not their normal place of work then health and safety law does apply.

Employer's consequences

If one of your employees is killed, for example while driving for work, and there is evidence that serious management failures resulted in a ‘gross breach of a relevant duty of care’, your company or organisation could be at risk of being prosecuted under the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007.

Legislative compliance

HSENI is the lead body responsible for the promotion and enforcement of health and safety at work standards in Northern Ireland.

The Health and Safety at Work (Northern Ireland) Order 1978 states that you must ensure, so far as reasonably practicable, the health and safety of all employees while at work. You must also ensure that others are not put at risk by your work-related driving activities. The self-employed have similar responsibilities¹.

The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2003 (as amended) require you to manage health and safety effectively.

You must carry out an assessment of the risks to the health and safety of your employees, while they are at work, and to other people who may be affected by your organisation’s work activities.

You must consult with your employees and where appropriate their health and safety representatives on issues including:

  • risks arising from their work;
  • proposals to manage and/or control these risks;
  • the best ways of providing information and training ¹.

You also have duties under road traffic law, e.g. the Road Traffic Orders and the Motor Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1999, which are administered by the police and other agencies such as the Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA).

In most cases, the police will take the lead on investigating road traffic incidents on public roads. HSENI may take enforcement action where the police identify that serious management failures have been a significant contributory factor to the incident.

¹ Driving at work Northern Ireland An employer’s guide