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Vehicle Use Policy

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Clarkson’s Vehicle-Usage Policy

University Drivers Application (.pdf document)

Clarkson's Vehicle-Usage Policy (.pdf document)

Introduction

Qualified Clarkson University employees and students have several options for meeting their business and/or educational transportation needs.  These options include: the use of a Clarkson University fleet vehicle, a commercial rental vehicle, or personal vehicle.  No matter which option is selected, students and personnel will be required to adhere to Clarkson’s Vehicle-Usage Policy.


In order to drive a university vehicle, you must become University Certified.  To learn about this process, follow the link below.

University Drivers Application 


Clarkson University employees, officers, and agents are provided with automobile insurance protection while using a University vehicle or renting a vehicle from a rental company while on University business.  Authorized students are provided with insurance coverage for using vehicles for educational purposes.  The department’s supervisor or student advisors involved with this travel in conjunction with the Risk Manager have the responsibility to monitor the use of the vehicle so as to minimize risks and for safety purposes.  This exposure can, most effectively, be controlled through the driver approval and authorization process.


Vehicle use entails a wide variety of issues including injury, property damage, and worker’s compensation.  Therefore, the exposures created by this driving must be controlled since the losses can be extreme.

The issues in this Vehicle-Usage Policy include: driver authorization; vehicle restrictions; drivers with out-of-state driver’s licenses; driving in other states; international drivers and vehicle use in Canada; the use of personal vehicles for University business and accident reporting.

II.        Components of Clarkson University Driver Safety Program
III.       Driver Authorization
IV.       Vehicle Restrictions
V.         Vehicle Use
VI.        Approval of Sponsored Events Both On and Off University Property
VII.      Revocation of Authorization to Use University Vehicles
VIII.    Drivers with Out-of-State Driver’s Licenses
IX.       Driving Clarkson Vehicles in Other States
X.         International Faculty, Staff and Students
XI.       The Use of University Vehicles in Canada
XIII.    Use of University Vehicle for University Business
XIV.     Passengers in University Vehicles
XV.      Accident Reporting

II.  Components of Clarkson University Driver Safety Program

The Clarkson University’s Vehicle-Usage Policy shall be followed by all drivers and shall form the basis for Clarkson’s Driver Safety Program.  After January 1, 2004, only students who have completed the online computer driver safety-training program and who have been authorized by their supervisor shall operate vehicles on University business.  Individuals shall operate only those vehicles for which they are licensed.  The Driver Safety Program applies to all student drivers on university business using leased or rented vehicles, and university vehicles.  There is a special policy for unlicensed motor vehicles e.g., snow mobiles, four wheelers, etc.  Please check with advisors of special programs when using unlicensed motorized vehicles.

III.  Driver Authorization


The purpose of this section is to provide driving requirements necessary for an employee, student, or volunteer to be authorized to use a Clarkson vehicle or lease a vehicle while on University business or for student educational purposes.  These regulations will give Clarkson University the ability to evaluate and authorize drivers with the goal of assuring driver safety.  This policy applies to anyone driving on University business, including times when the University rents or leases vehicles.

Use of Clarkson University vehicles is limited to Clarkson University drivers with a valid driver’s license and two years of licensed driving experience with an acceptable driving record.  Drivers must be at least 19 years of age to use Clarkson vehicles or lease vehicles.  Exceptions may be made for University students and other agents of the University when their use is deemed to be in the interest of the University.  However, any exception must be approved either by the Risk Manager or the Senior Vice President of Finance and Administration.  Clarkson University requires that drivers are subject to the same criteria as students and volunteers.  If supervisors are aware of any driver with health or related physical problems that may affect driving safety, authorization should be denied to this individual.

It is the responsibility of the University Risk Management to monitor Clarkson University driver’s use of vehicles as abiding by this vehicle policy.

