Large Trucks and CMVs
Click Here to View the CAPS Special Study Large Truck and Bus Analysis for the State of Alabama Data: 2011-2015

This page considers all trucks that are heavier than pickups.  While the majority of these are Commercial Motor Vehicles (CMVs), this page is not limited to just considering CMVs.
Safety Belt Usage Among Commercial Truck and Bus Drivers Rises to New National Levels
FMCSA: The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) today announced that safety belt usage by commercial truck and bus drivers rose to a new record level of 86 percent in 2016, compared to just 65 percent usage in 2007, according to the results of a national survey.

“Buckling up your safety belt, regardless of the type of vehicle you drive or ride in, remains the simplest, easiest and most effective step you can take toward helping to protect your life,” said FMCSA Deputy Administrator Cathy F. Gautreaux.  “While it is good news that we are making strong progress, we need to continue to emphasize that everyone, everywhere securely fasten their safety belt 100 percent of the time.”

Since 2007, FMCSA, in collaboration with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has conducted the Safety Belt Usage by Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers Survey six times.  In each survey, safety belt usage by commercial drivers has been shown to be steadily increasing. 

The 2016 survey observed nearly 40,000 commercial drivers operating medium- to heavy-duty trucks and buses at more than 1,000 roadside sites nationwide.  The survey found that safety belt usage for commercial drivers and their occupants was highest by trucks and buses traveling on expressways at 89 percent, compared to 83 percent on surface streets.  Male truck and bus drivers outpaced their female counterparts by buckling-up at a rate of 86 percent to 84 percent, respectively.

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Special Study Large Truck and Bus Analysis for the State of Alabama Data: 2011-2015
The purpose of this document is to produce information that will be useful to Alabama decision-makers in reducing the number of fatalities and other suffering and loss due to crashes involving large trucks and buses in the state. 

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Hours of Service (HOS) How Familiar Are You? Pre-recorded webinar
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Leveraging Large Truck Technology and Engineering to Realize Safety Gains
AAA: Large trucks with gross vehicle weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds drove approximately 280 billion miles on U.S. roads in 2015 and were involved in a total of over 400,000 crashes, which resulted in 116,000 injuries and 4,067 deaths. Advances in vehicle safety technology provide the opportunity to prevent substantial numbers of these crashes, injuries, and deaths.

Examples of such technologies include braking systems designed to shorten a truck’s stopping distance, systems that warn the driver if the truck begins to drift out of its lane, and systems that can detect when a crash is imminent and automatically apply the brakes if the driver fails to do so. The purpose of this study was to estimate the cost-effectiveness of these technologies by comparing the economic value of the benefits associated with installing these advanced safety technologies on large trucks with the costs of doing so.

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Lawmakers, Officials Explore Automation Issues for Big Rigs, Buses on Road System
AASHTO Journal: Industry and labor officials told the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee that fast-developing automated vehicle technologies in heavy trucks and buses can make highways much safer and freight shipping more efficient, but could create major safety gaps if not closely coordinated with communications systems emerging for passenger cars. 

The hearing comes at a time that manufacturers and tech firms are moving ahead with both prototypes and real-world test runs, and predictions that commercial truck operations could begin deploying highly automated and even driverless units before many such cars hit the road. 

Some senators and witnesses also said the different issues that could lead to self-driving commercial trucks have not received nearly the attention as those for cars, leading to differing views on whether the same legislation that sets federal requirements for autonomous passenger vehicle development should apply to heavy cargo rigs and large buses.

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Teamsters Chief Fears U.S. Self-Driving Trucks May Be Unsafe, Hit Jobs
Reuters: The head of the 1.4-million member International Brotherhood of Teamsters union is mounting an aggressive effort to convince Congress to reject new rules to speed the deployment of self-driving trucks, warning they could lead to the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs and reduce road safety.

James P. Hoffa, who has headed the union since 1999, said on Tuesday that Congress could help major trucking companies ultimately get rid of drivers by automating vehicles, which would also pose serious risks to American drivers.

“I‘m concerned about highway safety. I am concerned about jobs,” Hoffa said in an interview at Teamsters headquarters. “I am concerned we are moving too fast in a very, very strategic area that we have to make sure we are doing it right because lives are involved.”

Hoffa’s worries come as technology industry executives and policy makers grapple with the possible impact of artificial intelligence and robotics on jobs and the economy, potentially putting millions of people out of work.

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Toyota's Hydrogen Fuel Cell Kenworth Can Revolutionize Heavy Transport
Forbes: “We took two Mirai vehicles, tore them apart and integrated components into the Kenworth. This was a fast development program. The tanks are larger. Battery is larger. Motors are completely different from Mirai. But the two fuel-cell stacks are Mirai production units. The main purpose is to prove scalability of the Mirai system with little change to the rest of the truck. Our system can pull an 80,000-lb. combined load up a hill,” says Chris Rovik, engineering manager of Toyota Motor North America’s “Portal Project,” an effort to develop a fleet of zero-emission semi tractor-trailers to haul freight from the world’s two busiest container ports, Long Beach and Los Angeles, to a railhead well beyond the densely populated Southern California coastline. The I-710 freeway corridor in and out of these twin ports is nicknamed “cancer alley” because diesel emissions have blanketed the area for decades. The ports are not allowed to expand because of their current high levels of pollution.

