Drivers With Longer Commutes Likely to Drive Less Safely

Tuesday, 25 Nov 2014 : Decision Points
A study of 1,002 New Jersey residents found that drivers with longer commutes are less likely than drivers with shorter commutes to drive safely [...] Read More...

Car Crashes are the Leading Cause of Workplace Deaths

Wednesday, 09 Jul 2014 : Decision Points
Providing a safer work environment is something that's not only common sense, but can be good business sense as well, resulting in lower insurance costs, fewer lost man-hours, reduced risk of losing key people, and reduction in corporate liability. [...] Read More...

State Government Fleets Focus on Zero-Fatalities

Sunday, 06 Jul 2014 : Decision Points
Cooperation between various divisions of government is the hallmark of a new initiative in the State of Iowa. This educational approach focuses on altering driver behavior, seeking a more attentive, alert and trained vehicle operator, and using family values as a highlight towards the zero fatality goal. [...] Read More...

Reduce Your Businesses Exposure to Vicarious Liability and Negligent Entrustment Claims

Tuesday, 01 Jul 2014 : Decision Points
Does your company employ persons who drive while at work? If so, your business is vulnerable to vicarious liability or negligent entrustment claims. How can you guard against negligent entrustment? A new white paper sets forth five key factors [...] Read More...

BrightFleet Now Hiring Outside Sales Reps

Thursday, 15 May 2014 : Decision Points
With more than a third (35 percent) of fleet managers identifying it as their main concern, driver safety outpaced cost-savings goals and workforce productivity (27 percent and 22 percent, respectively) as the top concern for the second year in a row. [...] Read More...

Driver Safety Remains Top Priority of Fleet Managers

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 : Decision Points
With more than a third (35 percent) of fleet managers identifying it as their main concern, driver safety outpaced cost-savings goals and workforce productivity (27 percent and 22 percent, respectively) as the top concern for the second year in a row. [...] Read More...

Negligence Lawsuit – Failing to Implement Cell Phone Policy

Friday, 28 Feb 2014 : Decision Points
If you’ve not heard, a mother of two was killed as they crossed the street by a SDG&E company driver that police suspect was distracted while driving. The family of the victim has filed a negligence lawsuit against SDG&E for allegedly not having a cell phone policy in place. While the accident is still under […] Read More...

Minicars Perform Poorly in latest IIHS Crash Test

Wednesday, 22 Jan 2014 : Decision Points
Minicars generally fared poorly in Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s newest and toughest trial. Of the 11 minicars tested, none achieved the institute’s highest rating of Good. Only one – the Chevrolet Spark – achieved the next highest rating of Acceptable. The others received ratings of either Marginal or Poor, the lowest rating. The two […] Read More...

General Motors Will Recall 370,000 Full-Size Pickups Because of Fire Risk

Saturday, 11 Jan 2014 : Decision Points
General Motors said Friday that they will recall 370,000 full sized pickups due to fire risks posed by a software bug that may cause the engine to idle incorrectly, overheating elements of the exhaust system. GM confirms that there have been at least 8 fires cause by the software problem, which sometimes causes a "check engine light" and "engine power reduced" warning lights to illuminate. GM said Friday it will recall 2014 Chevrolet Silverados and GMC Sierras to reprogram software that [...] Read More...

New "Open Automotive Alliance" Aims to Bring Android to Dashboards

Friday, 10 Jan 2014 : Decision Points
Google has accelerated the journey of networked technologies to the dashboard, recently announcing the formation of the Open Automotive Alliance (OAA), designed to overcome shortfalls with proprietary stove piped technologies, pushing an "app platform for all vehicles" based on Android technology. Google has teamed up with automotive and technology leaders Audi, GM, Honda, Hyundai and Nvidia to form the Open Automotive Alliance (OAA), a global alliance aimed at accelerating auto innovation [...] Read More...

Onboard Safety Systems Effectiveness Evaluation - Final Report

Tuesday, 17 Dec 2013 : Decision Points
The Center for Truck and Bus Safety studied carrier crash data from DOT and (14) participating commercial fleets to study the effectiveness of on-board safety systems (OBSS) in reducing or preventing collisions. Today's modern trucks commonly feature one or more of OBSSs to help the driver mitigate or avoid a crash. Examples of commonly deployed OBSSs for CMVs include electronic stability control (ESC), roll stability control (RSC), lane departure warning (LDW), blind spot warning (BSW), [...] Read More...

