The Complete DOT Audit Checklist

The Department of Transportation (DOT) regularly conducts audits to ensure companies comply with all regulations. Since 2010, the number of DOT audits has increased. This increase is due, in part, to the DOT’s implementation of the Safety Measurement System, which compiles data from all roadside inspections and weigh stations.

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The Cost of On-the-Job Traffic Crashes

On-the-job traffic crashes cost employers and commercial carriers billions of dollars each year.

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Top Three Reasons It's Essential to Train Your Drivers

When it comes to your fleet, efficiency, compliance and the ultimate safety of your drivers and other drivers on the road are your top priorities.

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5 Reasons Driverless Cars Aren’t Gaining Traction

For the past decade, engineers have been working hard to make the dream of a driverless car a reality. With the quiet launch of Google’s Waymo projectin 2009, the race was on to develop and deploy vehicles that would do everything a human-piloted vehicle would do — but to do it better.  The promises surrounding autonomous vehicles, or AVs, have been big and bold. In 2012, Google co-founder Sergey Brin announced his planto have AVs on the road “within five years or sooner.” In 2016, Lyft CEO John Zimmerproclaimed that self-driving vehicles would be so prevalent by 2025 that automobile ownership would be nearly obsolete. All of the major auto manufacturers have announced plans for AVs and invested heavily in their development. Although the idea of vehicles that don’t need a human at the wheel was alarming for most drivers, it initially sounded like a great opportunity for businesses. AVs would eliminate the expenses associated with hiring and retaining qualified drivers, reduce the risk of crashes, which lowers liabilities to the company and it would give businesses a vehicle that, unlike a human operator, doesn’t need rest or breaks However, the reality of driverless cars has failed to deliver on those original promises. In the past few years, hiccups and slowdowns have shown a widening gap between what was originally proposed and what could actually happen. Now, it seems that AV developers are nowhere close to having AVs sharing the road. At the recent International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, tech companies showcased innovations that stepped away from previous claims and displayed scaled-back visions of the future. Instead of sleek driverless pods zipping through traffic, the first AVs in action will most likely be robot shuttles and taxi services that travel a predetermined route at a relatively low speed, according to The Wall Street Journal. Driverless cars will eventually share our roads, but it’s becoming more evident that the predicted takeover of human drivers isn’t right around the corner. Here are five factors that have helped hit the brakes on autonomous vehicles.

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Best Practices for Reversing Light- and Medium-Duty Vehicles

Drivers spend less than 1% of their time backing up, but a surprising 30 to 40% of all crashes happen when vehicles are in reverse. What's more, approximately 210 people die from backing incidents each year, mostly children under the age of 5. For both new and experienced drivers, driving in reverse continues to be the most dangerous move you can make behind the wheel. While heavy-haul drivers are often given a great deal of instruction on how to maneuver their trucks in reverse gear safely, much less attention is given to drivers of light- and medium-duty vehicles. However, learning more about the hazards of backing up and how to avoid them is one of the best lessons every driver can (and should) receive.

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How Automated Safety Systems Lead to Distracted Driving

The tools and technology in today’s vehicles not only make them more comfortable and easier to drive; but they’re also designed to help make driving safer. However, a study released late last year by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safetyfound that this advanced technology often has the opposite effect. In fact, as drivers use automated safety systems more often and become dependent on it, they actually can become less safe behind the wheel.

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Distracted Driving: The Dangers of Infotainment and Navigation Systems

In-vehicle technology has come a long way to make driving more convenient and enjoyable. Elaborate navigation systems have transformed the way we drive, making it easier than ever to move between appointments more efficiently. And vehicle infotainment systems provide access to endless music and news with touchscreen convenience.  But with these new technologies has come a sharp increase in distracted driving crashes. A study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that in-car infotainment and navigation systems take drivers’ attention (and eyes) off the road for dangerous periods of time. The study looked at the visual and mental demands of using in-vehicle technology, as well as the time it took drivers to complete a task with these systems in 30 new vehicles. The study included 120 drivers ages 21 to 36. Participants were asked to use voice command, touchscreen and other technologies to make a call, tune the radio, send a text or program their navigation system while driving.

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How Drivers Can Recognize and Report Human Trafficking

Human trafficking has been called an "invisible crime." It refers to buying, selling, harboring, and often transporting human beings for forced labor (involuntary servitude) or sexual slavery. Victims are hidden in plain sight all around us, and if we know the signs to look out for, we can all help the authorities work against this heinous crime. 

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Global Road Safety
Global Road Safety

Welcome to Global Road Safety, a podcast exploring the issues, trends, and innovations in driver safety worldwide. More than 2.5 million people are involved in crashes each year, a number that continues to rise as drivers become more distracted behind the wheel.

Featuring interviews with safety experts and leaders, Global Road Safety is an initiative to reduce crashes and save lives — across every continent. The Global Road Safety podcast is produced by Smith System, the leader in advanced driver safety training.

For more information, visit http://www.drivedifferent.com

Improving Road & Rail Safety in Ghana with Eric Nyame-Baafi

There’s a real need to improve road safety in Ghana and Sub-Saharan Africa as a whole, says Eric Nyame-Baafi, a road safety consultant for the Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety in Ghana. 

“A total of 650 people die on African roads every day. A child in Africa is twice as likely to die on the road as a child in any other part of the world.”

In this latest episode of Global Road Safety, Eric discusses Ghana’s initiatives to improve railway and road safety:

“The Government of Ghana is keen in rehabilitating existing railway lines in order for some of the traffic on the road to shift to rail and in doing that is going to reduce the number of accidents,”

And explains why public education is badly needed to improve driver behavior and road safety in Ghana:

“Even though drivers recognize the need for Road Safety Education, I think the education has to be geared towards changing the behavior patterns, I mean, in terms of speeding, and in terms of drunk driving.”

Improving road safety in Ghana would improve the lives of millions of people; and that means focusing on engineering, enforcement and education. To find out more, download and listen to Eric on this latest episode now. 

On today’s podcast:

  • How Ghana’s government is shifting traffic from road to rail
  • Why Ghana plans to establish a transportation regulatory body
  • Initiatives to improve driver skills
  • Why improving road safety will improve the lives of millions