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RPVD Handbook - Hackney Carriage & Private Hire Drivers, NVQ Level 2 Road Passenger Vehicle Driving

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RPVD Handbook - Hackney Carriage & Private Hire Drivers gives training and guidence for taxi drivers to make sure that they are following all guidelines closely and giving the best possible service to …

RPVD Handbook - Hackney Carriage & Private Hire Drivers gives training and guidence for taxi drivers to make sure that they are following all guidelines closely and giving the best possible service to their clients.

If you would like to find out more about training with the Transport Training Partnership please call: 0121 707 0550 or e-mail: info@pathwaygroup.co.uk or visit: http://transporttrainingpartnership.co.uk/transportcourses.htm

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  • 1. The Taxi/PHV Drivers Handbook Pathway Groupputting you first
  • 2. What you will need to gain a Taxi or Private Hire License To apply for a Taxi/Private Hire Driver license you will need to submit: (N.B. Depending on the local licensing authority. However the list below is fairly standardised across England.) • A FULL British/EU driving license; held for a least 1 year, prior to your application. • A completed CRB form. • A Driver Standards Agency Taxi Test Pass Certificate OR details of your test ap- pointment. • A completed medical form from your GP. (Please note that if you already have a HGV/PSV licence a medical form is not required.) • A completed application form for Hackney Carriage / Private Hire/Combined Driver License. All drivers must be licenced with the local council and hold an issued driving badge displaying their photo, licence number and expiry date. They must display their badge in the vehicle and wear one at all times whilst working. What is the difference between a Taxi & a Private Hire Vehicle? Hackney Carriage Vehicles (Taxis) • Hackney plates display the details of the vehicle, license number, number of pas- sengers to be carried and the expiry date of the license. • They must display a Taxi sign on the roof. • They can be hailed in the street. • They operate mostly from town centre ranks. • They do not need to be pre-booked. • They will have a fare meter and table of fares inside the vehicle. (Metres must be used for journeys within the borough, but you may negotiate the fare if the jour- ney ends outside the borough.) • The metre should always be used. Negotiated fares would not exceed the amount that appears on the metre • They will have an internal comment card displayed inside the vehicle. This will indicate the vehicle licence number and expiry date. 1.
  • 3. Private Hire Vehicles • Private Hire Vehicles are normally saloon vehicles. • They cannot be legally referred to as a Taxi. • PHV plates display the details of the vehicle, license number, number of passengers to be carried and the expiry date of the license. • They have door signs displayed on the front or rear door panels, with the words ‘Advanced Bookings Only’. • Private Hire Vehicles cannot be hailed in the street. • They must be pre-booked by telephone, or in person by visiting the operator’s office. • They will have an internal comment card displayed inside the vehicle. This will indicate the vehicle license number and expiry date. About Taxi Driving The job of a Taxi Driver involves picking up and dropping off passengers at given destinations. Taxi Drivers are also responsible for taking payment for these fares, judged by a meter that is visible in the front of the Taxi, which can be seen by both driver and passenger as time and mileage passes. There are two kinds of Taxi vehicle in operation: Licensed Hackney Carriages: These meet the truest definition of Taxi in that these can be hailed off the street or at a Taxi Rank. They can be hailed in random locations where people frequent, picking up their fares as and when they are gestured to. The fares and the geographical boundaries for Hackney Carriages are set by the local authority. In London, Hackney Carriages are easily identified as the famous‘Black Cabs’. Licensed Private Hire Vehicles (PHVs): Also known as Minicabs, these cars are not allowed to pick up passengers from the street and cannot display a‘Taxi’ light on the roof. Instead, they can only be pre-booked by phoning or calling in at the Minicab office which receives commission on their fares. They are often booked to pick up fares after nights out, from the airport or train station, and even on school runs. 2. t e b on: e tru off th n rand p their s and th iages are y Carriage Cabs’. s): Also know ed to pick up not display a‘T ning or calling in They are often bo ation, and even on the wor operator’s e. This will at given e fares, by both : ruest he dom fares he e set es wn Taxi’ n at ooked n school 2. rds
  • 4. The Job Most Taxi Drivers are self-employed and own their own vehicle. This means that they are in charge of its maintenance, fuel, insurance, and accountancy. The job involves customer interaction as the driver picks up passengers and determines where they wish to go. The driver must know the shortest and cheapest route, and be capable of handling money for the fare. It may also be necessary to help with luggage and assist passengers with mobility difficulties. The hours incorporate days, nights and weekends, with Friday and Saturday nights being peak times. To earn good money it will be necessary to put in long hours. Driver Qualities • Friendly, polite & sociable. • Safe & experienced driver. • Excellent Local geographical knowledge & sense of direction. • Calm in instances of traffic or dealing with aggressive passenger(s). • Able to handle money. Entry There is no formal qualification to become a Taxi Driver, and each local authority has its own specifics on licensing conditions. You may be required to take the DSA Vocational Driving Test. Hackney Carriage Drivers must be twenty- one or above and have held a driving license for twelve months. They must have no criminal convictions in fraud, theft, violent or sexual offences. They may have to pass a medical test and a formal‘test of the area’, like the‘London Knowledge Test’. Private Hire Drivers must have been driving for twelve months and must pass similar medical and criminal checks. Although the age barrier differs, people under twenty-five may struggle getting the relevant insurance. 3.
  • 5. Fitness to Drive • Drivers must be fit to drive at ALL times. • DON’T drive when affected by alcohol, drugs or medicines. • DON’T drive when affected by illness. • DON’T drive when you are too tired to do so safely. You should inform your organisation about any health issue or personal circumstances that may affect your driving. (Your organisation may make this a requirement). You are also legally required to inform the DVLA of any medical condition that may affect your ability to drive safely. Eyesight The minimum legal eyesight standard for driving is that you can read a number plate at a distance of twenty metres (around sixty-five feet). If you have to use glasses or contact lenses to do this, then they must be worn when driving. It is strongly recommended that you have your eyesight checked regularly, (at least every two years, or more often if your Optician recommends it). Drugs DO NOT drive if you have taken any illegal drugs. They can affect your decision- making and driving skills and ability, as well as your physical and mental condition and behaviour. Alcohol Avoid drinking alcohol in the hours before you will be driving (for example, at lunchtime). It can take several hours for alcohol to be removed from your body, and you may still be over the limit, or affected by alcohol the morning after you have been drinking. Alcohol impairs judgment, making drivers over-confident and more likely to take risks. It slows their reactions, increases stopping distances, impairs judgment of speed and distance and affects vision. Even a small amount, well below the legal limit, seriously affects the ability to drive safely. The legal drink drive limit is 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood. 4. g t sio ondi you will take seve ur body, an d by alcoho ing. Alcohol er-confident s their reaction airs judgment of vision. Even a sma imit, seriously affe 00ml of blood. ke this a edical umber o use g. It is least on- ition be ral nd ol ns, of all ects the 4.
  • 6. 4% beers & ciders: Average strength beers and ciders are two-hour pints. Each pint takes at least two hours to leave your blood stream from when you stop drinking. 5.5% beers & ciders: Stronger beers and ciders are three-hour pints. A 250ml glass of 15% wine: Is a four-hour drink. Drinking a bottle of 15% wine: After just three, 250ml glasses you CAN’T drive for 13 hours. (1pm the next day if you finish at midnight). A 25ml Shot: Is a one-hour drink. A 35ml Shot: Is a one and a half-hour drink. A 70ml Double: Is a three-hour drink. 250ml - 330ml bottles of 5.5% beer - Bottles of this size and strength are two-hour bottles. Drivers with a blood alcohol concentration between fifty and eighty mg per 100ml of blood are two to three times more likely to crash and six times more likely to be in a fatal crash. The risk increases massively when over the limit. A driver who is double the legal limit is fifty times more likely to be in a fatal crash. The legal drink drive limit is 80 mg of alcohol per 100 ml of blood. In reality it is better not to take any risks as risks can cost lives in this job. Medicines Check with your GP or Pharmacist whether any over- the-counter or prescribed medicines you are taking are likely to affect your driving (for example, by causing drowsiness). If so, ask for an alternative that does not, or avoid driving. Always check the label of medicines and the Patient Information Leaflet to see if there are any warnings. If the label says that certain side-effects may occur, assume that they will do so. Illness Illness can also affect our ability to drive. We can often be tempted to‘soldier on’, when in fact it would be safer for everyone concerned, for us not to drive until we are feeling better. 5.
