34. Driving University of Alberta vehicles

EAS Policy for Vehicle Use and Driver Requirements

EAS staff, students, volunteers and visitors must comply with the University of Alberta vehicle Use and Driver Requirements policies, procedures and recommendations when using vehicle pool, leased, rental or privately owned vehicles while conducting University business.

New Regulations

All University personnel need to familiarize themselves with the University’s Vehicle Use and Driver Requirements. The U of A has taken steps to reduce the payouts by our insurance provider of third party automobile liability insurance because the U of A’s risk status changed. As a consequence the U of A has had to enact strict Policies and Procedures for driving University Vehicles, rental or owned vehicles while on University business.

New drivers are required to attend a defensive driver’s course (DDC) and undergo a practical driver’s evaluation (DEC). The cost of the both courses is now covered by Risk Management and Fleet Safety for U of A personnel who require the use of vehicles while on University business.

U of A Vehicle Driving Requirements

In order to become an authorized driver of University vehicles, rental or leased vehicles all faculty, staff, students and volunteers must:

  • Possess a valid Canadian or US driver’s license
  • Must be 19 years of age to drive a University Vehicle, rental or leased vehicle. (Minimum age to drive a 15 passenger van is 21 years and must possess a Class 4 License.)
  • Possess a driver’s abstract with fewer than Five (5) demerits or 3 moving violation for new drivers. Existing drivers may not have any more than six (6) demerits or 3 moving violations.
  • Successfully complete a defensive driving course (DDC), or, have completed a DDC within the past 2 years from a certified provider.
  • Successfully complete a driver’s evaluation course (DEC), conducted at the University.

Contact Kenji Kinoshita, University Fleet Officer, 780-492-1233 (Kenji.Kinoshita@ualberta.ca) to register for either of these courses.  Here is the link to the U-Drive site for more complete information.

Driver Information and Consent to Obtain Driver Abstract

All employees/students/volunteers that are required to drive as either permanent, seasonal or casual drivers of University vehicles must complete a Driver Information and Consent form. This form gives the University permission to obtain your driver abstract and that along with the information on the form allows the University to assess whether driving privileges are to be granted. If the person to drive is under the age of 21, there is a supplemental form that must be filled out in prior to Vehicle Pool obtaining an abstract. Approval for drivers under the age of 21 is determined on a case by case basis.

Driving your own vehicle while on University Business:

If you wish to drive your own vehicle while conducting University business, you can, without taking the DDC or DEC courses and have more than six (6) demerits on your license but you are not covered by University insurance. It is recommended that you have both the DDC and DEC if you are using your own vehicle for University business.

Be aware that there are insurance related issues at stake. You are advised to contact your insurance company regarding use of your vehicle for business purposes or transporting business related equipment.

The University recommends that if you are using personal vehicles for University business and especially if you are transporting students for any reason that you:

  • Purchase automobile insurance that covers driving for business
  • Purchase adequate coverage for liability no less than one million dollars or more depending on the circumstance.
  • Have regular vehicle maintenance and inspections performed on your vehicle by a licensed mechanic.

If you have an accident while driving your personal vehicle on University business; the cost of the incurred expenses, including any litigation costs that could result, will not be covered by the University of Alberta or the Department of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences.

Responsibility for Deductible Charges while driving a University Vehicle

Deductible charges will be charged back to the research grants of the responsible driver or supervisor in the case of graduate students. The deductible for all third party incidents/accidents is $2500 where the U of A driver is deemed at fault. In cases of an internal incident/accident where only a U of A vehicle is involved the deductible is $500.

Policy on Alcohol/Drugs and Vehicle Use

  • Drivers cannot operate a U of A vehicle, leased/rented or owned, under any circumstances and consume alcohol.
  • Drivers cannot operate a University vehicle, leased/rented or owned, within ten (10) hours of having consumed an alcoholic beverage.
  • Alcohol for consumption cannot be transported in U of A vehicles owned/rented or leased. Alcohols such as Ethanol or Methanol to be used in experiments can and will be allowed to be transported. (TDG laws must be followed if you transport controlled products.)
  • Illegal drugs cannot be transported in U of A vehicles owned/rented or leased.
  • Care should be taken when consuming prescription drugs when you are required to drive.
  • Any fines or penalties imposed by law on any driver relating to drugs and alcohol will be the responsibility of the person operating the vehicle. Any traffic violation is the responsibility of the driver.
  • Vehicle Management and Driver Safety Program Manual link

The EAS Safety Site/Driving University Vehicles has more complete information and links to the University web-site if you need more information. Links are not provided on the EAS Safety Training Program; this program is intended for information only.