The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has mandated that ELDs, or electronic logging devices, be installed on all commercial trucks. However, some trucking companies in Louisiana and elsewhere in the U.S. believe that the mandate is, for several reasons, an unfair one.
Drivers in Louisiana who operate large commercial trucks that are equipped with state-of-the-art, video-based safety devices may be a little safer on the road. The results of a study conducted by the AAA Foundation of Traffic Safety have indicated that such safety technologies can prevent as many as 63,000 crashes in which large trucks are a factor.
Researchers from the University of Utah School of Medicine have discovered a link between high crash risk among truckers and the presence of one or more health conditions. Having analyzed the medical and crash histories of approximately commercial truck drivers across the U.S., they found that 34 percent suffered from at least one condition that was previously connected with poor driving performance.
Commercial truckers in Louisiana and the rest of the country may soon be subject to a new rule regarding testing for obstructive sleep apnea. Democratic senators and representatives have filed bills intended to compel the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to resume its work on a rule that will establish new guidelines for the screening and treatment of sleep apnea.
Sharing the road with commercial trucks that weigh as much as 40 tons can be unnerving even for the calmest Louisiana motorists, and these anxieties tend to become more severe when weather conditions are poor, traffic is heavy and frustrations are running high. Accidents involving semi-tractor trailers and passenger vehicles are often catastrophic, and car, pickup truck and SUV occupants accounted for 68 percent of the fatalities in such crashes around the country in 2014 according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
Large truck accidents can occur in Louisiana for a number of reasons. While there are many well-known reasons these accidents happen, drivers may be interested to learn of the little-known factors that can contribute to truck accidents.
Louisiana tractor-trailer drivers may have heard that more than 1,700 Kenworth and Peterbilt trucks have been recalled due to a potential problem with the fuel pumps. The trucks affected by the recall were those equipped with Cummins ISX15 engines.
Fatal accidents involving semi-tractor trailers and buses were more common in Louisiana and other U.S. states in 2015 according to the annual Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts report released by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. It reveals that the number of large commercial vehicles involved in deadly crashes surged by 8 percent in 2015 from the previous year and has risen by 20 percent since 2005, and data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Fatality Analysis Reporting System suggests that 2016 was even more deadly on America's roads.
On June 19, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear a class-action lawsuit brought by six truck drivers. This lawsuit was the second case backed by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association that the high court refused to hear over a two-week span. Because court rulings that concern the trucking industry may impact motorist safety on roadways across the nation, drivers in Louisiana and other parts of the country may want to know more about the history of this case and its potential implications.
After a lengthy delay, new federal rules for truckers in training in Louisiana and across the country are becoming law. However, carriers, trainers and others will still have almost three years to put the new rules into practice. The new training requirements will apply to all truck drivers who receive their commercial driver's license on or after Feb. 7, 2017.