A collection of news and updates related specifically to the trucking industry and online safety training ideas.

Negotiating Commercial Truck Insurance Tell Your Driver Data Story

Negotiating Commercial Truck Insurance

When it comes to commercial truck insurance, there are many points of data that you need to monitor closely and prepare to discuss with your insurance underwriter. It’s important to give the underwriter a full picture instead of a snapshot.

There is so much data available about companies as well as drivers that can count against you without the proper context. This out of context data makes it easier for plaintiff attorneys to go after large payouts and can lead to increased insurance rates or denial from insurance companies.

So, how do you keep this data in the right context? Make sure to tell your driver data story up front.

Telling Your Driver Data Story

The trick to providing the right background is to answer questions about the data before the underwriter asks. If you can’t tell the story behind bad stats, you could easily be rejected or be required to pay higher rates.

You need to tell the story behind poor records or show steps you are taking to improve on problem areas. Give clear records of corrective action steps taken where necessary. You also want to show clear records of all training assigned and completed to show steps to improve safety for your company.

There are many factors that go into the rising commercial truck insurance costs, including increased nuclear verdicts, driver shortages, and the number of commercial insurance carriers available. These factors make it more important than ever to tell the right story when it comes time to renew your insurance.

When gathering your data, there are a couple factors you should consider to tell the right story.

What Factors Influence Insurance Rates?

We all know insurance underwriters look at your crash rates, violations, and other important safety factors when determining what rates are available for your company. But, what other factors play a role in their decision? These are the areas where you have the best chance of telling your story.

Driver retention is a big factor for insurance companies. The available data shows that more accidents happen in the first two years with a new company for drivers. These statistics are the same no matter how long the driver has been operating through their career.

These increased accidents are due to drivers getting used to new equipment and new routes. If you can show your company has a good driver retention rate, you have more negotiating power. If you do have new drivers, but they are owner-operators, make sure your insurance underwriter knows up front that these drivers are operating equipment they are already familiar with.

Another factor in negotiating commercial truck insurance is dealing with the common violations that have easy fixes. A big one here is seat belt use. Provide training and encourage drivers to wear their seat belts at all times.

These seat belt violations are far too common, cost carriers more money than other seemingly more serious violations, and are simple to get under control. This easy fix can save significant amounts when it comes to insurance costs.

Ongoing Training to Improve Your Data Story

The best thing you can do to improve your driver data story is to provide consistent, ongoing training to your drivers. This includes orientation, ongoing, and corrective action training to ensure drivers are prepared to deal with any concerns on the road and improve your company safety culture.

Online training management with Infinit-I Workforce Solutions makes it easy to provide this consistent training. Drivers can access their training from any device with an internet connection, and complete training on their own schedule. This means you can get more of your drivers to complete the training that helps reduce factors that count against you during commercial truck insurance negotiations.

The Infinit-I system is easy to set up and easy to use. To see for yourself, request a demo.

Driver Health, Healthy Eating

Truck Driver Health Tips

The truck driver shortage is starting to get the recognition it needs. There are many factors that influence this shortage, from changes to drug screens, to retiring drivers, to younger workers entering other industries.

One area that is often overlooked when it comes to driver retention is driver health. Drivers face conditions that make it difficult to maintain healthy habits but can be pulled off the road if certain health issues arise. There are things drivers and trucking companies can do to help reduce this risk though.

Biggest Driver Health Concerns

One-third of drivers aren’t qualified to drive due to health issues. With driver shortages already hurting the industry, driver health is an issue that needs to be addressed.

The biggest health concerns for drivers are blood pressure, being overweight, and diabetes. This isn’t surprising as more than 10% of Americans have Type 2 Diabetes, and 75% are overweight or obese. These issues are increased for drivers as they spend so much of their time sitting behind the wheel.

Nutrition is the number one reason for these health issues. Part of spending their time on the road means drivers have difficulty maintaining nutrition. The trucking industry can combat some of these issues by promoting healthy eating, improved rest, hydration, movement, and stress reduction.

Promoting Healthier Eating

Beyond the obvious health issues associated with poor nutrition, this can also affect reaction times and decision-making skills. Poor quality foods negatively affect brain health and drain energy. You want your drivers to be alert and ready on the road.

Creating healthy eating habits can take time. Drivers should start with small changes, finding alternatives to their biggest problem foods first. Planning ahead also helps manage nutrition. Drivers can determine the best options for food on their routes to reduce poor food choices.

