Earlier this year, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released its annual publication: “Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements.” Contained in the list are 7 major safety issues on highways that the NTSB would like drivers and transportation companies to solve within the coming year.
The full list contains 10 items, with 3 pertaining specifically to railroads and aviation. For this reason, we’ve omitted them from the article. If you’d like to see the full list, however, please visit the NTSB’s page.
Between 2019 and 2020, the NTSB plans to improve safety on the road by addressing the biggest causes of injuries and accidental deaths in the United States, such as driving while distracted, drowsy, or under the influence. The board also hopes to encourage the adoption of vehicle safety technology by both the industry and consumers.
Without further ado, here is the NTSB’s list:
#1: Eliminate Distractions
Injuries, accidents, and fatalities related to distracted driving only continue to climb, year after year. Pedestrians, in addition to drivers, are also at risk of getting injured due to distractions. Cellphone usage while driving—or even crossing the street—is becoming a bigger problem every year as people become more dependent on their devices. When behind the wheel, one should focus on driving and the vehicles around them—nothing more.
#2: Reduce Fatigue-Related Accidents
Fatigue continues to be a major contributor to accidents in all sectors of transportation. Unlike driving under the influence (DUI), driving while drowsy is often hard to measure or detect before it’s too late. The NTSB seeks to reduce drowsy driving by using sleep disorder treatment, HOS regulations, and on/off-duty scheduling policies and practices. Evidence proving whether or not HOS regulations are effective in reducing drowsy driving has yet to be seen.
#3: End Alcohol and Other Drug Impairment
Both legal and illegal forms of impairment, including alcohol usage, are all leading causes of highway crashes. In 2019, the NTSB wants to see states adopt BAC levels of 0.05% or lower, plus technologies like ignition interlock devices. They would also like to implement national drug testing standards for passenger vehicles and stricter screening for commercial fleets.
#4: Increase Implementation of Collision Avoidance Systems in All-New Highway Vehicles.
With motor vehicle crashes being the leading cause of death and injury in the United States, the NTSB hopes to see automotive manufacturers make collision avoidance systems standard equipment on all new vehicles.
Many life-saving technologies are already available on the market, yet aren’t promoted strongly enough, according to the NTSB. Consumers should also keep themselves informed of collision avoidance systems and purchase vehicles equipped with the technology.
#5: Implement a Comprehensive Strategy to Reduce Speeding-Related Crashes
Speeding not only increases the chances of a crash, but also the severity of injuries sustained by occupants of vehicles. According to the NTSB’s statistics, speeding-related crashes kill more than 10,000 people and cost society over $52 billion every year. The NTSB proposes improvements in vehicle technology, law enforcement tactics, and educational campaigns.
#6: Require Medical Fitness—Screen for and Treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Undiagnosed and untreated cases of sleep apnea continue to have deadly consequences on the road. However, the development and implementation of medical tests and screening could prevent drivers with sleep apnea from getting behind the wheel.
#7: Strengthen Occupant Protection
The NTSB seeks to improve driver safety by further enforcing seat belt usage and encouraging vehicle manufacturers to design safer vehicles.
Implementing ADAS systems and monitoring devices in your vehicles can have a huge effect on the safety and profitability of your fleet. Even government institutions like the NTSB recognize the effectiveness of these technologies and see them as essential tools to increase the safety of our roads.
With live streaming dash cameras and GPS systems from Safety Track, you can track your fleet in real time and stay informed of the whereabouts of your drivers. You can also see inside the cab and prevent dangerous behaviors before they result in a collision.
By Installing Safety Track Live Dashcams in Your Fleet, You Will:
- Avoid Delayed Shipments, Setbacks, and Expensive Repairs Caused by Collisions
- Save Fuel, Increase Efficiency and Lower Operating Costs
- Protect Your Drivers and Others on the Road from Injury or Death
- Lower Your Monthly Insurance Costs by ~50%
- Have Evidence to Protect Yourself in the Case of Lawsuits and Insurance Claims
Want a safer, more profitable fleet? Visit Safety Track’s page to learn more.