SUPERCEDED Ohio University Policy and Procedure

Use of University Vehicles

SUPERCEDED as of December 22, 2011

Current Version

Procedure No.:   47.001

Page No.:        1,2,3,4 and 5 of 5

Date Issued:     2/08/99

Issued By:       Gary North

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To provide policy and procedure for the following issues relating to the operation of University owned and leased vehicles: Appropriate/Legal Use, Vehicle Crashes, Vehicle Inspection/Repairs


Appropriate/Legal Use

University owned or leased vehicles are maintained for the use of members of University departments who require transportation to and from specified destinations for the purpose of conducting official University business.

The assignment or use of University vehicles is limited to full-time and part-time employees of the University; students or others approved by an administrator or faculty member. The employee and the department to which the vehicle is assigned has the responsibility for determining that the vehicle is used for official University business, and that all drivers possess a valid operator's license.

Passengers in University owned or leased vehicles are limited to employees, students or guests of the University who are on official business. Other passengers in University vehicles must be approved by an administrator or faculty member. Authorized passengers may assist in driving provided they have a valid operator's license and have been granted permission to do so by the employee and the department to which the vehicle is assigned.

The use of a University vehicle for other than official business may subject the responsible individual to disciplinary action by the University and/or prosecution under appropriate sections of the Ohio Revised Code.

The University will not be responsible for traffic or parking violations incurred by persons using its vehicles and the responsibility for all penalties for said violations must be assumed by the driver.

Drivers of University vehicles who are involved in one or more automobile accidents where the causative factor involves the driver may be required to participate in a driver retraining program designed by the Ohio University Campus Safety Department. The driver retraining program shall be designed around the causative factors of the accident.

[Here begins page 2 of the hardcopy version.]

Vehicle Accidents/Crashes

The driver of the vehicle is responsible for the proper care of the vehicle while it is in his or her possession. All drivers (faculty, staff and students) who operate a University vehicle must become familiar with the Ohio University Vehicle Accident Report Form (OUVARF), which is incorporated as a part of this policy. All University vehicles will be equipped with the OUVARF and in the event of an accident the driver shall follow the instructions located on the reverse side of the form.

Driver Training/Selection

Ohio University employees who drive Ohio University motor vehicles as a substantial part of their duties as defined by the appropriate department head should successfully complete the Driver Education Program. This program will utilize the National Safety Council's Defensive Driving Course. The course is designed to teach drivers how to avoid collisions and develop safer driving habits through the use of situational discussions, videos, statistical information and lecture. Participants will gain an understanding of important driving habits and responsibilities while learning recognition techniques. Coordination of the Driver Education Program shall be the responsibility of Environmental Health and Safety, 593-1666.

Drivers of University vehicles who are involved in one or more automobile crashes where the causative factor involves the driver may be required to participate in a driver retraining program designed by the Ohio University Police Department. The driver retraining program shall be designed around the causative factors of the crash.

All Ohio University vans shall have a copy of the "van driver checksheet" placed in the vehicle. Student drivers and/or persons who do not normally drive vans shall review this checksheet prior to operating an Ohio University van.

Drivers of vehicles rented from the Ohio University Motor Pool shall review the "driver checksheet" prepared by OUPD before operating the vehicle. Additionally, if the vehicle is an Ohio University van, the driver shall review the "van driver checksheet" prior to operating the vehicle.

[Here begins page 3 of the hardcopy version.]

Vehicle Repairs and Inspections

Servicing of University owned vehicles is provided by Transportation Services at the University Garage which is located on Factory Street, regional campuses may service their vehicles locally. Annual safety inspections shall be made of all University vehicles to assist department chairpersons in evaluating the condition of their vehicles and to make certain that the vehicles meet safety and operations requirements. The University Garage is authorized to charge departments a fee of $15 for each vehicle inspected. With regard to these inspections, an inspection report will be forwarded to the chairperson of the department owning the vehicle. This report will indicate whether the vehicle passed or failed the inspection. If a vehicle is found to be unsafe for driving on or off-campus, the manager of Transportation Services shall notify the chairperson of the department that the vehicle is not to be operated until the specified repairs have been made and the vehicle certified safe by Transportation Services. Inspections of regional campus vehicles may be done locally. The regional campus dean or his designee will review inspections.

Vehicle Service

All vehicles are scheduled for routine maintenance at least once every six months. Each department will be notified of the time when a specific vehicle should be taken to the University Garage for servicing. The cost of all supplies and materials used in the servicing of vehicles is charged to the owning department. Labor is not charged to the department unless the service must be provided by an outside vendor, such as the replacement of windshields. Any questions regarding the services provided during routine servicing and special servicing should be directed to the Manager of Transportation Services. Regional campus vehicles may be scheduled for routine maintenance locally.

[Here begins page 4 of the hardcopy version.]

Driver Checklist

This is a five-minute safety checklist.

____  Start vehicle and turn on headlights and hazard lights.

____  Test horn to make sure it works.

____  Exit vehicle and check:

____  All lights

____  Tires: make sure they have sufficient tread

____  Listen for any strange engine noises or vibrations

____  Make sure wiper blades are intact

____Check trunk for spare tire and jack.

____  Get back into vehicle and make sure wipers work.

____  Adjust seat so your wrist is even with the top of the steering wheel in a normal seated position.

____  Adjust mirrors so they can be used from a normal seated position.

____  Buckle your safety belt and make sure all passengers do the same.

____  If you are not familiar with this vehicle, drive slower than normal until you are comfortable with it.

In the event of a crash, check to see if there are injuries. Leave vehicle in the place it stops unless doing so presents a risk of further damage or injury. Notify the appropriate law enforcement authority and, if needed, emergency medical personnel. Remove the OUVARF (Ohio University Vehicle Accident Report Form) from the glove compartment and complete it as soon as possible before you leave the crash scene. Return the OUVARF to the Ohio University Police Department once you return to campus.

[Here begins page 5 of the hardcopy version.]

Van Driver Checklist

Ohio University has several large, multi-passenger vans in its fleet of vehicles. These vans are larger than what most people are used to driving and are more difficult in several different ways. Two of these differences are:

  1. Wider turning radius

  2. Reduced visibility making them harder to operate, especially while parking.

While driving, develop these five seeing habits:

  1. AIM HIGH-Look farther ahead as opposed to close to the front of your vehicle for better guidance.

  2. GET THE BIG PICTURE-Don't follow other vehicles closely. Make sure you can see around them.

  3. KEEP YOUR EYES MOVING-Change your gaze every two to three seconds.

  4. ALWAYS LEAVE YOURSELF AN OUT-Don't get boxed in anywhere.

  5. MAKE SURE THEY SEE YOU-As you approach another vehicle, make sure the driver looks at you.

One-third of all crashes occur at intersections.

Keep both hands on the steering wheel when driving.

Before you start, adjust all mirrors to you. Don't adjust yourself to them.

When parking, back vehicle into the parking space.