Companies can help by offering healthier options when drivers are in-house. Providing information on healthier options will also help combat some of the health issues involved with poor nutrition.

Improving Rest

Sleep is when your body recharges and repairs itself, meaning lack of sleep is harmful to your physical and mental health. Beyond that, fatigued driving can lead to increased accidents.

Drivers can combat this by taking steps to get rest. A good place to start is by reducing caffeine and sugar, which will also help improve nutrition. Creating as much routine around their schedules will also help them rest better.

It’s essential to make sure drivers get enough sleep before getting on the road. Make sure they are following hours of service regulations while on the road as well. Explain the importance of proper rest so they know you are looking out for their best interest as well as yours.

Staying Hydrated

Hydration is an important part of driver health. Poor hydration can lead to health issues such as high blood pressure, asthma, arthritis, and many other problems including being overweight. If you are thirsty, you may believe you are hungry which leads to overeating.

Reducing caffeine intake can help. Often when we drink caffeinated drinks, they can dehydrate us further. Drivers can make simple swaps to take in better-quality hydration options on the road, but water is always the best option.

Trucking companies should encourage drivers to keep water on hand when on long trips, so they maintain hydration. For those who don’t like water, encourage better alternatives such as real juices and flavored waters.

Get Moving

Body posture and movement are also important to health. Both can affect digestion, joint health, and bone health. Poor posture and lack of movement can lead to chronic pain issues.

An easy way for drivers to improve this is to take walks. This is an easy way to get moving without adding extra stress for drivers. Walking has the added benefit of helping with some of the stress of the job.

Encourage drivers to take time to move around. Even if it’s walking around their vehicle on a break, it is a start they can grow from.

Reduce Stress

Stress can lead to angry or aggressive driving which is more likely to involve truck drivers in an accident. Stress also affects the immune system and prolonged stress can cause heart issues. Unfortunately, we know drivers must deal with a lot of stress.

Positive thinking can go a long way towards reducing stress. Taking time to focus on the positive will help create habits of redirecting during times of high stress. Getting out and moving around for a while can also help reduce stress levels.

It is in everyone’s best interest for you to encourage your drivers to take time for stress-reduction activities. You can also help with stress by promoting better communication within your company.

Making Driver Health Part of Safety Training

While it is up to drivers to make the changes that are needed for better health, there are things you can do to promote driver health throughout your company. Encourage drivers to understand the importance of health and why they would want to be healthier. Understanding why will help them to form better habits.

Provide training on the importance of health and how bad health can negatively affect their work. Encourage small changes to help them build better habits. Wherever you can, provide healthier options for drivers to see the benefit.

Promoting health is a good way to help drivers feel safe with your company. Safety and health go hand-in-hand, so incorporate training on healthy habits with your safety training. Make driver health part of your safety culture.

Developing a Culture of Safety

To retain quality drivers, you want to make safety an essential part of your company culture. Providing the tools needed to promote safety and health are easy with Infinit-I Workforce Solutions. Our online training management platform allows you to provide training year-round without disrupting schedules.

Schedule a demo today to learn how easy it is to provide the training you need to develop a culture of safety.

safety record

Even if you have a stellar safety record, letting one bad driver in can destroy your company. It’s essential that you check the records of new hires and ensure you take action to correct bad behaviors on the road, or you could see yourself facing a nuclear verdict.

Safety Record vs. Record Nuclear Verdict

Four years ago, a teenager in Jacksonville, FL was killed in an accident involving two commercial vehicles. One truck was overturned, causing a traffic backup. Another driver crashed into the line of traffic, resulting in the death.

Just recently, a jury brought back a verdict on this accident, requiring $1 billion from the companies with drivers involved. This verdict takes over as the new record for a nuclear verdict against a trucking company. The previous record was $411 million.

Distracted Driving, Hours-of-Service, and Other Issues

From beginning to end, this wreck seems to have been caused by bad driving practices. The original driver who overturned his truck was distracted by his cellphone at the time. The other driver was also distracted and didn’t try to brake until right before the crash occurred.

Distracted driving wasn’t the only issues though. Both drivers were over their hours-of-service limits. The second driver was on his 25th hour of a trip from Quebec.

The second driver also couldn’t read English well, meaning he couldn’t read the signs warning about the crash ahead. Plus, the first driver was driving without a valid CDL.

This was clearly an accident that could have been avoided if these drivers had been clear on CSA BASICS. It also could have been avoided if the first driver had received a background check before being hired. These bad behaviors destroyed the safety record of one company, ending with them closing their doors.

