Driving for the College

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About the Program

Five Colleges Office of Risk Management purchases a commercial auto liability insurance policy for all drivers of Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, Smith and Five Colleges, Inc. [collectively referred to hereafter as Five College] owned, leased or rented vehicles for College business. The credentialing policy also pertains to all drivers of motorized equipment and/or unregistered equipment owned by the College. UMass is not included in this program. In addition, drivers using personal vehicles in the performance of job related tasks may be covered for their liability "excess" of their own insurance. (There is no Five College coverage available for physical damage to personal vehicles.) Our insurer has strict underwriting regulations and requires each of the Colleges to "credential" all drivers in order to receive the benefits of the insurance policy. Please Note: Commuting to work is not considered "driving on college business".

Only authorized credentialed drivers may operate your school's owned vehicles or rent vehicles under the auspices of the College. Drivers who use their personal vehicle for employment related tasks still ned to complete their driver credentials even though their insurance will be considered primary should an accident occur (see our recommendations regarding driving personal vehicles under the quick links above). The insurance company and the College reserve the right to decline to authorize any driver on the basis of an individual's traffic violation history or accident history.

Driver minimum requirements are:

  1. Drivers must have a valid license issued from the US or US territories.
  2. Drivers must be at least 18 years old
  3. Drivers must have at least one year of driving experience, either in the US or internationally. (Individual Colleges may require more experience.)
  4. Drivers must be a student or employee of Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke or Smith College; an employee of Five Colleges, Inc.; an authorized volunteer or authorized by the director of conference/events services.
  5. Drivers must be Credentialed (see below).
  6. Drivers may not have had:
    1. More than 2 at-fault accidents in past 3 years
    2. Any Type A violations in past 3 years
    3. Any combination of three or more accidents and Type B violations in the past 3 years.

The Colleges reserve the right to (1) remove or deny driving privileges from any student or employee for accidents or violations (including violations of the Driver Agreement) involving College owned or rented vehicles, or (2) to use guidelines that are stricter than the insurance company's in deciding to authorize or de-credential drivers. The Colleges may, at their sole discretion, allow an employee who drives as a condition of employment to attend a College approved driver safety training program in lieu of losing driving privileges as a result of having had a combination of three or more accidents and/or Type B violations in the past three years. This does not apply to any Type A violations.


Type A Violations
  • DUI / drugs or alcohol
  • Negligent homicide
  • Use of auto in commission of a felony
  • Aggravated assault w/vehicle
  • Operating w/o license
  • Reckless driving
  • Speed contest
  • Hit & Run
  • Leaving the scene
  • School bus stopping flag violations (or similar)
Type B Violations
  • all moving violations not Type A

Driver Agreement to Terms, Conditions, Rules and Regulations

The colleges have adopted a basic set of safety rules which all drivers must agree to as part of the credentialing process. Drivers are expected to drive safely at all times. Other rules listed on the credentialing form include administrative rules.

Driving a College vehicle, rented vehicles, a personal vehicle or other vehicles on behalf of the College is a privilege, not a right. The safety of passengers, pedestrians and others is every driver's highest priority. The following rules are included by reference on the credentialing form and, by submitting credentials each driver agrees to abide by the following terms, conditions, and rules and regulations.

Drivers will:

  1. Have and carry a valid driver's license while driving.
  2. Adhere to the following terms of use:
    1. Use College vehicles for authorized business only.
    2. Not permit any unauthorized person to drive the vehicle. Unauthorized drivers may be personally liable for any accident or loss.
    3. Operate the College vehicle in accordance with College regulations, as may be provided in writing or verbally, and know and observe all applicable traffic laws, ordinances and regulations.
    4. Not transport unauthorized passengers such as hitchhikers. Not transport any alcohol (unless specifically permitted, e.g., dining or conference services), drugs, or other contraband in any College vehicle.
    5. Not drive the vehicle "off road" unless it is appropriate and authorized for that use.
  3. Follow these minimum safety requirements:
    1. Use seat belts or other available occupant restraints and require all occupants to use seat belts or occupant restraints, in accordance with state laws and not operate the vehicle unless all occupants are wearing the appropriate restraints. Never permit total occupancy to exceed the number of seat belts.
    2. Use safe driving principles, practices and techniques at all times.
    3. Not drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Not drive if using a medication that impairs judgment, reflexes or alertness.
    4. Turn the vehicle off, remove the keys, and lock the vehicle when it is left unattended.
    5. Not drive the vehicle at speeds that are inappropriate for road conditions.
    6. Not use a cell phone (including "hands free" cell phones, texting, PDAs, computers or any other device)when the vehicle is moving or engage in other distracting behavior. If the driver must make or take a call or text message, the vehicle must be safely stopped and secured (parked), before using a cell phone.
    7. Before leaving the parking area or garage, particularly with a rental vehicle or a vehicle that driver does not ordinarily drive, be reasonably satisfied that the following parts and components are in good working order. This includes, but is not limited too:
      • Service Brakes
      • Parking Brake
      • Steering Mechanism
      • Lights/Reflector Devices
      • Tires/Wheels
      • Horn
      • Windshield Wipers/Washers
      • Rear-Vision Mirrors
      • Coupling Devices (if applicable)
    8. Report any defects immediately to the vehicle coordinator to determine if the vehicle is safe to operate.
  4. Perform required administrative responsibilites:
    1. Report all accidents or traffic violations involving a College vehicle or while driving on College business to the vehicle coordinator and other offices as directed, according to College policy.
    2. Immediately report any changes in license status (such as points, suspension or revocation) and any other at-fault accidents that occur whether or not the accident or violation occurred while driving on College business to the Risk Management Office, and accept suspension of driving privileges if applicable.
    3. Personally assume responsibility for any and all fines or traffic violations associated with use of a College vehicle or privately-owned vehicle used on College business.
    4. Agree and accept that failure to follow driving rules may result in temporary or permanent suspension of driving privileges, or have more serious consequences.

College policies and procedures for vehicle use and what to do in case of an accident are on the following web sites: Auto Accident Information and Auto Accidents, Emergencies/Claims.

Please note: Departments will be responsible for deductibles incurred for "at-fault" accidents by department members. An "at-fault" or surchargable accident or other violations of this agreement may result in revocation of driving privileges or other disciplinary action.

PRINT VERSION of Driver Agreement to Terms, Conditions, Rules and Regulations.

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