It is a requirement that all drivers must sign a Vehicle-Use Agreement Form (attached Exhibit I), which signifies that the driver has read and understands Clarkson’s the Vehicle-Usage Policy.  The Driver Information Form, Exhibit 2, also contains space for the driver’s license number and it informs the driver of the obligation to reveal any changes in the status of their license.  This information allows the University’s Risk Manager to check the individual’s driving record and, based on their record, determine if they can be authorized to use or lease a vehicle.  Students are expected to provide to the University’s Risk Manager an authorized driving record, which they can obtain from their state’s Motor Vehicle Department.  Final authorization for student drivers is dependent on completion of the computer-based driver safety course overseen by the University’s Risk Manager.

Before A Vehicle Can Be Used By Any Clarkson University Driver The Following Is Required:

  1.   The Vehicle-Use Agreement form must be completed before a decision will be made on authorization of vehicle use.
  2.   Clarkson University drivers will only be authorized to use Clarkson University vehicles or lease a vehicle while they are on University business.  Automobile insurance will be provided to vehicle drivers on authorized business or student authorized trips.
  3.   All approved drivers must have a valid current driver’s license.
  4.   Automatic denial of vehicle use will occur if any one of the following conditions exists:
    a.  The driver has six points on their driving record within eighteen months at the time the motor-vehicle usage is requested;
    b.  Frequency of moving violations and/or at fault accidents of more than one within eighteen months; (These guidelines apply no matter what state the violation        occurred in.)
    c.  Violations within the past 12 months for any of the following:
    •   Drunken driving
    •   Driving under the influence of drugs
    •   Reckless driving
    d.  Driver’s experience – Denial will also occur when someone has:
    •   Less than two years licensed driving experience.  (Note: Having a learner’s permit does not apply toward this requirement).
    •   A reinstated license in effect for less than one year after revocation.


Drivers with occupational permits cannot drive or lease a vehicle while on University business.

It is important to note that these requirements apply to all employees and students.  Requests for exceptions for employees who are required to operate a University vehicle as part of their job should be referred to the University’s Risk Management Office; which will in turn, work with the appropriate director, dean, Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration and/or the Human Resources Department to resolve the situation.

IV.  Vehicle Restrictions

Where necessary, mini-vans or sports-utility vehicles should be used.  The use of large passenger vans is prohibited.  No trailers are to be used by faculty, staff or students unless authorized by the Risk Manager of Clarkson University.

V.  Vehicle Use

Vehicle use should only be given for official University business or authorized educational purposes.

No individuals shall abuse or misuse a University vehicle.  Persons using a Clarkson vehicle are responsible for safety, careful operation of a University vehicle, and for observing all laws and directives.  University vehicles should be used for the purpose for which they are intended (i.e. no sedans nor vans should be used for, or towing for, off road purposes.)

VI.  Approval of Sponsored Events Both On and Off University Property

When student events other than those associated with an academic course are planned for students either by a Clarkson department or a CUSA-recognized club or organization, an approval process must be followed.  This approval process is required for competitions in which clubs or organizations might participate, with the exception of intercollegiate varsity athletic competitions or SPEED programs.  The SPEED director must approve all SPEED events (Exhibit III) and transportation for all intercollegiate sporting events will be handled by the Athletic Department.  The approval process is coordinated through the Office of the Dean of Students.  Notification to that office about proposed events should be made in a timely enough manner to permit an approval decision to be rendered prior to publicizing the event to the campus/or public.  After approval by the Dean of Students an approval will be given for the use of a vehicle.  The attached Event Registration and Approval Form (Exhibit IV) is required to be completed and reviewed by the Dean of Students before any travel arrangements can be made.

Note: the Director of the SPEED Program approves all vehicles being used for the SPEED Program.

VII.  Revocation of Authorization to Use University Vehicles

  1. A Clarkson University driver who receives a traffic citation for driving under the influence of liquor or drugs is subject to the revocation or suspension of his or her University driving privileges.
  2. The failure to obey any applicable traffic laws while driving or occupying a vehicle may result in suspension or revocation of their University driving privileges.
  3. Drivers of University owned, leased, rented or loaned vehicles are required to observe all city, county, state and country traffic regulations, and are personally responsible for any citations or fines.

