Posted by: Lawyer Sanders | April 7, 2010

Jeffrey M. Sanders says commercial truck and bus drivers are using seat belts more often than in the past.

New data from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration show 74 percent of commercial truck and bus drivers are now using their safety belts. Only 65 percent of drivers were using safety belts in 2007. Apparently, drivers of these commercial vehicle are taking safety a bit more seriously than in the past.

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A total of 20,818 commercial drivers operating medium- to heavy-duty trucks and buses were observed at 827 roadside sites nationwide for the survey. Key findings include:

  • Safety belt use for both commercial drivers and their occupants was higher at 78 percent in states where law enforcement may stop drivers for not wearing a safety belt, versus 67 percent in states with weaker belt use laws.
  • Commercial drivers for regional or national fleets showed higher safety belt use at 78 percent, versus 64 percent for independent owner-operators.
  • Safety belt use rates for commercial drivers and their occupants were highest at 79 percent in the West, compared with 75 percent in the South, 68 percent in the Midwest, and 64 percent in the Northeast.
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