What Does the New Record Verdict Mean to You?

This sounds like a worst-case scenario, and many look at this and swear it wouldn’t happen to them. With nuclear verdicts on the rise and jurors wanting to hold trucking companies more responsible for safety on the roads, it’s important for trucking companies to protect themselves.

Large verdicts like this can easily put a trucking company out of business. It’s up to you to address situations before they lead to something like this. Make sure you are following all necessary procedures to protect your company.

  • Run background checks on drivers
  • Verify CDL status of all new hires
  • Make sure drivers can follow directions wherever they are travelling

Take the time to determine your company’s vulnerabilities within your safety record. Where you find recurring issues, take the time to re-train drivers in these areas. Maintain an ongoing training program to keep safety top of mind for everyone.

Make sure new drivers are clear on safety standards for your company before they ever hit the road for you. Make sure drivers understand safety measures that will reduce the potential for accidents.

Does Your Safety Record Stand Up to a Nuclear Verdict?

Bad actors within the trucking industry hurt everyone. There is a pre-conceived idea that trucking companies don’t care about safety. Each time accidents like this happen, it reinforces that idea.

This makes it important for you to evaluate, identify, and correct those areas that put your company at risk for the next nuclear verdict. Regular safety training is one of your strongest protections against this.

With Infinit-I Workforce Solutions, you can provide online safety training so drivers can access the training they need no matter where they are. Contact us today to request a demo and learn how we can help you protect against bad behaviors on the road.

smaller accident settlements and verdicts

The Impact of Smaller Accident Settlements and Verdicts on the Trucking Industry

A lot of time is spent discussing the effect of nuclear verdicts, or verdicts over $10 million, but trucking accident settlements and verdicts under $1 million also have a negative effect on the trucking industry.

Between the danger of increased litigation with the smaller payouts, the rise of insurance rates, and the increased scrutiny on the trucking industry, these smaller verdicts put strain on trucking companies. You need to learn how to protect yourself and your drivers from all litigation issues.

Why are Settlements and Verdicts on the Rise?

The increase in accident settlements and verdicts under $1 million has a lot to do with negative public perception of the trucking industry and tighter restrictions against the industry. The public perception is that carriers are large corporations that don’t care about people.

Plaintiff attorneys have taken advantage of this belief to cooperate on an easy target for litigation. Law firms that focus on the trucking industry have set up structures to go after as many companies as they can. Many will go out of their way to solicit accident victims to file a claim with their firm.

With this structure, some firms can have 300 cases against trucking companies open at a time. These firms often seek for settlements rather than going to court as this gives them a quicker payout. These firms go after minor accidents, but the payout is usually five times the true cost of the accident to the victim.

Litigation financing has also played a part in the increase of settlements and verdicts. Third parties will provide the money needed to pursue a case and take a share of any payment received as payback for the financing. This can also involve a third party purchasing a plaintiff’s medical bills in exchange for part of the settlement.

This third-party financing has also contributed to an increase in fraudulent claims, which adds to the increase in litigation against the trucking industry. These issues trickle down into other areas and have led to increases in insurance costs on top of these other costs.

Highest Payouts

The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) recently did a study on the impact of accident settlements and verdicts under $1 million for the trucking industry, and found that certain issues lead to bigger payments for plaintiffs.

The research showed the top 5 causes of accidents that led to the highest average payouts under $1 million were:

  • Poor driver history ($680,333)
  • Phone use ($629,375)
  • Hours of Service violations ($564, 531)
  • Falling asleep at the wheel ($543,343)
  • Equipment failure ($503,641)

Poor driver history is connected to poor hiring practices and inadequate training which leads to juries holding a carrier at fault for a driver’s mistakes on the road, which means bigger payouts. Driver history and reckless driving issues are a good indication of the average payment that can be expected.

The state where the accident occurs will also play a part in the payment size. California, Michigan, New Jersey, and North Carolina have the largest national averages.

Fatalities and severe injuries also increase payment sizes. In these cases, the payment was more likely to be over $600,000. This could have something to do with the fact that these cases are more likely to be settled out of court.

A carrier is likely to pay more if they settle rather than going to court. Settlements tend to be 37.7% larger than verdict sizes.

How Can You Protect Against Smaller Verdicts?

When it comes to these smaller accident settlements and verdicts, your best defense is a verifiable safety training record. A good place to start is with the top 5 issues that lead to increased payments (poor driver history, phone use, HOS violations, falling asleep at the wheel, and equipment failure).

