Operation safe driver week is almost here, and it will be an informative event about commercial truck safety. Large trucks contributed to 107,000 crashes that resulted in injuries in 2020, with 4,842 deaths. The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance created Operation Safe Driver Week to improve the driving behaviors of commercial and passenger vehicle drivers. The program accomplishes its goals through education, outreach, awareness, and interactions with law enforcement.
Safer drivers mean fewer worker injuries, lower costs for truck insurance, less vehicle downtime, a better reputation for your trucking operations, minor damage to client property, and more on-time deliveries. Participation in Operation Safe Driver Week benefits your driver’s health and bottom line.
What To Know About Operation Safe Driver Week
This program presents both opportunities and risks for drivers. The more your drivers know, the better equipped they will be to take advantage of opportunities and avoid risks.
When Operation Safe Driver Week Takes Place
The 2022 event occurs July 10 through July 16 in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Drivers should prepare for more road law enforcement activity during this time.
Who the Operation Impacts
The operation impacts all drivers. Law enforcement will target unsafe driving practices by both commercial and passenger vehicle drivers during this time.
Behaviors Law Enforcement Will Target
Law enforcement officers will look for drivers engaging in risky behaviors, such as following too closely. Other dangerous factors include distracted driving, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and changing lanes improperly. Additionally, there will be a particular focus on speeding. Instruct your drivers to be extra vigilant about driving the posted speed limit during this operation to avoid citations.
Increased Risk of Citations and Traffic Stops
Law enforcement officers stopped 17,910 passenger and 28,148 commercial vehicles during the 2021 operation. Likewise, they issued 16,863 citations and 10,486 warnings. Drivers should expect more traffic stops and plan potential delays into their schedules.
Purpose of Operation Safe Driver Week
The operation’s purpose is to increase roadways’ safety by reducing the number of crashes. Reduce risky behaviors to reduce dangerous situations.
Why the CVSA Launched the Program
Statistics show that the actions or inactions of drivers contribute to 94% of crashes. The CVSA launched this initiative because data indicates more interactions with law enforcement reduce risky driving behaviors. The 2022 program focuses on speeding because data shows that excess speed is a factor in over 25% of crash deaths and is the most common driver-related cause of crashes for both commercial and passenger vehicles.
The program also targets other risky driving behaviors that frequently contribute to deaths and injuries on the roads, such as distracted driving, not wearing seatbelts, and driving under the influence. In 2019, distracted driving killed 3,142 people. 47% of the people who died in traffic accidents were not wearing seat belts, and drunk drivers caused crashes that killed 10,142 people.
4 Tips for Improving Trucker Safety
Your drivers can avoid traffic citations, reduce truck insurance costs, and cause fewer accidents by engaging in safe driving practices:
Check Blind Spots
Drivers should check their mirrors every 8-10 seconds to see if any vehicles are in their blind spots. Scanning for about a quarter-mile will help drivers be aware of work zones, traffic congestion, and other hazards.
Proceed Through Wide Turns Cautiously
Larger trucks will usually have a wider turning radius than passenger vehicles. If a truck cuts a corner, it can result in property damage or cause an accident with another car. Passenger vehicle drivers may not always give commercial trucks the extra space to make turns. Drivers must be aware of this potential hazard.
Do Not Drive While Distracted
Driving while texting is illegal for commercial drivers and is a common cause of accidents. Additionally, drivers who use mobile phones should use hands-free devices. Drivers should avoid drinking, eating, operating a navigational device, or reading a map while driving. Likewise, they should not drive while feeling ill, exhausted, or using medications that cause drowsiness or dizziness.
Maintain a Safe Speed
Excess speed is the most common cause of accidents. Driving too fast is also likely to result in a citation during the operation. Drivers should obey posted speed limits and reduce speed when necessary due to the weight and size of the vehicle or the road conditions.
Safe driving behaviors benefit everyone involved in trucking operations. Encourage your team to drive safely not only during times of increased law enforcement but year-round.
About Western Truck Insurance Services
Western Truck Insurance Services is a commercial truck insurance agency with roots dating back to 1954. We have evolved into a highly respected, professionally managed, truck and transportation insurance brokerage. The hallmark of our organization is our desire to provide unparalleled service. We go way beyond what you expect to receive from an insurance brokerage. Equipped with state of the art automation, Western Truck Insurance can provide you with lightning fast truck insurance quotes, customer service, Insurance certificates, and coverage changes. Contact us today at (800) 937-8785 to learn more!