How to manage alternatives to public transport for business travel

Do any of your employees use public transport for business travel, aside from their normal commute? In that case, a new poll from IPSOS MORI* may be of interest to you, showing that 61% of people would be reluctant to travel using buses or trains in the future because of the risk of catching coronavirus.

What are the implications of this for businesses as many companies look to return to work?

The probability is that people will be looking for transport alternatives that allow them to socially distance. Those travelling a few miles will potentially walk or cycle. However, there is also likely to be much more car use, something promoted by Boris Johnson in his address to the nation.

This means that there will potentially be an increased grey fleet+ presence within your organisation that you will need to actively manage. Remember that the roadworthiness of any vehicle used on company business and the competence of its driver are both the responsibility of the employer. Essentially, your legal standing – and arguably your moral position, too – is the same as if you owned those cars or vans.

If numbers of grey fleet vehicles start to appear to rise in the coming weeks and months, then you need to ensure that the risk management element of your fleet policy in this area is watertight, to promote the safety of employees and to protect your legal position in the event of an accident. Having procedures in place to check that cars and vans are safe for use and employees fit to drive on company business are essential.


+ ‘Grey fleet’ is simply the term used to describe any vehicles that do not belong to the company, but which are used for business travel.

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