Shortcomings That Undermine the Effectiveness of Safety Programs

August 09, 2016

Although articles published on this blog often explore attempts by trucking companies and their drivers to cut corners to minimize costs and increase profits, many responsible commercial carriers recognize that big-rig crashes often cause debilitating injuries and fatalities. The person that suffers serious injury in a trucking accident usually will be someone other than the tractor-trailer driver because of the weight disparity between a big-rig and a passenger car. When commercial carriers fail to comply with safety regulations, our trucking accident lawyers remind injury victims that trucking companies can be financially responsible for injuries incurred by crash victims.

Trucking companies can implement multiple strategies to promote truck driver safety. In some cases, commercial carriers hire professionals to manage the safety of the company's fleet. In others, the trucking company might implement safety programs crafted to promote safety compliance and practices by its drivers. While these programs are a laudable step, issues often arise that undermine the effectiveness of these approaches to promoting safe practices.

Shortcomings in a commercial carrier's safety program can make the program ineffective at preventing tractor-trailer crashes. Some of the issues that can undermine trucking company safety programs include, among others: knowledgeable 

  • Employee Resistance: If employees do not respect safety training programs, or they consider the time commitment unjustified, drivers are not likely to internalize the safety tips and strategies.
  • Excessive Workload for Safety Managers: While the primary function of a safety manager theoretically might be promoting prudent practices that prevent trucking accidents, they often are overwhelmed handling emergency issues that include accidents and citations. When safety managers must divide their time between these competing responsibilities, they frequently lack time to arrange effective safety programs or to learn what aspects of the program are working well.
  • Failure to Monitor and Follow-Up on Training Results: The success of training programs depends to a significant degree on careful monitoring of results to determine the aspects of the program that should be continued, as well as appropriate modifications to improve compliance with safety practices.
  • Indifference from High-Level Executives: While driver buy-in is important, support from the upper echelon of management also is critical. If executives in the company do not place a high priority on the program, company resources devoted to safety training might be insufficient to ensure success.

While safety programs adopted by commercial carriers fall short for a variety of reasons, our Atlanta trucking accident attorneys prefer to see responsible trucking companies that attempt to improve roadway safety. Trucking companies that elect to emphasize profits over safety can be liable for the negligence of their drivers. Because our law firm handles many tractor-trailer accident claims based on a violation of safety regulations, we investigate the facts and circumstances of big-rig accidents to identify a basis for imposing liability.

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Our experienced Atlanta trucking accident lawyers are dedicated to pursuing the fullest recovery for our clients. The firm of Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, has been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout all of Georgia and in the Southeast for over thirty years, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.

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Category: Truck Accidents

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.