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An Engineering or Behavioural Approach? A Study into Employees’ Perceptions Regarding the Effectiveness of Occupational Road Safety Initiatives

Queensland University of Technology, Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety, Kelvin Grove Road, Kelvin Grove 4059, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Raphael Grzebieta
Received: 8 September 2015 / Revised: 10 March 2016 / Accepted: 10 March 2016 / Published: 16 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Road Safety Evaluation)
Full-Text   |   PDF [213 KB, uploaded 16 March 2016]


Background and Aims: Considerable variation has been documented with fleet safety interventions’ abilities to create lasting behavioural change, and research has neglected to consider employees’ perceptions regarding the effectiveness of fleet interventions. This is a critical oversight as employees’ beliefs and acceptance levels (as well as the perceived organisational commitment to safety) can ultimately influence levels of effectiveness, and this study aimed to examine such perceptions in Australian fleet settings. Method: 679 employees sourced from four Australian organisations completed a safety climate questionnaire as well as provided perspectives about the effectiveness of 35 different safety initiatives. Results: Countermeasures that were perceived as most effective were a mix of human and engineering-based approaches: (a) purchasing safer vehicles; (b) investigating serious vehicle incidents; and (c) practical driver skills training. In contrast, least effective countermeasures were considered to be: (a) signing a promise card; (b) advertising a company’s phone number on the back of cars for complaints and compliments; and (c) communicating cost benefits of road safety to employees. No significant differences in employee perceptions were identified based on age, gender, employees’ self-reported crash involvement or employees’ self-reported traffic infringement history. Perceptions of safety climate were identified to be “moderate” but were not linked to self-reported crash or traffic infringement history. However, higher levels of safety climate were positively correlated with perceived effectiveness of some interventions. Conclusion: Taken together, employees believed occupational road safety risks could best be managed by the employer by implementing a combination of engineering and human resource initiatives to enhance road safety. This paper will further outline the key findings in regards to practice as well as provide direction for future research. View Full-Text
Keywords: safety culture; climate; occupational road safety; interventions safety culture; climate; occupational road safety; interventions
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Banks, T.; Freeman, J.; Davey, J. An Engineering or Behavioural Approach? A Study into Employees’ Perceptions Regarding the Effectiveness of Occupational Road Safety Initiatives. Safety 2016, 2, 7.

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