When you look at poor driver history, you’re likely to find some common issues arising that you can focus training on. Deal with breaking these bad habits. If you can’t, it may be time to get rid of a driver before they cost you more in a lawsuit or settlement.

You also want to deal with any reckless driving issues. Reckless driving is any driving behaviors that disregard the safety of other people or property. This can include texting while driving, driving under the influence, failing to yield, etc.

The best thing you can do for your company is to set up a driver onboarding and ongoing training program to ensure safe driving behaviors. You can supplement these programs with corrective action training if an issue arrives to remind drivers of appropriate behaviors.

Many experts recommend at minimum developing a “Defensible Driver” program that covers entry-level maintenance, remedial driver training, corporate safety processes, safety technology plans, and consistent hiring and onboarding procedures. All these areas are discoverable during litigation, so you want to maintain proper documentation in each area.

Get the Tools You Need to Defend Yourself and Your Drivers

Don’t let truck accident settlements and verdicts under $1 million drown you in costs. Put the tools in place now that will help you defend your company and your drivers before you ever go to court. Infinit-I Workforce Solutions is an online training management system that will allow you to set up onboarding, ongoing, and corrective action training that will prove your safety record.

Would you like to see it in action? Contact us to set up a free demo. Learn how you can set, track, and document all your safety training efforts in one place.

Plan for Summer Driver Health During the Hot Months

How to Plan for Driver Health During the Hot Summer Months

Summer is almost upon us, and with it comes an extra layer of safety precautions to promote good summer driver health. As with any season, summer presents a new set of challenges to overcome as drivers navigate different climates, temperatures, and conditions in different parts of the country.

What are the potential health hazards for drivers during the summer?

While the summer seems like it should be slow and easy, it’s anything but. While you don’t have to worry about blizzards or severe weather in most cases, you need to be aware of an increase in traffic and construction, as well as the toll that heat and sun can take on a trucker’s body.

Why Health and Safety are Important During the Summer

There are a lot of factors that can put truck drivers’ health at risk, especially during long hauls. While the summer is a slower season for other industries, it means more traffic, more slow-downs, and more health hazards for truck drivers. 

The summer sun can present a nice, warm change from winter months, but can also present real risks to driver health when not addressed properly. The sun can cause a glare and impact vision long term, so it’s important that drivers protect their eyes. It can also cause painful sunburns, which can lead to health problems later in life if the skin is not protected.

When driving in the summer months, keep the “Five Ps” top of mind to ensure summer driver health and safety for the long haul and the long term.

Prepare for Traffic Congestion

Summer is the season for tourists, so expect traffic congestion on major roadways. This can lead to quite a bit of anxiety on the part of car drivers and truckers alike and can lead to poor decision making.

Be sure to leave early and account for slow-downs on your route, to ensure timely deliveries without pushing it on the road. Safety is an absolute imperative, so be safe by checking for traffic delays and road conditions before planning your trip.

Protect Your Eyes

Summer driver health is all about protecting your body from the risks of bright suns and heat. During the summer, the sun is especially bright, so high-quality, polarized sunglasses are essential for driving during the day.

Additionally, early morning and mid-evening sun can cause a glare, which can be dangerous to drivers, especially with more cars on the road. Take extra time to absorb surroundings and check glare spots for cars you may have missed.

Protect Your Skin

We’ve all heard of “trucker arm.” This happens when truck drivers rest their arms out the window of their truck, getting a sunburn. Days upon days of this and truckers can experience painful blistering and permanent skin damage. 

Use sunscreen to protect the skin, and roll up windows occasionally to give skin a break from UV rays.

Protect Your Truck

The summer heat puts an extra burden on a truck. It’s important during the summer to check fluids, especially coolant, during summer hauls.

When you’re driving in a hotter, drier climate, the weather can take a larger toll on a truck and even cause major issues if not addressed. Preventable maintenance is especially important during summer months when trucks are exposed to heat and elements at more extreme levels.

Pay Attention to Your Body

It’s easy to ignore the signs of dehydration. At least 518,000 people end up hospitalized each year in the U.S. due to dehydration. During an extended period outside, you may start to feel fatigued or disoriented.

This is your body telling you to cool down and hydrate. Make sure you take regular breaks and drink at least 8 glasses of water every day. Dehydration can lead to detrimental health effects and can even land you in the hospital, so make a plan to drink enough water. 

