FMCSA awards $1M in CMV driver safety training grants

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Seven community and technical colleges and two state government training facilities received a share of $1 million in Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration grants to enhance behind-the-wheel safety training courses for students enrolled in commercial driver’s license training programs.

“Our roads and highways are safer when we have highly-trained drivers behind the wheels of large commercial trucks and buses,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says. “Expanding the ranks of safety-conscious commercial drivers is critical to improving road safety and saving lives.”

The goals of the Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Training Grant Program are to make the roadways safer by increasing the number of CDL holders with enhanced safety training. In addition, the program seeks to assist economically-distressed regions of the United States by providing workforce training opportunities for qualified individuals to become commercial motor vehicle operators.

“We depend on professional truck and bus drivers to safely move our economy,” says FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro. “This grant program makes an investment in our work force, while ensuring that new commercial drivers are well-trained and focused on safety.”

Those eligible for the grant program include accredited public and private institutions of higher education, federally recognized Native American Tribal Governments and city, county and state governments. The following institutions were awarded grants for fiscal year 2010:
Arkansas – Arkansas State University, Newport ($74,072);
California – West Hills Community College, Coalinga ($87,360);
Illinois – Waubonsee Community College, Sugar Grove (59,978);
Iowa – Western Iowa Tech Community College, Sioux City ($144,750);
Missouri – Crowder College, Neosho ($106,140);
North Carolina – North Carolina Department of Transportation, Raleigh ($131,967);
Pennsylvania – Northampton County Area Community College, Bethlehem ($140,000);
Virginia – Western Virginia Workforce Development Board, Roanoke ($178,568); and
Utah – Snow College, Ephraim ($77,165).

The Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Training Grant Program was established by Congress in 2005 through the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). To apply for the fiscal year 2011 CMV Operator Training Grant Program, go to www.fmcsa.dot.gov.