ADDRESSING DISTRACTIONS AMONG COMMERCIAL DRIVERS


The National Safety Council estimates that distracted driving crashes in the US cause nine deaths and 100 injuries every day. Ohio residents should know that many of these crashes are the result of drivers using phones and in-vehicle tech like voice command and dashboard touchscreens. To raise awareness of this trend, the NSC chose April to be Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

Those working in the commercial driving industry may want to be especially aware of the dangers of inattention. Drivers in this industry go from job to job and have to contend with incoming emails and text messages at the same time. However, with telematics systems, drivers can reduce their distractions. One system can block work orders when drivers are completing one. Another can plan routes, keeping drivers from using their navigation systems.

Representatives of CalAmp, a telematics system provider, say that employers should not take a punitive approach to driver behavior, but they should instead reward good behavior. They can do this through a driver scoring program that lays down the criteria by which drivers’ performance will be judged.

CalAmp also offers a device called CrashBoxx, which is monitored by a 24/7 call center. This plays a role in vehicle risk management. It also recommends cameras, which are cheaper than ever, for commercial truck fleets.

Under truck accident law, those who are injured through the actions of a negligent truck driver can file a claim against that trucker’s employer. Determining ownership and liability, though, can be complicated, and negotiating for a fair amount in damages is hard. Therefore, victims may want to schedule a case evaluation with a lawyer. If the case is strong, third-party investigators may come in to show that the trucker was distracted. The proof could include phone records and in-cab camera footage.

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