Road Traffic Safety Brings New Awards, Partnerships and Innovations to FM Conway

FM Conway's IMS and Road Safety Manager, Dave Conway, details what new opportunities have kept him busy in the build up to Christmas.

I’ve been pretty busy with my Road Traffic Safety work since September.

I have continued to offer support and advice to businesses who are interested in pursuing the International Standard for Road Traffic Safety Management systems, ISO 39001.

We have had a significant number of companies and businesses approach us to come and see how we achieved the standard and the benefits that may be realised by their business adopting a true risk-driven management system. This is instead of, perhaps, an entirely prescriptive set of arbitrary requirements being imposed on them by so-called ‘recognition schemes’.

I am surprised at how many people we have entertained here at Sevenoaks, looking at what we do, or who have invited me to speak at their events. Highlights of such events include speaking at the South West Community for Highways England open day in Exeter and speaking at a Brake Safety workshop in Birmingham on the methodology we employ for risk evaluation in our ISO39001 system.

Speaking of Brake, I was absolutely delighted when we became an Associate Partner in November. Brake, a road safety charity, has excellent ambitions in ensuring safety is paramount for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists and to guarantee we operate in a world where everybody moves in a safe, sustainable and healthy way.

They also provide much needed support and help to victims of road crashes, and I am proud that this association takes FM Conway forward as an internationally recognised leader in the field of road safety, as we continue implementing innovative solutions to the ever-present dangers across our road network.

In November we were recognized by the British Standards Institution with an award to recognise our use of voluntary standards to improve/increase the productivity of a team, department or the entire organization, for our implementation of ISO 39001, and I was honored to collect this award on behalf of the company.

There has been a lot of work too. In November I had a week in Durban undertaking my work as UK representative to the ISO Technical Committee responsible for the 39000 series of standards.

In my time there, we effectively completed the work on ISO39002, ‘Good practices for implementing commuting safety management’ and we should see this new standard published early in 2020. We also started work on our new project, ISO 39003, ‘Guidance on safety ethical considerations for autonomous vehicles’, and this project generated a great deal of interest internationally and resulted in a trebling in attendance at the event, compared to last year’s meeting!

The annual plenary meeting saw each represented country delivering presentations on the state of road safety in their country and it is nice to see that the UK is one of the safest countries in the world. However, we must not become complacent and must keep trying to reduce the terrible number of deaths and injuries on our roads.

Closer to home, we had the inaugural meeting of the National Work-Related Road Risk Development Group in November. Facilitated by Highways England, this new body has representatives from the Department of Transport, PACTS, DVSA, and the Traffic Commissioners Office, so I found myself in some pretty high-powered company. I think this group may well become very influential.

Unfortunately, the meeting timed with the pre-election Purdah period, which meant that most of the members of the group were prevented from making meaningful commitments as they are civil servants.

Back here at base, we have been very busy implementing new initiatives for driver training including new VR (Virtual Reality) training systems and an amazing new system that enables our drivers to undertake an online Driving Risk Profile, which will then determine the necessary training to address their specific needs. The system includes a library of training modules and will deliver a full training plan for every driver.

I think this is truly ground-breaking and I look forward to seeing its full implementation next year.