A ‘Grey Fleet’ occurs when employees are required, or allowed, to drive their own vehicles, or perhaps pool cars or hire cars, for work purposes. Few employers appreciate that the law makes no distinction between the occasional grey fleet driver and tool of trade vehicle drivers. In essence, a vehicle is treated as a ‘place of work’ under the various Australian and New Zealand Workplace Health & Safety-related Acts.
The implications of the Grey Fleet’s legal position often come to light only when something goes wrong. For example, an employee has a collision in the course of a work related journey the cause of which is subsequently traced to a fault with the employee’s vehicle. The employer has checked the employee’s licence and demerit points, but can demonstrate no knowledge of the vehicle: a fleet management policy exists, but has only been shared with those who drive the company’s own vehicles. And so on.
Any employer in this situation will have failed in its Duty of Care, and the consequences, both for the organization and the individuals responsible, can be severe.
PlumFleet Australia specializes in assisting employers implement appropriate Grey Fleet Management solutions via our unique Plumtree system.