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Distracted Driving: A Major Issue for Truck Drivers

Are you a distracted driver?

Are you a distracted driver?

Contributed by : Kala Bell
Distracted Driving Help

The use of cell phones and other entertainment devices have surely had an effect on the transportation industry over the past few years.

Distracted driving legislation has been put in place in a number of states as many lawmakers work to improve traffic safety. One of the overlooked aspects of distracted driving is the impact that automobiles can have on trucks, given the difficulty involved with driving a CMV( commercial motor vehicle).

The impact that distracted driving has around CMV’s begins with the difficulties that automobiles have, even under non-distracted circumstances. It’s clear that safe and careful driving is important for automobile drivers when in the vicinity of a CMV. Blind spots, the inability to brake as fast, and a number of other factors play into the difficulty that is regularly associated with driving a large commercial truck.

When you think about the tediousness of driving a CMV under regular circumstances, distracted driving becomes a very serious issue. The reliance on technology has people checking their phones at all times, losing focus of the road. The level of danger that a moment of lost concentration can bring is multiplied around CMV’s. Responsible driving habits from those behind the wheel of automobiles are going to be necessary if the roads are going to be as safe as possible in the future. That starts with good habits with everyday driving, as one of the main goals should be phasing out distractions such as cell phones.

Of course, professional truck drivers may be distracted at times as well, although the penalties for doing so is strictly enforced by the DOT.  There is no limit to the importance of cutting down on the use of devices that may become a distraction in the driver’s seat, commercial and non commercial.  Fortunately, lawmakers are doing their best in many states to minimize cases of distracted driving through new laws. Right now, 35 states have a texting and driving ban in place, while nine states have a full violation for those who use any handheld cell phone while driving. The enacting of these laws will no doubt only make for safer highways.

Responsibility for safe driving practices is likely to extend to automakers and technology developers in the future. Although technology has many benefits, they can become a serious distraction while driving. It’s likely that limits will be in the future when it comes to placing distracting technology in automobiles.

In the case of distracted driving, there is much to be done from a number of fronts. It’s likely that some type of combination will be needed in order to have a strong and long term impact on safety.  Traffic and road safety is jeopardized when distractions come into play, most especially when automobiles are sharing our highways with “Big Trucks”

Kala  Bell is a creative writer from the University of Michigan. She works closely  with Distracted Driving Help, to  raise awareness of the dangers texting while driving has on the community.



© 2012, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

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By: Allen Smith

Allen Smith is a 37 year veteran who started at an early age in a household goods family moving business. He began driving straight trucks in 1977 and moved to the big rigs in 1982. His experience within the industry includes; owner operator, company driver, operations manager, and owner of a long distance HHG moving business, taking many of the long haul moves himself when needed. Allen Smith, a truck driver advocate who is driven by the desire to help others succeed within an industry where injustice, unrewarded sacrifice, and lack of respect and recognition exists. Allen and his wife Donna are hosts of Truth About Trucking ”Live” on Blog Talk Radio. Other websites include AskTheTrucker, TruckingSocialMedia, NorthAmericanTruckingALerts, TruthAboutTrucking, and many Social Media websites. In 2011 Allen and Donna hosted the first Truck Driver Social Media Convention, designed to create unity and solutions for the trucking industry. This is now being extended through the North American Trucking Alerts network as those within the industry join forces for the betterment of the industry. Allen strongly supports other industry advocates who are also stepping up to the plate to help those who share honesty, guidance and direction. He believes that all those involved in trucking need to be accountable for their part within the industry, including drivers, carriers, brokers, shippers, receivers, etc… The list of supporters and likeminded people grow daily, networking together and sharing thoughts and ideas for the betterment of trucking. He has coined the popular phrase "Raising the standards of the trucking industry"

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