Employee Motor Pool

Seattle Pacific University’s Motor Pool supports University business activities by providing quality, convenient services and safe, reliable vehicles at a reasonable cost.

Policies and procedures

The University has compiled policies regarding motor pool usage. You can obtain a copy at the Office of Safety and Security or see the complete version posted at the end of this page. 


The University motor pool fleet consists of two Suburbans, two 12-passenger vans, and one cargo van. Each vehicle rents for $90 per day, $0.44 per mile. 


To reserve a Motor Pool vehicle, use the Motor Pool Reservation Request form. https://spu.formstack.com/forms/securityparkingchanges_copy_copy_1

Driver Training

To request sign up for Driver Training for yourself or for others, use the Driver Training Request form. https://spu.formstack.com/forms/securityparkingchanges_copy_copy_1_copy


Motor Pool Policy and Procedures

Authorized Vehicle Use

The University provides a limited number of University-owned vehicles for staff and faculty who are conducting official University business, on a first-come, first-serve basis. Personal use of motor pool vehicles is expressly prohibited, unless approved by the President, or his (her) designate. Drivers may be held financially responsible for abusive or improper use of motor pool vehicles. This includes paying up to the deductible insurance limits for vehicle accidents resulting from improper use.


Age Requirement

No person under 18 years may operate a vehicle on behalf of the University. 


License Required 

All driver candidates must present a valid driver's license to the Office of Safety and Security. The license will be photocopied and must be updated when it expires. 


Driving Record Review

Each person who is seeking to operate a vehicle on behalf of the University will sign a release to aid in the review of their driving record. Drivers with poor driving records may not be allowed to drive University vehicles. This decision will be made based on the number of accidents or infractions that have occurred, as well as the type of driving which is to be done. Driving records will be obtained annually through a firm that conducts a nationwide search for information. Complaints about drivers will be followed up with an Administrative Inquiry. The inquiry will determine if corrective action is necessary which may involve further driver training or suspension of driving privileges. Documentation of this inquiry and its result will be placed in the driver’s file for one year.


Driver Training

All persons who operate University owned or hired motor pool vehicles shall complete defensive driver training prior to driving a University vehicle. This course can be made available on your Canvas account by contacting the Office and Transportation Manage of the Office of Safety and Security by filling out the “Driver Training Request Form on OSS’s Formstack account, or by emailing transportation@spu.edu. After finishing the course, a passing score must be obtained in order to become an authorized driver for the University. When a passing score has been achieved, the taker of the course should email transportation@spu.edu with a photo of their valid driver's license and a photo of the passing grade. 


Vehicle Reservation, Check-Out, and Check-In Procedures

Motor Pool vehicles may be reserved through the Office of Safety and Security by filling in the online reservation form on Formstack. Reservations must be made at least 24 hours in advance of the anticipated use. Since vehicles are available on a first come, first served basis, reservations are encouraged to be made as early as possible. To modify or cancel a reserved vehicle please email transportation@spu.edu. Previously reserved motor pool vehicles may be picked up and returned through the Office of Safety and Security, 24 hours a day. Motor Pool vehicles are parked in the Emerson garage. When picking up vehicles, a Vehicle Release Order and Mileage Report must be signed. You may request a let in to the Emerson garage to pick up your vehicle by calling dispatch at 206-281-2922. Below is a copy of the back of this form which includes a short safety and operational checklist that each driver must complete prior to starting their trip.


In addition, the following inspection should be completed both before and after the trip. Since motor pool vehicles are used by many different drivers, particular attention should be paid to fluid levels and tires.

1. Outside the vehicle, driver checks: 

a) doors, latch and open properly 

b) nothing hanging loose under vehicle 

c) tires are inflated 

d) headlights (high and low beam) 

e) turn signals 

f) taillights 

g) stop lights 

h) back-up lights 

i) body exterior for any damage 

j) outside mirrors for security and cleanliness 

k) all glass 

l) spare tire (present and inflated) 

2. Engine compartment, driver checks: 

a) oil level 

b) coolant level 

3. Inside the vehicle, the driver checks the condition and operation of all seat belts. There must be a seat belt available for use by each passenger transported.

If a driver discovers any questionable conditions, they should report this to the Office and Transportation Manager of the Office of Safety and Security immediately by emailing transportation@spu.edu. The driver check should be repeated at each refueling stop. Items critical to the vehicle operation (such as low oil) should be corrected, if found to be deficient, prior to resuming the trip. Gas credit cards, which can be checked out through the Office of Safety and Security with the vehicle, may be used for refueling and emergency repairs. The vehicle license number should be recorded for each charge made. The Vehicle Release Order and Mileage Report form also includes spaces for recording beginning and ending mileage for the trip. This form must be turned in when the vehicle is returned along with the gas card and key. If no mileage information has been recorded on the form upon return, a flat fee will be determined and charged to the budget number provided depending on the length of trip and destination.