  • 7. Fatigue Consider whether you are likely to be drowsy or sleepy while driving. Tired drivers are more likely to crash, especially on long, monotonous journeys, and especially in the early hours of the morning. Discuss any problems with your Manager. Safe Speed Drivers who travel at higher speeds have less time to identify and react to what is happening around them. It takes them longer to stop and, if there is a crash, it is more severe, causing greater injury to the occupants and any pedestrian or rider they hit. Higher speeds also magnify other driver errors, such as close-following or driving when tired or distracted, thus multiplying the chances of causing a crash. Excessive speed contributes to 26% of collisions in which someone is killed, 18% of crashes resulting in a serious injury and 12% of all injury collisions. This means that around nine hundred people are killed each year on Britain’s roads because drivers and riders travel too fast, and over six thousand are seriously injured. Speed Limits Always stay within speed limits (including variable limits and temporary limits at road works) even if you think the limit is too low. Speed limits set the maximum speed for that road. However, there are many circumstances when it is not safe to drive at that speed (for example, around schools at opening and closing times, on busy, narrow roads, on rural roads which are bendy and hilly and visibility is restricted). Make sure you know the speed limit of the roads you are using. If you are not sure, assume the limit is lower until you see a sign. Distractions Driving requires your full concentration all of the time. Trying to do something else while driving will distract you, slow your reactions and increase the risk of crashing. 6. u g v s) ev ts se ther to driv ools at arrow ro lly and know the g. If you ar until you se to do something ease the risk of cra ive cial to what is rash, it is n or rider ollowing or g a crash. led, 18% of ain’s roads usly variable even if et the re are ve oads, e re ee a g else rashing. 6. ers ly in s n
  • 8. Mobile Phones It is illegal to use a hand held mobile phone while driving, this includes any activity that involves holding the phone such as dialing a number or writing a text. It can also be illegal to use a hands-free phone while driving. Depending upon the circumstances, drivers could be charged with‘failing to have proper control of their vehicle’, or‘careless’or‘dangerous driving’if they are distracted because they are using a hands-free phone. Using a hands-free phone while driving, does not significantly reduce the risks because the problems are caused mainly by the mental distraction and divided attention of taking part in a phone conversation at the same time as driving. It is also an offence to‘cause or permit’a driver to use a hand held mobile phone, so your organisation should have policies to ensure their drivers do not use a mobile phone while driving. Other Equipment An increasing number of vehicles are being fitted with various devices designed to help the driver, with‘Satellite Navigation Systems’being the most common. While these devices can, if used properly, reduce the risk of drivers crashing, they can also increase the risk (e.g. by distracting the driver) if not used properly. If your vehicle is provided with any technology, such as‘Sat-Nav’, ask your Manager for training in how to use it safely. In particular, you should not adjust or operate devices while actually driving. For example, routes in the‘Sat-Nav’should be set before the journey starts. If it is necessary to make adjustments or to input new information, only do so when stopped in a safe place. Eating, Drinking, Smoking, Tuning the Radio Many other things, that might seem simple and innocent, can be distracting when driving. Fatal crashes can, and do, occur because a driver chose to un-wrap a sweet, take a drink or light a cigarette while driving. Safe driving needs concentration, so avoid unnecessary distractions. Driver Training Check your organisation’s policies on assessment and training. They may be able to assist you in undertaking some refresher or further training courses. This can take many forms, ranging from classroom sessions to in-vehicle training. Your organisation may provide driver assessment or driver training when you start as a volunteer, on a regular basis, after an accident or motoring conviction. Driver training is particularly important if you are driving a vehicle, such as a Minibus, that you do not normally drive. 7.
  • 9. Dress, Appearance & Behaviour When you are at work and particularly in a job where you meet your customers face to face, at close quarters, it is extremely important that you present yourself well: • Be clean and tidy. • Dressed Smartly: Clean, polished shoes. • Behave appropriately at all times. This is important because when you are at work you represent your company as well as yourself. It is all about presenting the right image to your customers; if you look the part it’s half the battle. Your customers will look at you and watch how you behave. It will affect their impression of the business, if it is professional, reputable etc. If on the other hand you are unwashed, not properly groomed and dressed untidily they will probably think the organisation is sloppy and un-professional. If this is the impression that customers get from you that would suggest to them that the company also wouldn’t be reliable, their vehicles are probably dirty and more likely to break down. Dealing with Difficulties at Work Appearance, dress and behaviour is important and if you have any issues with anyone else’s regard in terms of these you need to report it to your Manager or address it politely with them (If it isn’t a big issue where they will get offended or angry). You don’t want your own and the organisations reputations to be affected negatively. Opportunities for Improving Customer Care This is where you can build upon the firm foundations you laid by giving your customer’s such a good first impression of you and your company. You can do this by first of all providing consistent, reliable customer service and meeting or exceeding customer expectations. Talk to and be friendly with your customers, but again don’t overstep the mark by talking too much or by trying to be too friendly. If you watch their body language and listen to them you will soon work out when they want to talk and when they don’t. If you get the balance right you will develop a spirit of goodwill between your customers and your company that bodes well for the future. 8. mo with er o ded e egative are m stomer’s su ur company ng consistent ting or exceed t overstep the mar atch their body lang want to talk and whe a spirit of goodwill bet r the future. rs f we you are the part it’s ave. It will sed untidily f this is that the more likely h or ely. uch y. t, ding ark by nguage en they etween your 8. face ell: at s e
  • 10. The Positive Customer Experience Your aim and your companies aim should always be to‘delight the customer’. If you make them feel really good about their experience with you they’ll come back time and time again. Recognising Opportunities for Improvements to Customer Care By thinking about what you like and dislike when you are a customer and listening to what your customers/ passengers say or indeed what you hear people saying in general will give you a good idea of what is likely to impress your customers and give you a lead on what to focus your improvements on. Promoting Customer Care The development of professional relationships with your customers is really important to you own future and the future of the organisation that you work for. This is how you grow business. Employers would hope that the same customers ring time and again to the extent that whenever they need transport they automatically think of your company. To get to this point you need to create a situation where your customers have complete confidence in you and your organisation. To help you to do this you need to hold certain values and practise them. These values should always include the following: 9. Key Values Behaviour Appearance Trust Reliability Quality of Service
  • 11. Appearance: Means presenting both yourself and your vehicle in a clean and tidy manner at all times. Behaviour: Means your own and that of your colleagues. Reliability: Means always being there at the right place, at the right time and on time. It also means always providing a high quality service Quality of Service: Means the whole experience, from the customer booking the service or buying a ticket to arriving at their destination safely, comfortably and on time. If you demonstrate time and again that you can get everything right then your customers will have complete trust in the service that you and your company provides. But remember there can be no let up in this or they will walk away. If you pay equal attention to and practise each of these values it will go a long way to securing repeat business from your existing customers. This will also have a great bearing on additional work as your customers spread the word. Policies & Procedures for Customer Care All organisations engaged in the transport of passengers except perhaps some of the very small ones will have policies and procedures for customer care. Definition of Customer Service Customer service is described as:“The ability of an organisation to constantly and consistently give the customer what they want and need.” Whilst excellent customer service is defined as:“The ability of an organisation to constantly and consistently exceed the customer’s expectations” In accepting this definition you have to recognise that every aspect of your business has an impact on customer service, not just those that involve face-to-face contact. If your organisation is going to consistently exceed its customer’s expectations it will have to focus improvements in three areas: 10. ass l ha of an give the d as:“The d consisten ect of your bus ace-to-face con mer’s expectations y and o oking the ably and on en your mpany way. long way ave a great ssengers have ntly siness ntact. ns it 10. y on e on
  • 12. 1. Customer friendly policies and processes. Example: Provide warm comfortable waiting rooms with drinks facilities for customers. 2. Employee commitment to customer service. Example: Train, supervise, encourage staff to take a positive and genuine interest in every aspect of the service you provide for your customers. 3. Ongoing dialogue with customers Example: You must talk to your customers, listen carefully to what they say and they’ll tell you what you need to improve. It’s important that you feed back what they say to your manager. Knowledge, Authority & Responsibilities You may find that particularly with the experience of long service you may hold quite a lot of knowledge about the company and its employees and clients which is fine in itself but for the good of the company this knowledge must not be passed onto others because if it gets into the wrong hands someone could use it against your company. So, it’s not just a matter of having knowledge, it’s a case of knowing what you can safely pass on to others and what you should not. If in doubt, always ask your manager. Also in your work you may be given certain responsibilities; things that you are responsible for doing or for making sure that someone else does. You should take these responsibilities seriously and make sure that things are done when they should be and to the required standard. Always make sure that you do just what you are supposed to do and check with your manager before you do anything beyond the limits of your authority or responsibilities. Customer Care Information You and all your colleagues need to know what the company’s customer service policies are, particularly those that affect the customer directly. Such things as changes to published timetables, routes, price increases and the type of service itself will need to be available so that customers can be informed before the changes come into effect. 11.
