Young & McCarthy LLP

Operation Safe Driver Week set for July, speeding a top concern

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance is known for its annual inspection sprees of commercial vehicles, but it also hosts an annual Operation Safe Driver Week event that affects both CMV drivers and passenger vehicle drivers. Ohio residents should know that this year's will take place from July 14 to 20.

Operation Safe Driver Week is a period of intensified traffic law enforcement where police stop unsafe drivers to give out warnings and citations. Last year's had 51,000 law enforcement officials throughout North America making contact with over 113,300 drivers. Exactly 57,405 citations and 87,907 warnings were issued in 2018.

Each year has a different focus, and the 2019 event will be focused on speeding. According to the CVSA, speeding has factored in nearly one third of car crash fatalities over the past 20 years. In its 2016 Large Truck and Bus Facts report, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said that speeding of all kinds is the top driver-related factor in crashes. This was among both CMV drivers and passenger vehicle drivers.

The CVSA conducted a study back in 2014 showing that greater law enforcement can reduce car crash numbers. The CVSA pointed to the "Click It or Ticket" program in particular, which has helped reduce those numbers by 11%.

There are cases, though, where even the presence of law enforcement does not compel drivers to slow down, put away their phone, wear their seat belt or otherwise drive safely. Truckers can be no different, sometimes speeding to meet deadlines and violating hours-of-service guidelines. Fortunately for the victims of truck accidents, filing a claim may allow victims to be covered for medical expenses, lost income and other economic damages. Victims may wish to retain legal counsel.

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