New entry-level training and commercial driver rules could reduce truck crashes

Entry-level truck drivers with commercial licensing requirements will face significant changes to training rules and regulations in 2020. New Commercial Driver Rules According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA), new rules will soon apply to entry-level commercial truck drivers. On February 7, 2020, new national training standards will apply to all entry-level driver applicants seeking a commercial driver’s license (CDL). New rules are being established to enhance the safety of commercial motor vehicle operations on U.S. roads and highways. FMCSA states that providers of entry-level driver training will need to comply with new requirements. This includes trucking industry training schools, trucking companies, and private training facilities. Mandatory training applies to all first-time CDL applicants (Class A and Class

How long does it take to learn to drive a semi-truck … safely?

There are no national standards for training new semi-truck drivers. Here’s why that’s a problem. Several years ago, I represented Angelah, a young girl with a mild traumatic brain injury. She had been in a terrible crash. Her mother was driving. The afternoon was rainy, and the road was wet. A truck driver failed to take into consideration roadway hazards and struck the family vehicle. He hadn’t been driving a semi-truck for very long—he was still in training. He wasn’t driving carefully, especially for the weather conditions. If that young trucker had more experience, he might not have made this tragic decision. He might have slowed down. I don’t think that the semi-truck driver meant to cause a crash. I

Logging Trucks

  Logging trucks traveling on our highways and public roadways are a common site in the Pacific Northwest.  They are generally traveling with a full load of logs.  A fully loaded logging truck must be operated by a skilled and trained driver. Defensive driving practices must be used and road and weather conditions must be observed and considered.  All too often, logging truck drivers speed along without regard to necessary safety conditions.  We have all seen trucks following too close and not using proper following distances. Truck and trailer maintenance is also critical. Logging trucks take a pounding when they travel off-road for loading and off loading. The weight that these trucks carry causes fatigue and wear and tear on

Common Causes of Truck Accidents

In 2008, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), there were over 4,000 deaths caused by accidents involving large trucks.  Most of the deaths, approximately 2,760 were passenger vehicle occupants. Commons causes of large truck accidents include: *Speeding *Overloaded Trucks and Trailers * Sleep deprivation * Inadequte training * Failure to have a safety program * Inattentiveness * Poor maintenance I have handled many Large Truck crash claims throughout the past 25 years.  I am dedicated to helping those injured in Large Truck accidents. – Attorney Kevin Coluccio, Seattle Washington June 15, 2011 *This post has been updated since its original publication on TruckingWatchdog.com.  Recommended Article: How Many Hours can a Truck Driver Drive – A Guide

“Preventable Accident” in Trucker’s Defensive Driving Code

Motor carriers are supposed to train their drivers. That training should provide the appropriate skills and knowledge which would allow them to avoid preventable a crash— which they call a “preventable accident.” In the trucking industry, a “preventable accident” is a crash or collision in which a truck driver or motor carrier failed to act in a reasonably expected manner to prevent it. A “Preventable Accident” in Defensive Driving Code Many motor carriers use the National Safety Council criteria. In order to avoid a “preventable accident”, truck drivers must adhere to the Defensive Driving Code. Any commercial truck accident  crash* has to be evaluated by this one question: “Did the truck driver drive in such a way that he committed no errors

Safety Cushion: Semi-truck following distances

Recently, I was driving on I-5 in the Pacific Northwest. As is usual for this time of the year, it was raining, and the road was slick. The sky was gray with clouds. Time and time again, big rigs would come up behind my vehicle at high speed, then race past me, spraying water. I was alarmed, and a little fearful. Does this sound familiar to you? Because it happens all the time. I am often alarmed by the combination of high speed and limited semi-truck following distances. What is the proper semi-truck following distance? It can seem as though semi-truck following distances are irrelevant to truckers. Or that they have no knowledge of or respect for proper safety cushions. Safety

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