The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) has launched a “Teens & Trucks” awareness campaign, which aims to reduce truck accidents by focusing on the driving habits of young drivers. Teens are involved in 12% of fatal car accidents across the nation, even though teens only account for about 6% of licensed motorists. Many Florida car accidents and traffic fatalities are caused by teen drivers. In some cases, simple inexperience leads to car accidents among teen drivers. In other cases, teen speeding, distracted driving, and aggressive driving contribute to Florida car accidents and truck accidents.
CVSA’s Interim Executive Director, Stephen A. Keppler, announced the launch of the “Teens & Trucks” campaign by noting that teens and younger drivers between 16 and 24 years old do not recognize that larger commercial trucks are different than other vehicles on the roads. This, as well as unsafe behaviors lead to truck accidents. In fact, according to the CVSA, 5390 teen causalities between 2003 and 2007 involving trucks can be directly attributed to this failure to recognize the difference between trucks and passenger vehicles.
The “Teens & Trucks” campaign is partnered with American Trucking Associations, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), and state industry groups to help teens learn about driving skills near commercial trucks. Groups hope that by teaching teens the importance of commercial trucks and driving skills, many truck accidents can be prevented. The program aims to help reach teens before bad driving habits develop. The campaign will strive to teach teen drivers about the larger blind spots that trucks have and teach teens that trucks take longer to stop. The hope is that once teens understand the need to drive differently around commercial trucks, the rates of truck accidents will drop.
The “Teens & Trucks” campaign will be available to driving instructors, schools, and parents. Information is available through no-cost handouts, DVDs, workbooks, manuals, and other education materials. Parents of teen drivers and instructors can learn more at www.teensandtrucks.com.
The campaign will likely be especially important for Florida truck accident rates. Since Florida has many port cities, it has many trucks on the roads. Commercial trucks take cargo from ships in ports and transport them all over the nation. Teen drivers in Florida frequently share the road with trucks, putting them at a heightened risk of Florida truck accidents.