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45 APPENDIX B Survey Results from Motor Carriers There were 34 total responses from Motor Carriers. In this summary, the number of responses to a particular item is listed immediately to the left of the checkbox and underlined. Text comments are provided verbatim from the respondents. The response mean is calculated where appropriate (for the mean, a higher number indicates a more positive response). Background Information 1. Number of years you have been a manager for commercial vehicle: operations: Me an (M ) = 20. 5 2. Your approximate number of years experience in commercial: vehicle operations: M = 23. 8 3. Please estimate the percent of your work time focused primarily on safety concerns (as opposed to other, non-safety management areas such as operational management, administration, and sales): M = 74.2% 4. Number of power units in your companyâs fleet: M = 1665. 9 5. How would you characterize your fleetâs primary operation (select one) 13 For hire: local/short-haul (less than 100 miles from home base) 16 For hire: long-haul (over 500 miles from home base) 0 Private fleet: long-haul 6 Private fleet: local/short-haul 1 Passenger carrier: long-haul 0 Passenger carrier: local transit 4 Other (please specify): Between 100â500 miles 6. What is your primary type of business? (check all that apply) 12 Truckload 5 Less-than-Truckload 23 Bulk/Tankers 19 Hazmat 2 Specialized 7 Private Fleet 2 Other (please specify): Time-sensitive overnight 7. What type of truck drivers do you primarily employ? (check all that apply) 32 Employee Drivers 2 Owner-Operators with own authority 11 Leased Owner-Operators/Independent Contractors Role of Driver Distraction in the Overall Safety Picture 1. Driver distraction, from all sources (internal and external), is a significant safety issue for my fleet operations. (M ea n = 4. 3) 17 Strongly Agree 14 Agree
46 4 Neutral 1 Di sa gr ee 0 St ro ng ly Di sa gr ee 2. Driver distraction from driversâ personal electronic devices brought into the vehicle is, in particular, a significant safety issue for my fleet operations. (Personal electronic devices are defined here as cell phones, smart phones, electronic tablets (such as iPads), and portable music players (such as iPods).) (Mean = 4.1) 11 Strongly Agree 20 Agree 3 Neutral 2 Disagree 0 Strongly Disagree 3. Driver distraction from job-related electronic devices (i.e., dispatch and/or customer interface) is, in particular, a significant safety issue for my fleet operations. (Mean = 3.4) 5 Strongly Agree 13 Agree 10 Neutral 5 Disagree 2 Strongly Disagree Please provide any further comments on your view of safety management issues relating to driver distraction: I believe that this is the number one concern for all safety professionals. But where do you draw the line? Before there were cell phones and GPS (Tom-Toms) there were still driver distractions in the cab. Things like where is the driverâs mind at? Drinking coffee or cokes? Smoking, etc. A significant percentage of crashes can be directly related to driver distraction issues. More awareness and driver training should be set as goals within carriersâ Safety Programs to eliminate and teach drivers of the importance of not permitting themselves to become distracted while driving. Anything that requires or encourages a driver to take his eyes off the road or the driverâs mind away from his driving for more than Â½ second should be discouraged by the industry. 1. Driver distraction from job-related road construction/repair detours, lane restrictions, reduced speeds, and congestion. 2. Driver distraction from job-related road issues such as accidents and roadside hazards Using Qualcomm that does not allow interaction while unit is moving. In Question #2, please add GPS direction systems, especially of the sort that are limited in their ability to differentiate truck routes or routes that are restricted to full sized equipment. It might also be a good idea to mention hands-free cell phones, which we also believe distract from the job of driving. There are other significant distractions in todayâs environment including but not limited to eating and drinking soft drinks, etc., while driving. This has increased with the advent of the 14 hour limit.
