Driver safety is about the manner in which the driver behaves behind the wheel, but ironically it is this behavior that can additionally serve to keep other drivers out there safe. It is thus more appropriate to consider that driver safety concerns everyone on the roads and is arguably the best way to improve road safety statistics for the logistics and transport industry as a whole.
The manner in which a driver reacts and behaves behind the wheel is one of the main causes and factors that can avoid serious road accidents. Driving Dynamics have premised all their driver safety training on the ‘one-second advantage’ principle, and this is arguably the best way to change mindsets about accidents and driver preparedness. This principle maintains that if a driver knows what to do in just one extra second, the outcome of a crash is likely to be different, even less serious. It is, therefore, clear that any driver improvements must be based on individual technique and personal driving practice.
Until there are self-driven logistics and people are able to securely sit behind the wheel of their vehicles and securely trust that those around them will behave as they should and drive in a manner prescribed by the law, adhering to traffic signals and keeping under the legal traffic speed, drivers will need to ensure that safety is a major component of driver training and education.
Trucks are at More Risk
Newer and faster means of transport are devised and developed on an ongoing basis to meet the consumer demands of quicker delivery and same-day or next-day delivery preferences. Over 70% of all products are delivered to the consumer via a large truck. It’s a massive industry, and as such, the logic would dictate that if there were accidents, then some of these will involve trucks. It is hence an industry where safety has always been a priority.
By 2030, it is estimated that careless driving will be the 5th largest cause of death on US roads. This reiterates the fact that improving the manner in which drivers act and react in pressure and in normal driving conditions is key to saving lives.
Road accidents are part and parcel of the current logistics process. Crashes cause more than damage to goods and death or injury; they also cause delays and waits, costs to insurers, and damage to property. It must be clear, however, that it is not necessarily the truck driver that need be careless or drive unsafely, but the careless passenger vehicle driver who comes off worse in the resultant crash is always seen as the innocent party, the David and Goliath scenario. Hence, the suggestion that truck drivers should be better prepared means there will likely be fewer fatalities, regardless of who is at fault for careless driving.
Improved Training and a Change in Mindset are Essential
It is clear that the rate of accidents is directly related to driver error and poor driver judgment. The ability of a driver to make the right decision at the right time can be trained into them. By watching current driving style, the use of simulation, and real-time training, it will be possible to begin to change the idea that large trucks and delivery vehicles are reckless and irresponsible.
With 74% of all passenger car accident fatalities involving a large truck, it is essential to evoke the importance of driver improvement and training as one of the main routes towards a safer highway and road system. The sheer number of trucks on our roads necessitates that these drivers be at the forefront of all such change and, in doing so, protect all other road users out there. Any reputable logistics firm worth their salt must realize this and ensure that driver safety is at the forefront of their operations.