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  • 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 worst-performing vehicles were the Honda Fit and the Fiat 500, although a completely redesigned Fit goes on sale this spring. Russ Radar, a spokesman for the institute recommends “…If safety is a priority, it’s better to move up even one class size.”

    Jan 22,
    - by Michael
  • 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 could lead to overheating of exhaust components, potentially causing engine compartment fires. The 2014 Silverado is one of three finalists for North American Truck of the Year, which will be awarded Monday at the North American International Auto Show.

    Jan 11,
    - by Michael
  • 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), forward collision warning (FCW), adaptive cruise control (ACC), and collision mitigation braking systems (CMBS). In-service effectiveness assessment of these systems is of significant importance to FMCSA, U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), fleets, safety advocacy groups and other industry stakeholders. This study not only augments the

    Dec 17,
    - by Michael
  • 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 points in your policies demonstrates that not only were they aware there is a policy (like a signature), but provides a record that employee also understood the contents of the policy. Passing "score" should be 100%, and a record of each failing attempt should be

    Oct 15,
    - by Michael
  • 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 have been completed to date. ​​What is known, however, supports the contention that hands-free texting while driving poses significant distraction, and consequently, unacceptable crash risk (Tijerina 2008). ​​T​o put this traffic safety issue and public health concern into perspective, this paper draws upon existing research in order to share insight

    Sep 06,
    - by Michael
  • 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 that I was not in attendance at this event so for those exposed to this article it is here I would ask for your feedback to ensure the audience can also benefit from the experience. In allowing employees families the

    Sep 03,
    - by Michael
  • 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, and U.S. Territories. These surveys are conducted in accordance with criteria established by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to ensure reliable results. Compliance with the criteria is verified annually by NHTSA's National Center for Statistics and Analysis... ...Sixteen States, the District

    Aug 01,
    - by Michael
  • 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 their existing bus operator training programs. In addition to the three Florida case study agencies, four transit agencies outside Florida were contacted and interviewed on their experiences with the use of bus simulators in their operator training programs. The Research Team asked agencies to provide any relevant data they

    Jul 30,
    - by Michael
  • 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 10% of all drivers, at any given moment, are distracted by a cell phone. When this unprecedented level of exposure to risk is combined with the degree of risk as defined in the AAA Foundation study, it is easy to understand why cell

    Jul 12,
    - by Michael
  • 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 collisions and unnecessary deaths on our roadways but you have to forgive my skepticism in relying on anything government mandated to achieve the results. Let me explain

    Jul 02,
    - by Michael

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