  • 13. Don’t assume that because you have improved or extended the range of services you offer that your customers are aware of them. You must tell them! Possible Situations Involving Passenger Behaviour Doing the job at all times of the day and night you will see the whole range of human behaviour; the best and the worst of it! As such you need to be equipped to deal effectively with whatever is thrown at you including but not limited to: • Verbal and/or Physical Abuse. • Damage to Vehicle. • Assault on Other Passengers or in Worst Circumstances Yourself. • Interference with your Driving. • Fighting in the Vehicle. • Vomiting in the Vehicle. • Fouling in the Vehicle. • Smearing Food-stuff on the Vehicle Interior. Courses of Action you can & are authorised to Take There are a number of things that you can do when confronted by bad or inappropriate behaviour. The trouble is that your first instinct might well land you in trouble with your employer, or with the law and in the worst of all cases you might actually put yourself or other passengers in a dangerous situation. Approved Procedures & Guidelines Hackney Carriage and Private Hire driving are fairly high risk occupations because you can find yourself caught in the best and the worst of human behaviour. Many of the fares you are asked to carry are late at night when pubs and clubs are closing and people in different states of intoxication are wandering the streets. It follows then that you need to have some knowledge of what your company expects of you and what you are obliged to do under local licensing laws. Ask your company for some guidance and procedures that spell out exactly what is expected of you and study and be aware of the requirements of the licensing authority. You need to be prepared so that you can act immediately. At the end of your shift you will probably need to complete an incident report describing: 12. and you fairly h elf caugh Many of t when pu ent states o some knowled u and what you g laws. at spell out exactly irements of the licen act immediately. At th incident report describ ge of quippe to: d you u high ht in f the ubs of dge u are y what ensing the end of ribing: 12. ed too
  • 14. • What Happened? • Who was Involved? • Any Injuries or Damage Resulting from the Incident. • What Action you Took. • The Outcome of your Action. • Did you call for help? • Where the Emergency Services needed? Did you ring them? (I.e. Ambulance, Police or Fire Brigade.) Your Organisational & Legal Responsibilities When an incident occurs through passengers behaving badly your employer will expect you to assess each individual situation and by following company guidelines and procedures decide on the right course of action and then prioritise your actions. Your main responsibility is for your own safety and that of all your passengers and any member of the public who quite innocently becomes caught up in the incident Secondly your employer would not want to see the vehicle or any other property damaged as a result of the incident. Licensing conditions (under which you operate if you drive a Hackney Carriage and are plying for hire or stood at a rank) will mean that you are obliged to accept passengers who: • Flag you down. • Are waiting at the rank. However, you do have some choice in the matter as you can choose to refuse a fare if the person(s) appears to be drunk, is abusive or just behaving badly. Assertive & Professional Having the ability to be assertive and remain professional in times of conflict is a good thing so long as you don’t become too assertive. If you do you might come over as being arrogant. Taking control of a situation in a calm, assured (assertive) way is really an exercise in communications. A good communicator should always be: • Clear • Polite • Confident 13.
  • 15. It is possible to be assertive and have each of the three qualities listed meaning that you can take charge of a situation without causing offence to anyone involved. Don’t forget there could be genuine well behaved passengers or even members of the public watching and listening to everything you say and do. Impress Them, Don’t Offend Them. The seriousness of the situation will influence your response. For example, if you had to decide whether to remain in the vehicle or get out. If you are out of the vehicle be aware of possible danger of violence and make sure that you avoid this by: • Not standing too close to the aggressor. • Keeping your hands in front of you so you can protect yourself. • Staying in control of your emotions. • Not rising to the challenge. • Allowing the aggressor to rant and rage without being afraid. In this type of situation you must also think about the Health & Safety of your passengers/customers and members of the public who may be caught up in the incident. Depending upon the circumstances if you get out of the vehicle you might ask other passengers to remain inside the vehicle or alternatively you may ask another driver to take them to their destination, or at least out of harms way. Whatever you do you must communicate with them so that they know what’s happening. Calling for Help If you are concerned, at all, for your own safety or that of your passengers or by- standers then call for assistance by any practical means. Do the same if you feel your vehicle is likely to be damaged. If you can, drive the vehicle a safe distance away from the persons causing the trouble and then radio in for police assistance. On the other hand, if the persons causing the trouble are in the vehicle, drive up to a policeman on patrol or go to the nearest police station. Emergencies & Incidents It is important for the safety of everyone including yourself that you are aware of the sorts of emergencies and incidents that you might have to deal with. These can range from serious road traffic accidents, natural disasters, illness or death, down to someone forgetting a piece of luggage. 14. o in yo as ay. w wh ers or by- if you feel fe distance ice assistanc hicle, drive up elf that you are awa have to deal with. natural disasters, illne ggage. ve ers e, if you of the avoid this our n the ou might sk hat’s ce. p to ware of ness or 14. ved. s of u s .
  • 16. Actions you can take Once you have identified, a) that there is a problem and b) what that problem is, then you can think about a proper course of action. Clearly you need to prioritise depending upon the seriousness of the accident or incident with the Health & Safety of the people involved as the major priority. When deciding upon a course of action you must always follow company guidelines and never attempt to do anything that you don’t have the authority to do. Accidents If when driving your vehicle you are involved in an accident you must comply with the legal requirement to exchange information with others involved and report the accident to the police. Vehicle Breakdown This is a matter for you and your own organisation and it is expected that you would inform your operator so that a replacement vehicle could be sent to complete the journey for the customer. If you are a single vehicle operator then you need to have some sort of back-up arrangement to supply a second vehicle. Breakdowns will always occur but if you have a proper service and maintenance schedule you can keep them to a minimum. The authority encourages operators to allow time to carry this out. Fires The authority insists that you carry a specific type of fire extinguisher in your vehicle to enable you to attempt to limit damage to the vehicle and property if a fire starts. Illness Taxi Drivers are not employed as trained First Aiders and so you are not expected to treat illness or injury. You are expected to use your common sense and if someone appears to be seriously ill in your vehicle drive them straight to the hospital. 15.
