Truckers ask, “Can you see me now?”
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recently released the results of a study of single-unit truck crashes. More commonly referred to as straight trucks, this vehicle segment has far less regulatory scrutiny compared to the Class 8 tractor-trailer world. While nobody would wish the long arm of the regulatory bureaucracy on any segment in the trucking industry, it’s about time there was a bit more parity in the regulations.
Instead of increased training and testing of non-truck road users, the study’s primary focus appears to be on preventing the straight trucks from being struck by inattentive non-truckers. As with the regulations for the tractor-trailer side of the business, the study’s key recommendations include adding side and rear underride guards, as well as increasing the trucks’ conspicuity.
The study does mention enhancing the truck drivers’ ability to detect pedestrians and cyclists but stops short of requiring pedestrians and cyclists to be festooned with reflective conspicuity tape on all sides in the same manner as required for trucks.
In other words, if the non-trucker can’t see a huge, brightly lit, colorfully painted truck, it’s the trucker’s fault. While at the same time, if the trucker can’t see a tiny un-lit pedestrian or cyclist wearing dark, non-reflective clothing, it’s still the trucker’s fault. Gotta love this system.
, Straight Trucks