Training Video: 5 Deadly Sins Safety Managers Make at Trucking Companies

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Summary of 5 Deadly Sins Safety Managers Make

Government regulations can be unpredictable for the transportation industry. On top of this, you have new court precedents that make it more difficult for safety managers to protect their company.

In particular, there are 5 court precedents in place that can cause unexpected issues for safety managers and transportation companies if you don’t know how to navigate them.

  1. Negligent hiring
  2. Negligent retention
  3. Driver negligence
  4. Functionally asleep
  5. Last clear chance

When it comes to negligent hiring, this is completely on hiring managers. Plaintiff attorneys will come after your company if you haven’t done everything in your power to hire safe drivers.

While you don’t always have to redo safe driving tests when hiring new drivers, you do need to know their background, especially for issues such as failed drug tests. Make sure ahead of time that you know everything you need to know about the drivers you are hiring.

Negligent retention is also completely on the company. Plaintiff attorneys will look for the policies you have for drivers, and you need to have all these policies in writing. You also need to ensure that all policies are being followed.

Courts will assume that if the company policies aren’t being followed, no rules and regulations will be followed. It is important for everyone, including leadership to know and follow these rules.

These two issues alone can lead to punitive damages that can cost millions of dollars.

Driver negligence has to do with the actions of drivers before and during an accident. If an attorney can find that a driver was doing something they shouldn’t, they will look to see how your company could be at fault for this.

Functionally asleep involves what your driver does during rest times. If the driver was supposed to be resting, but the plaintiff attorney can prove they were on the phone during that time, the driver is considered functionally asleep.

Attorneys will look to your training records once again to determine if you hold any blame. If you can’t prove you provided training on proper rest, your company can be held at fault.

Last clear chance is about your driver being able to avoid an accident. If a plaintiff attorney can prove that the driver had a clear chance to stop the accident and didn’t, that falls under this category. This is even if another driver was at fault during the accident.

Once again, your company can be held liable if you can’t prove proper training. You must be able to prove you have done everything you could/should have to minimize accidents. If you don’t have documentation, you can be held liable because you can’t prove you trained your drivers.

When it comes to your safety program, it’s important to remember: if it’s not in writing, not signed, and not dated, it didn’t happen.


 

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About the Training Video

In this video, Dean Huth gives an overview of the “5 Deadly Sins” safety managers make.  This is the first in a five part training video series for safety managers available exclusively on the Infinit-I Workforce System.

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