The American Trucking Associations and its Share the Road highway-safety program has launched the Share the Road Instructional Video to demonstrate safe-driving techniques ahead of the busy Labor Day weekend.
ATA said the video addresses today’s most prevalent dangerous driving habit– distracted driving– and explains the various ways that drivers may become distracted while driving. According to Share the Road professional truck drivers, eating, drinking or watching videos are activities that can be just as hazardous as texting and are done by motorists of all ages.
“This video will be shown in schools and drivers’ education classes throughout the country,” said ATA COO and Executive Vice President of Industry Affairs Elisabeth Barna. "It’s one of the tools that ATA and ATA’s Share the Road program are using to save lives. The most highly-trained professionals on the road, truck drivers, have a lot of knowledge and experience with safety and they are all willing to share that advice if it means an accident can be prevented.”
The primary focus of the Share the Road safety campaign is to share information about blind spots and the Share the Road Instructional Video takes viewers through each of the four truck blind spots, explaining what a truck driver can and cannot see from the cab of his or her truck.
Incorporating seamless motion graphics and high-definition footage from various angles, the video aims to appeal to a younger, more technologically savvy audience to “equip future generations of drivers with strong safe-driving practices,” ATA noted.
“Making our nation’s roads safer through targeted highway safety information is the reason Share the Road exists,” said John Walsh, vice president of global marketing and brand management for Mack Trucks. “We at Mack want every student in the U.S. to have the chance to see this video, and learn from it. If it helps save even one life, it will have done its job.”
The full Share the Road Instructional Video is available online. Tips from the video, provided by Share the Road professional truck drivers include:
- Recognize blind spots: All four sides of the tractor-trailer have a blind spot. A good rule of thumb is “If you can’t see the driver’s face, the driver can’t see you.”
- Wear your safety belt: Seat belts save lives. Day or night, front seat or back seat – wearing a safety belt can save your life.
- Slow Down: Chances of a crash nearly triple when driving faster than the surrounding traffic.
- Be alert in work zones: The spring and summer seasons are when work zones are most common. Reduce speeds and pay close attention to barriers and workers when traveling through these zones.
- Keep your eyes on the road: Distracted driving is a major cause of traffic accidents. A car traveling at 60 miles per hour covers more than 500 feet in 6 seconds – even texting the word “Ok” is a major risk. Do not text and drive.
- Maintain a safe following distance: vehicles traveling too closely behind trucks may not be able to recognize changes in the flow of traffic and will be unable to make quick stops or avoid debris.
- Do not cut in front of large trucks: Trucks are heavier and take longer to make a complete stop, so avoid cutting directly in front of them.
- Prepare your vehicle for long distance travel: Check your wipers and fluids before departing on a trip. Have your radiator and cooling system regularly serviced. Simple maintenance can save lives and prevent motorists from being stranded.
- Leave early and avoid taking risks: Anxiety can be greatly reduced by leaving early for a long trip. Road conditions may change due to inclement weather or traffic congestion.
“With one of the biggest travel weekends of the year coming up, professional truck drivers throughout the country are hoping that all motorists make safe-driving a priority,” said Share the Road professional truck driver Allen Boyd, of Walmart Transportation. “This video walks viewers through some of the most important elements of safety and explains how drivers can safely navigate around large trucks.”