Another good idea is to carry electrolyte pouches with you at all times. These are small, easy packaged powders that can be added to bottled water to give you an instant boost. 

In addition to hydration, make sure to eat healthy food to fuel your body during the hot summer months. While we typically think of the winter as a season for sickness, the summer can present its own health challenges when you’re not properly nourished.

Key Takeaways about Summer Driver Health:

  • Summertime presents a new set of challenges for truck drivers
  • Protect yourself and your truck from breaking down by establishing a preventable maintenance routine during the summer.
  • Use the “5 Ps” to ensure summer driver health.

Infinit-I Workforce Solutions has a library of 1,000+ training videos on important health and safety topics, including protecting drivers during the summer months. Our videos use microlearning strategies that break the material down into bite-sized chunks, making it easier for drivers to comprehend and retain the information.

For more information on the online training videos available, request a catalog.

Other great posts about summer driver health:
Driver safety tips for the summer
HOT HOT HOT! Sunshine Threatens Truckers
8 Tips for Improving Fuel Efficiency

driver retention

The Struggle for Driver Retention

The number of drivers looking for a job continues to decrease, but the demand for drivers is still increasing. Between driver retention and recruitment issues, the trucking industry is close to a crisis.

Many options have been discussed to deal with the driver shortage, but part of this issue is making sure you put qualified and competent drivers on the road. There isn’t a quick fix to this issue, but there are some things trucking companies can do to bring in the drivers needed to fill the yearly 44% increase in job postings.

Why is There a Driver Shortage?

There are several issues that contribute to the driver shortage. According to anecdotal research done by ATRI, the four biggest issues are compensation, work life balance, being detained when loading and unloading, and truck parking issues.

21.6% of drivers say consistent time home is an issue that will make them leave a company. This number will likely increase as the trucking industry seeks to attract younger drivers.

The aging workforce also contributes to the driver shortage. The combination of drivers retiring, and difficulty recruiting and retaining younger drivers adds to the problem. Younger drivers are difficult to retain once they have 6 months of experience.

Many drivers have also been lost due to changes in the drug screening process. Most drivers who fail their drug tests are leaving the industry rather than completing programs to get back on the road.

The debate over vaccine mandates could cost the industry more drivers. With 36% of drivers stating they have no intention of getting a vaccine, this means these people could move into other industries if the vaccine mandates are instituted.

Unfortunately, 11% of drivers won’t tell you when they are having issues that would make them leave. This makes it difficult to determine the best methods for keeping drivers around. Luckily, there are some areas you can work on to help with driver retention.

How Can You Retain Qualified Drivers?

Truth in compensation is a big issue when it comes to driver retention. Many people leave the industry when they feel they were lied to about salaries. It’s important to make sure drivers are getting paid what they were promised if you want to keep them around.

You can also look at better payment models to keep drivers around. Make the payment process simple with pay per mile and guaranteed payment options. Direct deposit can also help reduce turnover as it keeps drivers from having to track down their checks.

Your equipment also plays a role in the compensation issue. Breakdowns cost drivers money. If they are dealing with equipment breakdown issues regularly, they will leave. You need to ensure that all equipment is well maintained to avoid this issue.

Communication and authority are also key to recruiting and retaining drivers. You need to provide relevant content that drivers can engage with to grab the attention of new drivers. Managing your online company branding is essential to recruiting drivers.

Maintaining communication with drivers once they are hired will help keep them around. Listen to their feedback and make sure they are clear on the policies and procedures necessary. Provide regular training and communications to maintain driver safety and understanding.

Where Can You Find New Drivers?

Understanding where your preferred drivers are likely to be found is important to the recruitment process. This isn’t just about the job searches. This includes social media so you can communicate with them.

Recruiting new drivers is about engaging them. Provide content in places drivers are likely to hang out such as YouTube and Facebook. You can also look at other avenues to recruit younger drivers. Share content on several medias regularly to interact with potential drivers.

55% of drivers will look for new jobs in online searches such as Indeed, Zip Recruiter, or even Google searches. You want to spend time setting up applications in these areas to catch their attention.

Be careful about making the application process simple though. More than 18% of drivers state length of applications as an issue during the hiring process.

You should also get current drivers involved in the recruiting process. 18.9% of recruits look for driver referrals. You can set up a referral bonus program to help with this process. These referral bonuses can help with driver retention as well, since drivers are less likely to leave a company they refer others to.

17.5% of drivers will check out job boards when seeking a job. This means posting openings on these job board sites is still a viable option for driver recruitment. You don’t want to rely solely on these though.