Upon check-in of the vehicle, each driver is expected to conduct an additional examination of the vehicle as demonstrated in the Defensive Driving Program. The vehicle is to be cleaned of any debris or personal effects. It is the responsibility of each driver to note any mechanical or operation problem experienced during the trip on the Vehicle Release Order and Mileage Report form. Of course, if a driver or passenger witnesses any damage occurring to the vehicle, this must also be reported to the Office of Safety and Security. For each incident of vehicle neglect, damage, or ignoring of procedures outlined in this program, the sponsoring campus department will procure a damage or negligence fee.


Rental Rates

Day fee: $90.00 per day. A day is each consecutive 24 hour period. 

Mileage fee: $0.44 per mile which includes a fuel charge. Gas credit cards checked out through the Office of Safety and Security with the vehicle must be used for refueling. The vehicle license number should be recorded for each charge made. If a department credit card is used for gas purchases, the amount paid will be deducted for the mileage fee charged as described above. 

Incomplete fee: $45 charged when (a) the vehicle is not returned in clean condition, with a full tank of fuel. A $45 charge will be assessed for each violation; (b) The driver did not read and sign both the Vehicle Release Order and Mileage Report. A $45 charge will be assessed for each item left blank by the driver. 

Cancelation fee: a $45 charge will apply for “no show” or for cancelations made less than 24 hours before use. 

Damage fee: a $150 charge will apply for any damages to Motor Pool vehicles. 

Other fees: all fines, costs and attorney fees for legal violations, parking, tolls, towing and storage attaching to the Motor Pool vehicle or incurred during the rental period will apply. 


Minimum Number of Drivers

To avoid excessive driver fatigue, a minimum number of drivers has been established for long trips. Any trip exceeding 200 miles requires two qualified drivers, who must trade driving responsibilities periodically (e.g., every two hours). On trips exceeding 300 miles, drivers shall be limited to 6 hours driving time, per day, to prevent excessive fatigue. Requests for exceptions to these rules must be discussed with the Office of Safety and Security in advance.


Travel Boundary Limitation 

In general, motor pool vehicles may not be used outside of Washington State. Requests for exceptions to this rule must be discussed with the Director of Safety and Security in advance.


Safe Driving Practices While operating the vehicle, each driver must obey the rules of the road as published in the Washington State Department of Licensing driver’s handbook. If the vehicle ventures across state or country lines, each driver must take care to observe any additional rules regulating driving in that region. At all times, each driver must follow the policies and procedures identified in this program. Failure to observe any of the above may result in the suspension of driving privileges. 

A key feature of any motor vehicle safety program is the recognition of safe driving practices that have been shown to reduce accidents. For the SPU driving safety program, these following practices are emphasized: 

• Accident safety: Drivers are expected to know and follow procedures for reporting accidents and safeguarding University Motor Pool vehicles. 

• Back Country Travel: Vehicles are not allowed on back roads or forest service roads. University vehicles are designed and equipped for municipal roads and state highways only. 

• Backing Large Vehicles: Whenever two or more people are present in a van or large truck, one of them should assist the driver, as a spotter, for backing the vehicle

• Cell Phones: Drivers are expressly prohibited from using a cell or mobile phone during operation of any University vehicle. 

• Crossing Railroads: The University requires that driver stop at any marked rail crossing and proceed with extreme caution. If a vehicle stalls on tracks, the driver should have all persons exit the vehicle safely and wait for assistance at a safe location well outside the crossing area. 

• Crossing Sidewalks: Whenever crossing sidewalks to leave alleys or parking lots, drivers should bring vehicles to a complete stop to be sure the walkway is free of pedestrians. 

• Driver Attitude: Lack of proper driver attitude often causes drivers to make mistakes due to excessive haste and lack of caution. Planning ahead allows drivers to engage their responsibilities without urge to forego safe driving precautions. 

• Emergency Reaction: Regardless of the caution followed by drivers, unexpected actions by other drivers and other unpredictable hazards can require drivers to use emergency reaction skills to avoid accidents. 

• Foul Weather Precautions: Foul weather creates many hazards such as reduced traction and vision, which require modified driving practices

• Intersections: See the diagram and information below regarding “right of way” at intersections. It is advisable not to assume the other vehicle’s driver has acknowledged this “right,” so proceed with caution.

Maintaining an Escape Route: Drivers should always position their vehicle in traffic to provide routes of escape in emergencies. 

• Observation Skills: Drivers should develop skills which enable them to detect or anticipate hazards to be avoided. 

• Safe Parking Practices: Parking lots contain special hazards, such as a lack of traffic controls, visual obstructions, and limited maneuvering room. Drivers must develop parking habits to mitigate these hazards. 

• Seat Belts: In accordance with Washington State Law, as well as good safety practice, all drivers and passengers using University vehicles are required to use seat belts whenever the vehicle is in use. Drivers are responsible for checking and making sure that every passenger has his/her seat belt secured prior to departure on each segment

• Three Second Rule: Drivers should maintain the proper distance behind the vehicle in front of them. Under ordinary driving conditions, this distance is three seconds at any speed. 

