In the fast-paced and highly regulated trucking industry, maintaining compliance and prioritizing safety is super important. In this blog post, we interviewed Brandon Wiseman from TruckSafe Consulting who shares strategies for ensuring compliance and reducing violations within trucking fleets.
Identifying Patterns and Addressing Gaps:
It’s crucial to monitor your safety measurement system account regularly. This account provides a detailed overview of regulatory compliance violations incurred by your drivers on a monthly basis. By identifying patterns and trends, you can focus on specific areas that require attention. Rather than being concerned about isolated violations, look for consistent patterns that may indicate a gap in compliance.
Taking Action and Digging Deeper:
Once you’ve identified areas of concern, it’s time to dig deeper and understand the root causes of the violations. For example, if you notice a rise in hours-of-service violations, it may indicate a need for driver training or improved accountability. Addressing these issues requires effort and time on the part of fleet owners and managers. Quick fixes are not the solution; instead, investing in driver training and holding repeat offenders accountable are key steps towards lasting improvement.
Termination as a Last Resort:
Termination of drivers is a challenging decision, especially in the context of the current driver shortage. However, poor-performing drivers can drive a company into the ground. Holding drivers accountable for compliance is essential, and sometimes termination is the necessary step to ensure fleet integrity and safety. It’s a difficult choice but critical for maintaining a reputable and compliant operation.
Audit Triggers and Common Mistakes:
When it comes to audits, our experts point out two common triggers. The first is high hours-of-service scores, often resulting from log falsification. Drivers may inaccurately log their time, intentionally or inadvertently, leading to violations. The improper use of personal conveyance is often a significant contributor to log falsification. The second trigger is red flag violations, which occur when drivers operate vehicles requiring specific licenses without possessing them, such as driving a combination vehicle with only a standard operator’s license.
Compliance for New Fleets:
For new fleets, understanding the regulatory environment is crucial. Lack of knowledge about applicable rules often leads to compliance failures. By thoroughly educating themselves on the rules and regulations governing their operations, new fleets can establish a strong foundation for compliance and avoid potential violations and audits.
To stay up to date with safety regulations, Brandon Wiseman recommends following industry publications on social media platforms. These sources often provide timely updates on regulatory changes. Additionally, subscribing to the Federal Register, where federal regulatory changes are published, can ensure access to official and comprehensive information.
Compliance and safety are paramount in the trucking industry, and maintaining a vigilant approach is crucial. By closely monitoring safety measurement system accounts, addressing patterns of violations, and investing in training and accountability, fleet owners can foster a culture of compliance. Additionally, staying informed about regulatory changes and continuously educating oneself will enable fleets to adapt to evolving requirements. Let’s prioritize compliance and safety to ensure a thriving and responsible trucking industry.
Watch the full video on this topic here: https://youtu.be/W9mSiT8PTZU