Idealease Safety Bulletin
Brought to you by Idealsafe | 847-304-3190 |

Are you driving with "Tunnel Vision" this winter? 


Tunnel vision occurs when a driver scrapes off only a small area of ice and/or snow on their vehicle windshield to allow just enough space to see through a small hole as they drive. This practice significantly reduces a driver's field of vision and greatly increases their risk of collision. The Kansas Highway Patrol estimates that drivers who do not clear their entire windshield of ice, snow and fog limit their field of vision to only about 2 to 3 percent of what a driver with a clear windshield can see.

In a recent survey conducted by the Center for Safe Driving found that more than 50 percent of drivers admitted to not fully clearing snow or ice from the windows of their vehicles. As a countermeasure, many states have enacted laws requiring drivers to make reasonable efforts to remove snow or ice from their vehicles, and numerous law enforcement personnel across the country are planning to target drivers who do not clear their windshields this winter.  


As part of your pre-trip inspection you should make sure that the windshield, side windows and mirrors are clear of any snow, ice or fog before starting your route or trip.  Another dangerous situation that exists is chunks of snow or ice flying off the top of your vehicle and landing on other vehicles behind you. These chunks can be quite heavy and become dangerous projectiles that can cause crashes, injuries, and deaths.  If heavy snow is forecasted it is recommended that you pull your unit away from the dock or terminal building so a drift of snow does not build up from the roof of the building to the top of your trailer or truck.  As a professional driver, it is important to recognize this unsafe act in other drivers and be prepared to avoid a collision and stay out of their way. 

Prescription Drugs and Commercial Motor Vehicle Operation Do Not Always Mix

Recently we have seen in the news where an actor has died of an overdose of prescription drugs and a doctor is on trial for the death of a famous musician who died as a result of an overdose of a prescribed medication.

As managers of commercial drivers we need to be aware of the medications that our drivers are taking as they may have a direct effect on their driving skills and operation of a CMV. Prescription medications have increased substantially in the last 50 years. In 1950, on average each person had two prescriptions dispensed per year. In 1994, 7.9 on average and in 2012 increased to 12.0. It is also alarming to see that Hydrocodone an opiate based painkiller was the largest single prescription dispensed in 2004 at 92.7 million prescriptions. Incidentally, this is one of the five drug groups that are tested for in the FMCSA Controlled substance-testing program.

What can you do to guard against prescription drug use in your vehicles?

1. Communicate with the drivers and be aware of their
physical condition. If you know that a driver has been
injured on or off of work, talk to the driver to see if
medications have been prescribed.
2. In work related injuries, make sure the examining
physician is aware that the employee operates a CMV
as part or their entire job. Go to the examining
physician's office with your employee.
3. Contact your Medical Review Officer for your drug
and alcohol-testing program for assistance in reviewing
the prescription medication.

Develop a relationship with your medical care providers so they have an understanding of your employee's job requirements.

New Research Shows FMCSA CSA Safety Measurement System is an Improvement for Identifying at-risk companies  

A new study confirms that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's Safety Measurement System (SMS) is more effective at identifying commercial bus and truck companies of all sizes for targeted enforcement than the system it replaced.

 Researchers analyzed the association between historical carrier data and future crash involvement by taking two years of pre-SMS safety data for a subset of carriers, running it through the system's algorithm, and then following those companies' crash records for eighteen months. Results show that the companies the SMS would have identified for interventions, such as roadside inspections, warning letters and on-site investigations, had a future crash rate of more than double the

national average. 


In addition, 79 percent of the carriers that SMS would have ranked as high risk in at least one of the seven safety categories it monitors, had higher future crash rates compared to those it would not have identified. SMS is a component of the agency's Compliance, Safety, Accountability program, which was launched in 2010 to identify and prioritize motor carriers that pose the highest threat to public safety for 

enforcement interventions. The study was conducted by the Volpe Center and peer-reviewed by independent experts. 



The full report is available at:

February is American Heart Month

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women, but heart disease is preventable and controllable.

Recognizing a Stroke

Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke.

Doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions:
S: Ask the individual to SMILE.
T: Ask the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE (Coherently)
(i.e. It is sunny out today)
R: Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS.

If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE of these tasks , call  an emergency number immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher.

*New Sign of a StrokeStick out Your Tongue 
Ask the person to  stick out his tongue. If the tongue is 'crooked', if it goes to one side or the other, that is also an indication of a stroke.
Registration is Now Open On Line for the 2014 Idealease/NPTC Safety Seminars

Idealease, its affiliates and the National Private Truck Council (NPTC) will again be hosting safety seminars in 2014. The one-day seminars will focus on basic safety and compliance, regulation changes and CSA. The seminars will be available to all Idealease customers, potential customers and NPTC members at no charge. The seminar provides important information applicable for both the novice and experienced transportation professionals. 

To view the schedule and register for an upcoming seminar in 2014 click on the following link:

February 14th, 2014
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Don't Drive Drowsy!


Myth: Drivers are used to getting little sleep and can safely stay awake by using distractions.


Reality: Research shows that being awake for 18 hours is comparable to having a blood alcohol concentration of .08 percent. It's vital to your safety and the motorists around you to pay attention to signs of drowsiness: frequent yawning, heavy eyes and blurred vision



Safety Seminar Schedule: 
11-Mar: Miami, FL
12-Mar: Fort Myers, FL
13-Mar: Tampa, FL
18-Mar: Chattanooga, TN
19-Mar: Atlanta, GA
20-Mar: Birmingham, AL
25-Mar: El Paso, TX
26-Mar: Memphis, TN
27-Mar: Kansas City, MO
27-Mar: Commerce, CA
1-Apr: Charlottesville, VA
2-Apr: Baltimore, MD
3-Apr: Landover, MD
8-Apr: Cleveland, OH
9-Apr: Dayton, OH
10-Apr: Lexington, KY
16-Apr: Philadelphia, PA
16-Apr: Lodi, CA
17-Apr: San Leandro, CA
17-Apr: Newburgh, NY
22-Apr: Wausau, WI
23-Apr: Dubuque, IA
23-Apr: Weirton, WV
24-Apr: Milwaukee, WI
24-Apr: Butler, PA
29-Apr: Harrisburg, PA
30-Apr: Greensboro, NC
1-May: Erie, PA
1-May: Columbia, SC
6-May: Toronto, Ontario
6-May: Everett, WA
8-May: Denver, CO
8-May: Edmonton, AB
13-May: South Bend, IN
14-May: Chicago, IL
15-May: Springfield, IL

The Idealease Safety Bulletin is provided for Idealease affiliates and their customers and is not to be construed as a complete or exhaustive source of compliance or safety information. The Idealease Safety Bulletin is advisory in nature and does not warrant, guarantee, or otherwise certify compliance with laws, regulations, requirements, or guidelines of any local, state, or Federal agency and/or governing body, or industry standards.