Commercial truck drivers have many responsibilities while on the road, from transporting vital freight to loading and unloading cargo to vehicle maintenance. However, perhaps the most important responsibility of truckers is following safety regulations. The trucking industry emphasizes this aspect of the business, allocating nearly $10 billion annually to driver training, rule compliance, technology, and incentive pay, according to a report from the American Trucking Association (ATA). But what makes safety such a high priority? Continue reading to discover four reasons why safety in trucking is so important.
1. Safety Decreases Truck-Related Accidents
It’s no secret that truck driving can be dangerous if safety isn’t prioritized. However, tractor-trailer crashes have recently decreased by 10%, due in part to the ATA’s emphasis on safety. Although it is virtually impossible to eliminate all trucking accidents, proper driver training on safety techniques, such as defensive driving and driving the speed limit, can help further drop vehicle crash rates.
2. Safety Lowers CSA Scores
Scores associated with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program are crucial for securing new business and improving a company’s image. Higher CSA scores represent an increased risk, whereas lower CSA scores indicate a better safety record. Good drivers know that a company’s CSA score directly reflects on themselves. Any safety violations, regardless of who was at fault, become part of their resume, including five years of crash history and three years of inspections. Prioritizing safety will help lower a company’s CSA score, attracting more high-quality drivers in turn.
3. Safety Improves Driver Retention
As safety becomes more of a concern in the industry, truck drivers are also becoming more selective about which companies they want to work for. Not only does safety attract more drivers, but it helps retain those drivers for longer as well. Truckers are more likely to stay with a company if they feel like their coworkers and superiors prioritize their safety.
4. Safety Saves Money
Another reason safety in trucking is vital is that it helps save money. Safety improvements can reduce company expenses in several areas, such as fines for violations and driver recruiting costs. Safety enhancements can also lower the costs of damage repairs resulting from an accident. A single major commercial motor vehicle accident can cost nearly $60,000, so keeping drivers safe from accidents is a huge cost minimizer.
Learn Safe Driving Habits at Phoenix Truck Driving Institute
You must learn safe driving habits if you want to work for a trucking company that prioritizes safety. With a combination of classroom, range, and real-world training, the commercial driver’s license program at Phoenix Truck Driving School teaches students the skills necessary to be safe and successful drivers.