Freight Carriers Facing Mobile Phone Ban From FMCSA
Today, Monday December 20, 2010, usa Department of Transportation proposed a new safety regulation which, as part of its commitment to safety, could try to lower distracted operating as a result of constraining the use of hand-held telephones when operating a commercial motor vehicle on interstate streets. This important subject has surfaced several times and circumstances on account of the creation of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Comprehensive Safety Analysis (CSA) 2010 legal guidelines.
The top officer of the United States Transportation Authority, Secretary Ray La Hood advised his support for this sort of regulation. Mr. la Hood claims that this kind of restriction may significantly help make the highways more safe by way of implying that the truck driver keeps his / her whole particular attention on the streets and not on a handheld cellphone. Mr. La Hood emphasizes that whenever a commercial trucker or owner operator takes his or her’s attention off the road, you will find a prospect of accidents or deaths on America’s Freeways.
If this kind of guidelines is proposed, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) may perhaps forbid commercial truckers, in operation, from using a cellphone even while driving. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will propose federal civil penalties ranging up to $ 2,750 for each occurrence and multiple offenders of a cellular telephone ban might possibly face disqualification of driving privileges. Although presently only in the discussion phase, this sort of regulation being considered could possibly move to suspend a driver’s CDL following the second infringement of any current state restriction with regards to telephone usage during operating commercial vehicles.
The the effects of this important unsafe practice may perhaps not be limited to only the driver – offender. Current versions of regulation being considered could hold the freight carriers liable for their drivers who use cellular telephones for driving as well. Trucking Companies may possibly face a maximum penalty in excess of $ 10,000 for every situation. This specific proposal, if put in place, could quite possibly effect as many as four million interstate commercial drivers.
The Administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Anne Ferro feels that implementation of such regulation would probably make the highways more secure and aim to diminish the impact of the top source of inattentive driving. Ms. Ferro explained the FMCSA’s commitment to applying all resources to make certain that commercial drivers are operating safely at all times. FMCSA Research demonstrates that operating a telephone when driving takes a significant amount of attention away from the driver’s operation of the vehicle. Truckers who had reached for an object including a phone while driving were more than three times more likely to be involved in an accident or other safety critical incident. The stakes go up more than 600% for truckers who are dialing a cellphone during operation of their semi truck. These stats are not new to many of the industry’s leading Trucking Companies. Trucking companies such as UPS, Covenant Transport, Wal-Mart and more have enforced company policies and have banned drivers who have engaged in use of telephones at the same time driving. These carriers have taken proactive steps in eliminating these unsafe driving habits.
FMCSA research shows that using a hand-held cell phone while driving requires a commercial driver to take several risky steps. In particular, commercial drivers reaching for an object, this as a cell phone, even while driving are three times more likely to be involved in a crash or other safety-critical event. Drivers dialing a hand-held cell phone during driving increase their risk by way of six times. Many of the largest carriers, this kind of as UPS, Covenant Transport, and Wal-Mart, already have company policies in place banning their truckers from using hand-held phones. In September 2010, FMCSA issued a regulation banning text messaging whilst operating a commercial motor vehicle.
Despite the FMCSA being very busy with the role-out of Comprehensive Safety Analysis (CSA 2010) implementation, the Administration is moving forward on this specific rule rapidly. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is permitting a 60 day time frame for the public to reply to the rule making. The comment period begins following the offered rule is released in the Federal Register.