Keep in mind that 76.5% of drivers will check out all the online data they can find about a carrier before deciding to apply. To attract qualified drivers, you need to be aware of the reviews, content, and company data that exists for your company.

How others perceive you online will play a big role in how many applications you receive. Get current drivers involved in helping to strengthen that online presence wherever possible.

Preparing New Drivers

As the trucking industry focuses attention on driver recruitment and driver retention, you don’t want to forget about making sure new drivers are prepared. The best way to do this is to develop a training program that includes orientation, ongoing safety, and corrective action training materials.

Infinit-I Workforce Solutions is an online training management platform that allows you to keep up with your training needs without disrupting workflows. Allow your drivers to stay on the road and making money, while ensuring they keep safety top of mind.

Want to learn more about how Infinit-I can help save you money on training and retain qualified drivers? Request a demo to get started.

The New Driver Process ELDT Training

What is the ELDT Mandate?

The Entry-Level Driver Training or ELDT mandate is a federally set minimum on requirements from the FMCSA for training entry-level drivers that went into effect February 7, 2022. This mandate is meant for all states to ensure drivers meet at least the federal minimum requirements on ELDT theory and behind-the-wheel training.

The ELDT requirements pertain to new drivers seeking a Class A or B CDL, drivers upgrading from a Class B to a Class A CDL, or drivers seeking a school (S) endorsement, passenger (P) endorsement, or hazardous material (H) endorsement.

Any drivers seeking one of these licenses or endorsements after February 7, will be required to complete the necessary ELDT curriculum to qualify.

What Does the Mandate Change?

The biggest change involved with new ELDT regulations is the Training Provider Registry. The FMCSA requires that all theory and behind-the-wheel training must be completed through an organization listed on their provider registry to ensure they have the necessary curriculum to meet the new standards.

Another part of the regulation is that drivers must score at least an 80% to pass. All ELDT curriculum must be completed before a new driver can take their CDL exam. This will affect all drivers seeking a CDL or endorsement for the first time.

Rumors Around these Changes

There is some confusion about the ELDT changes, and many rumors are out there about how the new mandate will affect drivers, companies, and the transportation industry. These rumors are around the difficulty of complying to the new regulations and the level of federal control.

To get a good understanding of how the ELDT mandate changes will affect you, it’s important to understand what is true and what is false.

Rumor One: Training will Take Longer to Complete with the New Mandates

Many people are concerned these regulations will make training take longer than it did previously. This is not true. There are no required minimum hours to complete training.

As long as you cover every topic required by the FMCSA regulation, you can complete training in whatever timeframe you need. This means online training programs can help drivers complete theory training in less time than traditional training programs and meet all requirements.

Rumor Two: All Drivers Must Redo Training

Some are concerned that drivers will have to redo training to maintain their current CDL or complete all training to upgrade or get an endorsement. This is also not true.

Drivers only have to complete the training required for their specific needs. This means, current CDL holders will not have to complete ELDT curriculum.

This also means drivers looking to upgrade their license from Class B to A or seek an endorsement, will only have to complete the training for those specific areas.

Rumor Three: Federal Requirements Remove State Requirements

Since the ELDT mandate sets federal minimums for training, many believe this will remove any state mandates in place, but this is not true. The federal regulations set a minimum standard for new drivers.

States can add regulations above these minimums. This means it is important for you to check all state as well as federal regulations when it comes to hiring or providing training for entry-level drivers.

What is Involved in ELDT Curriculum?

The theory instruction involved with the new ELDT mandate involves basic operation of the vehicle and safety procedures. Specific theory curriculum required includes:

  • Basic Operations
  • Safe Operating Procedures
  • Advanced Operating Procedures
  • Vehicle Systems and Reporting Malfunctions
  • Non-Driving Activities

There are also specific curriculum requirements for S, P, and H endorsements which include crash procedures, security, and specific CSA requirements.

Any organization that provides entry-level training is required to register with the FMCSA to ensure training complies with the minimums put in place. This includes schools providing programs, private or other fleets providing internal CDL training, and online training programs.

Internal training programs can also incorporate theory training from another registered organization.

Why Use Online ELDT Theory Curriculum?

Organizations registered with the FMCSA to provide training are subject to audits to ensure they are complying with all mandates.

If your company decides to provide internal training for entry-level drivers, an online training management system like Infinit-I Workforce Solutions can ensure all your documentation is stored and ready to access when needed.