Policy and Common Sense - Reducing Risks of Distracted Driving

Tuesday, 15 Oct 2013 : Decision Points
It's important to demonstrate that your employees comprehend and understand the policies you work so hard to create. Considering that your average worker reads at a 6th grade level, and your policies are written (and/or vetted) by attorneys, there is need to focus on communication of policy principles using plain language that "anyone" can understand. Confirming policy comprehension requires something more rigorous than simply having a signature upon hire. Testing each employee on the key [...] Read More...

Distraction Still Strong With Voice-to-Text Capabilities

Friday, 06 Sep 2013 : Decision Points
The Traffic Injury Research Foundation recently released a paper (.pdf) citing several early studies that indicate driving with "voice to text" texting technology is still a major distraction for drivers, and dispels the myth of employees being able to "multitask" during "windshield time". The crash risk associated with hands-free texting while driving is not as well understood because in-car voice-to-text technology is relatively new, and few studies investigating this specific issue [...] Read More...

Personal Use of Company Provided Vehicles and Enhanced Employee Accountability

Tuesday, 03 Sep 2013 : Decision Points
Guest Blogger: Bob O'Connor, CFO, BrightFleet.com I recently reviewed the excerpts of a topic at the 2013 Fleet Safety Conference (.pdf) in relation to the personal use of company vehicles. Those in attendance were clearly exposed to some excellent information in relation to positioning themselves and their companies to reduce their exposure to risk and enhanced employee accountability. It was one area that really caught my eye that I want to discuss. Now I do have to apologize in advance [...] Read More...

2012 Seat Belt Use Rates in the States and Territories

Thursday, 01 Aug 2013 : Decision Points
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has released a facts sheet that summarizes state-by-state trends in seat belt usage. The national average is up in 2012, to nearly 86%, but some important changes to the criteria used were also made recently. In 2012, seat belt use in the United States ranged from 66.5 percent in South Dakota to 96.9 percent in Washington. These results are from probability-based observational surveys conducted by 50 States, the District of Columbia, [...] Read More...

Do Driving Simulators Help Reduce Collisions?

Tuesday, 30 Jul 2013 : Decision Points
The Florida Department of Transportation Research Center last month released a new report which tracked the addition of full-scale 3D computer simulators in three Florida public transit agencies and four non-Florida agencies to determine what the affect was on driver safety, accidents, incidents, and performance. The purpose of this research (pdf) was to track and observe three Florida public transit agencies as they incorporated and integrated computer-based transit bus simulators into [...] Read More...

New DOT Rule Changes & Their Impact on Fleet Liability Exposure

Tuesday, 02 Jul 2013 : Decision Points
Guest post by Bob O'Connor, CFO at BrightFleet.com I know a lot of you out there like me who have actually used a rotary phone in their lifetime will remember the nine most fearful words in the English language quote by the late President Ronald Reagan, "I'm from the government and I'm here to help!" This quote has never rang more true than in the recent DOT rules change decision in reduction of driver weekly hours from 82 to 70. Now don't get me wrong here I am in favor of reducing vehicle [...] Read More...

New Study Confirms the Brain's Inability to Safely Drive and Use a Cell Phone

Wednesday, 12 Jun 2013 : Decision Points
The National Safety Council acknowledges that the results announced today by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety of a new distracted driving study, again confirm the presence and crash risk of cognitive distraction. The human brain is incapable of performing, at the same time, the tasks necessary to safely operate a motor vehicle while engaged in other cognitively demanding tasks such as a phone conversation or speech to text. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has observed [...] Read More...

Recent Analysis Indicates Cell Phone Distracted Driving Crashes Vastly Under-Reported

Wednesday, 08 May 2013 : Decision Points
Today, the National Safety Council released findings from a recent analysis of national statistics on fatal motor vehicle crashes, in a report entitled, "Crashes Involving Cell Phones: Challenges of Collecting and Reporting Reliable Crash Data," funded in part by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. The report reviewed 180 fatal crashes from 2009 to 2011, where evidence indicated driver cell phone use. Of these fatal crashes, in 2011 only 52% were coded in the national data as involving cell [...] Read More...

Estimated 1,045 Lives Saved by Electronic Stability Control, 2009-2011

Tuesday, 07 May 2013 : Decision Points
The Transportation Review Board recently released a Traffic Safety Fact report (PDF) estimating 1,045 lives were saved in vehicles equipped with electronic stability control (ESC) systems as standard equipment. In 2011, electronic stability control (ESC) saved an estimated 634 lives among passenger car (PC) occupants, and 411 lives among light truck and van (LTV) occupants, for a total of 1,045 lives saved among passenger vehicle (PV) occupants. This estimate of lives saved is a [...] Read More...

