Large Truck and Bus Safety in the Spotlight through Regional Campaign Efforts.
What is your plan for being safe on the road?
If you haven’t made one, you should — and if you are a passenger car driver, here’s a hint: don’t forget to consider the challenging operating characteristics of large trucks and buses. These big vehicles maneuver very differently than cars and smaller trucks. They make wide turns, have large blind spots for the driver, and take much longer to stop. Commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers have a responsibility to keep these safety considerations in mind, but so do the rest of us, because after all, safety is the responsibility of every road user.
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is dedicated to reducing crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks and buses. Leveraging Our Roads, Our Safety as the education component to regional enforcement activity, FMCSA worked with field offices and state-based partners in 2021 to implement dedicated regional efforts that amplified safety outreach efforts. This summer FMCSA and State Partners focused on high-risk crash corridors including Interstate 95 from Florida through North Carolina, and Interstate 81 from West Virginia through New York.
The regional campaigns involved both education and enforcement efforts. The Our Roads, Our Safety team, alongside regional partners, implemented advertising, public relations, and social media efforts to reach road users, then coordinated with law enforcement officers and road inspectors to implement on-the-road inspections.
In five states along I-81, FMCSA used hyper-targeted advertising, a social media playbook, and an earned media toolkit for local partners to use in their own markets. The combined tactics resulted in more than 1.3 million impressions, that is, opportunities for drivers to learn about sharing the roads with commercial motor vehicles. This outreach was paired with enforcement events, like one in New York state. Over two days, police and inspectors conducted 321 roadside CMV inspections. This resulted in 62 trucks being removed from service for safety issues considered likely to contribute to or cause a crash, and 24 drivers being suspended for safety violations. This was a huge win for road safety!
Meanwhile, in 13 states along I-95, FMCSA implemented a campaign called Safe DRIVE. Social media, audio ads, billboards, and other outreach efforts garnered more than 3.9 impressions in this high-trafficked corridor.
Working together, we can all be a part of improving road safety by understanding safety considerations, adopting safe driving behaviors, and sharing the road with CMVs and all other road users. Learn more about FMCSA’s plan for road safety at www.ShareTheRoadSafely.gov.