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Approved Drivers Policy for University Owned, Leased or Rented Vehicles

This policy defines the process by which an individual receives approval to operate a vehicle in connection with his/her university responsibilities. Biola University has numerous faculty, staff and students whose responsibilities include the operation of motor vehicles, including, but not limited to, automobiles, vans, trucks, golf carts and all-terrain vehicles. This policy does not apply to personal vehicles used for business unless specifically mentioned.

Biola University holds the safety of its employees, students, volunteers and guests in the highest regard. Individuals driving in a university owned, leased or rented vehicle represent Biola and carry responsibility for their actions as well as for the safety and security of all passengers and citizens of the community.

Biola’s business auto insurance will provide primary coverage for vehicles owned, leased or rented under the university’s name unless the driver causes damage or injury deemed as the result of an intentional act or gross misconduct. Individuals driving their personal vehicle on university business must select sufficient coverage and limits under his/her personal auto insurance, as Biola’s business auto insurance cannot cover a personally owned vehicle under any circumstances. Individuals driving their personal vehicles for university business understand that sole coverage for auto related damage and liability comes from his/her personal automobile insurance. As a reminder, supervisors must allow their employees to receive the full federal mileage reimbursement allowance when they use their personal vehicle to drive for university business.

Individuals who operate golf carts on campus must be at least 18 and receive training and certification from Facilities Management. The criteria used to approve a driver for a university owned, leased or rented vehicle do not apply to the operation of a golf cart. However, individuals involved in incidents or accidents in golf carts may have their privileges to drive a golf cart revoked by Risk Management with concurrence by the individual’s department/supervisor and Human Resources.

Completion of the Driver Application Process

Applicants seeking “approved driver” status must fill out the Motor Vehicle Record Authorization Form (DMV). Upon receipt of the form, the Office of Risk Management will order the applicant’s Motor Vehicle Report (MVR), match the MVR against the standards in this policy and inform the applicant of his/her approval status.

Employee applicants and student workers need only fill out the forms once during the course of their employment pending no changes to the forms or the laws governing the information requested on the forms. Risk Management will use the DMV’s Employer Pull Notice (EPN) program, which will provide Biola with a copy of the employee’s MVR once a year and any time a mark hits their record. Students (non-employees) seeking approved driver status must fill out the forms once per academic year. Their MVR will be ordered each time they make a request to drive.

General Requirements

Individuals driving university owned, leased or rented vehicles should use them for business purposes only. Employees using a permanently assigned university vehicle may use that vehicle for incidental personal use. These employees must report their personal and business mileage (including the bona fide business purpose of each business trip) to Accounting on a monthly basis and will incur taxes on the non-cash fringe benefit at least annually via payroll in accordance with IRS regulations.

Drivers must fulfill all university requirements including the following:

  • Carry a current, valid U.S. driver license with endorsements appropriate for the use and type of vehicle driven.
  • Qualify by age: between 18 and 75 years old for driving normal passenger or work-related vehicles and between 21 and 70 years old for driving people in multi-passenger vehicles (see the “Multi-Passenger Vehicle Use Policy” below for the definition). Risk Management may grant exceptions for drivers who are over 18 but under 21 to drive multi-passenger vehicles when no other drivers qualify.
  • Demonstrate familiarity with the type of vehicle driven.
  • Maintain a safe driving record, having:
    • No alcohol or drug-related violations within the previous three years.
    • No major violations in the last three years (see below).
    • No more than two minor violations in the last three years (see below).
    • No more than one at-fault accident in the last three years.
  • Must authorize Biola University to order and review their Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) and receive approval before driving.

Drivers must observe safety precautions including, but not limited to:

  • Observance of all traffic laws, including speed limits.
  • Use of seatbelts.
  • No distractions: no use of a cellphone or other distraction while driving.
  • Proper loading of vehicles.
  • Avoidance of drugs (e.g., antihistamines) that may impair performance.
  • Avoidance of driving when fatigued, sick, distracted or with other physical or emotional impairments.
  • Timely inspection and repair of headlamps, taillights, turn signals, windshield wipers and other safety equipment.
  • Sound judgment regarding safe driving conditions (e.g., weather, traffic, etc.).

The driver assumes full responsibility for any and all fines or traffic violations associated with his/her operation of a university vehicle.

