The emphasis for this year’s operation safe driver week is speeding, and it starts from July 11 to the 17th. This means that during this week, Law enforcers will be on the lookout for truckers that will be speeding even slightly past the safe limit.
Operation Safe Driver Week
Operation safe driver program is an annual protocol of CVSA, in which commercial Law enforcement agencies aim to engage in the heightened traffic and the driving safety of commercial truckers so that they can address unsafe driving behaviors by both, passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles.
To understand the operation safe driver program, you have to understand the idea behind CVSA and what the organization stands for.
What is the CVSA?
CVSA is a commercial vehicle safety alliance. Many people confuse the CVSA with a government program; nevertheless, it has no affiliations with the United States government. Regardless, every trucking company and commercial drivers hold this safety alliance as a legitimate authority.
It is a separate private alliance that aims to achieve uniformity, reciprocity, and compatibility of commercial motor vehicle inspection and enforcement. It does this by issuing certified commercial inspectors that dedicate themselves to driver and vehicle safety and enforcing them onto truckers across North America.
The reason why commercial transportation services respect and comply with them is that they promote universal inspection standards. This uniformity allows businesses to trust each other and collaborate across states.
The CVSA compliance has spread across borders and they not only operate in the US, but Mexico and Canada. They also issue pass inspection stickers for commercial vehicles that are always helpful. If a truck has a CVSA sticker, the inspector notices it and this informs the inspector that a reliable source has recently inspected the truck and hence, they may not be bothered to inspect it again.
This alliance organization conducts about four million inspections every year. Their inspection follows the official North American Standard and they enforce this standard to all of their inspectors to achieve maximum uniformity in commercial vehicle quality.
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Road check and Its Successes
You will find strong data that supports the efficacy of traffic stops and road checks. Even though to most commercial drivers, they may be time consuming and limiting, you still cannot deny the fact that they actually help decrease driving behaviors that put other passengers at serious risk.
Due to the high success rate of frequent safety inspections, the president of CVSA has emphasized the importance of law enforcers in making contact with the commercial truck drivers. These safety checks not only make the roadways safer for the truck drivers, but they also make them realize the responsibility that they have on their shoulders.
A study in 2014 reveals that when the enforcers issue citations, it undoubtedly has a severe impact on the reduction of accidents and crashes. This leads to an influence in positive driver behavior. This positive influence is the reason why CVSA is focusing primarily on speeding for this year’s operation safe driver’s week.
Speeding as a Focus
Truck drivers are responsible for huge machines that carry expensive freight, which is yet to become part of the nation’s commerce. They not only are responsible for the losses of businesses, but also for lives on the road. The truth of the matter is that even a small mishap can lead to fatalities that are beyond imaginable bounds.
For this reason, this year’s focus of the operation safe driver’s week is speeding. It is one of the most prolific reasons for driver-related fatalities on the road. Despite the drop in traffic due to the pandemic, the numbers of fatalities have increased and speeding is the main cited issue.
In terms of data, speeding is responsible for an average of 24 deaths that happen each day. Other researches tell us that an increase in speed by 10 miles per hour can increase the likelihood of accidents by 9 percent. These statistics are evidence of a drastic and impactful correlation between speed and fatalities on the road.
To counter this problem, law enforcement agencies will be looking out for drivers that driving fast and unsafely. This will result in warnings and citations regarding risky driving behaviors. Another shocking statistic is that the estimated death rate saw an increase of 24 percent over the last year, despite the fact that the miles covered on the roads dropped significantly.
What is Likely to Warrant a Stop?
A law enforcer is more likely to stop a truck driver who is speeding and going too fast for the specific conditions that they encounter. Other common reasons to seize a driver are their failure to use a seatbelt, which accounts for reckless and distracted driving. Apart from speeding, a driver also has to make sure that they are properly following the lanes and not haphazardly changing them.
Preparing for CVSA operation Safe Driver Week
Ahead of this year’s driver week, truck drivers need to focus on ways to reduce their risk of encountering a halt by the law enforcer. Below are some tips on speeding, following too closely and seatbelts that can help commercial pilots avoid a citation or a warning.
Many times, a driver receives a citation because they fail to drive at the speed that is appropriate for the specific condition. Unsafe weathers often result in wet roadways or reduced visibility. Other times, it is not the weather that makes for an unsafe driving condition; instead, it is construction activities and even heavy traffic. Therefore, drivers must understand all the factors that constitute to lowering the vehicle speed.
Similarly, they can also avoid seat belt violations by considering insightful steps. Drivers have to spend days on the road, and in all that they come across, it are not uncommon for a driver to forget about seat belts. One solution for this problem involves fluorescent seat belt covers. This can help remind drivers to put on their seat belts and helps officers to easily spot and verify that the driver has applied the seat belt.
The violations for following in too closely are also very avoidable, considering that the driver is familiar with a simple rule. The rule explains that if a driver below the speed of 40MPH, they have to leave at least four seconds of space between them and the vehicle in front of them.
For speeds that go over 40 miles per hour, the truck driver should consciously be adding one additional second. Keep in mind that the operation safe driver week’s purpose is to promote safe, conscious, and considerate driving throughout the year. Therefore, adhering to the speed limits, traffic laws , and other policies should be a priority for all commercial and passenger drivers.
If an officer does stop a truck driver just out of mere suspicion or misunderstanding, keep in mind that they will likely check your documentation and logbooks for any discrepancies. This is why, having an organized notebook and documentation counts as good preparation for operation safe driver week.
This coming week, expect the inspection unit to be on their toes and the number of road checks to increase. If you do happen to be a part of their inspection, be steadfast and ready with all your documentations. This way, you can give them no chances of citation or warnings.
If you are late on maintenance, then now is that time you should be looking into it. The best way to organize your documents will be to have them compiled in a binder, with a proper table of contents and numbered pages. This can solely be you tool to survive a roadside inspection. It gives the officers an impression that you are a responsible driver.
Trucking Company Owners should Beware
As a truck company owners, let your drivers know that there is zero tolerance for going over the speed limit. Truck drivers will often overlook these speed limits and this is where law enforcement is more likely to be present. Therefore, make sure that the drivers know that they cannot be even a mile faster than what the limit portrays.
The other problem occurs when the driver notices that the construction zone is on an interstate and it is a couple miles away from where construction is happening. They fail to realize that the speeding limit applies to the construction parameters and they can still get a citation regardless of whether the work is happening.
The operation safety week 2021 will start implementation at full throttle, and those who are wondering if the operation safe driver is real need to start paying attention. This initiative has had great success in the past and promises to make the roads safer than ever.