Make a note on your diaries, CVSA’s Operation Safe Driver Week (OSDW) is on. The healthy – and necessary – annual reminder for all fleet managers and drivers out there to stay safe on the road, will go ahead as scheduled on July 12-18.
While the Covid-19 pandemic prompted the cancellation of this year’s CVSA International Roadcheck, the OSDW will not become a victim, and the focus this year will be on speeding.
Speeding is understandably one of the most dangerous of unsafe driving behaviors, by both commercial motor vehicle and passenger-vehicle drivers. So, tackling unsafe driving behaviors such as excessive speeding is an important part of preventing fleet accidents.
Let’s have a closer look at what this year’s OSDW will be about and why it’s an important event on the motoring calendar.
What is Operation Safe Driver Week?
Operation Safe Driver Week was established in 2007. The objective was to help reduce the number of crashes, deaths, and injuries involving large trucks, buses and passenger vehicles, due to unsafe driving behaviors. It’s a period when law enforcement agencies across North America engage in heightened traffic safety enforcement; and education aimed at combating unsafe driving behaviors, by both commercial motor vehicle and passenger-vehicle drivers. There will be various activities taking place across the United States, Canada and Mexico. The goal is to increase commercial vehicle and non-commercial vehicle traffic enforcement, safety belt enforcement, driver roadside inspections and driver regulatory compliance.
During the Operation Safe Driver Week, law enforcement officers will be keeping an eye out for drivers who are texting, or following too closely. Also, for those not wearing seat belts or maneuvering in unsafe manners. All, while placing added emphasis on keeping within speed limits.
But that’s not all. Education is also an important part of OSDW. Law enforcement and transportation safety officials will offer educational and awareness safety programs to the motor carrier population; and the motoring public, of course. The aim is to promote defensive driving behaviors.
Why Operation Safe Driver Week and safety are so important
A recent CVSA press release, earlier this month, stated that findings from the Governors Highway Safety Association showed that state highway officials nationwide in the United States are “seeing a severe spike in speeding”. That is, as traffic volume has decreased; a result of quarantines and stay-at-home orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Also, preliminary estimates from the National Safety Council show that, in March, the rate of motor vehicle deaths in the United States was 14% higher than in March 2019. And that’s despite fewer drivers being on the road.
Speeding is one of the major driving forces of aggressive driving. And it’s something that every driver needs to work on controlling. Especially, if they are to play a part in reducing road traffic accidents – pandemic or not. The end goal? To make everyone a better driver, of course.
Check your speed with Veturilo
If you are a fleet manager or owner of a small to medium-sized business, running a fleet of vehicles, safe driving needs to be at the top of your agenda. A good way of monitoring something like speeding and trying to stamp it is via a fleet management solution; like our very own Veturilo.
We recently posted a blog about defensive driving. Which is, as you can imagine, the exact antithesis of unsafe driving. To encourage it, you need to make sure all your drivers get access to training on different kinds of tactics for defensive driving. You can do this via incentive schemes; rewarding the safest drivers each week or month, using data pulled from your fleet tracking solution.
Using such data is the perfect way to boost efficiency; as well as make significant cost-savings, which can help the business’s profitability. Since it’s so simple for fleet managers to track driving behavior in detail, you can evaluate drivers. And you can discipline and/or reward them, as you see fit. By tracking driving behavior with Veturilo, you can monitor indicators like fast accelerations, sharp or harsh turns, heavy braking and high RPM use. All of which are tell-tale signs of unsafe driving.
Leave unsafe driving in your rear view mirror
With Operation Safe Driver Week just over a month away, there’s plenty of time to get your fleets – and yourselves – prepared. Unsafe driving can not be implemented overnight, of course, and there will always be exceptions and rule-breakers.
The point is, as a fleet manager, is trying to set yourself up with the right tools to help combat unsafe driving practices. And this includes fleet management solutions, hiring the right drivers, and offering the proper training.
Keep trucking and and be safe out there.