Transport firms take safety route for truck driving

A growing number of transport companies are seeking to change the stereotypical image of a truck driver in India by upgrading their recruitment and training procedures to ensure that the drivers they hire conform to all rules for their safety as well as that of others on the road.

Executives said these companies are putting in place several stages and kinds of screening, implementing modern training modules that are often outsourced to overseas firms, implementing strict rules on speed and driving hours, and monitoring vehicles via GPS aided software.

Rhenus Logistics, for instance, checks the detailed employment history, criminal record, job terminations and fitness of the driver who has to be at least 25 years old, according to managing director Vivek Arya.

The joint venture between Germany’s Rhenus and the local Western Arya group owns and operates more than 100 commercial vehicles.

“Our clients, especially the international companies, are extremely careful about the kind of drivers that are ferrying their goods,” said Jagjit Parmar, owner of Parmar Transport.

The 65-year old company owns a fleet of 350 commercial vehicles and ferries petroleum and gas products.

Manoj Singh of Kailash Carriers said that although the minimum education requirement is eighth standard in school, the company takes two written tests apart from the driving and skills test before issuing the drivers their identity cards.

These transport companies also impart training on hazardous products that their vehicles often carry or make sure a driver has a certificate that shows he has undergone that training earlier.


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