Did you know your brain can miss seeing up to 50% of your driving environment when you talk on a cell phone? And that according to research, drivers talking on cell phones had slower reaction times than drivers with a .08 blood alcohol content. April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month and is the perfect time for motor carriers to reinforce to their drivers the dangers of distracted driving and the rules and regulations being enforced by the FMCSA.
According to these regulations, Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) drivers are prohibited from texting or using hand-held mobile phones while operating their vehicles. Violations can result in fines and/or disqualifications and will impact a motor carrier’s and/or driver’s Safety Management System (SMS) results. Texting means manually entering alphanumeric text into or reading text from an electronic device. The rules also restrict a CMV driver from reaching for or holding a mobile phone to conduct voice communication and dialing by pressing more than a single button. CMV drivers who use a mobile phone while driving can only operate a hands-free phone located in proximity. In short, the rule prohibits unsafely reaching for a device, holding a mobile phone, or pressing multiple buttons.
The rules impose sanctions for driver offenses, including civil penalties of up to $2,750 and disqualification for multiple offenses. Motor carriers are also prohibited from requiring or allowing their drivers to text or use a hand-held mobile phone while driving and may be subject to civil penalties of up to $11,000. Violations will impact SMS results.
This month reinforce to your drivers the dangers of distracted driving. It’s effortless to comply with the rules:
No REACHING, No HOLDING, No DIALING, No TEXTING, No READING.
Banning Distracted Driving: An Employer's Guide to Protect Employees and Liability
- Implement a clear policy indicating that the employer does not require employees to answer calls while they are on the road. This includes the employer placing calls to employees while they are driving.
- Encourage your employees to plan their trips to include stops so they can safely return calls and emails.
- Establish a company policy that makes it unnecessary for employees to text while driving to fulfill their duties.
- Eliminate incentives that may encourage employees to text/talk while operating a vehicle.
- Communicate your state's regulations and associated fines to employees.
- Encourage employees to sign an anti-distracted driving pledge.
- Designate company vehicles as "distraction-free zones."
For additional information on distracted driving visit the following websites:
National Work Zone Awareness Week April 17-21st
National Work Zone Awareness Week (NWZAW) is an annual spring campaign to encourage safe driving through highway work zones and construction sites at the start of construction season. The key message is for drivers to use extra caution in work zones. For more information, check out the link: http://www.nwzaw.org
All 50 States have "Move Over" laws to protect law enforcement officers and other first responders stopped on our Nation's roads. Yet, many of our drivers are unaware of these laws ... and traffic-related incidents continue to be the number one cause of death among on-duty law enforcement officers.
Therefore, together with our law enforcement partners and State highway safety offices, NHTSA is working to increase awareness of these life-saving "Move Over" laws and highlight the need to protect public safety professionals who are at risk to protect motorists.
You can make a difference and save lives by working with local organizations and raising public awareness of "Move Over" laws through earned and social media.
Click on the following link and get your new campaign materials now.
CSA Prioritization Preview Website Now Available
As the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has announced proposed changes to its Safety Measurement System to identify and prioritize at-risk motor carriers for enforcement and compliance interventions, the agency has also noted that a new website, the Compliance Safety Accountability (CSA) Prioritization Preview, is now live.
Motor carriers can visit the website to preview their data's appearance under the proposed changes. The agency encourages companies to preview these results and submit feedback on the proposed changes to FMCSA at the Federal Register website on rulemaking. Other users will be able to view sample pages.
The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance has announced this year’s International Roadcheck dates as May 16-18
Roadcheck is a 72-hour high-visibility, high-volume commercial motor vehicle inspection and enforcement initiative. Commercial motor vehicle inspectors in Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. will conduct North American Standard Inspections of commercial motor vehicles and drivers at weigh and inspection stations, roving patrols, and temporary inspection sites.
Each year, CVSA focuses on a specific aspect of a roadside inspection. This year the focus will be on anti-lock braking systems (ABS) and cargo securement. ABS violations are not out-of-service violations; however, the anti-lock braking system is critical in reducing collisions. A properly functioning ABS will prevent wheels from locking up or skidding, allowing a driver to maintain vehicle control while braking. Improper or inadequate cargo securement accounted for 10.6% of all vehicle out-of-service violations discovered during last year’s International Roadcheck. Past International Roadcheck data routinely found cargo securement violations in the top five of vehicle out-of-service violations.