NTSB Calls for Safety Recommendation Improvements

5 Mar 2019

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has just released its “Most Wanted” list of transportation safety improvements for 2019 – 2020. While there are no big surprises topping the list, there are some safety improvements that could go a long way toward saving lives if accidents do occur while also limiting the number of accidents that happen on the roads today.

Among the top items on the list are the following:

  • Eliminate driver distractions.
  • Ensure safer shipment of hazardous materials.
  • End impairment related from drugs, alcohol, and other substances.
  • Implement a comprehensive strategy to reduce or crashes resulting from speeding.
  • Reduce fatigue-related traffic accidents.
  • Make collision avoidance technologies more widely available in motor vehicles with the eventual goal of including it in all new vehicles.
  • Make stronger efforts to improve occupant protection protocols in vehicles.
  • Require professional drivers to screen for and treat obstructive sleep apnea.

While many of these most wanted items address the needs of highway traffic, the organization also overseas transportation safety for airway, waterway, and rail transportation, making specific recommendations for each mode of travel and transport. Some of the items on the list above can apply to more than one transportation modality.

Of course, putting this wish list into action is another matter altogether. It is one that businesses and professional drivers simply cannot wait on the government to change. With a massive nationwide shortage of truck drivers, it is increasingly important for business owners to take matters into their own hands when it comes to protecting their drivers, their image, and their good name.

This often includes the following:

  • Acting to establish company policies about distracted, fatigued, and impaired driving.
  • Installing GPS tracking devices on vehicles to monitor driver speeds and other behaviors behind the wheel that might be aggressive, indicate impairments, or cause accidents.
  • Monitor closely the number of hours drivers spend behind the wheel each day to ensure drivers are getting an appropriate amount of rest and downtime.
  • Creating strict policies regarding the use of mobile phones and other distracting devices while driving.

There is no need for businesses to wait on government action and mandates to implement changes that improve safety for all on the road. These small steps can net big changes for your drivers and others when it comes to safety on U.S. Highways.

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