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Vehicle Use Policies

Vehicle Use Policies

Use of University-Owned Vehicles

This Policy applies to all CAFE and Farm Facility vehicles and is recommended for all Extension and associated vehicles. 

1. CAFE Vehicles may be used for official state business only. 

a. Absolutely no personal use of state vehicles is authorized. 

b. Operators must be employed by or working on behalf of the University and have a valid driver’s license. 

c. Passengers must be travelling on official University business. 

2. Operators must be approved, trained, and vetted by the Farm Manager and/or Farm Superintendent. Operators not employed by CAFE may operate vehicles only with the approval of the Farm Manager. 

a. Operators must be instructed on the following: 

i. Operational knowledge/skills particular to the vehicle. 

ii. Use of the Fleet Fuel Card. 

iii. Use of Fleet Response in the case of breakdown.

iv. Operators must complete UMass idling training:

3. Mileage charts must be maintained for all vehicles and must be submitted to the Farm Manager at the end of each month. 

4. Pre-Approval is required for all Out of State and Overnight travel. Approval is obtained by following the procedures outlined by the Travel Registry. 

a. Travel Registry:

5. Operators must notify the Farm Superintendent and/or Farm Manager of any vehicle issues (mechanical or otherwise) immediately upon discovery. 

6. In the event of an accident, Operators must follow Transportation Services Procedures. 

a. Transportation Services Procedures:

7. With the exception of approved Overnight travel, vehicles must be locked and secured at their respective facility at the conclusion of each working day. 

a. During overnight travel or when off campus, vehicles must be locked and secured at all times when not in use. 

8. No smoking is allowed in state vehicles.

UMass Transportation Services Accident Procedure

At the scene of an accident involving a State vehicle, the driver shall, unless incapacitated due to injury:

  • Call for medical assistance if necessary;
  • Notify the police. If this is not immediately possible, the driver must notify the police as soon as he/she is able;
  • Obtain all information necessary to fully complete a RMV Motor Vehicle Crash Report and an Owned Vehicle Auto Loss form with the University Treasurer's Office.

After the accident, the driver or Department Fleet Manager is responsible for:

  • Calling the University Treasurer's Office within 24 hours of the accident.
  • Repairs related to the accident will be billed to the department in the monthly repair recharge. In some cases, auto body work may need to be paid for using a purchase order.
  • The University Treasurer's Office will subrogate all claims against other driver's insurance companies and collect all funds for the University.
  • If an accident causes over $1,000 worth of property damage and/or injury or death, the driver must send a copy of the accident report to the Registry of Motor Vehicles and the police department in whose jurisdiction the accident occurred.
  • If a police report was filed in connection with the accident the driver or department Fleet Manager MUST obtain a copy and forward it to the University Treasurer's Office.

In the event that a State employee, driving a State-owned vehicle, is involved in an accident that damages their own personal vehicle or other personal property then this incident shall be considered a Conflict of Interest and the Commonwealth of MA cannot be held liable for any damage done to that individual's personal property. As a result, no claim can be brought against the Commonwealth by that driver.

Questions: Contact Bob Skalbite, 413-545-0143,

14 May 2019

PDF of Policy on Use of University-Owned Vehicles


Use of Personally-Owned or Rented Vehicles for Work-Related Travel

Insurance for Work-Related Use of Personally-Owned Vehicle

“The University does NOT provide insurance coverage for employees operating a privately owned vehicle.  The owner/driver is solely responsible for automobile insurance coverage.  The owner/driver will be responsible for any damage caused to third party property and any damage to the employee’s own vehicle, regardless of fault.”  - UMass Travel Manual, 2018
CAFE employees are required to carry an appropriate amount of automobile insurance coverage for the personal vehicles they use for work-related travel.  Employees may need to purchase extra automobile insurance coverage if they are transporting co-workers, volunteers or clients as part of their work day.  Please contact your automobile insurance carrier to ensure you have the right coverage for your particular travel situation.

Rental Vehicles as Alternative to Personally-Owned Vehicles

Depending on the nature of the travel conducted by the employee, use of a rented vehicle may be less expensive to CAFE than use of a personally-owned vehicle. In general, rentals are more cost-effective for longer-mileage travel and use of personally-owned vehicles are more cost-effective for shorter-mileage travel. Current rates for reimbursement for use of personally-owned vehicles can be found here: . When comparing  costs, be sure to add the cost of gasoline to the rental rates you will pay. University policies on insurance for rented vehicles can be found here:

Safe Driving

CAFE employees who feel that bad weather, low visibility, or other poor driving conditions will prevent them from safely driving to their office or off-site work location may report this to their supervisor, in advance of the scheduled activity, and request to postpone or cancel the drive, using vacation time or personal time to cover the lost work time.  We wish all employees to engage in safe driving.  

Questions: Contact Joe Shoenfeld, 413-545-5309,

14 May 2019

PDF of Policy on Use of Personally-Owned or Rented Vehicles