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Poll: Americans say truckers are safe drivers

Poll: Americans say truckers are safe drivers


People who drive semi-trucks or other large commercial vehicles in Illinois work each day under constant scrutiny, regulatory guidelines and federal oversight. Drivers with commercial driving licenses must adhere to very high standards for safety for themselves, their companies and the general public.

While it can seem that commercial truck drivers are under siege and viewed as dangerous to other drivers or pedestrians, a recent survey dispels such myths with strong certainty.

The numbers tell the story

Highlights from the survey focused on beliefs about trucker safety and were communicated via the American Trucking Association in early October. A group called Public Opinion Strategies administered the poll to 800 registered voters in the United States. Among the results were the following key findings:

  • Regarding motor vehicle accidents between large commercial trucks and standard passenger vehicles, respondents indicated they felt the passenger vehicle operators were at fault 74% of the time.
  • Only 10% of participants felt that truckers were more likely to speed than other drivers while 90% of participants felt passenger vehicle drivers were more likely to be found speeding on area roads.
  • A large majority—93% in fact—of people polled said they felt drivers of passenger vehicles are more apt to drive in unsafe manners than drivers of large trucks.
  • Out of all participants, 80% view truckers as safer drivers than those persons operating cars or other passenger vehicles.

These results should make drivers and others in the transportation industry proud of their continued focus on safety and pride in their profession.

Federal laws are clear

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration oversees all commercial transportation and continually seeks new ways to improve safety on the road for all parties, including truck drivers and trucking companies. Last year’s changes to working hours and break requirements, commonly referred to as the Hours of Service or HoS were instituted with reducing driver fatigue clearly in mind.

The Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse Rule that was approved this year has paved the way for the development of a database that will serve as the means by which substance use or abuse by truckers will be monitored. These are just some examples of how the transportation industry itself strives for safety.

Confirmation and affirmation in the poll

Professionals within the transportation industry should be proud of the results of the recent survey. While a continued effort on safety is always important, receiving feedback that existing efforts are noticed and working is a positive step.

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