Health and safety

Health and safety at the AA

Health and safety is one of our highest priorities. We strive to protect the health and safety of our employees and all the people we come into contact with. We are committed to fostering and maintaining a healthy and safe working environment.

Our safety management system is written to OSHAS 18001 standards, with AA DriveTech being certified to this standard. This helps us to identify risks and hazards and ensure our existing suite of policies and codes of behaviour are up-to-date and effective. Our systematic and comprehensive approach to health and safety includes goal setting, planning and performance measurement.

Our patrols work in potentially dangerous situations where the risks include moving traffic, slips, trips and falls, manual handling of equipment and road traffic collisions. We minimise risks through training, the equipment we give them and by reporting, investigating and learning lessons from accidents and near misses.

Safety performance

High health and safety standards are implicit in our service to Members. During the year, we continued to focus on risk management, empowerment of our staff through their knowledge of health and safety and improving Near-Miss reporting.

We look for continual improvement by monitoring performance and auditing our systems to ensure our management of health and safety remains effective. In addition, we also have in place improvement programmes which identify objectives and targets along with the action plan we will implement to achieve these.

Since 2010 we have seen year on year improvement in our accident performance with the number of accidents halving over five years. This improvement has been achieved through implementation and delivery of safety training programmes and focusing on performance monitoring and measurement. See the graphs above.

In the 2016 financial year, we improved our Near-Miss reporting system with an on-line reporting tool for patrols which has resulted in more near-misses being reported to us than accidents. The AA is the only UK breakdown company to actively collect, collate and act upon Near-Miss reporting, enabling us to take action to minimise potential accidents.

Protecting our members

We were the first UK breakdown company to begin our response to breakdown calls with safety advice to ensure Members are given this all-important information immediately. We were also the first to pioneer three-way telephone calls between us, the Member and the Police for breakdown situations in dangerous locations.

Protecting all motorists and road users

We work closely with motor manufacturers and the UK Government to help improve the safety of our roads. For example, AA DriveTech trainers lead Ford’s Driving Skills for Life courses aimed at young drivers. In addition, we have trialled smaller recovery trucks in London which are designed to meet the requirements of the London Safe Lorry Scheme. This has been successful and plans are in place to bring these lorries to 50% of our London fleet, helping us to do our part in supporting Transport for London’s “Safe Streets for London” project.