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1. What is the primary mission of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)? 
Your response must be at least 75 words in length.

2. Explain how new transportation regulations are made. 
Your response must be at least 200 words in length.

3. You have a serious accident in your warehouse. Both the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) hear about it and respond at your facility to investigate. Which of these two agencies has jurisdiction, and why? Feel free to describe additional information about the accident scenario in your answer. 
Your response must be at least 200 words in length.

OSH 2305, Fleet and Driver Safety 1

Course Learning Outcomes for Unit I

Upon completion of this unit, students should be able to:

1. Summarize fleet safety management programs and practices.
1.1 Identify agencies and regulations pertaining to fleet safety management.

2. Discuss industry-specific fleet safety issues.

2.1 Explain the development of new transportation regulations.

4. Apply hazard analysis and control techniques to fleet safety.
4.1 Describe accident investigation jurisdiction for a given scenario.

Course/Unit
Learning Outcomes

Learning Activity

1.1

Unit Lesson
Introduction, pp. iii–xii
Chapter 1, pp. 1–13
Chapter 2, pp. 15–24
Unit I Assessment

2.1

Unit Lesson
Introduction, pp. iii–xii
Chapter 1, pp. 1–13
Chapter 2, pp. 15–24
Unit I Assessment

4.1

Unit Lesson
Introduction, pp. iii–xii
Chapter 1, pp. 1–13
Chapter 2, pp. 15–24
Unit I Assessment

Required Unit Resources

Introduction: pp. iii–xii

Chapter 1: DOT Regulations, pp. 1–13

Chapter 2: OSHA and Other Regulations, pp. 15–24

Unit Lesson

Introduction

For many years, state governments and the federal government have facilitated the development of safety
regulations throughout many different areas of commerce and industry. An increase in the population of the
United States led to a significant growth in transportation and supply chain movements across the country.
More than a century ago, a mass expansion began in the 1800s, which led to the development of various new
methods of transportation, such as waterways, roads, and trains, and the expansion then led to the
organization of safety regulations throughout the states and within the federal government. Throughout the
1900s, populations had expanded so much that the government mandated specific rules and regulations to
facilitate the transportation of goods, including hazardous materials (Haight, 2015). Eventually, in 1966, a

UNIT I STUDY GUIDE

Introduction to Fleet Safety

OSH 2305, Fleet and Driver Safety 2

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government agency had to be established to handle the work of creating and sustaining transportation
regulations—the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT).

DOT

Originally, the primary responsibility of the DOT was to manage, track, and analyze the development of safety
regulations related to all transportation activities. This responsibility grew into a larger umbrella of oversight
throughout the years in which the DOT now manages operations of all areas in the U.S. transportation
infrastructure systems. All companies operating within the United States utilize key management procedures
provided by DOT regulations regarding the operation of commercial fleets. The DOT plays a key role in
providing oversight management of transportation operations for fleets within the areas below.

 Federal Aviation Administration: Aviation fleet operations

 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration: Highway safety programs

 U.S. Maritime Administration: Waterborne transportation systems including fleet ships and port
operations

 Federal Transit Administration: Mass transportation systems

 Surface Transportation Board: Interstate surface transportation systems such as railroads

 Federal Highway Administration: Highway transportation systems

 Federal Railroad Administration: Safety throughout railroad systems

 Research and Innovative Technology Administration: Research and development activities, which
coordinate future improvements within DOT safety regulations.

While all regulations are developed and designed to facilitate safety, additional regulations are developed to
ensure compliance with specific operations. On January 1, 2000, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety
Administration (FMCSA) was established in conjunction with the requirements under the Motor Carrier Safety
Improvement Act of 1999. The purpose of the FMCSA is to directly monitor and enforce all safety regulations
related to the use of commercial transportation vehicles across the United States (FMCSA, n.d.).

Administration of safety regulations ensures compliance with DOT regulations for transportation of interstate
commerce goods and services, for-hire carriers, and intrastate commerce. Each carrier must specifically
follow the policies for operating, including gaining an operating authority issuance from the DOT through the
FMCSA. Failure to comply with the safety regulations issued for commercial transportation activities results in
increased fines from the federal government, which can eventually lead to the loss of operating permits in
addition to the suspension of the operating authority issuance. It is crucial to large companies to maintain the
correct safety practices within management procedures and to provide effective training to all employees,
ultimately reducing their safety risks and mitigating potential transportation accidents. Senior management
officials and safety managers need to constantly review updated regulations published online while engaging
the drivers in safety practices.

In determining the results of the implementation of safety regulations, management officials can utilize
strategic planning to effectively measure outcomes, which will allow them to determine how to proactively
provide improved methods of training in the future. Successful fleet safety management depends on
delivering the most updated information and continuous, ongoing training practices as well as constant
enforcement.

Companies can use methods of tracking driver safety practices based on logbooks, technological initiatives, a
global positioning system (GPS), and activities that will enable managers to designate performance
benchmarks for analysis. Potential benchmarks include the use of seatbelts, use of handheld devices,
transportation of hazardous materials, accuracy of driving records, speeding, and braking habits. Research
from transportation activities can be utilized in conjunction with a company’s safety training program in
addition to the implementation of an effective safety culture to promote a safe fleet management environment.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

Please note that while the DOT is accountable for governing all safety regulations with regard to all
transportation activities throughout the United States, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration
(OSHA) is responsible for maintaining safety procedures for transportation activities within the workplace.