VIII.   Drivers with Out-of-State Driver’s Licenses

Any driver who has an out of state driver’s license and is requesting approval to drive a Clarkson University vehicle must attach a completed certified statement of Driving Record from the state in which they are licensed.  This must be done prior to their submission of the Vehicle-Use Agreement.  This statement must list any moving violations and describe any accidents they have been involved in during the past three years.  This also applies to drivers who have been licensed elsewhere, but have a New York State driver’s license less than three years.

IX.  Driving Clarkson Vehicles in Other States

Authorized drivers who take a University vehicle into another state should be aware that many states require proof of insurance in the event of an accident or traffic violation.  The proof of insurance card should be in the glove compartment of the vehicle.  Please verify that this certification is with the vehicle before the start of the trip.

X.  International Faculty, Staff and Students

As requested by New York State, all international drivers need a valid international drivers license or international permit.  Similarly, international faculty, staff and students can be approved to drive University vehicles if they have a valid international driving permit and are expected to obtain a New York driver’s license within a year of when they began their affiliation with Clarkson (required by New York State Motor Vehicle Department).  The procedures to follow when approving a driver from a foreign country are the same as those for drivers with a license from other states with authorization expiring at the end of a year unless a New York driver’s license is obtained or at the time a driver’s license expires.

XI.  The Use of University Vehicles in Canada

Drivers should be authorized through the same procedure as described earlier.  In addition, when driving a University vehicle into Canada, a Canadian Automobile Liability Card must be carried at all times.  Although full-liability protection for authorized student purposes exists for drivers in Canada while acting within the scope of their assignment, these cards provide necessary proof of insurance as required by Canadian officials.  The Facilities and Services Department has placed Canadian Proof of Insurance cards in each of our vehicles.  These cards are located in the glove box in each vehicle.  It is advised that you check to see if the card is in the glove box before your departure to Canada.

Clarkson University staff or its employees driving vehicles owned or rented by employees of the University on business are covered by Clarkson’s automobile insurance policy, which includes collision.  When renting a vehicle from a reputable car rental agency all supplemental insurance should be declined.

XIII.  Use of University Vehicle for University Business


Clarkson University drivers driving vehicles owned or rented by employees of the University on business are covered by Clarkson’s automobile insurance policy, which includes collision.

XIV.  Passengers in University Vehicles


In general, non-employee and non-agent passengers are not allowed to ride in University-owned vehicles due to the additional liability.  Exceptions to this arise when transportation is necessary or convenient for individuals who are dealing directly with, or are involved in, University business. Providing transportation to hitchhikers is prohibited.

Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the use or occupancy of a University vehicle to provide assistance to any person, or the use or occupancy by private sector mechanics, or repair personnel in the course of performing required maintenance or repairs.

XV.  Accident Reporting

 
The following should occur when a driver is involved in an accident.  An accident is defined as any incident in which the vehicle comes in contact with another vehicle, person, object or animal, which results in death, personal injury, property damage, regardless of who was injured or what was damaged, where it occurred or who was responsible.

  1. All accidents shall be reported to the Risk Management Department as soon as possible or no later than 24 hours after the accident (268-7722) – then fill out the Accident Information form (Exhibit IV) which can be found in the glove compartment of the vehicle you are driving)
  2. A driver involved in an accident is responsible to report this accident to their immediate supervisor.
  3. The involved driver, if physically able, shall call the police and make a report.  The University driver shall also request that all parties and properties concerned remain at the scene of the accident until a law enforcement representative has released them.
  4. Each University driver should refrain from making statements regarding the accident with anyone other than the investigating officer, Clarkson’s officials, and Clarkson’s insurance investigator.  Statements shall be confined to factual observations.     
  5. Failure of a driver to report any accident may be cause for disciplinary action, up to and including suspension of driving privileges.  All accidents will be subject to review by the Safety Committee comprised of the Director of Risk Management, Safety Manager and Director of Facilities and Services (and the individuals department head involved in the accident).  If the University driver is found to be at fault the department in question will be charged all unrecoverable costs related the accident, including insurance deductibles.  The driver at fault could receive penalties up to and including suspension of the privilege of driving University vehicles.
Driving