The Whys and Hows of Corrective Action Training for Drivers

Jill Schultz, Sr. Editor - Transportation Safety 

May 26, 2021

Corrective action training, sometimes referred to as remedial training, is conducted in response to an accident, violation, or complaint. 

The goal of corrective action training is to address and correct an issue, problem, or bad habit when it first occurs and is minor in nature — before it escalates into something major that could lead to a serious accident and/or violation. 

Focus on the issue 

Corrective action training needs to be focused on the individual driver and the driver's specific problem or issue. 

For example, if a driver is involved in a fixed object accident involving turning, cosider conducting a targed session on cornering. 

Or, let's say you have a driver who has been cited on more than one occasion for violation of the 14-hour duty limit, but as no other hours-of-service issues. Providing training on everything related to hours-of-service compliance would be excessive and not necessary. The driver needs to focus on the specific issue — understanding and complying with the 14-hour rule. 

Implementing a program 

How do you successfully implement and administer a corrective action training program? 

First, you need to have an active monitoring program that identifies canidates subject to this type of training and the areas of safety and compliance that need attention. Citations, accidents, and insurance claims are all ways to identify drivers and the areas that may need reinforcement or correction. 

Once you have identified an issue, you need to select a means of instruction. The instruction should be focused on a specific issue and relatively brief (no more than 5 to 10 minutes in duration). Instruction should occur as soon as possible following the incident that triggered the need.

The goal is to send a message to your drivers that you are serious about safety and compliance and that correction is necessary. 

Once training is completed, continue to monitor the driver to verify that the corrective action training is working. This lets the driver know you are serious and provides you with proof that there is a change in behavior. This could prove vital if the driver is involved in a related accident or incident later on. 

Corrective action training and your company policy 

In many cases, training can correct an issue that a driver is dealing with. Keep in mind, though, in some cases, there is more to an issue than corrective action training can solve. 

Because of this corrective action training should be linked to your company's disciplinary policy. How you use corrective action training within your disciplinary policy is a business decision. It should work hand-in-hand with your other policies, any state labor laws, and contracts or agreements you have with your employees that may apply. 

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