Seat Belt Usage Data for 2011 Released

Wednesday, 24 Apr 2013 : Decision Points
The U.S. National Traffic Safety Highway Administration has released a fact sheet that provides updates on occupant protection—or seat belt usage—in 2011. Research has found that lap/shoulder seat belts, when used, reduce the risk of fatal injury to front-seat passenger car occupants by 45 percent and the risk of moderate- to-critical injury by 50 percent. For light-truck occupants, seat belts reduce the risk of fatal injury by 60 percent and moderate-to-critical injury by 65 percent. [...] Read More...

Addressing Driver Performance and Behavior in Traffic Safety - Phase One Report

Thursday, 11 Apr 2013 : Decision Points
The Transportation Research Board recently released the initial analysis of the Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP 2) project to study specific research questions using early SHRP 2 naturalistic driving study and roadway information database data. The study recruited 2,800 volunteer drivers, ages 16-80, across six sites...data will be collectd for 1 to 2 years...data include vehicle speed, acceleration, and braking; all vehicle controls; lane position; forward radar; and video views [...] Read More...

Car Crashes Remain Leading Cause of Workplace Deaths in United States

Tuesday, 09 Apr 2013 : Decision Points
If you drive for work, either in your own car or in a fleet vehicle, you work in one of the most dangerous "offices" around. In 2011 the total unintentional injury related deaths in the US attributed to driving for work was 1,603 - roughly 70% of the total number of 2,306 work-related deaths, according to the 2013 National Safety Council Injury Facts report. The "good" news is that you are less likely to be injured while driving for work vs injuring yourself doing other things at work. [...] Read More...

Distracted Driving Laws Complicate Fleet Operations

Monday, 01 Apr 2013 : Decision Points
Do your drivers have company cell phones? Does your company have a driving policy that prohibits cell use in one way or another while driving? Even if it's not company policy (you are not alone), do your drivers operate company vehicles in states or jurisdictions where cell phone use is banned in one form or another? Last year at the NAFA convention Rachel sat in on a particularly interesting seminar by St. Louis attorney Karen Baudendistel, who proceeded to "scared the hell out of" the [...] Read More...

You used to be my search engine, now you want to drive my car?

Tuesday, 19 Mar 2013 : Decision Points
Google has been busy mapping the highways and byways across the US, the world, and even places very few have ever been. These maps and the geo-referenced data layers combined with advanced sensors and drive-by-wire controls promise what might be as close to the autonomous "flying car" experience we've been dreaming about since the Jetsons'. The Google driveless car is an extraordinary technical achievement. To grasp the its scope, watch this video featuring a near-blind man sitting behind [...] Read More...

Congested, Gridlocked, Wasting Time and Money

Wednesday, 06 Feb 2013 : Decision Points
What an odd, and great, Superbowl game. But enough distractions... let's get back to America's true favorite national pass-time - sitting in traffic! Ok, may not really be your favorite, but according to a recent study, you do a heck of a lot of it... in fact they've estimated we spend roughly five and a half billion extra hours per year sitting in traffic. That equals roughly $121 billion dollars a year in "wasted time" and fuel. The Texas A&M Transportation Institute released a [...] Read More...

Nodded Off Behind the Wheel - One of the Three Deadly-D's

Tuesday, 08 Jan 2013 : Decision Points
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety recently released a study (pdf) where 46% of 3,303 drivers responding to the survey self-assess that they have nodded off while driving at some point in their lives, with nearly 10% admitting to nodding off behind the wheel at least once in the last 12 months. Drowsy driving is a factor in a substantial number of accidents each year. Earlier studies... ...estimated that 15% - 33% of drivers involved in fatal crashes nationwide from 2001 through 2003 [...] Read More...

Interview with Mike Payette at Staples about Speed Limiters, Fuel Economy, and Safety (Updated)

Tuesday, 18 Dec 2012 : Decision Points
(Please Note: This post was originally published with a few errors. Mr. Payette was kind enough to correct my mistakes with an email. This version contains those corrections and some additional detail that he added.) I was on my way home from the NSC Congress in Orlando, driving up I-4 when I passed another Staples truck driving in the slow lane at a cool 60 miles per hour. I've been involved in eco-driving practice and research since 2006, so I had long kept an eye on the Staples trucks, with [...] Read More...