Examples of Minor Violations:

  • Parking tickets
  • No seatbelt
  • Failure to yield
  • Stop sign violation
  • Traffic light violation
  • No proof of insurance
  • Registration violation
  • Speeding
  • Passing violation
  • Altered license or unlawful use of license or permit
  • School bus zone violation

Examples of Major Violations:

  • License suspended, revoked, cancelled or barred
  • Failure to appear
  • Reckless driving
  • Failure to stop or report accident
  • Violation of open container law
  • Motor vehicle theft
  • Manslaughter, vehicular homicide or vehicular assault
  • Carrying a concealed weapon
  • Felony use of a motor vehicle
  • Drag racing or speeding contests
  • Driving on the wrong side of the road

Rental Car Policy

Biola recognizes that employees and guests must obtain and use rental vehicles for business purposes. Only approved drivers over the age of 21 qualify to use a vehicle rented in the name of the university. Biola University maintains a robust Business Auto Policy with applicable coverage for rental vehicles. Employees should decline optional coverage offered by rental companies. Employees must rent any and all vehicles used for business purposes through the Purchasing Department, as Biola’s insurance will only cover a rental vehicle procured under Biola University’s name. Risk Management will distribute a copy of Biola’s proof of insurance card upon approval as an approved driver.

Biola’s insurance provides coverage in the United States of America, the territories and possessions of Puerto Rico, and Canada, but not in Mexico. Travel to Mexico in a rental vehicle requires advance notification to Risk Management, permission from the rental agency and sufficient and separate Mexican auto insurance coverage obtained from a reputable company before crossing the border. Drivers must report any accidents in Mexico to the Mexican auto insurance carrier before crossing back over to the United States.

For Students

In addition to everything stipulated above, students must purchase the following additional rental car coverage options (or their equivalent) when renting vehicles for university-sanctioned purposes:

  • Damage Waiver (DW) — covers damage to the rented vehicle
  • Personal Accident Insurance (PAI) — covers injuries of the driver and passengers
  • Supplemental Liability Protection (SLP) — covers liability for injury and damage to other parties (required when available for purchase)
  • Personal Effects Coverage (PEC) — covers theft (not loss) of the personal property of the driver and passengers (required when available for purchase)

For Non-Employees

Employees who travel for business may request to have a non-employee companion such as a spouse accompany them and list them as an additional driver on a rental vehicle procured for business purposes. Employees may make these requests by sending an email to Risk Management and must receive approval before proceeding further. Once approved, the non-employee companion must go through the clearance process outlined in this policy. Employees will need to request Damage Waiver and Supplemental Liability Protection (see above) when picking up their rental vehicle. The responsibility for the cost of these additional coverages remains with the employee. If the rental agency will process payment for these costs at the time of pickup, the employee should pay for them at that time. If Biola receives charges for these additional coverages, the employee will receive notification from Purchasing or Risk Management and will need to reimburse Biola shortly after returning from the given trip. Biola assumes no liability or responsibility for any injuries sustained by a non-employee companion arising from the use of a rental vehicle. All costs associated with any such injuries shall be the sole responsibility of the employee through their personal health insurance (including deductibles, co-pays, additional fees, etc.) or out-of-pocket. Biola is not responsible for personal items damaged or stolen from a rental vehicle.

Multi-Passenger Vehicle Use Policy

For the purposes of this policy, a multi-passenger vehicle is any vehicle larger than a sedan capable of carrying 4-5 passengers (including the driver). Biola constituents may not use multi-passenger vehicles capable of carrying ten (10) passengers and above (including the driver) for university related activities. These vehicles require possession of a commercial driver’s license (see section 1 of the California Commercial Driver Handbook). Fifteen-passenger vans also require a passenger transport vehicle (PV) endorsement and have a history of roll-over risk, resulting in fatalities.

If university business requires the transportation of multiple passengers, Biola constituents should use multiple vehicles that have a passenger capacity of nine (9) or less (including the driver) or rent buses with professional drivers through Purchasing.

Drivers in multi-passenger vehicles should drive at least 5 MPH below the posted speed limit.

General Precautions

  • Auxiliary Equipment: Biola constituents should not use auxiliary equipment such as trailers and roof racks as they may affect handling or the center of gravity of the vehicle.
  • Fatigue: Biola constituents should either take breaks or alternate drivers for trips over three hours. No driver may drive for more than 8 hours in any 24-hour period. Biola constituents should plan trips so that drivers can remain rested and alert. Limit travel to normal waking hours (avoid travel between 12:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m.).
  • Headlights: Biola constituents should drive with headlights at all times on long trips and during the night for local driving.
  • Front Passenger Seat: If traveling in pairs or groups, make sure that the driver has a companion to keep him/her company, help the driver remain alert and assist with navigation.
  • Backing: When driving larger vehicles, drivers should have someone assist him/her while backing up.
  • Safety Inspections: Drivers should perform a vehicle safety inspection before driving the vehicle, upon returning the vehicle and at regular intervals in between. Please contact Risk Management for the Biola Vehicle Inspection Form.


