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Lack of checks 'puts lives at risk'

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Public sector bosses' failure to carry out basic safety checks on employees' cars is putting the lives of their staff at risk, according to new research.

Trade magazine Fleet News carried out the survey and discovered that tens of thousands of county council employees in England are using their own vehicles for work purposes even though employers have not carried out even the most basic of checks.

Even more worryingly, more than half of the 30 councils quizzed did not even have a policy for checking that employees' cars had valid MoT certificates before they are used for council work. Fewer than half require employees to provide documentary evidence that they have business class insurance.

The councils in question employ 572,000 people between them with more than 140,000 using their own, rather than company cars. Not one of the councils inspect those vehicles for safety.

Councils are therefore operating against Government advice and are putting themselves at risk of Corporate Manslaughter charges should one of their employees cause a death while driving their own car for work.

© Press Association 2009