Commercial truck drivers across South Africa recently participated in Engen’s annual Driver Wellness programme, receiving over a thousand free voluntary health screenings.
In collaboration with Trucking Wellness, an initiative of the National Bargaining Council for the Road Freight and Logistics Industry (NBCRFLI), 1 188 screenings took place in October at 20 locations across seven provinces in South Africa.
Upon completion of the screenings, drivers were presented with complimentary toiletry bags as a gesture of appreciation.
Expressing gratitude, drivers commended Engen for its commitment to their health and safety, with many adjusting their routes to prioritize these essential health checks, recognizing the significance of knowing their health status.
Dr. James Xolani Nyawera, Engen’s Manager of Transformation and Stakeholder Engagement, emphasized that the primary objective of Engen Driver Wellness is to enhance driver health and overall road safety.
Screenings, which were conducted by qualified nurses and counsellors, included blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, malaria, TB and STI screenings, as well as BMI (Body Mass Index), and HIV/AIDS testing.
Additionally, Trucking Wellness provided support for the treatment, care, and management of primary healthcare issues identified during the screenings.
In alignment with the commitment to safer roads, Engen collaborated with key stakeholders in the transport industry, including MAN, Hollard Trucking, and Guud, all joining forces with Engen to promote driver wellness.
The Shayela bus from the Guud program visited participating sites, offering assistance to drivers with their Professional Driving Permit (PrDP) documentation and optometry checkups.
Guud reported that 20% of all road accidents in the country are attributed to factors such as poor vision, lack of concentration, fatigue, and dizzy spells. Undiagnosed medical conditions further contribute to these risks, and limited access to healthcare impedes commercial drivers from obtaining necessary medical assistance.
Engen’s Commercial Marketing and Business Development Manager, Adnaan Emeran says for the past ten years, the Engen Driver Wellness Programme has sought to improve occupational health and wellness among long-distance truck drivers by providing free health screenings, healthy lifestyle advice and consultations where necessary.
To ensure ongoing access to screenings, Engen has established six permanent clinics at strategic locations
- Beaufort West Truck Stop
- Musina Gateway Truck Stop
- Harrismith Highway Junction Truck Stop
- PE Gone South Truck Stop
- East London Kempston Truck Stop
- Kokstad Truck Stop
“Engen’s relationship with the transport fraternity stretches back many decades. We have enormous respect for an industry that is a crucial cog in helping to keep the wheels of South Africa’s economy turning,” added Nyawara.
Commented Emeran: “Truck drivers are the true heroes on our highways. Given the long hours many truck drivers spend on the road, hauling cargo across the African continent and the stresses associated with the job, we believe that interventions such as Engen Driver Wellness provides a critical pillar of support in making a difference to both Fleet owners and truck operators.”