Monday, 29 March 2010

More Commercial Truck, Bus Drivers Buckling up

Seatbelt use is as important for drivers of commercial truck and bus drivers as it is for the general motorist population. Drivers, who are not safely restrained, may suffer serious injuries in an accident or a truck rollover.

However, there seems to be very good news for Los Angeles truck accident lawyers on that front. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has released the results of a survey that shows that more numbers of commercial truck and bus drivers are buckling up than before. According to the FMCSA, seat belt use among these drivers has grown by an impressive 9% since 2007. Currently, 74% of commercial bus and truck drivers wear seat belts compared to 65% in 2007. The FMCSA based its findings on a survey of 20,818 commercial trucks and buses at roadside inspections across the country.

The rates of seat belt use seem to vary depending on the location. States in the western part of the country, including California, Colorado, Hawaii, Montana and Nevada seem to have the highest rates of seat belt use among commercial truck and bus drivers at 79%. Southern states rank second with a 75% rate of compliance with seat belt laws.

Truckers also seem to be more inclined to buckle up when they work for major national carriers, than when they work for independent operators. Truckers in states with primary enforcement of seat belt laws like California, were much more likely to buckle up. In these states, compliance was up to 79%, while in states with secondary enforcement compliance rates were just 67%.

A truck driver may have a serious risk of being ejected from a truck during an accident, especially in the case of a rollover, which is not that infrequent for these massive trucks. Load shifts and improperly secured loads can cause a trailer to lose balance and tip over. Truckers in such accidents have a much higher chance of surviving with minimal injuries if they are safely buckled up.

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