• Keith Hunt

Trucking Industry Risk Management Review

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), has determined over the past two decades, the number of truck accidents has increased by 20%.

Although Federal laws and regulations govern the trucking industry, true safety awareness starts with the drivers and other employees of the trucking industry.

Should a trucking accident occur, there are number of people that may be held liable for any victims’ injuries. Possible defendants could include:

· The truck driver

· The owner or company of the truck or trailer

· The manufacturer of the vehicle, tires, or other parts that may have contributed to the cause or severity of the accident

· The shipper or loader of the truck’s cargo (in cases involving improper loading)

While these possibilities may not come into play with every accident, it’s important to know what Risk Management strategies you should employ to financially protect your trucking firm. The biggest part of this is ensuring that your drivers are always adhering to the rules and regulations set forth by the Department of Transportation (DOT).

In addition, you should make sure that your drivers:

· Take care of themselves physically and mentally - follow required rest periods

· Always maintain their vehicle - daily inspections both before and after haul

· Be aware of their blind spots - assess blind spots and remediate

· Slow- down in work zones - gps to monitor proper speeds

· Always keep their distance - is your firm encountering rear end claims

· Fasten their seatbelt - follow ALL required safety measures

· Drive defensively - continually review accidents and trends for additional training

If your driver feels that they are in an unsafe driving situation, they should be able to let you know and avoid the situation as needed while not encountering any repercussions for bringing up the subject. Always listen, document and remedy anything which is brought up in those discussions. It could save your company untold time and profits in defending your situation, should you need it.

Glenn Salter is Vice President at Compliance and Safety First, the Safety division of Delaney Insurance Agency, Inc. at 8231 White Oak, Rancho Cucamonga, 91730. If you have any questions, concerns or needs on Safety or Compliance, such as new ways to improve security while minimizing your total cost of risk, Glenn may be reached at (909) 481-7223 or email Glenn@ComplianceandSafetyFirst.com. He will help!

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