GAO Report: Selected Cases of Commercial Drivers with Potentially Disqualifying Impairments

Tuesday, 18 Dec 2012 : Decision Points
The GAO recently released a report Selected Cases of Commercial Drivers with Potentially Disqualifying Impairments that explores weaknesses in FMCSA and DOT controls designed to prevent drivers with certain medical conditions from renewing their CDLs. Matching CDL holders with Social Security Administration (SSA) disability files produced 204 commercial drivers who drove a commercial vehicle as recently as 2011 despite having epilepsy, a disqualifying medical condition characterized by [...] Read More...

Relationship Between Politics and Traffic Deaths?

Saturday, 24 Nov 2012 : Decision Points
Last week there was a minor buzz about a story suggesting a relationship between politics and traffic deaths. The article identifies the 10 states with the highest number of traffic fatalities per 100,000 residents supported Romney in the last election, and the states with the fewest number of traffic accidents per 100,000 residents supported Obama. To an extent that mystifies safety experts and other observers, federal statistics show that people in red states are more likely to die in road [...] Read More...

How Many Days Until Christmas?

Tuesday, 06 Nov 2012 : Decision Points
Dale Sommers, aka: the Truckin' Bozo, died way back on August 24, 2012. I read about it in the October issue of Land Line Magazine. I've been meaning to post a simple message of respect since then, and then life got in the way. I really don't know Dale beyond listening to him on Sirius XM "Road Dog" off and on for the last few years. He was a funny and sometimes cantankerous old-timer who seemed to know something about something most of the time. He loved trucking and truckers, and talking [...] Read More...

Blogging the National Safety Congress in Orlando, FL

Sunday, 21 Oct 2012 : Decision Points
I'll be blogging the latest and most interesting fleet-related safety topics from the 2012 National Safety Congress in Orlando, Florida. My initial itinerary includes both "Using Data Analytics to Predict and Prevent Workplace Injuries", "Distracted Driving: A Fresh Perspective", and "Beyond Fleet Safety, Practical Tools and Tips". I've arranged several interviews with leaders in fleet safety, insurance, and risk reduction strategy. Watch this space for updates over the next few days, and [...] Read More...

Is the Economy the Reason for the Increase of Road Fatalities

Wednesday, 03 Oct 2012 : Decision Points
Road fatalities have dropped by 26% in the period between 2005 and 2011, but recent data show an increase in fatalities (up 13% in 2012), and predictions that this trend will continue to climb. According to a new analysis by Michael Sivak (.pdf) at the university of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, there are many contributing factors attributable to the 2005 - 2011 decline; including safer cars with airbags and stability control, graduated driver licensing programs, and effective [...] Read More...

Despite U.S. Traffic Deaths up 13.5 Percent in 2012 - Safety Programs are Being Cut

Saturday, 15 Sep 2012 : Decision Points
A recent Traffic Safety Facts summary report from the NHTSA [pdf] anticipates the increase crash severity rate for 2012 may be the highest since 1979. A statistical projection of traffic fatalities for the first quarter of 2012 shows that an estimated 7,630 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes. This represents a significant increase of about 13.5 percent as compared to the 6,720 fatalities that were projected to have occurred in the first quarter of 2011... [download the pdf] [...] Read More...

Virtual Test Dummies Improve Crash Safety Studies

Saturday, 15 Sep 2012 : Decision Points
The same technology that is used for scanning and modeling human forms for use in computer gaming is now being used to create vitrual test dummies for simulated crash testing analysis. The benefits include the ability to test with a wider array of human shapes and sizes, cheaper non-destructive testing, both allowing for a wider set of results for analysis. Unlike crash dummies, which can only be positioned by shoving their hips and heads into limited positions, virtual human models can be [...] Read More...

What Does CSA Look Like From Your Insurance Company's Perspective? (Video)

Tuesday, 11 Sep 2012 : Decision Points
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szq5ONFzs0Y?rel=0&w=460&h=259] This presentation was recorded live at the Truckload Carriers Association's annual convention on 3/16/11 [San Diego, CA]. Mike Natalizio, President and CEO of HNI addresses the impact CSA will have on obtaining insurance and your insurability in this informative 13 minute video. He also shares a unique perspective on how he sees motor carriers manage risk in the future by moving from lagging indicators to leading [...] Read More...

