As a safety company, the NTSB proposed cell phone ban for CDL drivers cuts straight to our values.
2015 Update: We've completely overhauled our driver distraction video, using feedback and data from fleets, drivers and technology partners. You can see a clip below, as well as our announcement about the Driver Distraction course here.
2011 Update: The ban on handheld cell phones was approved by both the DOT and the FMCSA. Our Driver Distractions course was updated to reflect the new law within 72 hours. Drivers face fines of $2,750 and risk their CDL, while companies face fines of $11,000. Can you *prove* you trained your drivers? With PRO-TREAD, you can.
The ban was spurred by a horribly, horribly tragic accident in Kentucky in which 11 people died. According to investigators, the driver made four phone calls in the minutes before the crash, and there's conflicting reports about if he was making a call during the start of the accident. Investigators said he'd put in too many hours, as well, which could make him more susceptible to distraction. And the fleet's ugly safety record? Washed away in FMCSA's bureaucracy. (We also recommend reading the excellent investigative series from TheTrucker.com: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.)
But it's not our job to play detective in this case. The undisputed fact is that driver distractions abound. Drivers eat, they drink, they talk to their co-drivers, they look at navigation systems. Technology can minimize distractions — hands-free devices keep your eyes on the road, but they don't focus your mind. Training is needed. Distractions happen, and training keeps the mind sharp.
The video above is just a short clip from our 30-minute course on Driver Distractions. Please share it. It covers eating and drinking, cell phone use, reaching, mental distractions, visual distractions, and lots of real-world advice. If you'd like a demo of this full lesson, or one of our 70+ other driver safety courses, let us know.