Driver Safety

Risk Services is committed to providing a comprehensive safe driving program for UC Santa Cruz faculty, staff and student employees. The goals of the Driver Safety Program are to increase awareness of guidelines for the safe use of University vehicles, and to provide a safe driving environment.

Driver Safety Training


Fleet and Transit sponsors a “Safe Driver” Awareness Program for employees who drive a University vehicle in order to perform their job duties. This program educates drivers on defensive driving techniques, consequences of poor driving habits, and the role of individual driver behavior. We are committed to providing safe driving practices and outreach programs to mitigate risk, lower the frequency of vehicular collisions, and reduce campus liability.

SmithSystem Program

smithsystem.webp SmithSystem is the driver training program used to instruct University drivers on defensive driving best practices and collision avoidance. SmithSystem helps drivers see, think and react to driving challenges in different driving situations and vehicle types.

Who should participate?

While we strongly encourage all classification of drivers to participate in Instructor-led training, we have an online version of the class that semi-frequent or occasional drivers can complete directly on their desktop. In order to determine the best training option for your drivers, please refer to the table below:

  • Occupational Driver (drives daily, or more than 25 hours per month)
  • Frequent Driver (drives from 10 to 25 hours per month)
  • Semi-Frequent Driver (drives from 5 to 10 hours per month)
  • Occasional Driver (drives less than 5 hours per month)

Training Options

For Instructor-led and online courses, please contact us.

*Employees who take the online training are required to pass the review quiz with a 100% score in order to complete the course. System requirements: Internet Explorer must be used for all online courses.

Basic Driver Training Forward Motion/Backing
Refresher Training
Post-Collision Training
In-Vehicle Training

Additional Info

  • SmithSystem 5 Keys to Safety
  • Smith System Online Course Overview
  • Driver Safety Training Coordinator (DSTC) User Guide

DMV Pull Notice Program

The University, an employer of drivers, participates in the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Employer Pull Notice System (EPN), which provides employers and regulatory agencies with a means of promoting driver safety through the ongoing review of driver records. The EPN program allows an organization to monitor the California Driver License records of employees who drive on the organization's behalf. An employee whose license has had a disqualifying action (suspension or revocation of license or certificate) by the DMV cannot be employed as a driver. Employees considered by the University to have a poor driving record after being evaluated to be a 'negligent' operator by the DMV (based on violation point count) shall not be employed as drivers.

The program assists the employer in identifying a driver:

  • who has been convicted of a driving offense,
  • who is accumulating a negligent operator's record,
  • whose license has been suspended or revoked,
  • who has had any other actions taken against their driving privileges or certificate.

Employee records are reviewed as received from the DMV and copies are forwarded to Campus Human Resources for appropriate personnel actions related to the disposition of driving privileges. Campus departments will be responsible to add new employees and delete employees when they leave the University.

This monitoring will help to improve campus safety by revealing problem drivers or driving behavior. Each campus driver's license validity can be verified and it will help to minimize your liability as an employer.

Drug and Alcohol Testing

Fleet and Transit is committed to providing safe transportation, ensuring a safe working environment for all employees, and creating a workplace environment free from the adverse effects of drug and alcohol substance abuse or misuse.

In accordance with Federal Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations, Fleet and Transit administers a Drug and Alcohol Testing program for commercial drivers performing designated safety-sensitive functions. Testing for the illegal use of alcohol and controlled substances is required for all DOT-covered drivers and applicants for these positions. Non-DOT drivers are also included in this program. See also: University of California Policy on Substance Abuse(link is external).

The following tests are performed:

Pre-Employment Testing Drug
Random Testing Drug and Alcohol
Post-Accident Testing Drug and Alcohol
Reasonable Cause Drug and Alcohol
Return to Duty Drug and Alcohol

Fleet Services and Transportation utilize WorkforceQA for selection, testing and reporting of drug & alcohol tests for all covered employees.

All tests are conducted at the following certified collection sites:

Doctors on Duty - Santa Cruz
615 Ocean St, Santa Cruz, CA, 95060
Phone # 831-425-7991
Fax # 831-425-7346
Hours: Mon - Fri 8am to 6pm, Sat and Sun 8am - 2pm 

Doctors on Duty - Watsonville
1505 Main St, Watsonville, CA, 95076
Phone # 831-722-1444
Fax # 831-722-4414
Hours: Mon - Fri 8am to 6pm, Sat and Sun 8am - 2pm

Campus departments will be recharged for all costs associated with testing and administration of the program.

For Questions

Contact Veronica Febonio at or 831-502-0054.