Reducing the "Dilemma Zone" Situation at Intersections

Friday, 07 Sep 2012 : Decision Points
New traffic light technology displayed at 117th annual International Municipal Signal Association earlier this month in Orlando promises to help drivers avoid the panic-inducing "dilemma zone", caused when the traffic light has turned yellow, and the driver must decide to either slam on their brakes and risk a rear-end collision, or run a red-light. The new technology called "TrafiRadar", created by Belgium-based Traficon, will extend the duration of yellow light depending on road traffic, [...] Read More...

Insurance Claims Data Show New Technologies are Preventing Crashes

Wednesday, 22 Aug 2012 : Decision Points
The latest Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) "Status Report" is a special Crash Avoidance edition titled "They're Working" (.pdf), referring to new passenger vehicle technologies that are showing statistically significant reductions in collisions. This issue relies heavily on studies conducted by the Highway Loss Data Institute (HDLI), a nonprofit research affiliate of IIHS that publishes insurance loss statistics for most vehicles driven in the US. The report focuses on forward [...] Read More...

Poorly Executed Driving Policy Can Cost You Millions in Court

Tuesday, 05 Jun 2012 : Decision Points
I'm sure you've read the news about the $21 million dollar jury award against Coca-Cola in the case where an employee was driving while talking on the phone and hit another motorist. Originally reported as a collision involving a delivery truck and driver, Coca-Cola later clarified that the driver was an employee in a company owned car, not a delivery truck. The particular case hinged on, of all things, the company vehicle policy on distracted driving not being clearly understood. This topic of [...] Read More...

Now You See Me - How Vehicle Markings Can Reduce Collisions

Wednesday, 30 May 2012 : Decision Points
Arizona is using retroreflective materials to increase the conspicuity and identifiability of its police and emergency-response vehicles, being one of the first states to adopt the National Fire Protection Association Standard for Automotive Fire Apparatus, known as the NFPA 1901. Arizona has outfitted its highway patrol vehicles with retroreflective striping that covers 50% of the cab with body-length striping 4 inches wide, 25% of the front of the vehicle with 4-inch wide striping, and 50% of [...] Read More...

Now I See You - Fixing Blind Spots to Reduce Collisions

Friday, 04 May 2012 : Decision Points
It's a sad fact that 1 out of 25 accidents on America's highways today is due to unsafe lane changes and merges(1). That's approximately 630,000 collisions every year, causing more than 700 deaths per year(2) and maiming and injuring many more. Stick-on "blind spot" mirrors are one way to reduce your risk. On my personal vehicles I have added after-market blind-spot mirrors, the little round ones that just stick to the outer lower corner of the flat mirrored glass. They cost less than $1 [...] Read More...

1 in 5 are Driving for Work

Wednesday, 04 Apr 2012 : Decision Points
Guest Blogger: Howard Redwood, Head of Road Safety & Programme Development at Driving Instructors Association (DIA) The physical act of driving is a complex task, however, we tend to pass it off as a ritual process to get from point A to point B. Recent studies have given cause for concern. Although the driving fatality rates have reduced by over 33% since 1998, it is a fact that 1 in every 5 vehicles on the road are being driven by someone who is driving on business. It is a sad fact that [...] Read More...

New Cadillac Shakes Your Booty to Help Save Your Butt

Monday, 02 Apr 2012 : Decision Points
The new Cadillac XTS and ATS has an interesting way to tell you when you are "danger close", it shakes your seat. The "Safety Seat Alert" is one of several other safety features in a system called "The Driver Awareness Package". This sort of tactile feedback is becoming more important for safety systems engineers looking for ways to alert drivers to dangers without distracting them from driving. GM's Active Safety Technical Fellow Raymond Kiefe said drivers respond more quickly and accurately [...] Read More...

Top 5 Ways to Reduce Your Fuel Costs Starting Today

Saturday, 31 Mar 2012 : Decision Points
While I've been championing "eco-driving" for the past 5 years as a tested, proven, and effective way to reduce fuel costs, for some reason it's still a "hard sell" here in the US. While most of the rest of the world already employs some sort of eco-driving component into their driver training and fleet operations, the US seems simply not interested, even though the numbers are there to prove how effective it is. This week yet another study, this time by a company providing eco-driving training [...] Read More...

Central Florida Safety Day - A Recap

Friday, 30 Mar 2012 : Decision Points
The Alliance for Central Florida Safety held their annual Safety Day last Monday in Orlando, Florida. The event focused on a wide range of workplace safety topics including distracted driving, AEDs, ergonomics, electrical line safety, crane safety, and an OSHA update. The event was well attended by over 300 safety professionals from around Florida - with a few making the trip from as far away as California and Montana. Some of the immediate feedback included: "So many great topics and [...] Read More...