  • 17. Natural Disasters Future planning for tackling natural disasters it is likely to bring into action that Taxis will be utilised to transport people to safety in emergency situations. If a natural disaster happens when you are driving stay calm and take the most rational sense of action. If in doubt and it is safe to do so, radio in and ask for guidance. Follow company policies and procedures relating to this at all times. Theft The authority encourages you as drivers to be vigilant as you drive around neighbourhoods because you may see incidents and unusual events that should be reported. By doing so you are providing a valuable service to local communities. If anything is stolen from, you, your Taxi or another individual who is using your service make sure that you report it to your organisation and/or the police. Summary The value of working partnerships with both the local licensing authority and the communities can’t be over stated. As Taxi Drivers, because of the shift patterns you work you are often about late at night and early in the morning when most other decent law abiding citizens are either at work or at home. As a result you often see things happening that shouldn’t and are often able to fill the police in with information that will lead to crimes being solved. Other partnerships involve you in looking out for local people’s welfare, for example if you have regular elderly customers who fail to ring you as normal you would be encouraged to call in and see if they are alright. They may be fine but on the other hand they could be in trouble and your action could be critical in saving lives. Helping Passengers Providing help to passengers is all part of the service and some passengers will require more help or different types of help than others. The first thing you have to do is to be able to recognise when a passenger needs your help and then to decide on the type of help you will give. Passengers most in need of your help will be those with special needs and disabilities. 16. al A e ost ome and will lea cal peo tomers w ed to call y could be passengers wil when a passenger ne will give. Passengers nd disabilities. at T tura al sen ollow nd at should be munities. ng your ce. l licensing As Taxi often t other e. As a d are ead to ople’s who in e in ll needs rs most in 16. Taxi al nse w e xis
  • 18. The Equality Act (2010) The Equality Act (2010) Aims to protect disabled people and prevent disability discrimination. It provides legal right for disables people in the areas of • Employment. • Education. • Access to goods, services & facilities including larger private clubs & land based transport services. • Buying & renting land or property. • Functions of public bodies, for example the issuing of licenses The Equality Act also provides rights for people not to be directly discriminated against or harassed because they have an association with a disabled person. This can apply to a carer or parent of a disabled person. In addition, people must not be directly discriminated against or harassed because they are wrongly perceived to be disabled. Disability & Disability Awareness The Categories of Disability The Disability Discrimination Act (1995) (with amendments) recognises that there are over 8.5 million disabled people in the United Kingdom. What the Law Says The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 introduced new laws aimed at ending the discrimination that many disabled people face. The Act gave disabled people new rights of access to goods, facilities and services, as well as in employment and buying or renting property. Though Taxis fall into the‘access to service category’, Part III of the Act says any means of transport is excluded from the provisions of the Act. Whilst this is true you may well find that your own licensing authority makes it a condition that you comply with the spirit of the Act when granting licenses. The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 requires taxis to carry assistance dogs. If you refuse to carry an assistance dog you may be fined a sum up to £1000. The only legal way you can avoid carrying an assistance dog is if you have an exemption license from your local licensing authority. 17.
  • 19. In order to claim exemption you will have to take a medical examination to prove that you have, for example, an allergy to dogs. The popular view is that disabled people always use wheelchairs. This view is totally inaccurate as only 5% of the 8.5 million use wheelchairs. That’s 425 000. That’s still a lot but only a very small proportion of the total. Some of these people have more than one disability and some have disabilities that can’t be seen. This means that in practice it’s often not so easy for you as a Taxi Driver to recognise many of these conditions and decide just what type of help is required. An experienced controller will know to ask the right questions when someone books a taxi:“Do you have any special needs or requirements” is a good starting point. In this way you can often be fore-warned that the person you are collecting will be in need of certain types of help. So what are the categories of disability? Under the Act a disabled person is anyone with“a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect upon his/her ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”. Your organisation, through your actions, will have to ensure that both as an employer and a provider of services to the public that they don’t discriminate against disabled people. These people may be customers or employees. To help you in this you need a clear definition of what the Act classes as disabled. The disability could be: • Mental • Sensory (Sight or Hearing) • Physical It is not difficult to recognise that someone in a wheelchair needs help but we need to recognise the other categories. This is not so easy and you need to be alert to the possibility that any passenger you transport could have a disability of some sort. 18. n an ad an nate s disabled eeds help but we u need to be alert disability of some s to at’s s n one hat can’t often not s nise many what type of o ask the a taxi:“Do rements” can often n types of nyone dverse d. e need rt to the e sort. 18. e otally still a t be so y a
  • 20. The Limits of your Ability & Responsibilities when Providing Help to Passengers As providers of transport services to the public your organisation is not legally bound by the Disability Discrimination Act but it would be a foolish thing to ignore it. There is a great deal of business out there for those companies that are prepared to go the extra mile and provide a proper service for disabled customers. You must greet all your passengers in a polite and considerate way. Ensuring that you respect the dignity of a disabled person when providing them with your services be prepared to go the extra mile without being patronising. Always offer help before it is asked for because this is a very good first step in gaining the goodwill of your passengers. To comply with the spirit of the Disability Discrimination Act you need to think and plan ahead to meet the requirements of your disabled customers. One of the obvious things to do is to provide some vehicles with wheelchair access and ramps to assist. However, don’t forget wheelchair users account for only a small percentage of disabled people. Think about the way you treat disabled customers. Let them know how to request assistance, and provide a customer complaints procedure that’s easy for them to use. The limits of your ability to help will depend upon the following things: • Physical Strength. • Ability to Communicate. • Reading of Body Language (A Type of Communication). • Powers of Observation (Recognising what the Disability is). • Ability to anticipate what’s required next. • Company Guidelines & Procedures. Physical Strength It is important that you understand your own physical strengths and limits if you have to lift passengers into your Taxi or if you have to push them up ramps etc. Remember the importance of Manual Handling and make sure that you have had training on this before carry out any lifting. 19.
  • 21. Ability to Communicate You need to be able to communicate with all customers in some way or you won’t know when and how to help. Reading of Body Language This is always important as it can tell you a lot without a word being spoken and even if all you can read is an expression of pain or distaste when you take hold of a passengers arm, you’ll know to stop doing it. Powers of Observation This means watching and listening carefully for clues that will help you to recognise what kind of disability you’re dealing with. Ability to Anticipate What’s Required Next For example, if you are dropping off a wheelchair user after a trip to the supermarket it’s no good leaving them at the kerb edge, you must take them to the door and provide further help as requested. Company Guidelines & Procedures This will give you a good guide as to what your employer expects you to do in these situations but above all the comfort, safety and satisfaction of your passengers is the main thing. ‘Communication is Especially Important’ Many disabled people have medical conditions that make it more difficult for them to communicate and so you must be patient and try extra hard to understand their individual needs. This is not just about the exchange of information although this is vital it’s also very much about the way you conduct yourself whilst you are communicating. 20. em o in t afety a main th ant’ al conditio m to e patient an eir individual he exchange of vital it’s also ve conduct yourself won ken and e hold of o recognise m to the these and hing. ons nd of ery f whilst 20. n’t d f a
  • 22. Equal Opportunities Disabled passengers have the right, by law, to travel in the same degree of safety and comfort as any other passengers. If you offer them a lower standard of service than other passengers because they are disabled then you will be guilty of discrimination against them. In practice sometimes this can pose difficulties. For example, if you arrive to pick up a fare in an ordinary Private Hire car and then, when you get there find a wheelchair bound passenger waiting for you. Contribute to Effective Working Relationships The aim of your employer is to run an effective and commercially successful Taxi business. No matter how much he or she tries this will simply not happen unless you and your colleagues play a full part in supporting your employer in this aim. Do this by developing effective working relationships with all your colleagues and they with you. What Does Effective Mean? Effective means:‘Efficient, valuable, useful, helpful, of use.’ In terms of your everyday work: • Treating colleagues how you like to be treated. • Responding quickly to colleagues requests for help. • Helping each other within the limits of your job role. • Making the extra effort to get on with each other. • Helping regardless of the affect upon your own work. • Providing information that is accurate & up-to-date. • Helping to train new staff. If you and your colleagues work together effectively your employer will feel the following benefits. The company will be more efficient in financial terms and from the customers point of view will appear to be more professionally run. If you don’t work together effectively you’ll certainly disrupt the running of the business. 21.