47 There needs to be an understanding that there is a line that can be crossed. You donât want a cab with nothing at all going on, but you need to eliminate distractions that remove the driverâs concentration from his driving duties. Removing CB radios, other radios and sources of entertainment would tend to lull the driver into boredom and sleep. This opinion comes from my experience as a driver. While I donât advocate the use of cell phones, there are sleep experts that will tell you a phone call can raise the alertness of a dozing driver. I am only using this to illustrate the need to keep the driverâs mind stimulated. Technology has created the issue and truly needs to assist in solving this problem. Cell phones are of particular interest for safe driving. Monitoring drivers for these distractions is certainly possible; however, it becomes an issue with big brother watching over a driver. As a private fleet with low turnover, the company culture will suffer if the right balance between monitoring, safety and trust is not achieved. I feel our drivers deal with âcarâdistraction. They are keeping their eyes on the cars, which is very distracting. Entering and exiting ramps, lane changes, speed, slower cars, objects on the highway and the list goes on and on. We cannot blame just the electronics. Eating and drinking We have training and policy in place to address Distracted Driving practices. This has significantly reduced our distractive driving exposure. Driver personal cell phones are the biggest distraction. Electronic devices, both personal and company-provided, only add to the problems of driver distractions Assessment of Distracted Driving 1. Please indicate which of the following behaviors while driving you believe constitute distracted driving (select all that apply): 18 passenger interactions 32 personal: eating, drinking, smoking 25 personal: grooming/hygiene 30 reading a map or directions 14 reading billboards 34 talking on mobile phone (hand-held) 25 talking on mobile phone (hands-free) 34 texting/dialing on mobile phone 31 searching for objects in the cab 32 reaching for objects in the cab 19 adjusting on-board entertainment or climate control systems 3 other (see below): Adjusting and listening to audio entertainment devices All items are distracting that take your attention away from driving defensively Writing down state line crossings
48 2. Please indicate which of the following devices you believe contribute to distracted driving (select as many as applicable): 34 personal electronic devices 23 job-related electronic and/or dispatching devices 8 aftermarket active safety systems (lane departure warning, forward collision warning, etc.) 22 onboard entertainment systems 20 GPS navigation systems 7 weigh-in-motion or vehicle-in-motion inspections 0 other (please specify): Please provide any further comments on your view of behavioral- and device-related driver distraction: I feel that anything taking your eyes off the road is technically a distraction, every safety professional has seen consequences for something as simple as changing the radio station. But we obviously donât want everything regulated. Thereâs no way to enforce looking at a billboard. Audio device distractions are more of a distraction than visual distractions. To reduce some in-cab distractions, we have programmed our satellite communication systems to âblank outâ their screens when tractors are in motion. We have also employed a text-to-voice system to read aloud directions to customer facilities, preventing drivers from having to read directions from paper while driving. Phone conversations can hold your attention and distract you from your driving. Adjusting controls or reading billboards are things that are done by choice when the time is right. The behavior is difficult to change; thus, it takes a strong commitment from management. We need to lead by example. I would appreciate a system that would disable all personal device electronics while the vehicle is in motion. Take away the temptation on the front end to effect behavior change. Identification of Effective Distracted Driving Countermeasures Please indicate which of the following distracted driving countermeasures you believe to be effective (whether present or not in your current operations) External to Company 7 insurance penalties for phone-linked crashes 18 increased fines for crashes with cell phone use 24 cell phone prohibition laws 23 broad education campaigns on risk of driving while using cell phones in particular 23 broad education campaigns on risks of distracted driving in general Internal to Company 31 maintaining a strong safety culture 25 strong focus on recruiting drivers with a demonstrated safety record 30 clear employee policies and consequences for policy violation 24 having a post-incident coaching tool (or metric) that addresses potential distraction issues that could have played a role in a safety critical event 10 specific training techniques
49 Policies do work sometimes, but to have a policy for everything that can happen is ridiculous. How do you enforce them? You are not in the cab with them. You can say that you are going to terminate them, but it is usually after something has happened. Safety culture as a whole is key, and both policies and training/coaching practices play a part. If drivers see how serious you are regarding on-road distraction, then they will be just as serious. If itâs never mentioned, and theyâre still pushed from an operational standpoint to answer their phone or use their job-related electronic device no matter where they are (driving or not), then they may consider the distraction âsupportedâ by the carrier. Award drivers who demonstrate and develop a safe employment record. Communicate driver safety deficiencies immediately with the driver. Use of distracted driving training: VideoâTestâDiscussion Complacency is our greatest enemy. We have to keep drivers focused on the task at hand. Whether they are driving, loading, or unloading we have to train them to stay focused on what they are doing. Internal to Vehicle 21 company