We’re all accustomed to the increased traffic in Colorado around the holidays. Our state’s highways, train stations, bus terminals, and airports become more congested as travelers head or return home for family gatherings and other engagements.
With more vehicles on our roads, please do yourself and your family a favor and be more careful this holiday season.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently began funding a study to learn more about the best ways to prevent fatigue in truck drivers. Fatigue is a major cause of truck accidents in Colorado and nationwide. In the past, the agency has attempted to address fatigue by requiring drivers to limit their total hours on the road per day and to take regular breaks – but the FMCSA and researchers continue to improve these requirements.
The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) have teamed up to urge drivers of both passenger vehicles and commercial trucks and buses to avoid speeding in order to reduce the risks of serious or deadly crashes, according to a recent article in Land Line Magazine, a trucking trade journal.
The recent concerns are driven by the results of a study by the CVSA of speeding tickets issued in October 2012. The study found that the number of tickets issued to commercial vehicle drivers had increased 2.8 percent over the previous year, and the number of tickets issued to passenger vehicle drivers had increased 10 percent.
Overall, passenger vehicle drivers received half of all speeding tickets in the U.S. in the past year, while commercial drivers received 19.6 percent of tickets. Failure to use a seat belt and to obey a traffic control sign or signal were also common reasons police stopped drivers during the study, which involved over 35,000 vehicles, according to the CVSA.
Beginning in 2014, professional commercial drivers of trucks and buses will have to meet new, more stringent health examination requirements, according to a recent article from The Associated Press.
The medical examination requirements that will take effect in 2014 are designed to enhance rules already enforced by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Currently, truck drivers are required to have a medical examination once every two years in order to maintain their Class A commercial driver’s license (CDL). Drivers are referred for follow-up care if they have conditions or risk factors that might impair their driving, such as sleep apnea.