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OSHA regulations also apply to fleet safety operations; therefore, its primary focus is to govern safety within
the workplace while still applying the operational and safety policies that are disseminated from the DOT.

OSHA promotes safety with the goal of reducing hazards within the workplace to reduce accidents and
increase the use of safety procedures to prevent any future safety-related incidents. Transportation incidents
accounted for 40% of fatal workplace injuries in 2017 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018).

To successfully reduce annual accidents, OSHA drives the regulations to provide not only a safe workplace
but also fleet safety management procedures to ensure the appropriate precautions are taking place within
the work environment. One example of fleet safety is that of commercial trucking companies. These
companies must comply, not only with general industry standards but also OSHA and DOT regulations.
Because of this, companies must disseminate safety information and maintain prevention strategies to ensure
that all materials transported within the fleet meet regulations.

Proactive Safety Measures

There are many benefits to being proactive in conducting safety measures for both the workplace and within
fleet operations. Management can ask the following questions in determining the best course of training.

1. What is the best course of action in determining potential hazards within transportation routes,
including vehicle maintenance?

2. What types of safety procedures can assist drivers with mitigating potential road issues and conflicts
within load deliveries and traffic hazards?

3. What solutions can be utilized to effectively train employees to successfully manage fleet operations
and safety procedures?

Safety managers can assist driver managers in efficiently conducting fleet safety operations in conjunction
with their employees. In operating fleet vehicles, the first line of defense in preventing accidents involves
proactive vehicle maintenance. Safe vehicles within a fleet can help ensure success.

Effective training can facilitate current and future safety processes as well as improved productivity. On-the-
job accidents are an important concern for many companies, and driving accidents on the job present a major
issue that needs to be continuously addressed. Proactive measures in promoting a culture of safety can help
companies measure past safety problems to improve current training and mitigate future accidents. These
types of proactive measures are a response to safety and health in the workplace, and they take place prior to
taking to the road. This approach is deemed more economical than responding to an accident after it takes
place since it is at that time that the accident directly and financially impacts the company. A few examples of
proactive measures are listed below:

 accident analysis to fix the system, not to affix blame;

 safety committees and/or safety teams;

 hazard analysis programs;

 inspection programs;

 job hazard analysis programs;

 incentive/recognition programs that recognize complying, reporting, suggesting, and involvement;

 safety education and training; and

 accountability systems.

Reviewing prior accidents and carefully analyzing the causes are useful practices that start the process for
safety teams to create innovative and new training methods in addition to improving past initiatives to promote
safety education within the workplace. Accountability in this method lies not only with management but also
with individuals employed by the company who are required to review all safety training methods and employ
those methods on the job within their daily tasks (Alberta Government, 2015).

Drivers must also conduct pre-checks and post-checks to assist with continuously monitoring vehicle
operations. In addition to this, safety managers are required through DOT regulations to carefully vet drivers
who are qualified to operate fleet vehicles. Background checks must also be performed on each potential
driver so that safety managers can review past driving histories, on-the-job accidents, and driving habits.

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Authorized employees must follow the safety programs outlined by management, reviewing each current
regulation to maintain control over their transportation responsibilities.

Transportation regulation and safety has been and will continue to be a main concern for the federal
government. Employers are constantly developing new strategies in conjunction with federal regulations to
train and ensure safety throughout not only the workplace but also within individual fleets because you must
have the appropriate safety controls in place to successfully manage your fleet. There are many different
federal and state agencies involved with promoting safety; however, the regulations change each year, per
data collected that demonstrates the necessary action for change. DOT regulations and OSHA policies are
continuously updated online so that the public has access to review these at any time. The overall goal of all
safety policies is not only to promote safe practices within the workplace and within fleet management but
also to eventually provide consistency throughout all safety guidelines and regulations in the United States
and on a global scale.

References

Alberta Government. (2015). Leading indicators for workplace health and safety: A user guide. Retrieved from

https://open.alberta.ca/dataset/17acecf3-0922-41b3-97b8-8b43ac27c304/resource/ac726e0c-e545-
4401-adda-0e66ba4d6b5d/download/2015-ohs-best-practices-bp019-greyscale.pdf

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. (n.d.). About us: History. Retrieved from

https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/mission/about-us

Haight, J. M. (Ed.). (2015). Fleet safety: For safety professionals and fleet managers. Park Ridge, IL:

American Society of Safety Professionals.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2018, December 18). National census of fatal occupational injuries in 2017

[Press release]. Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/cfoi.pdf

Learning Activities (Nongraded)

Nongraded Learning Activities are provided to aid students in their course of study. You do not have to submit
them. If you have questions, contact your instructor for further guidance and information.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website contains a wealth of information that will be helpful
to new and seasoned fleet safety professionals alike. Main categories to explore are listed below.

 About FMCSA

 Regulations

 Registration

 Safety

 Analysis

 News

Peruse the website to learn more about fleet safety, and list five new things that you learned by doing so.