Safe Driver Program
The University's Auto Insurance Program covers all authorized Students, Staff and Faculty when operating University vehicles on University business.
Northwestern University Office of Risk Management has outlined the Safe Driver Program to serve as a guide to promote the safety of drivers and passengers when vehicles are used on University business. The program outlines the eligibility, requirements, and responsibilities of those who drive on behalf of the University.
In consideration of being authorized to drive a University vehicle, all Faculty, Staff, and Students must complete a Safe Driver Application. Applicants will be subject to MVR review and may be subject to completing the Defensive Driving Course. The University will conduct annual and frequent checks if at-risk behaviors are identified. Authorized drivers will be monitored for regular compliance with the procedures, policies and rules in the Safe Driver Program.
Important: Please add RIAC@northwestern.edu to your address book to ensure email notifications are received
SUBMIT AN Application
List of Certified Student Drivers
VIEW List of CERTIFIED DRIVERS
Who needs to complete the Safe Driver application?
Students, Staff and Faculty who are required to operate* University vehicles are required to complete the Safe Driver Application which will subject them to a Motor Vehicle Record Review and completing the Defensive Driving Course.
University credentials are required. Applicants may be asked to submit a copy of their drivers license for verification. For questions please contact Juan-Carlos Perez.
*Only certified drivers are allowed to operate University owned and/or rented vehicles.
Do I need to upload a copy of my Drivers License?
What are the eligibility requirements for Certified Drivers?
- Students, Faculty, & Staff
- All students, faculty and staff are required to: i) Have a valid driver’s license; ii) Have a driving record with no more than one major moving violation or one accident in the past year (whether damaged caused either to or by the vehicle), and iii.) Have a driving record with no serious events. Serious events include but are not limited to any alcohol or drug related offense(s), failure to report an accident, and operating during a period of license suspension or revocation.
- Additional Eligibility Requirements for Students
- All students are required to i.) Complete and pass the Office of Risk Management’s Defensive Driving Course; ii.) Have a valid driver’s license for at least two years; and iii.) Consent to having a motor vehicle record run and reviewed in accordance with applicable privacy laws.
- Additional Eligibility Requirements for Faculty & Staff
- In consideration of being authorized to drive a University vehicle, all faculty & staff will be monitored for regular compliance with the procedures, policies and rules in this Safe Driver Program. Faculty and staff will be subject to MVR review and the University will conduct more frequent checks if at-risk behaviors are identified.
What is the annual MVR check?
The annual MVR check is initiated by the Office of Risk Management in order to capture the academic year's Active Drivers. Active drivers are identified by their departments as those who operate University Vehicles as part of their daily operations and those who rent vehicles for University business during the course of the academic year. Such Faculty, Staff, and Students are required to complete the Safe Driver Application in order to receive authorization to operate University Vehicles.
Active Drivers will be monitored for regular compliance with the procedures, policies and rules in the Safe Driver Program.
Who needs to complete the Defensive Driving Course?
- The Defensive Driving Course is an interactive online course that goes over safe driving principles and takes approximately 45 minutes to complete
- The Defensive Driving Course is a required course for all students to complete in order to be eligible to operate University Vehicles
- In some cases, Staff & Faculty may be required to complete the Defensive Driving Course by Risk Management and/or their respective department
Is the Defensive Driving Course still completed in person?
How do I get approved to operate University Golf Carts?
Are there operational rules?
Operational Rules and Trip Management for Students
Permission must be obtained from the Office of Risk Management for any exceptions to these rules
- 4 Hours / 2 Consecutive Hours - Each driver may only drive a total of four hours per day and no more than two consecutive hours.
- All trips over two hours require at least two approved drivers. At least one passenger shall remain awake at all times.
- 5:00 am to 11:00 pm - Drivers are only able to drive between 5:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m.
- 150 Mile Radius – During the week, trips must stay inside of a 150-mile radius. On the weekends, the radius is extended to 300 miles, requiring an overnight stay.
- 10 Hours per Day Total – The maximum a vehicle can be driven in one day is 10 hours.
How long can drivers hold their certification?
Drivers who remain in compliance with the procedures, policies and rules of the Safe Driver Program can hold their certification for up to 2 years*.
*Dependent upon acceptable annual and/or semi-annual motor vehicle record checks.
My license is expired, but the issuing state has granted an extension. Can I still operate university vehicles?
I completed the course, but I didn't get my certificate. How do I get a copy?
Who do I put down as my supervisor/advisor?
How do I rent a vehicle?
How do I obtain a copy of the Auto-ID card?
How come I don't see my name listed as a certified driver?
If you currently hold a Defensive Driving Certification and do not see your name listed on the Certified Student Drivers list, your MVR check may be expired. Your MVR expiration date is approximately 1 year before your DDC Certification expires.
If you need more assistance, complete a support request ticket.
I'm experiencing issues. Who should I contact?
If you are experiencing any issues with the program and/or application process, submit a support request ticket and someone from our team will assist you.