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Entries related to: operations-personnel

Ask the Safety Rep: The Difference between an AOBRD and an ELD?

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The Essential 7 Work Practices

Truck drivers, mechanics, and office workers were asked to identify the skills they felt were most effective in preventing workplace injuries. They agreed on the Essential 7 Work Practices. Read the information below and ask yourself how you can improve your work habits to protect yourself from injury.
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Trucking Safety 101: Back to Basics

In the frenzied pace of motor carrier operations, it is easy to get caught up in the daily grind and lose sight of fundamentals. For any business, three key elements are crucial to success: communication, teamwork, and planning. Revisiting each of these elements periodically is healthy for the entire organization and can help the company achieve its objectives. However, one area that motor carriers tend to ignore in varying degrees is safety. In the Spring 2019 issue of Safety Talk, we discussed how practical drift, an employee’s gradual deviation from established policies and procedures, can erode the effectiveness of a company’s safety efforts, and if allowed to continue unchecked, can negatively define the company’s culture. Senior management at a trucking company can contribute to this erosion as well. Here is an example: A motor carrier may become complacent or resistant to change because it hasn’t recently experienced a crash or injury. Management then adopts a mentality of, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” This type of mentality introduces risk into what may otherwise be a healthy organization. If management cannot attribute the company’s success to effective loss-prevention practices, it is essentially saying pure luck is responsible for the company’s performance. Regardless of past loss performance, no company can afford to rest on its laurels if it expects to remain competitive. A periodic review of basic safety practices is essential because new risks may be present that have not been accounted for. Whether a change in customers, equipment, commodities, or personnel, motor carriers should have a process in place to continually assess their risks and determine if current safety practices are sufficient. Below are some assessment methods.
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Why You Should Make Road Tests Part of the Hiring Process

One of the most important responsibilities a motor carrier has is to hire qualified drivers. This critical task, if conducted haphazardly or not performed at all, could have a negative ripple effect across the company and affect productivity, downtime, morale, expenses, and profitability. Due diligence should be given to screening applicants and conducting required background checks, but, arguably, the most reliable method to gauge a driver’s abilities and safety attitude is with a comprehensive road test.
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Preventing Crashes from Outside the Truck

There is nothing worse for a motor carrier than receiving a call that one of its drivers has been involved in a crash. Everything stops as you react to the situation and start gathering details about who was at fault and whether the driver could have prevented the incident. While drivers are ultimately responsible for the decisions they make behind the wheel, the root cause of a crash could run deeper. There could be mitigating factors within management’s operational control that are contributing to losses – or worse – have lulled the organization into a false sense of security if a loss has not occurred yet.
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Is Your Driver Retention Problem Right in Front of You?

The trucking industry focuses a great deal of attention on preventing large truck crashes and workplace injuries, but what about preventable turnover? The shortage of drivers entering the occupation and the fact that an aging workforce is leaving are problems motor carriers must contend with. However, these staffing issues are not to be confused with the causes of driver turnover. Turnover occurs when an employee driver or contractor leaves the company voluntarily or is forced to leave. According to HR Drive, “75% of the causes of employee turnover are preventable.”¹  Whatever the reason for the turnover, there’s a good chance it could have been prevented.
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Choosing the Correct Personal Protective Equipment for the Job

If a hazard cannot be removed or reduced to a point it can be considered an acceptable risk, personal protective equipment (PPE) can be used to provide an extra barrier of protection to workers. Keep in mind: PPE does not remove a particular hazard, but it can help to reduce the risk of injury or illness. PPE should always be worn in designated areas where PPE is required. Read the information below, and determine how PPE can better protect you from harm.
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Practical Drift: How Human Nature Causes Policy Failure

Policies and procedures are necessary for high-hazard industries like trucking. They add structure and consistency to operations to ensure the highest quality product or service is being delivered. Unfortunately, a lack of oversight by senior management can cause the company’s policies and procedures to deteriorate over time and lead to a phenomenon known as practical drift.
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Preventing Slips, Trips, and Falls

Slips, trips, and falls are leading causes of workplace injuries. No matter where you are, hazards may be present that put you at risk of losing traction and slipping, tripping over an object, or falling from an elevated position. Read the information below, and ask yourself if there are actions you can take to protect yourself from a slip, trip, or fall.
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Is Accident Reporting Your Achilles Heel?

There is a misguided belief by some motor carriers that delaying or failing to report claims to their insurers will work in their favor. On the contrary, it can have the opposite effect and cost a motor carrier more in the long run. Regardless of perceived fault, other parties involved in an incident have a legal right to assert a claim. For this reason, delaying or failing to notify your insurer of an incident can hinder its ability to proactively manage a claim and settle it in a fair and timely manner.
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