Javascript Menu by
Skip to main content
more options

Fleet Policy Manual

About Fleet Services                                  
Types of Vehicles Available                       
Use of University Vehicles                                                           
Off-Road Use                                     
Authorized Renters and Drivers                 
Authorized Passengers/Use                       
Unauthorized Passengers/Use                   
Driver Requirements                                 
University Expectations                            
Fueling the Vehicle                                   
Credit Card Use                                        
Insurance Coverage                                  
Accidents/Roadside Assistance               
Fees and Penalties                                  


About Fleet Services

Cornell University Fleet Services provides safe, clean and reliable transportation in a courteous, friendly environment to all university staff and departments at the lowest possible cost.

The department is responsible for the care and condition of approximately 170 vehicles used by employees on official university business. Fleet Services tracks departmental use and will make necessary vehicle adjustments and repairs. Our  vehicle mechanics schedule and perform routine maintenance and document any adjustments and repairs made. Fleet vehicles undergo the same annual safety inspections as other vehicles registered in New York State.

Types of Vehicles Available

The following vehicles are available for official business use by university personnel:  hybrid vehicles, subcompact and 4 door sedans, 7 and 12 passenger (including the driver)  vans and pickup trucks.  


The fleet rental price is based on a per day, per month, or per year rate plus mileage. 

Daily:  any rentals that are less than 30 days in duration

Monthly:  any rentals that are 30 days or more up to one year in duration

Annual:  rentals that are up to and greater than one year

Arrange For Use of University Vehicles

For questions regarding the use of vehicles and to handle other matters pertaining to Fleet Services, please call or  visit Cornell University Fleet Services, 209 Solidago Road, Ithaca, NY 14850-2814; Phone: 607-255-3247; Fax: 607-255-8405.

Off-Road Use

The university’s rental fleet includes pick-up trucks that are available for off-road use. Other fleet vehicles such as passenger vans and sedans are not designed to be driven off-road and should be only driven on roads and highways. Drivers are responsible for vehicle damage resulting from negligence and/or unauthorized off-road use of fleet vehicles.

Authorized Renters and Drivers

Only Cornell University faculty, staff and students with a valid driver’s license may operate fleet vehicles. Exceptions will be considered by the Risk Management Office.  PLEASE NOTE:  All students (undergrad and graduate students) must now be pre-approved by Risk Management by filling out the Driving History Form and forwarding it to Risk Management.

Faculty, staff and students  must register as a university driver by filling out the User Registration Form and the Driver Release Form at  The driver’s supervisor must authorize the Employee/student as a driver.  They will receive an email with instructions.

All of vehicles are equipped with:

  • Snow brush
  • Wright Express gas/service card
  • Road flares
  • Flashlight
  • Emergency instructions in the event of an accident.

Authorized Passengers/Use

Cornell faculty, staff, students are authorized to drive and be in our vehicles.  Guests must be authorized by Risk Management.

Unauthorized Passengers/Use

Fleet vehicles may not be used for personal business nor may the vehicle be used in commuting to and from an individual’s place of residence.

Members of an employee’s family or other unauthorized passengers not associated with the University may not ride in a fleet vehicle.

Animals may not be transported in a fleet vehicle without prior approval.

Driver Requirements

To assure that all personnel are qualified and advised of Fleet policies and procedures, all drivers are required to register at University Fleet Services before their first trip.

Additionally, all drivers must:

  • Have in their possession a valid driver's license.
  • Notify Fleet Services of any change in license status.
  • Wear seat belts when driving or occupying a university vehicle.
  • Operate a university vehicle in accordance with university regulations and applicable state laws.
  • Assume responsibility for any and all fines or traffic violations associated with your use of a university vehicle.
  • Never drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • Never transport passengers such as hitchhikers, family members, or friends for unauthorized use. Caution: Unauthorized usage exposes the university to great risk, especially in the event of an accident.
  • Lock the vehicle when you leave it unattended.
  • Never drive the vehicle at speeds that are inappropriate for road conditions.
  • Never drive the vehicle "off road" unless an exception has been granted
  • Report all accidents.
  • Never use a cell phone while driving, unless hands-free technology is utilized.
  • Smoking is not permitted in any university-owned vehicles.
  • Remove all personal items and trash before returning the vehicle to the fleet garage.


Cancellation Policy:  Please cancel reservations 8 hours prior to departure.  Failure to do so may result in fee based on the duration of your reservation.

University Expectations of the Vehicle Driver

Practice defensive driving techniques.

Obey all posted speed limits, taking into consideration road conditions, weather, traffic and pedestrians.

Secure all loads.

The driver of the vehicle has ultimate responsibility for seeking and possessing information about driving safety and road regulations.

Be observant and respond to any dashboard trouble indicator lights.


Monthly / Annual Assigned Vehicles:

Clean and wash vehicle as needed to maintain a positive appearance.

Do not apply bumper stickers or decals or modify the vehicle in any way. A fee may apply for removal or repair for extraneous items.

Fuel and service the vehicle at the Fleet Services whenever possible.