Research on the Safety Impacts of Speed Limiter Device Installations on Commercial Motor Vehicles: Phase II

Thursday, 29 Mar 2012 : Decision Points
New research on the effectiveness of active speed limiters (SLs) in commercial vehicles was released this week, indicating a "a strong, positive safety benefit" of using speed limiters to reduce vehicle speeds and improve road safety. This study represents the most comprehensive investigation that has ever been conducted on speed limiters. The primary safety analysis was a focus on the reduction in truck crashes that could have been avoided and/or mitigated with an active SL installed. This was [...] Read More...

New Study: Driver Performance and Distraction Evaluation for In-Vehicle Signing (IVS)

Tuesday, 27 Mar 2012 : Decision Points
The Center for Transportation Studies at the University of Minnesota has recently released the results of their study on In-Vehicle Signing (IVS). An IVS is a system designed to aid drivers by repeating the current road signage in-vehicle for conditions like speed limits on roads, in school zones, and construction zones. The system was a uses a combination of exiting on-board navigation aid or smart phone, gps location data, and detailed surveys of current road signage. The emphasis was on [...] Read More...

FedEx Express is Launching an Eco-Drive/Fleet Sustainability Driver Training Program across Asia-Pacific

Wednesday, 21 Mar 2012 : Decision Points
Last September I wrote about FedEx Japan adopting an eco-driving program to help them deal with fuel shortages after the tsunami that caused so much damage. Now FedEx Express has launched an Asia-Pacific wide eco-driving program for all fleet drivers, with the goals of reducing fuel consumption and emissions. Eco-driving (or "economic driving") is a term used to describe a collection of several simple driving techniques that have shown time and again to reduce fuel consumption 10% or more in any [...] Read More...

MIT Researchers Predict Red-Light Runners at Intersections

Tuesday, 21 Feb 2012 : Decision Points
From: Science News >> Technology In 2008, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2.3 million automobile crashes occurred at intersections across the United States, resulting in some 7,000 deaths. More than 700 of those fatalities were due to drivers running red lights. But, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, half of the people killed in such accidents are not the drivers who ran the light, but other drivers, passengers and pedestrians. [...] Read More...

U.S. DOT Issues New Distracted Driving Guidelines for In-vehicle Technologies

Monday, 20 Feb 2012 : Decision Points
During a press conference on Feb. 16, the U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray Lahood, and the National Transportation Safety Administration's (NHTSA) Administrator David Strickland, presented new proposed guidelines designed to encourage automakers to limit the risk of driver distraction when using communications, navigation, and entertainment technologies built into vehicles. The first phase of the guidelines include recommendations to do the following: Reduce the complexity of in-vehicle [...] Read More...

The Intangible Costs of Collisions

Thursday, 16 Feb 2012 : Decision Points
Last week I was talking with a fleet safety manager about the intangible costs of collisions at work. At BrightFleet we often create an ROI analysis for qualified and interested prospects in order to provide them the financial information that they need to determine in our driver safety training product is a good fit for their company, or to help them "sell" our program "by the numbers" to other stakeholders within their organization that are involved in the buying decision. Discussing the ROI [...] Read More...

For Whom The Bill Tolls

Wednesday, 15 Feb 2012 : Decision Points
I was listening to a bit of the "Lockridge Report" on Sirius radio while at the office this afternoon I heard, for the first time, of a likely amendment to the MAP 21 surface transportation bill (S. 1813) - which proposes to greatly expand tolling on existing interstate highways. While it may not be so surprising that the Senate is kicking this idea around right now, what is surprising is the number of organizations that have signed an open letter to the US Senate opposing the proposal. From [...] Read More...

The 2012 Fleet Forum - A Vendor's Perspective

Monday, 13 Feb 2012 : Decision Points
We arrived home from the FleetForum in Bonita Springs, FL late last Friday, and it's taken a few days just to decompress. I've been to many trade shows, Rachel and Janet have been to scores more. We all agree that we've never been to a "trade show" like this ever before. Instead of the standard convention format, the FleetForum is more like "speed dating" between vendors and potential buyers, and it's intense. In 2 and a half days we met with 30 or so potential buyers of our service, [...] Read More...

