Safety & Compliance

California Officials Stress Highway Safety This Memorial Day Weekend

May 27, 2010

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In a demonstration held Thursday on a Van Nuys, Calif., thoroughfare, professional drivers highlighted the dangers of driving too close to big rigs
. The Insurance Information Network of California , the California Highway Patrol, the Los Angeles Police Department and the California Trucking Association have joined forces to focus attention on truck and passenger vehicle driver safety this Memorial Day weekend.

During the demonstration, CHP officers reinforced the need for passenger car drivers to understand how to safely share the road with big trucks when traveling over the holiday weekend.

"Motorists need to know that sharing the road with big rigs requires patience and recognition of a truck's blind spots," said Candysse Miller, executive director of the Insurance Information Network of California.

"Truckers in California maintain the highest standards of safety and need the help of passenger drivers to keep the roads safe," said Denny Wyatt, CTA president.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety cites the statistic that 4,008 people died in truck collisions in 2008, 15 percent of which were truck occupants and 69 percent of which were occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles. The California Highway Patrol estimates that more than half of the 7,262 collisions involving big rigs in 2008 were caused by passenger vehicle drivers.

"The number of trucks using the California highway system will inevitably increase over the coming years," said CHP Capt. Tommi Tyler. "For that reason, the CHP is working to create public awareness about driving around commercial trucks; and thus, minimizing truck-involved collisions and fatalities."

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