WASHINGTON — In support of Operation Safe Driver Week, which runs through July 15, the American Trucking Associations’ Law Enforcement Advisory Board (LEAB) is encouraging all drivers to engage in safe practices and share the road.
ATA established the LEAB in 2021 “to help strengthen the ties between the trucking industry and law enforcement community and better align our resources toward the common goal of promoting safety on the nation’s roadways,” an ATA news release stated.
The LEAB is comprised of ATA members with experience in federal, state and local law enforcement, as well as current and retired law enforcement officials who serve or served in the CMV domain.
“Unsafe drivers endanger their own lives as well as the lives of others,” said Fred Fakkema, chairman of the LEAB and vice president of safety and compliance for Zonar Systems. “Law enforcement professionals are on alert every minute of every day to help prevent collisions by pulling over distracted or aggressive drivers. Operation Safe Driver Week helps to elevate the issue of safety and gives all drivers an opportunity to reflect on how they can be a part of the solution to safer roads.”
Mark Savage, first vice chair of the LEAB and director of connected truck solutions at Drivewyze, said that as a former CVSA president, “I know what an important role Operation Safe Driver Week plays in ensuring the safety of everyone on the road. The vast majority of fleets already take safety very seriously, and for most, this will just be business as usual. The larger patrol presence drivers will see next week will help reinforce safe driving practices and target those who fail to obey the rules of the road.”
Steve Dowling, second vice chair of the LEAB and director of enterprise safety training at Covenant Logistics, said that safety on America’s roadways depends on everyone working together.
“Operation Safe Driver Week shines a spotlight on safety through education and enforcement actions and gives greater visibility to the brave police officers and state troopers who put their lives on the lines to protect our communities every day,” Dowling added.
Examples of unsafe driving behaviors include improper lane changes, passing or turns; driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol; using a handheld device; and failure to wear a seat belt.
This year, a particular emphasis will be placed on deterring speeding.
According to NHTSA, an estimated 42,795 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes last year.
- Speed is a factor in 1 in 4 crash deaths.
- Distracted driving claims more than 3,000 lives annually.
- 28 people per day die in drunk driving crashes.
“It takes all of us to make our roads safer. No matter what you drive — car, truck or motorcycle — we all want to make it home safely to our families,” said Share the Road professional driver Glen Kirk, Old Dominion Freight Line. “Operation Safe Driving Week is important for all drivers to be aware of their surroundings and a reminder to implement safe driving practices not just this week but year-round.”
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.