As previously noted, Transport Canada (TC) has embarked on developing comprehensive training material to help mitigate driver distraction in the motor carrier industry. The deliverables will include training material for drivers and a fleet management guideline for managers, and both will be made available free of charge to the industry.  Education and training to combat distracted driving were a key recommendation in the Canadian Trucking Alliance’s 10-point Action Plan to improve truck safety and compliance.

The TC project is on a two-year time frame and was initiated in July 2019. The first phase, which is now complete, involved reviewing scientific models of driver distraction and driver training to identify the issues that should be covered in training material and fleet guidelines.

The second phase includes a survey administered by Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) and aims to identifying current practices to mitigate driver distraction (company policies, driver training, etc.) in the Canadian motor carrier industry. On the basis of this data, TC will be able to assess if and to what extent the issues identified in phase one are being used in current practices. This will allow the research team to identify gaps and to develop comprehensive material that will address them.

“Distracted driving is a growing epidemic that affects all road users. Proactive efforts to deter distraction are critical. This work by Transport Canada will enhance materials and information available to all parties in the trucking industry and addresses a key point identified in CTA’s 10-point plan on truck safety,” said Geoff Wood, senior VP, Policy, Canadian Trucking Alliance. “CTA will continue to work with its provincial associations, carrier and supplier membership as well as like-minded organizations such as the Traffic Injury Research Foundation to provide as much support as possible to prevent distracted driving and make roadways safer.”

Both driver training material and fleet management guidelines to mitigate driver distraction are expected to be available by March 2021.

If you are interested in participating, please click here for a link to the survey.  Further questions about the Research and Survey Work can be directed to Matthew Camden (mcamden@vtti.vt.edu)or Jeff Hickman (jhickman@vtti.vt.edu)

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