Driver Selection Tests and Measurement - Research

Tuesday, 07 Feb 2012 : Decision Points
Today the Transportation Research Board of the National Academies announced the availability of CTBSSP Commercial Truck and Bus Safety Synthesis Report 21 titled "Driver Selection Tests and Measurement", a 98-page review of the latest research available on the subject, including 9 case studies spanning a range of carriers - from large truckload fleets, to small charter bus fleets. This report synthesizes current information on the driver selection methods of commercial truck and bus [...] Read More...

Bureau of Transportation Statistics Releases 2012 Transportation Pocket Guide and Website

Friday, 27 Jan 2012 : Decision Points
The DOT's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) published these two updates today; an interactive website with transportation facts and figures by state, and the 2012 Transportation Pocket Guide which can be ordered or downloaded as a pdf. BTS Releases Pocket Guide to Transportation 2012 (All Modes): Friday, January 27, 2012 - The Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), a part of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA), has published the Pocket Guide to [...] Read More...

Hybrids One - Pedestrians Zero

Thursday, 26 Jan 2012 : Decision Points
According to new research from the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI), hybrids have a 25% lower injury rate over their non-hybrid counterparts when it comes to shielding their occupants from injury in a collision. Hybrids generally weigh 10% heavier than the same model non-hybrid, giving the hybrid a weight advantage in a collision. On the down side, hybrids are about 20% more likely to be involved in a pedestrian crash with injuries, says HLDI. This is a similar result as with two other [...] Read More...

The Fifth International Conference in Driver Behaviour and Training - Reviewed

Monday, 16 Jan 2012 : Decision Points
Dr. Lisa Dorn of Cranfield University, widely noted as a world-leader in the study of driving behavior and training, and editor of Volume 1 through 4 of the Driver Behavior and Training collections of papers on the subject, reviews the the fifth international conference held in Paris last November, for those who were unable to attend. This year over 150 delegates from around the world gathered to discuss in-vehicle technology, driver distraction, at work driver risk, eco-driving, driver [...] Read More...

Conversation with an Airport Offsite-Parking Shuttle Driver

Tuesday, 06 Dec 2011 : Decision Points
I had an interesting conversation with a driver named Tony who picked me up at the Orlando International Airport a few weeks ago. Tony drives the late shift for "the Parking Spot", one of the popular local off-site parking companies that run shuttle buses on a continuous schedule, transporting customer to and from the airport terminal and their off-site parked cars. The conversation started at the airport pickup location when I noticed he backed just enough to cut his wheels left and exit the [...] Read More...

Remind Your Drivers - Don't Turn Thanksgiving into a Tragedy This Year

Friday, 11 Nov 2011 : Decision Points
Washington, DC - U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is asking fleet operators to remind their drivers this Thanksgiving that the only belt that should be left unbuckled this year, or any year, is the one holding up your trousers--not the seat belts in your vehicle. "Seat belts have saved more lives than any other single piece of automotive safety equipment, but in order for them to work, they have to be used. This Thanksgiving, and every [...] Read More...

Keeping Workers Safe While Driving and Working Alone - November 3rd, Orlando, FL

Wednesday, 26 Oct 2011 : Decision Points
The Alliance for Central Florida Safety is holding a free half-day session titled "Keeping Workers Safe While Driving and Working Alone" on November 3rd in Orlando, FL. Did you know 33,000 people were killed while driving last year alone? How do you protect your workers when they are alone? Join us for this exceptional training event featuring expert speakers to address these very questions. This is an interactive session where best practices and ideas will be shared. Please be a part of this [...] Read More...

Did Last Week's BlackBerry Outage Improve Road Safety?

Tuesday, 25 Oct 2011 : Decision Points
Last week's BlackBerry outage caused millions of users world-wide to suffer service interruptions that lasted several days. RIM, manufacturers of the BlackBerry said a message routing computer and it's backup system failed, causing a massive message backlog to build, leaving users without instant communications services. In the high-tech microcosms of Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) where the BlackBerry is highly popular, police reported a 20% to 40% reduction in accidents [...] Read More...

The Rise of Fleet Eco-Driving - FedEx Eco-Drives After Disaster in Japan

Monday, 05 Sep 2011 : Decision Points
With the recent announcement from FedEx that they are considering implementing eco-driving training and indicators into their fleet management systems, the world leader in overnight delivery once again leads fleet operators in setting best business practices that improve operational efficiency and safety. Already known for running a very tight business, FedEx found itself eco-driving earlier this year in Japan after the combination tsunami and nuclear disasters disrupted fuel supplies across [...] Read More...

