Driver’s Alert program marks one year anniversary
The Driver's Alert program was implemented in Minneapolis Sept. 1, 2016, to protect City drivers and to reduce costs to the City’s vehicle fleet caused by driver error. It requires departments using City vehicles to implement online and in-person vehicle safety training and put a yellow “How am I driving?” sticker on their vehicles.
Thanks to all the City drivers who have followed this policy, the program is on track to reduce the incident calls by about 50 percent in the first year: from 165 in 2016 to an estimated 80 in 2017. Results are expected to improve in following years as more people receive training and training is reinforced. Currently 500 vehicles are part of the program, and the goal is to expand it to all 920 City vehicles except Fire and Police.
Minneapolis was one of the first cities in Minnesota to implement a distracted driving policy. The policy prohibits employees from using cellphones or electronic devices including those with hands-free technology while driving for the City. City vehicles responding to an emergency and the use of the City’s two-way radio system are exempted from the policy.
Driver’s Alert uses yellow bumper stickers with a phone number the public can call to report compliments or concerns about driver behavior. The program administered through Driver’s Alert Inc. helps identify potentially unsafe drivers before an accident occurs and has been proven to reduce the number of motor vehicle accidents. The program fee is $2 per vehicle per month.
Training component 1: Open communication
The Driver’s Alert program’s first training component includes the following topics that have been agreed to by all stakeholders and are addressed during the department’s trainings and meetings:
- Management support.
- 311 Call Center support.
- Marking of vehicles.
- Handling reports.
- Performance data.
Training component 2: Training
This component provides an online training platform on the following topics for all City employees at no cost:
- Motor vehicle accidents and breakdowns.
- Backing for small vehicles.
- Changing lanes for small and large vehicles (English and Spanish).
- Defensive driving for small and large vehicles (English and Spanish).
- Distracted driving (English and Spanish).
- Extreme driving conditions for small and large vehicles.
- Fleet safety.
- Parking lot safety.
- Rear-end collisions for small and large vehicles.
- Road rage.
- Speeding awareness for small and large vehicles (English and Spanish).
- Stop signs and signals for small and large vehicles.
- Tailgating awareness for small and large vehicles (English and Spanish).
If employees have questions or need assistance, they can contact their supervisors or the Risk Management office at 673-2175.
Published Sep 19, 2017