Safety Training for Drivers
Our training program for bus, bus rapid transit (BRT), paratransit, and shuttle begins with a strong focus on proper recruiting, screening, interviewing, and hiring techniques, in order to ensure we hire people who are best suited to succeed as an operator. As part of our hiring programs, we have well-managed procedures for drug testing and background checks.
Once hired, it is impossible to overstate the critical role that training plays in developing and sustaining the world’s safest vehicle operators. That’s why in 2006 we launched the Operator Development Program™ for our drivers of bus, BRT, paratransit and shuttle services. Developed by Avatar Systems, the industry-leader in training development, this powerful curriculum-based program comprises 120 hours of classroom and behind-the-wheel training, teaching all the essential skills to enable operators to do their job at the highest level of safety and competence. The program took 16 months to develop and builds upon the best practices from Veolia locations around the world.
Facilitated by a well-trained safety manager, the program uses 22 DVDs explicitly training operators in the “Veolia Way” for every aspect of safe driving. The videos are not lectures, but instead participatory, engaging sessions that include extensive materials for trainers (discussion guides, facilitators guides, etc.), a detailed instructor’s manual, and operator workbooks for practice and comprehension. Quizzes and tests are used to document performance and learning.
Some of the key topics in our driver training include:
The Operator Development Program integrates classroom courses, closed-courses and behind-the-wheel training modules. Each operator spends 40 hours in the classroom, 10 hours in a closed course and 70 hours behind the wheel. There are 33 performance standards operators must meet. The training alternates between academic knowledge and practicing skills, often hour by hour. Our emphasis is on modeling sound behaviors, practice and coaching. This program can also be adapted to include the training requirements of our Transit Authority clients.
For operators that have already completed the initial 120 hours of training, we conduct regular safety training meetings and organize our people into Safety Committees. In many locations we have reward and recognition programs designed to reinforce our message and our culture of safety.