  • 23. Journey Planning It is important to plan your route before every journey. The more planning in advance you can do, the less that unforeseen and risky circumstances will arise, and you will be better prepared to deal with them if they do. Avoid driving in poor conditions and check the weather forecast before you set off, especially if there has been recent bad weather. If the reported advice is to only make essential journeys then you should follow it. Preventing driver sleepiness is something that your organisation can help you manage. Accidents caused by driver fatigue are most likely to occur: • On long journeys on monotonous roads. • Between 2am and 6am. • Between 2pm and 4pm. • After having less sleep than normal. • After drinking alcohol. • After taking medicines which cause drowsiness. Safe Vehicle Vehicle defects are only involved in a small proportion of crashes. However, the type of vehicle also has a major influence on the likelihood and severity of injuries when there is a collision. Your organisation should have a clear rule that any vehicle that is, or suspected to be, in an unsafe or illegal condition will not be used until all necessary repairs have been completed. As the driver, you are also responsible for ensuring that the vehicle you are driving is safe and legal. Before driving any vehicle, check: • Tyres: Undamaged (no cuts or bulges), are at the correct pressure for the number of passengers or equipment being carried, & have enough tread depth. The legal minimum is 1.6mm, but above 3mm gives much shorter braking distances in the wet. • There are no signs of vehicle damage. • Oil, coolant & windscreen wash levels are correct (check when cold). • You know the correct type of fuel for the vehicle. • Brakes are working. • Lights & indicators are working. • Windscreen & windows are not damaged. • Washers & wipers are working. • Mirrors are correctly positioned. 22. r, th inju ny ve d unt sible or the num epth. The l king distanc n cold). ise, in po there journe your the juries ehicle til all for mber legal ces 22. , oor e has eys s
  • 24. • All occupants are using their seat belts and head restraints are adjusted correctly. • Loads are securely restrained. If you are in any doubt about how to check any of the above, read the vehicle’s handbook, and/or ask someone to show you. Ask your organisation if they provide a pre-drive checklist. If you find any problem during the check, report it to your Manager immediately. Driving Position You should be able to: • See & reach all of the controls comfortably. • Have a good all-round, unobstructed, visibility. (This is vital.) • Check that your view is not obstructed unnecessarily by objects such as stickers or devices such as Sat-Navs. • That Sat-Navs are not placed where they might be hit and flung forwards by an airbag. If you are not familiar with the vehicle, check the handbook to ensure you know what the different lights mean. Finally, consider whether the vehicle is suitable for the task, for example: • If carrying passengers, is there a seat belt for each occupant? • If carrying children, is there an appropriate child seat for each child that needs one? • If carrying a heavy load or an animal, can you secure it safely? Accident, Breakdown & Emergency Procedures Your organisation should have procedures for emergencies, such as accidents or breakdowns. It is essential that you are familiar with, and follow, these procedures, if an emergency occurs. In the vehicle, keep copies of: • The emergency procedures. • Contact details for the person(s) to whom you should report emergencies. • Contact details of the breakdown firm your organisation uses & any reference numbers that you may need to quote. Make sure you have a fully charged mobile phone to summon help if necessary. 23.
  • 25. Do not use the phone while driving. A summary of the main points to remember is below. But you should always follow the procedures set down by your organisation. Accidents • Use hazard warning lights & switch off your engine. • Do not move injured passengers unless they are in immediate danger of further injury from other vehicles or from fire or explosion. • Call the emergency services immediately: Provide them with information about the situation, any special circumstances (for example, if carrying oxygen bottles) & if any passengers have special needs. • If child passengers are present, ensure an adult remains with them. • If the emergency services are called, stay at the scene until they allow you to leave. • Obtain the names & addresses of all independent witnesses. • Ensure the vehicle is roadworthy before continuing the journey. • If there is any injury or the names of people involved are not exchanged, you must report the accident to the Police as soon as possible or in any case within 24 hours. Following an accident you may need to discuss the details with your Line Manager at the next appropriate moment. This will help them ensure that any risk assessments that they have made are relevant and up to date. Breakdowns • Move the vehicle off the carriageway (onto the hard shoulder on a motorway) & switch on the hazard warning lights. • If this is not possible, move it as far away from moving traffic possible. • Move passengers out of the nearside of the vehicle & as far away from it and other traffic as possible. No one should stand between the vehicle & oncoming traffic. • On motorways or other busy roads, passengers should be taken onto the embankment or grass margin & as far from the traffic as is practicable. • Keep passengers together, keep children under constant supervision. • Telephone the emergency services, or breakdown firm, giving them accurate details of the vehicle’s location, & whether children or passengers with mobility problems are being carried. • Telephone your nominated contact person to tell them what has happened.On a motorway, use the roadside emergency telephone as this will enable the Police to pinpoint your location. 24. e an torway e. m it and & oncomin onto the icable. rvision. g them accurat engers with mob m what has happen as this will enable th tio of furt tion abou gen bottles w you to d, you e within ny risk y) & ng te bility ned.On a he Police 24. is ion. ther out es) .
  • 26. Smoking Legislation This came into effect in July 200. It states that all licensed vehicles are affected by the introduction of Governments Smoking Legislation. No person (including the driver) is permitted to smoke in a licensed vehicle. Seat Belt Laws The Seat belt Law became effective from the 18th September 2006 in cars, vans and goods vehicles. Check the advice and information at: www.childcarseats.org.uk. RoSPA also have advice about Carrying Other People’s Children Safely, available to download free at: www.rospa.com/roadsafety/carryingchildren/index.htm. Who is responsible? • The driver is responsible for self. • The driver is responsible for every person carried under the age of 14. • The passengers are responsible for themselves: If over 14. • Front Seat belts MUST be worn if available. • Correct child restraint MUST be used. • Correct child restraint MUST be used. • All seat belts MUST be worn if available. • Rear seat belts MUST be worn if available. Correct child restraint MUST be used. If one is not available in a Taxi, they may travel unrestrained. Carrying Children Safely In a crash at just 30 mph, an unrestrained child would be thrown forward with a force thirty to sixty times their body weight. They would be thrown about inside the vehicle, injuring themselves and quite possibly seriously injuring (or even killing) other people inside the vehicle. They are also likely to be ejected from the car through one of the windows. It is not safe to hold a child on your lap. In a crash, the child could be crushed between your body and part of the car’s interior. Even if you are using a seat belt, the child would be torn from your arms - you would not be able to hold onto them, no matter how hard you try. It is also dangerous to put a seat belt around yourself and a child (or around two children). 25.
  • 27. Type of Child Restraint Weight Range Approx Age Range Rearward-facing baby seat Group 0 for babies up to 10 kgs (22 lbs) Birth to 6 to 9 months Rearward-facing baby seat Group 0+ for babies up to 13kg (29 lbs) Birth to 12 to 15 months Combination seat Group 0+ - 1 0-18 kgs (20 to 40 lbs) Birth to 4 years Forward-facing child seat Group 1 9-18 kgs (20 to 40 lbs) 9 months - 4 years Booster Seat Group 2 15-25 kgs (33 to 55 lbs) 4 years to 6 years Booster Seat Group 2 and 3 15-36 kgs (33 to 79 lbs) 4 years to 11 years Booster Seat Group 1, 2 and 3 9-36 kgs (20 to 79 lbs) 9 months to 11 years Booster Cushion Group 3 22-36 kgs (48 to 79 lbs) 6 to 11 years A properly fitted child restraint keeps the child in their seat, preventing them from being thrown about inside or ejected from, the vehicle. It also absorbs some of the impact force. This means that your child is much less likely to be killed or injured in a crash. To be effective, child restraints must be fitted and used correctly. Surveys have consistently shown that a high proportion of child restraints are incorrectly fitted, usually for one or more of these reasons: • Seat belt too loose. • Seat belt not routed through child seat correctly. • Buckle crunch (Buckle resting against part of the child seat’s frame, which means that in a crash it might break or snap open). • Handle on baby seat not positioned properly. • Child seat not compatible with car. • Child seat old and in bad condition. • Child too large or too small for the seat they are using. 26. ea hem fro ome of t r injured veys have orrectly fitte at’s frame, which m y are using. hs mont ears ars ars ars om the d in a ed, means 26. ths
  • 28. Booster Seats By the time children weigh 15 to 25 kgs (33 to 55 lbs) (Usually about 4 to 6 years old, but the weight is the most important factor) they are ready to use booster seats. This means that the adult seat belt will go around them and the seat. So it is important that the seat belt is correctly adjusted. The basic points to note are: • The belt should be worn as tight as possible. • The lap belt should go over the pelvic region, from hip-bone to hip-bone, not the stomach. • The diagonal strap should rest over the shoulder, not the neck. Seat Belts Seat belts are designed for people 150 cms (about 5ft) and taller. A child shouldn’t graduate to using the seat belt on it’s own too soon. Children are usually big enough to use the seat belt on it’s own by the time they are about 11 years old, although this varies from child to child. Three-point seat belts (lap and diagonal) provide greater protection than lap belts. However, lap belts are far better than no belt at all. The lap belt should be placed over the pelvis (from hip-bone to hip-bone), not the stomach and worn as tight as possible. Passenger Restraints Some passengers with disabilities may need postural support during the journey, and a variety of passenger restraints to assist people to remain upright in their seat are available. Under no circumstances should they be used instead of a suitable seat belt as they do not conform to a recognised standard nor are they designed for this purpose. Children up to 3 years old In the Front Seat • The correct child restraint MUST be used. • It is illegal to carry a child in a rear-facing child seat in the front, which is protected by an active frontal airbag. 27.
