Safety is always top of mind for those in our industry, both on and off the road, but there are ways to make the roads safer. That’s a combination of today’s truck technology and conscientious drivers.
The incidences of accidents involving trucks have been rising and that’s something that should concern all of us. As Jane Clark, vice president of Member Services for NationaLease notes in a recent IdeaXchange blog, 2015 saw a 4 percent increase over 2014 in truck-related crashes. That translates to 400,000 crashes resulting in 4,000 deaths and 116,000 injuries.
As those of us in the industry know, many of these accidents are caused by automobile drivers making some bad driving decisions. There’s a limit to what can be done to stop distracted or dangerous driving, but there are steps we can take to mitigate the damage.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety notes that there are now advanced safety systems trucks have access to including lane departure warning systems, automatic emergency braking, air disc brakes, and video-based onboard safety monitoring systems.
Since some fleets may be concerned regarding the cost to install and implement this technology, the AAA Foundation provided important and eye-opening statistics:
- Automatic emergency braking can prevent up to 5,294 crashes, 2,753 injuries and 55 deaths
- Air disc brakes can prevent up to 2,411 crashes, 1,447 injuries and 37 deaths a year.
Consider the liabilities that are inherent when these accidents occur. Preventing those accidents by utilizing the new technology will definitely outweigh the costs of implementation.
Jane also reminds fleets to continually work to reinforce safe driving practices with your own drivers. Technology alone isn’t the answer, but technology, paired with safe well-trained drivers is the best way to ensure safer roads for all of us.