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

  • Matrix's OmniPro Vision AI Collision Avoidance System

    OmniPro Vision AI is a state-of-the-art collision avoidance system that features NIOSH award-winning Visual Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology. This highly accurate, powerful system identifies and alerts on pedestrians, vehicles and specified objects, ensuring safer facilities, mining operations and industrial sites. With its web-based cloud application, OmniPro Vision AI also logs and analyzes a wide range of data related to zone breach notifications. Operating without needing personal wearable devices or tags, OmniPro has visual and audible zone breach alerts for both operators and pedestrians. 3

  • 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. 3

  • SlateSafety BAND V2

    SlateSafety BAND V2

    SlateSafety's BAND V2 is the most rugged, easy-to-use connected safety wearable to help keep your workforce safe and help prevent heat stress. Worn on the upper arm, this smart PPE device works in tandem with the SlateSafety V2 system and the optional BEACON V2 environmental monitor. It includes comprehensive, enterprise-grade software that provides configurable alert thresholds, real-time alerts, data, and insights into your safety program's performance all while ensuring your data is secure and protected. Try it free for 30 days. 3