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Tesla Developing Self-Driving Tech for Semi-Truck, Wants to Test in Nevada

Reuters: Tesla Inc is developing a long-haul, electric semi-truck that can drive itself and move in "platoons" that automatically follow a lead vehicle, and is getting closer to testing a prototype, according to an email discussion of potential road tests between the car company and the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)

While established trucking companies and truck manufacturing startups have poured resources into electrifying local package delivery fleets, battery range limitations have largely kept the industry from making electric trucks that travel across swaths of the country. Lithium ion battery researcher Venkat Viswanathan of Carnegie Mellon University said electric long-haul trucking is not economically feasible yet. “Your cargo essentially becomes the battery,” Viswanathan said of the massive batteries that would be needed to make range competitive with diesel.

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2017 Pocket Guide to Large Truck and Bus Statistics
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ATLAS Center Improving the Safety of Older Truck Drivers Final Report
Road freight transportation represents a long-standing transportation safety and public health problem in the United States (US). In 2014, there were an estimated 438,000 large truck-involved crashes in the US, resulting in 3,903 people killed and approximately 111,000 injured.  This report focuses of improving the safety of older truck drivers on the road.

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FMCSA Safety Program Effectiveness | FY 2012
FMCSA has published another Safety Program Effectiveness report for the Carrier Intervention Effectiveness Model (CIEM) during the 2012 Fiscal Year.

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Road Rage is Getting Worse, Not Better
The Florida Times-Union: If commuters only understood. That is the prevailing mentality of truck drivers when it comes to courtesy, and the lack thereof, on Florida’s highways. Jacksonville-based truckers say if people better understood the challenges of driving 18-wheelers, they’d be less inclined to spar with them on the roads. Lane changes and merging trigger the vast majority of road rage between trucks and other vehicles, the drivers said. That’s especially true of cars squeezing in front of tractor-trailers, forcing them to slam on the brakes.

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FMCSA Establishes National Training Standards for New Truck and Bus Drivers
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) today announced a Final Rule establishing comprehensive national minimum training standards for entry-level commercial truck and bus operators seeking to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) or certain endorsements. The standards established in today’s rule address the knowledge and skills necessary for the safe operation of commercial motor vehicles and also establish minimum qualifications for entities and individuals who provide entry-level driver training. The entry-level driver training Final Rule retains many of the consensus recommendations of a negotiated rulemaking committee comprised of 25 stakeholders and FMCSA representatives.

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Federal Register: FMCSA Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse

FMCSA amends the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations to establish requirements for the Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse (Clearinghouse), a database under the Agency’s administration that will contain information about violations of FMCSA’s drug and alcohol testing program for the holders of commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs).

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Better Information Needed to Assess Effectiveness and Efficiency of Safety Interventions
GAO: In July 2010, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) chose to delay nationwide implementation of two of the eight interventions that FMCSA uses to address motor carrier safety concerns under its Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program. This delay is linked to continuing delays in developing software needed to support the two interventions, offsite investigations and the use of cooperative safety plans. The software under development is intended to help FMCSA overcome some of the information challenges it faces due to its reliance on legacy information systems. FMCSA estimates that the software development project will be completed by April 2017.

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Trucker Shortage Prompts Calls for Driverless Big Rigs
Washington Examiner: America is facing a trucker crisis. As it readies for the busy holiday delivery season, the industry is expecting to be short about 73,000 long-distance drivers, more than three times the shortage of 2005, and that could lead to delivery delays and higher shipping costs.

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Truckers Claim Speed Caps Would Do More Harm than Good
Michigan Live: In response to a national proposal to electronically limit the speed of semitrailers, some truck drivers are warning that, if enacted, it could cause more traffic issues and deadly crashes.

The Associated Press reports around 150 "independent truckers" filed comments with the federal government against the proposal from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Under the proposal, the U.S. Department of Transportation would require all new U.S.-manufactured trucks, buses and multipurpose vehicles weighing more than 26,000 pounds to come with speed limiting devices.

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U.S. DOT Proposes Speed Limiters For Large Commercial Vehicles
FMCSA: U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced today that the Department’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) propose equipping heavy-duty vehicles with devices that limit their speeds on U.S. roadways, and requiring those devices be set to a maximum speed, a safety measure that could save lives and more than $1 billion in fuel costs each year.

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National Cooperative Highway Research Program: Report 830
Multi-State, Multimodal, Oversize/Overweight Transportation

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FMCSA Launches Safety Campaign to Raise Awareness about Sharing the Road w/ Large Trucks
FMCSA: The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) today announced the launch of its new safety-focused campaign, "Our Roads, Our Responsibility," to raise public awareness about how to operate safely around large trucks and buses, or commercial motor vehicles (CMVs).

"Trucks and buses move people and goods around the country, contributing to our economic wellbeing and our way of life," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.  "These commercial vehicles also carry additional safety risks, so it’s critical that all road users understand how to safely share the road."


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LTBP Program's Literature Review on Weigh-in-Motion Systems
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Data Improvements Needed to Enhance Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program
The quality of data used in a federal state grant program needs to improve to ensure the program’s effectiveness, the president of a leading safety group told a Senate panel on July 12.

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Sleep Apnea Problems for Drivers of Large Trucks
Feds Inching Toward Implementing Possible Sleep Apnea Screening for Truckers

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American Transportation Research Institute came out with a report on Obstructive Sleep Apnea for Commercial Drivers

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Traffic Safety Facts: Large Trucks 2014 Data
In 2014 there were 3,903 people killed and an estimated 111,000 people injured in crashes involving large trucks. In the United States, an estimated 438,000 large trucks were involved in police-reported traffic crashes during 2014.

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Passengers in Large Commercial Trucks Now Required to Wear Seat Belts
NHTSA: The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced today that passengers riding in large commercial trucks will be required to use seat belts whenever the vehicles are operated on public roads in interstate commerce.  Effective August 8, 2016, the final rule revises Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations and holds motor carriers and drivers responsible for ensuring that passengers riding in large commercial trucks are using seat belts.

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