Idealease Safety Bulletin
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Proactive vs. Reactive 
Safety and Loss Control Program
Which One Do You Have?

At the end of the year you should be evaluating your safety and loss control program to determine your performance over the year. Where do you stand compared to last year and the year before? Ongoing analysis programs are vital to a proactive and productive safety and loss control program. It always amazes me that companies cannot tell me what their accident frequency rate is and how it compares to years past. 

 Accident frequency should be determined throughout the year no less than quarterly to determine trends and be proactive in controlling losses. Accident frequency rates can be calculated by multiplying the total number of accidents for a period of time by one million and then dividing by the total number miles for the same period. Accident frequency rate can be determined for DOT recordable, preventable recordable, non-preventable, by region, by fleet, driver supervisor, injury, etc. However, accident frequency rates are just one piece of the overall safety analysis program that is in place to provide you with a sense of direction of where your program is going. 

Other areas of your internal analysis program should include, driver turnover frequency, DOT violation analysis (Hours of Service, Drug and Alcohol, driver file), OSHA violations, workers compensation injuries, etc. Another analysis tool that you should review monthly is the Federal Motor Carrier.  heading

*Compliance, Safety and Accountability (CSA) program provided to you by the FMCSA at

A sound Proactive safety and Loss control program will adequately address the following areas:
*Driver Selection
*Driver recruiting
*Carrier-based training
*Management-driver communications
*Driver safety-performance evaluation
*Safety incentives, Behavior-based safety
*On-board safety monitoring
*Telematic event-data recording
*Accident investigation
*Improved driver scheduling and dispatching
*Fatigue management
*Carrier-based medical programs
*Preventive maintenance and vehicle inspection
*Advanced safety technologies, Industry-based safety standards and certification
Don't Crowd the Plow

During winter storms, snowplows work around the clock to make roads passable. These large vehicles can present a hazard for drivers who follow too closely. Observe these tips to stay safe while giving snowplow operators room to do their jobs.

*Keep well back from snowplows
Plow drivers can't see directly behind their trucks. Sometimes they must stop or back up. Staying a safe distance behind a snowplow will protect you from possible injury and protect your car from sanding material that plows spread on slick roadways.

*Know where the snowplow is on multi-lane highways
The plow could be in either lane, or on the shoulder. Watch for snowplows on interstate ramps and "authorized vehicle only" turnarounds.

*Never drive through a snow cloud or whiteout conditions
You can't be sure if such conditions are caused by crosswinds or by a snowplow, so be patient. snowplow operators periodically pull over to allow traffic to pass.
snowplow operators are extremely safety-conscious, but they need your help. Stay back and let them safely do their job of clearing the road for you. Don't take a chance. Don't crowd the plow!

What the FMCSA says about Recreational 
Use of Marijuana

Recently, some states passed initiatives to permit use of marijuana for so-called "recreational" purposes.

We have had several inquiries about whether these state initiatives will have an impact upon the Department of Transportation's longstanding regulation about the use of marijuana by safety-sensitive transportation employees - pilots, school bus drivers, truck drivers, train engineers, subway operators, aircraft maintenance personnel, transit fire-armed security personnel, ship captains, and pipeline emergency response personnel, among others.

We want to make it perfectly clear that the state initiatives will have no bearing on the Department of Transportation's regulated drug testing program. The Department of Transportation's Drug and Alcohol Testing Regulation - 49 CFR Part 40 - does not authorize the use of Schedule I drugs, including marijuana, for any reason.

Therefore, Medical Review Officers (MROs) will not verify a drug test as negative based upon learning that the employee used "recreational marijuana" when states have passed "recreational marijuana" initiatives.

We also firmly reiterate that an MRO will not verify a drug test negative based upon information that a physician recommended that the employee use "medical marijuana" when states have passed "medical marijuana" initiatives.

It is important to note that marijuana remains a drug listed in Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. It remains unacceptable for any safety-sensitive employee subject to drug testing under the Department of Transportation's drug testing regulations to use marijuana.

We want to assure the traveling public that our transportation system is the safest it can possibly be.

December 6th, 2013
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Question of the Week

With the upcoming holidays, what regulations are in place pertaining to alcohol consumption and driving a commercial motor vehicle? 
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations address use of alcohol by any commercial driver (>10,000lbs MGVWR) in CFR 392.5 No driver shall- Use alcohol, as defined in CFR 382.107 of this subchapter, or be under the influence of alcohol, within 4 hours before going on duty or operating, or having physical control of, a commercial motor vehicle; or use alcohol, be under the influence of alcohol, or have any measured alcohol concentration or detected presence of alcohol, while on duty, or operating, or in physical control of a commercial motor vehicle.  There are additional provisions to this regulation, please read 392.5 in its entirety.
Any driver who is found to be in violation of these regulations shall be placed out-of-service immediately for a period of 24 hours.
Additional FMCSR

Regulations apply to drivers who are operating a CMV with a CDL and can be found in and CFR 382 such as random, post accident and reasonable suspicion testing. CFR 383.51 addresses disqualification of a CDL for alcohol violations in a CMV and a NON-CMV.

The bottom line is that a driver of a commercial motor vehicle jeopardizes his/her license and job anytime they drive any type of motor vehicle under the influence of Alcohol.
Driver Tip of the Week!


Other drivers may not be aware of the size of your truck's blind spots. Be vigilant in watching out for vehicles in the No-Zone. 
The No-Zone represents the danger areas, or blind spots, around trucks and buses where crashes are more likely to occur. One-third of all crashes between large trucks and cars take place in the No-Zone.

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.