Trucks hauling heavy cargo across long distances with sleep-deprived drivers at the wheel are often accidents waiting to happen.
So, while most companies stick to building schools and toilets or opening vocational training centres under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Rules that took effect on 1 April 2014, Agarwal Packers and Movers Ltd is setting up driver assistance centres for these tired men.
At Agarwal Packers and Movers’s Driver Seva Kendras, truck drivers can freshen up and sleep for free, as well as get subsidized food and repair work for their vehicles.
According to the logistics firm, most road accidents involving truck drivers are due to lack of sleep. With its own fleet of 1,000 trucks and over 1,200 drivers, the firm set up its first centre Dudhu in Rajasthan on National Highway 8.
Operations and maintenance of the centre costs Rs8-10 lakh per month.
The firm has used part of its CSR funds, (total amounting to Rs1.28 crore in FY16 and Rs1.1 crore in FY15) to provide an average of about six hours of sleep for 500 drivers every day. The second centre is scheduled to open in January at Malkapur in Maharashtra.