CVSA touts improved Operation Safe Driver results
Annual campaign targets both commercial, passenger drivers
The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance said the results from its 2011 Operation Safe Driver campaign show that targeting enforcement and education efforts at both passenger as well as commercial vehicle drivers is starting to pay off. Drivers are slowing down and taking heed of safety groups’ messages that driving fast and cutting it close around commercial vehicles is a deadly combination.
Operation Safe Driver was launched in 2007 by CVSA in partnership with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to address the problem of improving the behavior of all drivers operating in an unsafe manner – either by, in or around commercial vehicles – and to initiate educational and enforcement strategies to address those exhibiting high-risk behaviors.
“Campaigns that target and remove unsafe drivers from the road, like CVSA’s Operation Safe Driver, are yielding positive results,” said Stephen Keppler, CVSA’s executive director. “Until we move closer to achieving zero deaths, CVSA will continue to educate the driving public – and especially teens – about the risks they take when speeding and cutting off vehicles.”
CVSA initiated two new focus areas under the Operation Safe Driver campaign: The Teens & Trucks Program and the Defeating Distracted Driving campaign. During this year’s Operation Safe Driver campaign, law enforcement officers who pulled over nearly 44,000 commercial and passenger vehicle drivers found that the top three reasons warnings and citations were issued included speeding, failure to obey traffic control devices and failing to use a safety belt.
Of the warnings issued to CMV drivers, 16.8 percent were for speeding, versus 40.5 percent for passenger car drivers, both significant reductions from 2010; 5.9 percent were for failure to obey traffic control devices, compared to 3.2 percent for passenger car drivers, minor reductions from 2010; and 3 percent were issued for failing to use a seatbelt while operating their vehicle, compared to 1.9 percent for passenger car counterparts. These numbers represent a slight rise for CMV drivers and a slight decrease for passenger car drivers.
Of the citations issued to CMV drivers, 12.8 percent were for speeding, versus 40.6 percent – a significant drop for passenger car drivers; 2.9 percent were for failure to obey traffic control devices, a slight drop, compared to 1.9 percent for passenger car drivers; and 3.7 percent were issued for failing to use a seatbelt while operating their vehicle, compared to 7.0 percent for passenger car counterparts. CMV drivers were issued significantly less warnings and citations in 2011 for failing to buckle up (416) as compared to 2010 (1,055).
The data, obtained during the fourth annual Operation Safe Driver campaign conducted Oct. 15-22, 2011, was collected by 3,805 law enforcement personnel at 1,848 locations across the United States and Canada.
“FMCSA is proud to be part of a lifesaving effort like Operation Safe Driver – which sends a strong message to all drivers to think safety first, every trip and every time,” said FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro.
NPTC backs Unified Registration System
While generally supporting the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s efforts to make the Unified Registration System more efficient, the National Private Truck Council said the agency’s proposal to require private fleets to demonstrate hazardous materials insurance coverage is redundant and unnecessary.
NPTC’s comments were filed last month in response to FMCSA’s Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on the Unified Registration System. The FMCSA proposal is intended to streamline the existing registration process so that the agency can better track motor carriers, freight forwarders, brokers, intermodal equipment providers and cargo tank facilities.
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