• Traffic Management: Urban areas contain congested traffic, complex intersections, and limited access road ways that increase the danger of driving. Drivers should learn traffic management skills, which would increase their safety in these situations

• Transportation of Animals: Transportation of animals in motor pool vehicles is not allowed since animals can be thrown around the vehicle in an accident. Appropriate animal restraints are not available at this time. Exceptions for academic purposes may be made with approval of safety arrangements from the Office of Safety and Security

• Transportation of Children: Transportation of children in motor pool vehicles is not permitted without advanced approval from the Office of Safety and Security. When approved, safety restraints must be provided in accordance with state law. 

• Vehicle Loading: Vehicles and devices are not permitted to be towed behind the motor pool vehicle and no items are to be loaded on top. Interior loads must not obstruct driving visibility. 

• Vehicle Maintenance and Inspection: Proper vehicle maintenance is essential to safe driving. Drivers should learn to complete a vehicle safety check as listed on the Vehicle Release Order and Mileage Report form.



In the event that there are injuries involved in the accident, make sure that the local emergency services are notified. In most localities, this can be done by dialing 911, although, in some rural areas, it may be necessary to dial the operator and state that you have an emergency to report to the police. All motor pool vehicles are equipped with first aid kits, fire extinguishers and reflective warning triangles for your safety. The reflective warning triangles are to be set up 100 feet or more behind the vehicle, in the event of an accident or mechanical failure. They provide a hazard warning to oncoming motorists so that they can see and avoid collision.


Accident Investigation

Seattle Pacific University’s Office of Safety and Security will normally conduct an investigation into the circumstances and causes of any accident that occur involving drivers for SPU-sponsored activities. This investigation will start immediately under the supervision of the Director of the Office of Safety and Security. The Office and Transportation Manager will immediately suspend the driving privileges of any University driver involved in the accident. Reinstatement of driving privileges will depend on the outcome of the investigation.


Accident Kits

Each motor pool vehicle shall contain an accident kit, which is kept in either the glove box, under the driver’s seat, or in the back of the van. This kit includes proof of insurance, an accident report card, a witness card, and a pencil for recording information, as well as a disposable camera. The law requires that drivers be able to produce proof of insurance any time a vehicle is operated on public roads. Drivers may be required to produce proof of insurance by law enforcement officers at any time. It is usually requested for accidents and during the insurance of traffic citations. Drivers should complete the accident report card which allows drivers to record essential information about the drivers, owners, and other vehicles involved in a collision. The card contains instructions to be followed in the event of an accident. Below is an example of an accident report card:


Accidents should be reported to the Office of safety and Security, which is open 24 hours a day by dialing (206) 281-2922. They will take preliminary information over the phone and help with procedures to follow if the motor pool vehicle is disabled. Inform the officer on duty of any injuries, hospitalizations, and/or fatalities. The officer will make the proper notifications. If alternative forms of transportation are required, the officer may assist in notifying others that may be able to help. After the initial interview is completed, the officer will notify the Director of Safety and Security regarding the accident. The witness card may be handed to a witness who saw the accident so that they can record their name, address, and phone number for later investigation. An example of a witness card is shown below:


University representatives involved in the accident should take adequate snapshots of the accident scene using the disposable camera in the vehicle. The officer with the Office of Safety and Security will be able to assist the representatives in determining the best angles of visual documentation. Departments using the camera for anything other than its single intended use will be fined accordingly.


What to do in Case of an Automobile Accident

If necessary, to prevent further damage or hazards, move the vehicle onto the shoulder or side of the roadway if possible. Place warning signals (reflective triangles) promptly. 

• Ask someone to summon the Police and medical assistance if anyone is injured and then to report back. If after five minutes no one has arrived, repeat the request

• Keep calm. Be courteous. Make no statement concerning the accident to anyone except a Police Officer. Get his/her name, badge number, and department which he/she belongs to. 

• Secure and solicit the aid of witnesses or persons at the scene. Ask for completion of Witness Cards or names of witnesses, who will be of value to the adjuster in claims and settlement. 

• Obtain names and addresses of anyone injured and involved vehicle license numbers. Also obtain the names and addresses of drivers and occupants of all cars involved. 

• Report the accident to Safety and Security immediately. They will take an accident report and start the insurance claim process. Call (206)281-2922, 24 hours a day.  

• If no one has done so, report the accident at once to the State Police or other authority, as required by law. 

• Before leaving the scene of the accident, check to determine if all information has been recorded.



When renting one of the Safety and Security vehicles, your department representatives would agree (a) that the rented vehicle shall not be used to transport passengers or property for hire; (b) that the rented vehicle shall not be used to carry passengers other than in the interior or cab of the vehicle; (c) that the rented vehicle shall not be used to carry passengers in excess of the capacity thereof; (d) not to carry passengers, property or materials in excess of the rated weight carrying capacity of the vehicle (e) not to use the vehicle to push, propel or tow another vehicle, trailer or any other thing without the written permission of the Office of Safety and Security; (f) not to use the vehicle for any race or competition; (g) not to use the vehicle for any illegal purpose; (h) not to operate the vehicle in a negligent manner; and (i) not to permit the vehicle to be operated by any other person without the written permission of the Office of Safety and Security.

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