In the event of an accident while driving a Biola owned, leased or rented vehicle, please do the following:

  • Assess the condition of all occupants. If anyone has sustained minor injuries, please call 911 so that the police can take a report and seek medical assistance after completing the rest of the accident procedures below. If anyone has sustained major injuries, please call 911 right away both for medical assistance and for the police.
  • If possible, take pictures of all the vehicles together from various angles so that insurance adjusters can clearly see what happened.
  • Ask the other parties involved to move their vehicles to a nearby location away from traffic.
  • Take pictures of all vehicles involved (front, rear, sides and four corners). Take closer shots of noticeable damage on all vehicles and the other party’s license plates.
  • Ask the other parties if they have sustained any injuries. If they have, please make note of it for your report later.
  • Exchange information with the other parties. The information should include the following (it may be convenient to use your cell phone to take pictures):
    • Name
    • Driver’s License Number
    • Phone Number, Address & Email Address
    • Year, Make, Model, Color & License Plate Number
    • Insurance Company, Policy Number, Phone Number
  • If anyone has witnessed the accident, please obtain their:
    • Name
    • Phone Number, Address & Email Address
  • Other information to obtain:
    • Location
    • Date
    • Time of Accident
    • Police Information (If Applicable)
      • Police Report Number
      • Phone Number
      • Officer Name
      • Badge Number
  • Fill out Biola’s Incident Report Form

Driver Safety Training Requirements

Although Biola constituents may attain approved driver status based on the criteria in this policy, Biola must make sure that its drivers do not grow complacent. Therefore, Biola requires its drivers to take the Driver Safety Training program through United Educators/EduRisk if a driver has any negative movement on his/her Motor Vehicle Record; such negative movement would include cell phone violations.

Please go to the Driver Safety Training Program page for instructions on how to register and login.

Those who have negative movement on their Motor Vehicle Record but still qualify as an approved driver must complete the Driver Safety Training program within 30 days after receiving notification from Risk Management. Those who have negative movement on their Motor Vehicle Record and have lost their status as an approved driver must wait until the negative marks have cleared. Once they have met the qualifications as an approved driver once again, they must complete the Driver Safety Training program before Risk Management will grant them approved driver status.

Loss of Driving Privileges and Reinstatement

Approved drivers may lose their privilege to drive for Biola for business purposes immediately upon incurrence of a disqualifying mark on their Motor Vehicle Record. Determination of unsafe driving behavior based on a single, multiple or a history of incidents may also cause an approved driver to lose their driving privileges. When Risk Management determines that an employee has lost his/her status as an approved driver, Risk Management will send the employee an email, copying the employee’s supervisor, to notify the employee of the loss of driving privileges and the date when they may be eligible to be reinstated pending no further marks on their Motor Vehicle Record.

The employee’s supervisor must determine what will happen to his/her employee after they have lost their driving privileges when the employee’s position requires a significant amount of driving. Employees will not receive automatic reinstatement of their driving privileges. They must first complete the Driver Safety Training program outlined above and then send an email to Risk Management ( to petition for their reinstatement as an approved driver.


In order to ensure that Biola’s students, staff and faculty are transported in properly insured vehicles, all transportation sanctioned by the university must be in the form of a university owned, leased or rented vehicle or a chartered bus. Drivers must be cleared to drive prior to driving a university owned, leased or rented vehicle. If the university organizes an event off campus and does not provide transportation in one of these forms, the event organizer should inform the participants that they are responsible for their own transportation.

Effective Spring 2016, Biola students, staff and faculty may not organize university sanctioned carpools or reimburse drivers for carpool related expenses (this does not affect normal mileage reimbursement for employee business travel). This applies to all university sponsored activities, both academic and non-academic. For example, professors should not pass around a sign-up sheet to organize a carpool for a field trip and supervisors may not require their employees to drive others in their personal vehicles. However, as long as the driver and all the passengers in a vehicle have employment status with Biola (i.e., full-time employee or part-time employee with 01, 02 or 03 status; Resident Advisor; etc.) the driver may receive normal business-related travel reimbursements.

Carpooling presents a situation where Biola’s students, staff and faculty are transported in an underinsured or even an uninsured vehicle. In California, auto insurance follows the vehicle and the vehicle owner, meaning that Biola cannot transfer its auto insurance to a personally owned vehicle. Additionally, medical coverage for passengers is both limited and optional. Those who participate in carpools are subject to the vehicle's individual insurance limits and Biola's insurance cannot replace or supplement an individual's personal auto insurance.