  • 29. In the Rear Seat • The correct child restraint MUST be used. • In a licensed Taxi or licensed Hire Car, if a child restraint is not available then the child may travel unrestrained in the rear. This is the only exception for children under 3, and has been introduced for practical rather than safety reasons. You should always think about ways to make sure that a child seat is available. Cars The law requires all children travelling in cars to use the correct child restraint until they are either 135 cm in height or the age of 12 (which ever they reach first). After this they must use an adult seat belt. It is the driver’s responsibility to ensure that children under the age of 14 years are restrained correctly in accordance with the law. It is the driver’s legal responsibility to ensure that the child is correctly restrained. In the Front Seat: Children aged 3 and above, until they reach EITHER their 12th birthday OR 135cm in height. The child MUST use the correct child restraint. In the Rear Seat: The child MUST use the correct restraint, where seat belts are fitted. There are three exceptions where there is not a child seat available. In each case the child MUST use the adult belt instead. These are: 1.In a licensed Taxi or Private Hire Vehicle. 2.If the child is travelling on a short distance for reason of unexpected necessity. 3.If there are two occupied child restraints in the rear which prevent the fitment of a third. In addition, a child 3 and over may travel unrestrained in the rear seat of a vehicle if seat belts are not available. Children over 1.35 metres in height, or who are 12 years old • When in the Front Seat the adult seat belt MUST be worn. • In the Rear Seat the adult seat belt MUST be worn. Passengers Over 14 years old • When travelling in the front or rear seat, an adult seat belt MUST be worn. • It is the responsibility of the individual passenger to ensure that they are wearing the seat belt. 28. y ir nt. ts a h case necessity the fitmen eat of a vehic ld . ult seat belt MUST be w ssenger to ensure that th en t hildre ns. Yo ble. estraint reach first). y to ensure ance with ly r 12th . are e the y. nt of cle if e worn. they are wearing 28. the en ou
  • 30. Summary of the Seat Belt Laws for Cars, Taxis and Private Hire Cars Front seat Rear seat Who is responsible? Driver Seat belt MUST be worn if available. Driver Children un- der 3 years old Correct child re- straint MUST be used. Correct child restraint MUST be used If one is not available in a taxi, then the child may travel unrestrained in the rear Driver Children aged 3 and above, until they reach EITHER their 12th birthday OR 135cm in height Correct child re- straint MUST be used Where seat belts fitted, correct child restraint MUST be used MUST use adult belt if the correct child restraint is not available in three scenarios: • In a in a licensed Taxi or Private Hire Vehicle • For a short distance for reason of unexpected necessity. • Two occupied child restraints pre- vent fitment of a third. • In addition, a child 3 and over may travel unrestrained in the rear seat of a vehicle if seat belts are not available Driver Child over 1.35 metres, or 12 to 13 years Seat belt MUST be worn if available Seat belt MUST be worn if available Driver Adult pas- sengers (i.e. 14 years and over) Seat belt MUST be worn if available Seat belt MUST be worn if available Passenger 29.
  • 31. Maintenance Basic car maintenance is something every car owner should know. Being able to check the engine oil, the pressure of the tyres and the overall condition of the brakes can save you money, and you won’t need to rely on the skills of a mechanic to do everything. All you will need is some basic tools to do the job and of course some time! Engine Oil If your engine doesn’t have the right amount of oil, it could be seriously damaged, sometimes beyond repair. Checking • Check the level at least once a week, when the engine is cold and the car is on a level surface. • The dipstick usually sticks out from one side of the engine. On more modern cars it may have a coloured handle: usually red, orange or yellow. • Pull the dipstick out and wipe it clean with a rag. Return it to the full extent, pull it out again and holding the stick horizontal, check that the oil mark is between the upper and lower limits on the dipstick. Topping up • Make sure you use the right oil, and the same as what’s currently in the engine. Your owner’s manual will contain these details. • Find the oil filler cap - it’s usually on the top of the engine and marked‘oil’, it too is usually coloured the same as the dipstick. Unscrew this carefully and place to one side. Pour in a small amount of new oil and recheck the level with the dipstick. Repeat until the level is about halfway between the maximum and minimum marks on the dipstick. • DO NOT EXCEED THE MAXIMUM MARK • Oil is usually replaced at every service inspection of your car. This is usually a maximum of 10,000 miles. • Refer to the owners’manual for details. Tyres It’s dangerous to drive on tyres that are in poor condition or incorrectly inflated. There’s a legal minimum tread depth. If you crash while driving on illegal tyres and you’ll be in trouble with the police and your insurance company. 30. o te et e engin d‘oil’, it t nd place with the mum and his is usually a tion or incorrectly infl while driving on illegal urance company. to he echa f cour damaged, car is on a odern cars ent, pull etween ne. too a nflated. al tyres and 30. o anic rse
  • 32. Pressure • Always check tyre pressures cold. • Pressure is measured in pounds per square inch (psi) or bar (1bar = 15psi) and the right amounts for your car should be listed in your owner’s manual. • If the amount on the pressure gauge is below that mentioned in your owner’s manual, you will need to inflate the tyre. To do this, connect a pump or an air line on a garage forecourt and fill until the right amount is shown on the pressure gauge. • If you put too much air into the tyre, depress the pin in the centre of the valve to let some out. • Don’t forget the pressure of the spare wheel. Tread Depth Locate a tread wear marker; small squares found in the grooves of the tyre, and make sure your tyre’s tread depth is higher than this. If it’s lower, your tyres need changing. For a more accurate measure, use a tyre tread depth gauge. A minimum tread depth of 1.6mm should be across the central three-quarters (75%) breadth of the tyre and the entire outer circumference or any specification set down by your local licensing authority, (3mm is recommended). Any lower and the tyres will need changing. Look for any cuts, bulges and foreign objects (such as nails) stuck into the tyres. Exhaust If the engine sounds rough or you can hear a blowing sound, the exhaust may have a leak, have it checked. The emissions are tested in the annual MoT test. If your car fails on either of these tests you will need to get the problem solved by an authorised service centre. Shock Absorbers (Dampers) Push down on each corner of the car and then release. If the shock absorbers are working, the corner of the vehicle will quickly settle into its normal position. If it bounces, the shock absorber at that corner will need to be replaced. Rust During the MoT test the entire car will be examined for rust, especially in structural areas. 31.
