Could Distracted Driving Cost You Money?10 Jul 2017, Posted by General in
Fleet drivers know it’s hard work transporting goods and products on the road. There are long hours, strict deadlines, and the responsibility of saving money along the way. Often, hours can pass before they’re able to stop at a retail fuel services provider for a much-needed break. As the time behind the wheel adds up, drivers can fall victim to driving distractions.
It’s no surprise that one of the most distracting and dangerous behaviors is using a cellphone while operating a large vehicle. In fact, the Federal Motor Carry Safety Administration (FMCSA) imposes strict regulations on using cellphones as a commercial carrier. Distracted driving can be costly in more ways than one. It can cause serious accidents and also carries civil consequences and penalties for distracted truck drivers.
The FMCSA’s Definition of Distracted Driving
The rules for using a mobile device in a commercial vehicle are straightforward and simple. If drivers have to reach for their phone, hold it, and manually enter or read text, they’re distracted from the task at hand. Texting, dialing, or receiving phone calls must be a hands-free process for them to not violate FMCSA regulations. Anything involving more of their attention, such as reading and responding to messages, requires them to pull off the road and park the vehicle first.
The Risks of Distracted Driving
When a driver takes their eyes off the road to dial a number or send a text, their eyes will be off the road for an estimated 3-5 seconds. That number may seem small, but traveling at highway speeds will move a vehicle over 300 feet in that time. For comparison, they are moving slightly farther than length of a football field. A lot can go wrong in that small amount of space and short amount of time.
Every form of distracted driving increases the likelihood of an accident. Even if an accident doesn’t occur, lane deviations and near misses still jeopardize the safety of everyone on the road.
The Cost of Distracted Driving
There are numerous financial consequences from distracting driving. Fines for drivers can run up to $2,750. If fleet managers or employees allow or require drivers to use hand-held devices, they could be fined up to $11,000.
A distracted driver could also face civil and criminal penalties for accidents and injuries they cause. They could be put out of service for a period of time or lose their jobs. In some instances, drivers are held liable for the cost of the damages their accident caused.
Stay Focused, Stay Safe
Driving a commercial vehicle is hard work, but giving into distractions is never worth the risk. Fortunately, one way to keep fleet drivers safe and focused is by implementing hands-free cellphone and dispatching devices.
McPherson Oil has been serving customers with comprehensive fuel distribution and petroleum management for over forty years. We help you maximize savings on the resources your business needs to keep running. Contact us or call 888 802 7500 today to learn more about our products and fuel services.