Infinit-I can also take care of all FMCSA reporting requirements for your company. This ensures you never miss a deadline and reduces the stress of compliance with these new regulations.

To see for yourself how easy it is to set up your training with the Infinit-I system, contact us to set up a demo. We can help you meet your training goals, whether it is ELDT, orientation, ongoing, or corrective action training needs.

Supply Chain Shortages with delivery, export, supply

Will Supply Chain Shortages Affect Your Company?

Supply chain shortages have made national headlines for several months now, and it doesn’t look like there’s an end in sight anytime soon. This national focus has led many, including the current administration, to ask “what’s causing the supply chain issues?”

The answer to this question isn’t simple. There are many issues that have led to the breakdown in transporting goods. The possible solutions are also complicated.

The big question on the minds of those in the transportation industry is, how will this shortage affect your company and your drivers?

Contributors to the Supply Chain Problems

Many people blame the COVID pandemic for the supply chain shortages, but the pandemic only highlighted issues that already existed. Some of these issues include:

  • “Just-in-time” inventory delivery
  • Foreign manufacturing being cheaper than domestic
  • Heavy transportation industry regulations
  • Driver pay scales

Ironically, the supply chain shortages have also led to further issues. Due to lack of materials, needed equipment can’t be produced, making it difficult to increase manpower to get through the crisis. Companies are on waiting lists at minimum six months for needed equipment.

Regulations on how driver pay is processed, coupled with a struggling economy, makes it difficult to pay drivers what they are worth, adding to an ever-growing driver shortage. The inability for drivers to purchase trucks also increases the driver shortage issues.

The Pandemic and the Supply Chain

With problems already creeping up, the pandemic led to increased online shopping when people couldn’t get out as much as before. Manufacturing companies had to shut down at this same time, leading to product shortages.

The shutdown also led to backups at ports and shipping containers unavailable in areas that needed them to ship more product. As shortages of certain products increased, the problems trickled down leading to further shortages for other products.

Shipping costs increased as shortages got worse, and delay times increased meaning drivers were unable to meet deadlines. At this point, without good solutions, supply chain shortages will likely continue through 2023.

Is There a Good Solution?Supply Chain Shortages with delivery, export, supply

The current administration is attempting to step in and provide different means of recruiting new drivers and increasing labor time at major ports. They intend to target veterans for transportation jobs as part of their solution.

The administration also wants to create a task force dedicated to recruiting more women into the industry. These efforts are on top of the apprenticeship program included in the recently passed infrastructure bill.

The Department of Transportation (DOT) and Department of Labor (DOL) are also getting involved. Representatives are putting effort into a better understanding of delay times and how these delays affect driver pay.

Critics of these efforts are concerned that trying to deal with recruitment issues without fixing underlying problems will only make the problem worse. So, is there a real solution? That remains to be seen, but there are steps trucking companies can take to keep afloat.

Protect Your Company During the Supply Chain Crisis

Trucking companies are struggling to keep good drivers and struggling to access needed equipment during this difficult time. This makes it more important than ever to take care of the resources you have available.

Keep Up with Truck Maintenance

With material and equipment shortages, it’s more important than ever to keep the equipment you have, including your trucks, on the road and running smoothly. Truck maintenance will reduce your chance of losing one of your valuable trucks during this time.

Take Care of Drivers

Driver turnover has been a real issue over the years, but this is a time when you really can’t afford to lose valuable drivers. Make sure you are listening to your drivers and meeting their needs so they are willing to stick around. This includes making sure you bring in drivers who are a good fit for your company goals.

Ongoing Training is Essential

Industry regulations and trends can change rapidly. To protect your company and your drivers, you want to ensure they are aware of these changes. With supply chain shortages and driver shortages, you want to make sure you don’t lose a driver to CSA violations or accidents.

Online Training and Communication Solutions to Keep Your Company Moving Forward

Since it’s harder than ever to pull drivers off the road for training and meetings, you need an effective online training and communication solution. Infinit-I Workforce Solutions provides the tools you need to keep drivers up to date on regulations and needs to combat supply chain shortages.

Access 1100+ training videos to keep drivers safe and continuing to move product or develop custom content for training or awareness. Drivers can access training and communications from any device with an internet connection, so you’re not adding to their stress and frustration pulling them away from their source of income.

See for yourself how Infinit-I can keep your company moving forward through any industry concerns. Request a free demo today!

threat to accident prevention

A Threat to Accident Prevention

While your company looks for methods of accident prevention for your drivers, some less honest people look to take advantage of trucking companies for a big payout. These scammers like to stage accidents in the hopes of settling or getting large sums during a lawsuit.

