Policy 5-303

  1. Title

    Policy 5-303 Use of University-Owned Vehicles

  2. Policy

    The following policy will govern the assignment and use of university owned vehicles:

    1. Motor vehicles owned by the State of Texas and operated by The University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) will be used solely for official business. Official business is defined as use that supports and provides a direct benefit to the institution. The University of Texas at Arlington accepts no liability when one of its vehicles is being used in violation of this policy.
    2. Vehicles will not be used for travel to and from personal residences, nor will they be used to transport the personal effects of staff or faculty members to and from the campus. If a university owned vehicle is to be used outside the local area for official travel an employee may be authorized by a department head to keep the vehicle at a residence the night before travel begins and the night of return. The UTA Police Department will follow departmental procedures for use of PD vehicles.

      Exception: During inclement weather, particularly relating to severe storms, snow, and ice conditions, the Office of Facilities Management (OFM) may deploy a limited number of vehicles appropriate for inclement weather, to transport staff workers who live within a reasonable distance from campus, and are unable to drive their own vehicles, for the purpose of performing services to re­open the campus. Authority for this decision rests with the Assistant Vice President of OFM, and OFM directors.

    3. The operators of university owned vehicles must hold, at their expense, an appropriate operator's license for the type of vehicle operated.
    4. Traffic violations/fines received by an operator/driver are the operator's/driver’s responsibility, and will not be paid by UTA.
    5. Operators of university-owned vehicles must be authorized by the University to operate the vehicle.
    6. The responsibilities of the head of department/supervisor are to:
      1. Indicate to Human Resources when making requests for new employees, or existing employees moving to a new position, that the position will or could require driving university-owned vehicles.
      2. Ensure that all employees who are required to operate university owned vehicles are fully informed of their personal responsibility and liability for their negligent operation.
      3. Ensure that persons they assign to operate UTA vehicles are legally licensed.
      4. Ensure that all employees who are required to operate university owned vehicles are on the department's authorized drivers list maintained by the UTA Environmental Health & Safety Office (“EH&S”).
      5. Ensure that EH&S is advised of necessary employee changes to the department's list of authorized drivers.
      6. Advise employees of what actions to take or to report vehicle problems to UTA OFM.
      7. Ensure each University vehicle belonging to the department is equipped with a minimum of two 18-inch orange traffic safety cones to comply Section G. of this policy
    7. The responsibilities of the driver of university owned vehicles are to:
      1. Possess and maintain a valid driver’s license.
      2. Obey all local, state and federal laws.
      3. Use reasonable care in operating and maintaining the vehicle.
      4. Adhere to the safe backing procedures listed below.
        1. When parking a university-owned vehicle the licensed driver shall place a safety cone at the rear and front of the parked vehicle, unless they are parked in a parking lot and are able to leave the parking space without backing.
        2. When parking along a roadway, drivers shall place the safety cones on the street side of the vehicle near the front and rear of the vehicle. Ensure the cones are not placed anywhere in the roadway.
        3. Prior to re-entering the vehicle to leave the parked location, drivers shall completely walk around the vehicle, picking up the cones, checking for other vehicles, obstacles, and any persons in the area.
        4. The only exception to this section is for police officers, public safety officers (PSOs), or EH&S and OFM personnel who are responding to an emergency call.
      5. Secure and lock vehicle when it is unattended.
      6. Promptly report vehicle malfunctions or maintenance needs to the OFM Automotive Shop.
      7. Obtain receipts for all reimbursable purchases. Show the vehicle license plate number on the receipt with a description and cost of each item. Receipts must be turned into the OFM Automotive Shop.
      8. In the case of vehicle failure, notify your immediate supervisor who will advise you of actions to take or who will report the problem to OFM (817-272-2000). The OFM Automotive Shop has 24 hour service.
    8. If involved in an accident while operating a UTA vehicle take the following actions:
      1. Insure that injured persons receive medical attention
      2. Warn other motorists of the accident site if possible.
      3. If on campus notify UTA PD. If off campus, notify local law enforcement agency(s), as appropriate.
      4. If there are any injuries contact or request others to contact UTA Police at (817) 272-3381.
      5. Attempt to get the names, addresses and phone numbers of witnesses.
      6. Get the name, phone number, and address of the other party and the other party's insurance company and/or agent.
      7. Notify your supervisor as soon as possible after the accident regardless of the extent of damage
      8. Fill out an accident form (located in the vehicle glove compartment).
      9. Advise other parties that the state vehicle you are driving is insured and our adjusting company will contact them as appropriate. Their contact at UTA is the EH&S Office (817) 272-2185.
      10. Do not admit that the accident was your fault or that your actions may have contributed to the accident.
      11. Do not state or imply that UTA will pay for damages. UTA’s insurance carrier will make that determination.
  3. Definitions

    N/A

  4. Relevant Federal State Statutes

    Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Section 101.027

    Texas Government Code Section 612.002

  5. Relevant UT System and Institutional Policies, Procedures, and Forms

    UTA Procedure 5-13 Vehicle Repair

    UTA Procedure 6-2 Accidents (Motor Vehicle Collisions)

    UTA Procedure 6-13 Service Vehicle Operation on Campus

    UTA Procedure 8-6 Driving Records/Training

    UT System Policy 157 Automobile Insurance Coverage for Officers and Employees and General Requirements for the Use of Vehicles

  6. Who Should Know

    All UTA employees who wish to or are required to drive university-owned vehicles as part of their job description or other university responsibilities.

  7. UT Arlington Officer(s) Responsible for Policy

    Office of Facilities Management.

  8. Dates Approved or Amended

    06/29/2016

    9/15/2018

  9. Contact Information

    All questions regarding this policy should be directed to the Office of Facilities Management.