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Entries related to: operations-personnel

Aging and the Dangers of Winter Driving

The winter months bring shorter days and increased driving hazards due to adverse weather. The change in season can be difficult to adjust to, especially for older truck drivers. One way normal aging affects older adults is fading night vision. The eye’s retinas function like photo film, reacting to light and images and then transmitting those signals to the brain for interpretation.
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Ask the Safety Rep: How Does CBD Affect Motor Carriers?

HOW DOES CANNABIDIOL (CBD) AFFECT MOTOR CARRIERS? CBD products, which are extracted from hemp or marijuana plants, have grown in popularity in recent years. Currently, each state treats CBD usage differently. This poses a significant risk to motor carriers and truck drivers who are subject to federal drug testing requirements.
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Annual Clearinghouse Queries due Jan. 5, 2021

A reminder that motor carriers' annual Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse queries are due Jan. 5, 2021.  Per §382.701, employers of CDL drivers must conduct a query of the FMCSA’s Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse at least once per year for each CDL driver they employ. If an employer has already conducted a query on all currently employed CDL drivers, that employer has met the annual query requirement for 2020 and is not required to conduct a query for one year from the initial query date. This includes any limited queries, full queries, and pre-employment queries of the Clearinghouse conducted in 2020.
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Ask the Safety Rep: Starting an Incentive Program

HOW CAN I CREATE AN EMPLOYEE SAFETY INCENTIVE PROGRAM? An employee safety incentive program, if part of a larger risk management strategy, can enhance your safety culture. On the other hand, if not designed, implemented, and managed properly, incentive programs can be a source of contention or irritation, and can lapse into oblivion very quickly. If your organization is considering implementing a safety incentive program, here are some points of discussion that you should consider:
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Protecting Parked Equipment from Fires

  A fire can be a devastating financial event for a trucking company or a driver. Modern trucks and trailers are manufactured to be as light as possible, which means they are constructed using a variety of potentially dangerous materials; that construction can become extremely hazardous should a fire occur. The dangers of today’s truck fires include extreme heat, rapidly spreading flames, and potentially toxic fumes.
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Try blended learning to improve safety training

Are your safety meetings effective? The traditional instructor-led approach involves one person standing in front of a group of drivers, telling them what they think the drivers need to know. This delivery method may work in some cases, like explaining a new regulation, but it is less effective when trying to change behavior (ex. prevent a rear-end crash). In reality, each worker has a learning preference. Some learn best by doing, while others may prefer online, self-paced learning. Attempting a one-size-fits-all approach to safety training could be the reason your training efforts are unsuccessful and not achieving your desired results. To improve your results, consider using a blended-learning approach to reach a broader range of learning styles.
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Post-pandemic planning

At the time of this writing, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is still with us. Stay-at-home orders are in place or are gradually being lifted, and the world is trying to figure out the safest way to return to whatever our new normal will be. COVID-19 caught everyone by surprise and forced us to respond in a trial-by-fire fashion. Many employers already had contingency plans in place that were adaptable to the pandemic, while others struggled to respond. Now, with some hindsight, it is increasingly evident why risk management is so important for motor carriers. The world may never see another crisis like this pandemic, but other events can certainly take its place. Here are some basic contingency planning ideas to consider.
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FMCSA’s New Crash Preventability Determination Program

  Contributed by Dave Osiecki, Scopelitis Transportation Consulting LLC   Since the inception of the Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the trucking industry has been rightly concerned that its business partners would improperly use CSA scores to make business decisions. The scores, the trucking industry argued, were not an accurate depiction of a company’s safety posture.   
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Interpersonal Skills

  Interpersonal skills (aka soft skills) are character traits and behaviors we exhibit when interacting with other people. From your attitude and body language to the words you say, everyone must effectively deal with others to do their jobs successfully. Below is a list of common interpersonal skills. Read this information and determine how you can improve your soft skills.
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Understanding the risks of obesity

Obesity and being overweight are two common health risks facing truck drivers. Obesity means having too much body fat, while a person can be overweight due to too much muscle, bone, fat, and/or body water. If a person consumes more calories than he/ she burns, those extra calories are stored as fat. Over time, if life changes are not made, that excess body fat will continue to increase until a person reaches obesity. When that happens, there is an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, etc. The good news is that obesity is reversible in most cases, by eating and drinking smarter and increasing your physical activity. Consider the chart below and ask yourself where the majority of your daily calories are coming from.
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