policy banning use of all personal communication devices while driving 10 company policy only banning cell phone use while driving 10 company policy only allowing hands-free or voice-operated communication devices while driving 25 fleet managers locking out certain functions on employer-provided communication devices 3 use of in-vehicle placards to remind drivers to âstay alertâ 20 paying careful attention to placement of aftermarket devices within vehicle to minimize distraction 15 providing messaging from dispatcher with different levels of urgency so that driver can defer reading non-emergency messages 20 using active safety systems to augment driverâs situational awareness and improve reaction time 9 physiological monitoring of driver attention placement (typically head- or eye-trackers) and warning driver when needed 14 monitoring systems that provide retrospective feedback on the driverâs distraction stat 22 conducting observations / ride-alongs to assess driverâs behavior and provide feedback 21 use of on-board safety monitoring systems which capture video of the driver and traffic environment when extreme maneuvers occur to identify training needs 3 other (please specify): All dispatch messages should be deferred until unit is not moving Prohibitions are great but not enforceable as preemptive measures A device to deactivate personal communication devices or one that at least reports their usage while the vehicle is in motion. Please elaborate:
50 Much of the countermeasures that anyone initiates are nullified by the government reports that state to the effect that there is no proof that there has been an increase in the number of accidents because of cell phone usage or texting while driving. I strongly believe that there is very little investigative data gathered (at the crash scene) about the cell phone, texting, Qualcomm, etc., usage in the 10 seconds before the crash. The crash data must be properly gathered in order to make a statement like that. Anyone commuting to and from work cannot help but notice the number of vehicle drivers with a cell phone in one hand, sipping the coffee, smoking a cigarette, and somehow managing to steer the vehicle. The sole effective distraction countermeasure is focusing driversâ attention to the task of driving. We use many of the systems above to help us train, remind, and monitor drivers of distracting behaviors. Company policies are fine but if they are hard to enforce or not enforced at all they are not effective. When possible, one on one contact is still the best trainer. Cameras have been the most effective tool. Internally we need to ensure that the dispatch/operations department provides the driver the highest quality data available to minimize any distractions from that end of the operation. Assessment of Driver-Machine Interface Techniques A series of questions assessing opinions on the relative effectiveness of (a) audible, (b) visual, and (c) haptic means of communicating information to the driver via devices not integrated into the vehicle. 1. Please indicate your view of the effectiveness of driver warnings based on audible alerts. (Mean = 3.8 on a 5-point scale) 0 Highly Effective 26 Effective 6 Neutral 1 Ineffective 0 Highly Ineffective Highly Effective Effective Neutral Ineffective Highly Ineffective Highly Effective Effective Neutral Ineffective Highly Ineffective 2. Please indicate your view of the effectiveness of driver warnings based on visual alerts. (Mean = 3.5 on a 5-point scale) 0 17 14 1 0 3. Please indicate your view of the effectiveness of driver warnings based on haptic alerts (such as a vibrating seat or steering wheel). (Mean = 3.4 on a 5-point scale) 3 11 17 3 0 Please provide any further comments on effective driver distraction countermeasures.
51 4. Please indicate your view of the effectiveness of graded warnings (early indication of potential issue with warning escalating as situation becomes more risky) versus single stage warnings. (Mean = 3.9 on a 5-point scale) 5 Highly Effective 19 Effective 9 Neutral 0 Ineffective 0 Highly Ineffective Please provide any further comments on your view of effective driverâvehicle interfaces. Iâm not familiar with haptic alerts or graded warnings, so it would be hard to form an opinion without doing some further research. What makes any alert ineffective is the occurrence of false alerts. If a driver sees regular false alerts, the technology becomes meaningless. As an example, I live in a small town which uses the tornado siren to alert their volunteer fire fighters to emergency situations (car crashes, fires, etc.). The amount of times they sound the horn is different for emergency notification or severe weather; however, I hear these âfalse alarmsâ all the time. This is the same for any safety technology. If the technology is constantly inaccurate, itâs ineffective. Also, if too many warning signals are present, a driver can easily get confused which warning signal belongs to which hazard. The problem with any alarm be it audio, visual, or felt is that people become desensitized if the alarm is initiated often, in opposition to intermittently. Pilot programs have illustrated that too many audible or visual warnings in a cab will soon be âtuned outâ by drivers. They will start to marginalize the warnings, or even consider them âphantomâ in nature. Overall, if drivers are provided accurate feedback they will then adjust their habits. Provided with feedback that is only marginally correct they will only become frustrated and more distracted. I also believe that an integrated all-in- one system would be better than the one-off systems that exist today (such as one system for speeding, one for lane departure, one for following distance, etc.). Countermeasures are only effective as part of an overall program to monitor, report, and review as part of a continuing monitoring and improvement program. Follow-Up Please indicate here if you would be willing to participate in a follow-up interview of approximately Â½ hour, focusing on your fleetâs experience with distracted driving issues. Yes 21 No 5 No Response 1