Operations Guide

Travel Planning and Authorization


The review measures taken in the planning and authorization of automobile travel provide the best opportunity for management of certain travel risks. It is important that sound travel authorization procedures be established in each department to avoid costs and other losses associated with accidents. The following information is intended to assist in planning and authorizing University-related vehicle travel.
Management of automobile travel includes consideration of the following:
  • Purpose to be accomplished.
  • Cost and efficiency (practicality) of automobile mode.
  • Driver's competency and legitimacy.
  • Liabilities involved.
  • Life safety considerations in automobile condition and operations.
  • Insurance coverage.
The first two considerations, purpose and practicality, are subjective to the department involved. The remaining four considerations are addressed here.

Driving Record

The University's automobile liability insurance imposes a $50,000 deductible on any accident involving a University vehicle in which the driver had received a citation within the 12 months prior to the accident for any of the following reasons:
  1. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  2. Reckless driving.
This deduction is not operative if the driver has completed an approved Safe Driving Course subsequent to receiving the citation.
As any uninsured liability loss will be the department's responsibility, it is important that the person authorizing automobile travel determine the prospective driver's record through fleet operations to avoid this loss. 


In addition to a valid driver's license and appropriate driving record status, a University driver should be experienced and competent in the type of driving required.
Care should be extended in the selection of any driver to ascertain that she or he is physically and mentally capable of driving safely. Any faculty, staff or student may be a driver providing the requirements above have been met.

Driver's Training

All employees who operate University vehicles or Enterprise rental vehicles during University business as an essential function of their job, must complete the defensive driving course every two years.

These requirements are in accordance with State Administrative Rule R-37.


Drivers of University vehicles must posses a valid and appropriate license for the vehicle they will be driving.
Valid licenses for the State of Utah include:
  1. Valid licenses from any state of the USA.
  2. An international license. Valid out of country licenses plus the international license must be obtained in the resident country.
  3. Licenses from Canada and Mexico, but only for sixty days.
Students from other states are not required to obtain a Utah driver's license unless and until they take any action that constitutes residency, i.e., obtaining employment (including UVU employment), buying a residence or property, sending children to Utah schools, etc. Bona fide tourists from foreign countries have one year's grace from the above requirements unless they take action which changes that status, such as accepting employment or attending school anywhere in the U.S. Persons, other than bona fide tourists, in state for more than sixty days must obtain a Utah license.
A commercial Driver License is required for:
  1. A vehicle designed to transport more than 15 persons (including the driver).
  2. A single vehicle with a gross automobile weight rate (GVWR) or more than 26,000 pounds.
  3. A trailer with a GVWR of more than 10,000 pounds if the gross combination weight is more than 26,000 pounds.
  4. Any size vehicle which requires hazardous materials placards.
  5. Any size vehicle used as a school bus.
The Travel Authorization (TA) form, if required for the travel involved, documents the purpose of the trip and can be a key element in determining the assignment of liability when necessary.
In order to assure that the trip's authorization is complete and properly documented, each person authorizing the travel should:
  1. Determine and fully identify all certain and probable destinations of travel.
  2. Identify all drivers and passengers involved.
Field Trips and Excursions

Field trips or other excursions should be carefully managed to be sure that due diligence is exercised to provide safe conditions for all participants.

The most preferable situation is to arrange for commercial transportation. If this approach is not practical University vehicles can be used. 

Waivers and Representations
Before leaving on any student related travel, a waiver form must be obtained.

Vehicle Operation

Basic safe operation of a vehicle is obeying all traffic laws, including the wearing of seat belts by the driver and all passengers. This precludes passengers from riding in the back of pick-ups and vans even around the campus.

Most accidents in which University drivers are involved occur in backing and turning situations. Care and concentration should be exercised whenever one is entering a different traffic flow pattern.
When it is necessary to drive for long periods of time, it is important to rotate drivers and/or take rest stops every 90 to 120 minutes. Such stops should include getting out of the car and stretching.

Vans represent one of the greatest driving risks to the University. This is because the driving dynamics are different than other vehicles particularly in high winds, sudden stops and on slick road conditions which can surprise drivers unaccustomed to vans. Also the interactions that can occur between the driver and the passengers can be a distraction to the driver.
Special care should be exercised in the selection and authorization of van drivers. In addition to proper licenses and clean driving records, a prospective van driver should have a mature and responsible attitude and have experience driving vans.

Long Distance Travel
Long distance trips should not extend the driving day beyond ten hours, and this duration should only be achieved by alternating drivers at least every two hours. Drivers cannot operate a vehicle after 11 pm.  Initiating trips in actual inclement weather should be avoided particularly if vans are planned to be used.

Automobile Liability Insurance

The University's automobile liability insurance covers any person authorized to drive a University owned automobile provided the actual use is within the scope of such authorization. It also provides secondary coverage for any employee driving her or his personal automobile with in the scope of employment. The employee's personal automobile liability insurance is primary to the extent it is available.
There is a $10,000 per accident deductible if the driver involved does not have a valid driver's license and a record clear of citations for the past 12 months. Any losses, that are applicable to such deductible, are the responsibility of the driver's (employee's) department.

Rented Automobile Coverage

The State of Utah periodically contracts with certain car rental agencies to provide cars at rates that include liability coverage for damage to rented vehicles as well as damages and injuries of third parties. To obtain a rental car, the UVU Travel Office must book the vehicle with the state contracted vendor.
Payment of any daily rate other than the negotiated contract rate nullifies the liability coverage.
There is a $10,000 deductible in liability coverage for use of any non-contracted rental agency's vehicle unless it can be verified that a reasonable attempt was made to use the state contracts, but no automobile was available either at the time or at the place or of the type needed. If these conditions are not met, but use of a non-contracted agency vehicle is still desirable, the liability insurance offered by such agency should be procured.

Use of Personal Vehicles for College Use
When using personal vehicles for University business, the personal vehicle insurance becomes the primary insurance. The University insurance is secondary only after the limits of the personal insurance are exhausted.