four in 10 commercial truck passengers dont wear their seat belts, the 2008 survey indicated

Independent Truckers Lag on Seat Belt Use

This week, the American Trucking Associations highlighted its work to increase truckers' belt use -- part of ATA's safety agenda, which advocates adoption of primary enforcement laws.

The good news is that seat belt use by commercial drivers rose to an all-time high of 72 percent last year. The bad news? Only 62 percent for independent owner-operators, and only 61 percent of the passengers of commercial motor vehicles wear seat belts, the American Trucking Associations noted this week. The figures come from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's 2008 survey,

this is the logo of FMCSA's Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Belt PartnershipWhen then-DOT Secretary Norman Mineta created FMCSA's Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Belt Partnership in 2003, a survey indicated only 48 percent of truck drivers wore their seat belts, even though Section 392.16 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations requires it. The section states, "A commercial motor vehicle which has a seat belt assembly installed at the driver’s seat shall not be driven unless the driver has properly restrained himself/herself with the seat belt assembly." [35 FR 10860, July 3, 1970, as amended at 60 FR 38747, July 28, 1995]

In 2007, truckers' rate for belt use was 65 percent, the survey found, compared to the 82 percent rate that year of passenger vehicle drivers.

"We must continue to educate all motorists about the importance of buckling up," ATA President and CEO Bill Graves said this week. The organization's 18-point safety agenda recommends:

  • that all states enact primary safety belt laws
  • audible reminders for safety belt use in commercial vehicles
  • contrasting colors for safety belts so law enforcement can quickly identify non-users
  • state adoption of the failure to wear a safety belt defense
  • denial of workers' compensation for drivers who fail to use safety belts
  • that the federal government explore incentives and penalties to motivate states to pass primary belt laws, which are in place in 29 states and Washington, D.C.

Product Showcase

  • Preventative Heat Safety

    Dehydration and heat exposure impair physical and cognitive performance. Proper hydration boosts heat stress resilience, but hydration needs are highly individualized and hard to predict across a workforce. Connected Hydration® empowers industrial athletes to stay safe through behavioral interventions, informed by sports science, and equips safety teams with critical insights to anticipate high-risk situations and adapt to evolving environmental factors. Curious about applying the latest in sports science based hydration strategies for industrial athletes? Stop by booth #1112 at AIHA or schedule a free demo today at Read More

  • Magid® D-ROC® GPD412 21G Ultra-Thin Polyurethane Palm Coated Work Gloves

    Magid’s 21G line is more than just a 21-gauge glove, it’s a revolutionary knitting technology paired with an advanced selection of innovative fibers to create the ultimate in lightweight cut protection. The latest offering in our 21G line provides ANSI A4 cut resistance with unparalleled dexterity and extreme comfort that no other 21-gauge glove on the market can offer! Read More

  • AirChek Connect Sampling Pump

    Stay connected to your sampling with the SKC AirChek® Connect Sampling Pump! With its Bluetooth connection to PC and mobile devices, you can monitor AirChek Connect pump operation without disrupting workflow. SKC designed AirChek Connect specifically for all OEHS professionals to ensure accurate, reliable flows from 5 to 5000 ml/min and extreme ease of use. AirChek Connect offers easy touch screen operation and flexibility. It is quality built to serve you and the workers you protect. Ask about special pricing and a demo at AIHA Connect Booth 1003. Read More