Promptly respond to maintenance notices by bringing the vehicle to Fleet Services for regularly scheduled service and safety inspections.


Fueling the Vehicle

In the Ithaca area, obtain all fuel and maintenance services at Fleet Services.  Wright Express or other credit cards should only be used when outside the Ithaca area or in emergency situations.

Daily Rentals:

Vehicles should be full when picked up and do not need to be returned with a full tank of gas.

Monthly/Annual Rentals:

Fuel must be obtained at Fleet Services when on campus. When off campus use the Wright Express credit card.

Credit Card Use

Purchase gasoline, oil and other necessary services using the Wright Express credit card provided in the book in the glove compartment. The instructions for the fuel card are in the Fleet Services booklet in the glove box of the vehicle.

Please note that the Wright Express cards can be used at Esso stations in Canada.  

Credit cards can be used for the following purchases:

  • Regular unleaded fuel
  • Oil
  • Emergency service
  • Necessary vehicle accessories such as windshield wiper blades (with prior approval from Fleet Services).


Misuse of the Wright Express gas card includes but is not limited to:

  • Food and drinks
  • Transactions coded as miscellaneous
  • Maps
  • Full service
  • Premium or super unleaded fuel

Insurance Coverage

The university is self-insured. All potential drivers should review and understand University Policy 3.4: Use of Cornell Vehicles.

If there is a change in a driver’s license status after having completed the form, the driver is required to immediately notify Fleet Services.

Accidents/Roadside Assistance


If the vehicle is involved in an accident, please obtain complete information. Use the form enclosed in the book in the glove compartment for the preliminary report. Notify Fleet Services immediately in the event of any accident.

When in an accident, the driver must:

  • Get immediate medical aid if you are injured.
  • Keep calm and don't argue. Arguing can result in a lawsuit.
  • Make no statements concerning guilt or fault.
  • Never agree to make payments for the accident. Notify the police.
  • Discuss the accident only with police officers, representatives of Gallagher Bassett of NY, Inc. (the university's third party claims adjuster), or a university official.
  • Record as much information as possible on all other parties to the accident. This information may include their insurance company, their name, license number, plate number, make, model, and year of car, how accident happened, witnesses (with addresses and phone numbers).
  • Contact the Fleet Office (607-255-3247). Leave a message if it is after hours.
  • Complete a Vehicle Accident Report at the fleet office as soon as possible.
  • Refer all questions from lawyers, the other party to the accident, and others to the Department of Risk Management and Insurance (607-254-1575).

Roadside Assistance

The Fleet Office opens at 7:00 a.m. and closes at 3:30 p.m. Monday – Friday. After hours, leave a detailed message and the driver’s contact number.

If in need of a tow service in the Ithaca area, call Fingerlakes Wrecker Service at  273-6972 and arrange to have the vehicle towed to the fleet garage.

If out of the Ithaca area, use the nearest available tow service and have the vehicle towed to their impound area

Remember to remove the glove box book that contains the credit card. Call Fleet Services with the name and address of the tow company.

When in the Ithaca area, Fleet Services personnel are available during business hours for minor emergencies such as flat tires, jump starts etc.

Reimbursement for gas, emergency road service or repairs to fleet vehicles may be processed through Fleet Services. Vehicle and confirmation number must be noted on the receipts.


On the Cornell Campus

Drivers of fleet vehicles must comply with all campus parking regulations. All Fleet-owned vehicles have N Permit Parking, which is valid in areas signed:  N, C, G, HH,Z, CF, ME, O, R, T, W, WE, E, A; Student residence permit areas:  EL, FH, MW, ND, SW, WD; Also Valid in:  Night restricted areas; Two hours in FLEX spaces;  Free 30-minute load permit from info booth.


  • Fleet vehicles are not allowed to park in MT areas.
  • Posted time limits and payment requirements in metered areas must be obeyed.
  • Fleet vehicles are not exempt from being ticketed and towed.
  • Any parking violations on or off campus are the responsibility of the lessee.
  • Transportation Services reserves the right to suspend or change these parking privileges as needed.

Personal vehicles should be parked in the Fleet Rental lot located at the east end of the Fleet Garage while renting a fleet vehicle.


Persons who incur expense for parking, bridge and road tolls, thruway tolls and ferry service may claim reimbursement on their travel expense voucher through their department.

Fees and Penalties

Failure to comply with Fleet Policies and Procedures will result in the loss of driving privileges.

A department may be charged a fee for excessive wear and tear or damage on a rented vehicle as well as repairs resulting from negligence.

Any accident will be charged the $500 insurance deductible.

There will be a no-show fee based on the duration of your reservation.

Cleaning fees will be charged for unusually dirty vehicles as well as special detailing to remove interior spills, smells etc.

Replacement cost for lost or damaged keys or keyless entry devices will be charged to the department.

Additional costs resulting from the misuse of a gas credit card will be charged to the renting department and reported to the department head and University Audit for possible disciplinary action. Drivers will be held personally responsible for charges resulting from misuse.