Safety is a huge priority for many construction companies—and one place that is evident is on the road. Many companies have safety policies for their drivers and workers on highway projects. This week, there is an even greater focus on safety on the roads, as it is Operation Safe Driver Week.
The CVSA’s (Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance) Operation Safe Driver Program was created to improve the driving behaviors of all drivers and reduce the number of crashes involving commercial motor vehicles on our roadways through educational and traffic enforcement strategies.
This is an annual safe-driving awareness and outreach initiative aimed at improving the driving behaviors of passenger vehicle drivers and commercial motor vehicle drivers through educational and traffic enforcement strategies and interactions with law enforcement.
We all know speeding has been a factor in more than a quarter of crash deaths since 2008 and distracted driving claimed 3,142 lives in 2019—although I suspect these estimates are actually lower than they are in the real world, as it is very hard to prove if someone was distracted when behind the wheel.
What’s more, of the 22,215 passenger vehicle occupants killed in 2019, 47% were not wearing seat belts. Every day, about 28 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes—that’s one person every 52 minutes. In 2019, 10,142 people lost their lives due to drunk driving.
These are our brothers and sisters. They are our husbands and wives. They are our aunts and uncles. One life is far too many to lose. These individuals are also our fellow workers. Worker injuries and illnesses are down from 10.9 incidents per 100 workers in 1972 to 2.8 per 100 in 2019. Yet safety on the roads across America remains a pressing issue for people driving to work—and especially those working on highway construction jobsites.
The bad news is it is getting worse. According to research from TRUCE Software, 72% of those who drive as part or all of their job said they feel pressured to respond to work-related communications while driving. Yikes.
The study also found 97% of employees carry at least one mobile device with them while working, yet just half said their employer has any sort of mobile device usage policy in place. Worse yet, only 30% have technology solutions in place to monitor or enforce those policies.
Throughout this week, law enforcement personnel will be on the lookout for drivers who might be engaging in risky driving. Will they be your workers? Will they be you?
What will you do to participate in Operation Safe Driver Week? Will you create a policy to define how workers can use mobile devices during a typical workday? Will you consider technology or software to monitor or control mobile usage?
No matter what you decide this week, one thing is for certain: We need to make our roads a safer place for all our workers. If not now, when?
Want to tweet about this article? Use hashtags #construction #IoT #sustainability #AI #5G #cloud #edge #futureofwork #infrastructure #OperationSafeDrivingWeek