Interview with Jamie Lynn Crandall - Miss Utah USA - Working to Stop Texting While Driving

Wednesday, 24 Aug 2011 : Decision Points
Guest post by Michael Block Sometimes drivers take a "that will never happen to me" attitude and rationalize behavior that is considered to be dangerous or unwise. Distracted driving is now considered to be as dangerous as driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Texting while driving is considered to be one of the most risky things people can do behind the wheel, and most company and government vehicle policies prohibit it while on company time. Yet, millions of drivers [...] Read More...

Paving the Prevention Highway

Wednesday, 17 Aug 2011 : Decision Points
Just as the motor insurance carrier commercials contend, accidents happen. But a crash is not an accident, and in 1997 the US Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration issued a press release stating just that. To use the term "accident" falsely implies that the crash was out of human control. Since we can identify the cause of collisions, we can also identify the steps to take to avoid them. According to findings by the NHTSA, 12% of all collisions each year in [...] Read More...

Do Driver Incentive Programs Work and Are They Fair?

Wednesday, 27 Jul 2011 : Decision Points
Behavioral therapists and child psychologists have long been preaching about the benefits of positive reinforcement for good behavior, both in school and at home. They insist that rewarding a child for a good grade, for example, will encourage the child to continue good behavior, as opposed to only punishing a child for a bad grade or bad behavior with hopes of ending it. Perhaps, though, this type of behavior modification works with adults too. If you're reading this blog, you're likely [...] Read More...

New NHTSA Report: "Run-Off-Road Crashes: An On-Scene Perspective"

Wednesday, 20 Jul 2011 : Decision Points
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has released a report titled "Run-Off-Road Crashes: An On-Scene Perspective" that explores run-off-road (ROR) critical pre-crash event, assesses the reason for the ROR event, and examines associated factors present in the pre-crash phase of the ROR crash. Abstract: Run-off-road (ROR) crashes, which usually involve only a single vehicle, contribute to a large portion of fatalities and serious injuries to motor vehicle occupants. In [...] Read More...

California Supreme Court Maintains That Employers Cannot Be Liable Twice For The Negligence Of Their Employees

Sunday, 03 Jul 2011 : Decision Points
A recent decision by the California Supreme Court held that an employer's liability should not exceed that of an employee, reversing an earlier decision that had added some uncertainty to the tort laws that impact situations where an employer might be sued for negligence due to the actions of their drivers. The Supreme Court held in Diaz v. Carcamo that an employer's own liability should not exceed that of the employee's. If an employer admits vicarious liability for its employee's [...] Read More...

New White Paper Published on Hazards of 15-Passenger Vans

Friday, 01 Jul 2011 : Decision Points
[Excerpts from the new "15-Passenger Van Safety White Paper" now available for download.] 15-Passenger Van Safety The 15-passenger van has been the subject of many studies over the years. It has been scrutinized and closely examined for safety issues and its inability to handle certain situations and road conditions. Due to its design, it has been deemed one of the most unstable, most dangerous vehicles on the road. It is important to understand the dynamics of the 15-passenger van and what [...] Read More...

Improved Fuel Economy Starts With Your Drivers

Wednesday, 15 Jun 2011 : Decision Points
Fuel prices are still at record highs for the second time in three years. Couple that with the American economy still struggling to recover from its worst downturn since the Great Depression, and individuals, small businesses, and corporations alike are scrambling to save money in as many ways as possible, including reducing fuel consumption. One method of cutting fuel costs is to change one or more components on the vehicle to lighten the engine's workload. Wal-Mart uses lower-profile tires on [...] Read More...

Have You Looked at Your Vehicle Policy Lately?

Thursday, 26 May 2011 : Decision Points
When was the last time you reviewed your formal vehicle policy? Is it up to date considering new and developing federal, state and local regulations regarding distracted driving, cell-phone use, anti-idling regulations? Does it include policies that compliment your in-house safety, maintenance, and green-fleet initiatives? Are you sure your drivers understand it? If you don't yet have a written policy, or haven't reviewed your written policy recently, you may be putting your drivers and company [...] Read More...

Welcome to "Decision Points" Blog

Thursday, 05 May 2011 : Decision Points
According to the most recent OSHA Safe Driver study - drivers make over 200 decisions per mile, and the decisions your drivers make on the road have a serious impact on your overall fleet operations. With new technology augmenting the driving experience (arguably for better or for worse) it still remains up to the employees behind the wheel making thousands of decisions per trip that will mean the difference between another unremarkable journey and a potential disaster for your company. With [...] Read More...