Driving for work – long hours culture

Any businesses that has employees; that work long hours, during which they may drive, whilst on Company business, has a duty to take care of those employees.

In a recent Court of Appeal case, the court upheld a High Court award for 1 million in damages, after a van driver was left parlayed down one side of his body, after being involved in a road accident, whilst driving on company business.

The High Court found that the accident had been caused when the van driver, fell asleep briefly; a so called “Micro Sleep”, at a critical moment, and ploughed into the back of a 44 ton articulated lorry.

The van driver’s employer was found to be liable, for the incident at the High Court, after the Judge had ruled that the chain of causation, led right back to the organisational culture of the firm, in terms of long working hours.

The potential outcome for any other firm, found to be in breach of the Management of Health and Safety Regulations 1999, could be severe, if a case, with a similar thread is brought before the High Court, as under the rules of precedent, the Judge would have little alternative, but to follow the Court of Appeals ruling.