  • 33. Brakes Brakes are crucially important for safety, of course, but complicated to fix. If there’s a problem, avoid using your car until an authorised service centre can perform repairs and adjustments. Ask the service centre to check the overall condition of the braking system. • If there is a great deal of pedal movement before the brakes begin to bite, the rear brakes may need adjusting. • Pull on the handbrake: If it takes more than a few clicks before it will hold the car on a hill, the cable or rear callipers / drums need inspection. • If the pedal feels spongy and braking lacks sharpness: This is an indication of air in the system or component seizure. • If the brake reservoir is low: This may indicate a leak BUT more likely the pads are nearing renewal. • Brake fluid: Check the brake fluid level is between the minimum and maximum points – driving with low levels of brake fluid can be dangerous. • Brake fluid is HYGROSCOPIC (absorbs moister from the atmosphere): It should be changed every two years. Cooling If it’s winter, make sure that there is sufficient anti-freeze in the cooling system. Coolant: Ensure the tank isn’t hot, and use a cloth to remove the cap. Check the minimum and maximum levels on the coolant tank, and fill up with water to the halfway point. In the winter it’s a good idea to use a 50/50 mixture of water and anti-freeze. Take care as anti-freeze can damage paintwork. This will help prevent freezing, which could crack your car’s engine block. Headlights Check your lights are working. These include headlights, tail lights, brake lights, indicator lights and fog lights. If a bulb is blown or doesn’t work, it may need replacing. Follow the following guidelines to make sure that this is done correctly: 1.Open the bonnet & look behind the headlight. 2.Identify the faulty bulb & remove it from its holder. 3.Check your vehicle handbook for the right specification or ask an engineer to find the right bulb before buying. It can be helpful to take the old bulb along to ensure you buy the correct one. 4.Unscrew the old bulb & screw in the new one. Take care when touching the bulb; a small piece of dirt or grease can ruin the bulb. 5.Ensure there are no cracks or dirt on the bulb’s seal. 6.After fitting a new bulb, switch on the lights to check they work. 32. tem ck th to th er and preven rake lights, may need done correct ask an engineer e the old bulb alo care when touching seal. ts to check they work. her rm on o bite, the hold the c ation of air the pads are maximum t should m. he he d nt tly: r to ong to g the bulb; 32. re’s of the he car r e
  • 34. Windscreen Wipers If the wiper blades are leaving behind dirty smears or tiny scratches instead of cleaning the windscreen, it’s time to replace them. 1.Check your vehicle handbook for the correct wiper blade size. 2.Lift the old wiper blade up away from the windscreen. 3.Slide the old blade off. You may need to release a securing tab to remove it. 4.Slide the new wiper blade onto the wiper arm by clicking it into the metal hook of the wiper arm. 5.Lower the wiper back into place. 6.Repeat with the second wiper. 7.Test the new wipers by activating the washer control & switching them on. You can clean your wiper blades with vinegar each week to keep them in good condition. Give them one quick wipe with a cloth. Screen-wash Ensure washer fluid is filled up to the maximum mark, but take care not to overfill. Battery Check that your battery is charged. Battery chargers are not expensive and it is worth giving it a boost. Safety First Before you even think of trying to get your car going with jump leads, you need to follow some simple, but exceptionally important safety rules: If you are in any doubt whatsoever about what to do then leave well alone and get some professional help. Also check your vehicles handbook. While there are general rules for jump starting engines, some models have very specific procedures. When you are getting ready to jump start your vehicle, make sure you keep all metal objects away from the battery as this could create unnecessary sparks and could, in some circumstances, explode the battery. Also be careful of watches, rings, tools or stray wires 33.
  • 35. Don’t try to jump start a battery that looks damaged as this could be very dangerous. Make sure you check the flat battery thoroughly for damage and avoid smoking and naked flames. Using Jump Leads • Make sure the batteries are the same voltage before you connect the leads and make sure that the vehicles are parked with their handbrakes on and ignitions off. Also, make sure they are not touching as this can cause sparks. • Connect the positive terminal on the‘good’car to the positive terminal on the bad (flat battery) car, using the live (red) lead before the earth. • Attach the black, earth lead to the negative terminal on the good car and then to a suitable earthing point on the bad car, such as the engine block or chassis, rather than the negative battery terminal of the ailing car (this protects the electronics). • Once you have connected the leads, wait a few minutes before starting either engine. • Start the engine of the good car and allow it to run for a minute then, with it still running, start the engine of the other car and leave both running at a fast idle for ten minutes. • Don’t remove the jump leads while the engines are running as this can damage the electronics on both cars. • If the jump leads get hot, switch off both engines and allow the leads to cool down. • Turn the ignition off on both cars and then disconnect the leads carefully in the reverse order. Be careful not to touch the clips against each other or against the car bodywork • As a final check, you should try starting the car that had the flat battery. If it won’t start, then it may well have a more serious problem that will need the help of a mechanic or garage. Valeting (Secrets of the Experts) • A can of upholstery foam cleaner is excellent to keep in the boot of the car, as a general purpose, clean. If you have a spillage in the car you can clean it up there and then, or else, you can prevent making your upholstery dirty by using it to wash your hands. Although it is not a very powerful cleaner, it is enough to clean greasy hands from takeaway’s or clean up after changing a spare wheel. You can do just about anything with it from cleaning dust from your dashboard to removing birds mess from the outside of your car. It’s also good for removing grubby marks from clothing in an emergency. But its best use is if somebody is sick in your car. It will not spread the contamination and it will mask the smell. 34. w as da o co lly in ainst ry. If it w e help of t of the car, a can clean it up tery dirty by us eaner, it is enoug anging a spare wh dust from your dash r. It’s also good for re t its best use is if som nation and it will mask t voi eads an ignition nal on the r and then or chassis, ts the g either with it still st idle for amage ool n the the won’t f a as sing gh to heel. shboard removing mebody is k the smell. 34. oid nd ns
  • 36. • Normally most people would advise against using household products on your car, especially those from the kitchen, but with your car’s interior there are lots of products that do work. For example, sprinkling bicarbonate of soda on your carpets an hour before you vacuum will help rid your car of stale smells. It’s probably best not to put anything on your seats, instead wiping them with a damp, leather or micro-fibre cloth removes most dirt. • Most plastic surfaces are best washed with a damp cloth and warm soapy water. However, it is very important that the cloth is just DAMP and not wet when cleaning your dashboard. Many cars have sensitive electronics, anything from computers which control air-bags to switches for your windows, none of which respond well to water. A single droplet of water in the wrong place could end up costing you thousands of pounds! For this reason it is important never to spray anything directly onto your dashboard. Furniture polishes such as Pledge works as well as most Automotive plastic dressings, just be sure to spray it onto a cloth and don’t spray directly. • You can Vacuum hard to reach places if you get yourself a length of hose pipe. All you need to is to tape the hosepipe inside the nozzle of the vacuum cleaner. This narrow extension not only enables you to get into those hard to reach areas down the side of the centre console, but it actually has more suction. • White vinegar will remove calcium deposits which cause unsightly water stains on your cars windows and mirrors. • Don’t wax polish the windscreen and this can cause smearing. • Carry a box of baby wipes (wet wipes) in the boot of your car. Don’t leave them in the sun or they will dry out, but in the boot they will be fine. They are inexpensive and supermarkets often have deals on them. They can be used for wiping bird’s mess from the car’s paintwork and for wiping sticky fingers. They are also great for wiping over the dashboard when it’s dusty. • When using a pressure washer, never allow the nozzle to get closer that 4”to the surface you are cleaning. A pressure washer won’t get all the dirt off, so you shouldn’t even try, instead use it to get the grit off, then use a wash mitt and soapy water to agitate the remaining dirt. Once you have loosened it with the mitt, it should then all blast off with the pressure washer. Valet’s: Step by Step Car Valeting Cleaning the Car Interior • Remove all litter. • Remove any personal objects. • Vacuum the carpets and the seats thoroughly. • Make sure you look in the boot and remove any rubbish and vacuum out. • When you have finished the vacuuming it’s time to valet the seats. • First spray the seats with upholstery cleaner. 35.
