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February 21, 2008

Motor pool checking driving records

Asking Pitt to give you the car keys has become a bit tougher recently. Speed demons or those who drink and drive may find themselves on the motor pool’s no-drive list.

A recent change in policy aimed at reducing the University’s liability now requires Pitt employees and students who want to use a motor pool vehicle to authorize a review of their driving records.

Pitt is using an online service that pulls driving records from motor vehicle departments in Pennsylvania, or other states for drivers licensed elsewhere.

Those with serious violations on their driving record — DUI, driving with a suspended license or speeding more than 20 miles per hour over the posted limit, for example — will be recommended for denial, Pitt associate director of News John Fedele said. Drivers who are rejected are informed as to the reason, he said. The policy is being fine-tuned to determine how frequently to review drivers’ records, and to determine the exact threshold for denial, Fedele said.

The change, adopted following an October 2007 meeting between the motor pool and Risk Management, was not prompted by any specific incident, but as part of an evaluation of procedures and industry best practices, Fedele said.

Since the policy took effect, fewer than five people have been denied the use of University vehicles, he said.

Pitt’s 33 motor pool fleet vehicles were rented for a total of 4,180 days by 1,507 different drivers during fiscal year 2007.

—Kimberly K. Barlow

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