Healy Scanlon Law Firm

Focusing on entry-level drivers and truck accident rates

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is required by law to establish a baseline set of mandatory requirements for entry-level driver training (ELDT) by mid-October of 2013. These critical truck regulations will aim to establish a greater emphasis on safety and accountability among the newest commercial vehicle drivers on the road.

In establishing these regulations, the FMCSA ultimately hopes to reduce the rate of fatal truck accidents and seriously injurious truck accidents that occur in the United States each year.

In order to ensure that it is fully informed before constructing these regulations, the FMCSA will be holding both a public listening session on the topic and soliciting public feedback through other means through the early portion of January. The agency is specifically concerned about receiving public feedback on "factors, issues and data it should consider in anticipation of a rulemaking to implement the entry-level driver training provisions."

Just as teenagers experience a higher risk of being involved in an accident during their first year of driving than at any other point in their driving careers, novice commercial drivers are similarly at a higher risk of accidents when they first start driving their large vehicles. The new FMCSA regulations seek to address some of these unique risk factors and place new commercial vehicle drivers in a better position to operate safely.

If you have concerns or input on the subject of novice commercial driver regulations, consider submitting feedback to the FMCSA. Your own safety on the road could be influenced by your efforts.

Source: Fleet Owner, "FMCSA wants comments on entry-level driver training rule," David Cullen, Dec. 20, 2012

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