  • 37. • Then, using a small scrubbing brush or interior sponge, work the cleaner into the upholstery. • Remove the dirty water with a water extraction machine. • Any excess water that is situated in difficult to get to places should be moped up with a micro-fibre cloth. • Clean any door panels that have fabric inserts at the same time. • Clean the headlining with Interior liquid cleaner or Interior Foam Cleaner. (This product spray’s on a thick foam that dissolves dirt and grime away.) • Clean any Leather upholstery with Leather Cleaner, This product cleans feeds and protects all leather. Simply rub on and polish off with a clean soft cloth. • Cleaning the dash, centre consol and plastic or vinyl door panels is easy, simply wipe over with an interior cleaner spray then polish the dash & trim with a vinyl polish dressing. Cleaning the Engine • Pay attention and keep away from the electrical components. • Leave the engine running as the heat helps to keep the engine dry. • Using a quality degreaser, either spray on or use a paint brush to agitate the worst areas. • You will also need a strong cleaning agent, such as Traffic Film Remover (TFR.). • Spray the TFR over the engine and allow to soak into the grease and oil. • Then wash off the TFR and the dirt will go with it. • You can use a hot water steamer but a cold one works perfectly well, it’s just takes a bit more time. • Wash off the engine and allow to dry keep the engine running to promote drying. • Finally you can finish off with an Engine Lacquer once the engine has cooled down. Or use WD40 penetrating oil if required, to finish off. Washing the Car • Before washing the vehicle, clean the doors and boot openings, either with a sponge or paint brush. • For alloy wheels use an acid Alloy wheel cleaner if they are heavily covered in brake dust or have baked on dirt, but be very careful not to leave it on the wheel too long as it might mark the alloy. Non-acid cleaners are also available. • Spray the alloy wheel cleaner onto the wheel, or put some of the cleaner in a small pot and use a paint brush to work into difficult areas. Old toothbrushes are handy to reach difficult areas. • Use a power washer to spray the vehicle, including the wheel arches, with a non- caustic Traffic Film Remover to loosen up the dirt. 36. e (T s jus mote cooled either with a avily covered in eave it on the w also available. me of the cleaner in reas. Old toothbru ng the wheel arches, w dirt. oped ner. (Th ns feeds a th. asy, simply with a vinyl e the TFR.). st a n wheel in a ushes are with a non- 36. the d up his and p
  • 38. • Then hand wash the vehicle with a car shampoo. There are many different types available depending on what of finish you want to achieve. The best, is Wash & Wax, it leaves a protective wax shine to your car’s paintwork with no need to polish, simply shammy off. • If you are going to polish the car you can use an ordinary car shampoo. Finally rinse off the car with your power washer. Dry off the car using synthetic leather. Polishing the Paintwork When the car is dry you can apply the polishes to the exterior. Body polish is a matter of choice, and depends on the type of paintwork the car has that is been valeted. Premium polish is an all round polish that is suitable for all types of body work. Apply the polish to the car with a polishing sponge or soft cloth in a circular movement, leave to dry, and then remove with a circular movement with a clean soft cotton cloth. Clean the glass on both the inside and outside of the vehicle as well as the door and rear view mirrors. Don’t forget the area that sits in the rubbers. A low dusting Glass polish or a Solvent glass solution can be used. Exterior Trims & Tyres With the bodywork finished you can move onto the bumpers and other vinyl trims. • Use Vinyl polish or Vinyl Gel rubber, plastic bumper conditioner on these and it will bring back the original colour. • Then you can do the tyres with the Rubber cleaner tyre dressing or Vinyl Gel dressing. • You can either spray the Rubber dressing over the tyre, or use a paint brush and paint it on. The Vinyl Gel can only be put on with a brush as it is a thicker solution. • Putting an air freshener into the vehicle is a good idea. • Any lasting lingering odours should be treated with a de-odouriser. These come in several fragrances, to leave a long lasting fresh fragrance. Car Survival Kit The chances of being trapped in a snow drift for several days are pretty slim in Britain, but a car survival kit can help protect your car. 37.
  • 39. Theft Prevention Hundreds of thousands of cars are stolen or broken into each year. There are some simple steps you can take to make sure you’re not the next victim: • Make sure you keep valuables out of sight when your car is unattended. • Always close and lock doors, boot and sunroof. If it hasn’t already got one, fit an alarm and immobiliser. • Have the windows and windscreen etched with your car’s registration number. • Try to leave your car in the most visible location, especially if it’s staying there overnight. • If your car is fitted with alloy wheels, replace one nut on each wheel with a locking version that needs a special adapter to remove. • Under the bonnet there should be a small metal plate bearing the vehicle identification number (VIN). Make sure it’s visible. The V5 has been replaced by the V5C Registration Certificate (or‘logbook’), which can be recognised by its bright red front cover page. New V5Cs are issued to anyone who has taxed their vehicle (using the V11 renewal reminder form), or declared it on a‘Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN)’form or has registered a vehicle in a new name. Failure to have a V5C Registration Certificate could make selling your vehicle difficult, and dealers or private buyers may refuse to purchase your vehicle without one. For more information on the new V5C Registration Certificate, visit the DVLA website at dvla.gov.uk or contact them on 0870 240 0010. MoT The MoT scheme is now done on computer to protect motorists from fraudsters and improve general test standards. You can check the MoT status of any vehicle you own, or are considering buying by contacting the Vehicle & Operator Services Agency 0870 330 0444 or vosa.gov.uk. Manual Handling STEP 1 Think about all the activities in your workplace which involve staff moving materials and assess whether such manual handling is really necessary, for example could you use lifting aids such as trolleys, lift trucks, hoists, chutes or roll cages? 38. ) t la n le e wit VLA m fraudsters f any vehicle perator Servic ch involve staff moving ly necessary, for examp sts, chutes or roll cages? som d. one, fit n number ng there with a hicle ’), which to anyone ared it on n a new thout s e ces ng materials mple could you s? 38. me t an er.
  • 40. STEP 2 If you can’t avoid manual handling, then you need to assess the risks associated with each task involving movement of materials, considering steps 3 - 7 below. STEP 3: Think about the load If it is heavy: Consider breaking it up or ordering smaller packages? If it is difficult to grasp or could shift during carrying consider placing the load in a container for carrying or binding it together before moving. If it is awkward consider using another person to assist, or the use of a trolley. STEP 4: Think about the task If it involves twisting, stooping or reaching consider rearranging the storage facilities by providing more space or shelving or reorganising shelves so that the heaviest items are kept at a height between mid thigh and mid-chest. Consider also the use of stepladders or platforms for access to higher shelves. If it involves long distance carrying consider rearranging the layout of the workplace to minimise travel by arranging delivery and storage to be as near as possible to the point of use or consider using a trolley or powered truck. STEP 5: Think about the working environment Remove any obstructions in the areas where people need to carry materials and ensure that there are no tripping hazards. Ensure that lighting levels are adequate. If there are steps or ramps consider use of more than one person or the use of chutes, hoists, or conveyors. STEP 6: Think about the physical capability of your staff Ensure the staff you are asking to handle materials are capable of doing so. Consider those who are pregnant, or who have a physical weakness. Train all staff in the safe lifting technique and in the safe procedures you have identified for moving materials. Instruct staff on the correct clothing and footwear to use. Provide protective shoes, hats and gloves where necessary. 39.
  • 41. STEP 7: The Safe Lifting Technique Remember to assess any new manual handling tasks. 1. Stop & Think • Do I need help? • Where is the load going? • Are there any aids to help me? 2. The Lift • Feet apart. • Leading leg forward. • Bend the knees. • Lift in stages. • Keep back straight. • Keep load close to body. • Lean forward a little for good grip. • Keep shoulders level. • Get a firm grip. • Put down first, then adjust. 3. Don’t • Jerk. • Overstretch. • Twist. • Lift loads which are too heavy. For Further Information refer to: Manual Handling - Solutions You Can Handle. Health & Safety Executive: ISBN 0-7 176-0693-7 Risk Assessment HAZARD: Means anything that can cause harm. RISK: Is the chance that someone will be harmed by the HAZARD A risk assessment is a careful examination of what, in the workplace could cause harm. The aim is to ensure whether enough has been done and precautions taken to prevent harm. The important factor is to decide whether a HAZARD is significant and whether it is covered by satisfactory precautions so that the RISK level is SMALL. 40. ZARD he workplace could c n done and precautio e whether a HAZARD cautions so that the RISK d cause ions taken D is significant K level is 40.
  • 42. The following are the 5 Steps to follow. (Taken from the HSE website is the document guide:“5 Steps to Risk Assessment”): 1.Look for the Hazards. 2.Decide who might be harmed & how. 3.Evaluate the risks & decide whether existing precautions are adequate or whether more should be done. 4.Record your findings. 5.Review your assessment & revise if necessary. Resources Driving for Work A series of RoSPA Guides about many of the aspects covered in this booklet, and sample policies for organisations’to put into practice. http://www.rospa.com/roadsafety/resources/employers.htm Managing Occupational Road Risk (MORR™): The RoSPA Guide (£25) The RoSPA guide explores the issue of MORR in depth, and is an invaluable tool for organisations. It explains how to put the people, policies and procedures in place to successfully manage occupational road risk. http://www.rospa.com/morr/information/morr_guide.htm Other Resources A full list of other MORR advice can be found on the Occupational Road Safety Alliance website. http://www.orsa.org.uk/resources/list.htm The Highway Code Make sure that you are familiar with the Highway Code, which contains frequently updated advice on traffic law and how to stay safe on the roads. http://www.highwaycode.gov.uk 41.
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  • 44. Pathway Group Fairgate house, 205 Kings Road, Tyseley, Birmingham B11 2AA Tel: 0800 955 0870 / 0121 707 0550 Email: info@pathwaygroup.co.uk Web: www.pathwaygroup.co.uk Pathway Groupputting you first