This threat means safety managers need to have more diligence when it comes to accident prevention methods. Safety for your drivers and your company when it comes to scammers requires diligence. You need to understand the threats they will face so you can put a plan in place.

The Case that Started an Investigation

While staged accidents aren’t anything new, a case from 2017 has come back into focus as one woman involved in a conspiracy to commit fraud recently pled guilty. This makes her the 28th person convicted in an ongoing federal investigation into a ring of scammers in New Orleans.

Aisha Thompson and five co-conspirators staged an accident in New Orleans September 2017. Ms. Thompson, who was not at the scene when the staged accident occurred, joined family members and friends in filing a false police report.

The false report claimed a different driver than who originally sideswiped a truck owned by Averitt Express. It also claimed Thompson was in the vehicle during the accident. Along with the false report, Thompson made claims she had suffered a back injury during the crash.

Thompson, her co-conspirators, and her attorney shared a $30,000 settlement from Averitt’s insurance company. In March of 2020, she finally admitted to the FBI that she was not in the vehicle and that they had staged the accident.

Staged Accidents and Insurance Fraud

Federal investigators estimate one hundred accidents were staged in the New Orleans area, with attorneys and medical personnel participating in the scam. To date, 40 defendants have been charged, including one attorney who represented 77 plaintiffs in falsified court claims related to 31 staged accidents.

The attorney, Danny Keating, paid conspirators to set up the accidents, then split the insurance payouts with those involved. Indictments have referenced three attorneys as part of the staged accidents.

Another of the cases in New Orleans involved two vehicles targeting a Triple G Express truck. The truck’s dash cam proved the incident was a scam and the passengers were forced to withdraw their claim once the video showed them intentionally colliding with the truck.

These staged accidents are a threat to accident prevention as it is difficult for drivers to prepare for an intentional crash. These scams often involve entire teams, including medical and legal personnel working with fake victims and fake witnesses to defraud trucking companies and insurance companies.


 Types of Staged Accidents

Many believe these staged accidents are a consequence of increased verdicts awarding $1 million or more in lawsuits. These larger payouts have increased 1,054% since 2011. The success of plaintiff attorneys in winning huge verdicts has put a bullseye on trucking companies for staged accident scammers.

These cases share similarities. There will be multiple people in the vehicle, and often staged witnesses. Allegations of a crash with the commercial vehicle with minimal damage to the claimant’s vehicle and little to no damage to the truck.

There are a couple of methods scammers use to stage an accident:

  • T-Bone Scam: The scammer waits for a commercial vehicle to move through an intersection, then accelerates to make impact with the truck. They usually work with accomplices who act as witnesses to claim the truck ran a traffic light or stop sign.
  • Sideswipe Scam: The scammer will wait until the truck driver is switching lanes, then accelerates to collide with the truck. They may also drive into the truck’s lane to sideswipe the vehicle, then blame the accident on the driver.
  • Swoop and Stop Scam: This involves scammers in multiple vehicles. One vehicle will suddenly pull in front of the truck and stop, while other vehicles box the truck in to prevent the driver from moving to avoid the accident.

The last is less common as the potential for serious injury is greater with this method. The threat of staged accidents means drivers need to be even more vigilant on the road though.

How do You Protect Your Drivers and Your Company?

Most trucking companies have started using dash cams in all their vehicles to help reduce the chance of fraudulent claims. These cameras show what happens leading up to the accident so drivers can show intent on the part of a scammer.

The driver should also take pictures immediately at the scene of an accident. Thorough training on what to do at the scene is also helpful to reduce fraudulent claims. Making this training part of your safety management program can prepare drivers on what to look for and what information to record.

A good safety training solution will also help drivers be more vigilant, so they reduce the threat of a staged accident. Arm your drivers with accident prevention knowledge with Infinit-I Workforce Solutions. Request a demo to find out more about the training solutions that can help you protect your drivers and your company.

Truck Safety Sensors Risk Management

Truck Safety Sensors Risk Management

Thanks to nuclear verdicts, risk management is already tricky for the trucking industry, but plaintiff attorneys continue to find ways to increase your risk. You already know the importance of keeping up with CSA records and company documentation to reduce litigation risk.

What you may not know is the new target for plaintiff attorneys to justify litigation. Lawsuits are now targeting some of the safety measures you have put in place. Namely, safety sensors in your vehicles.

Nuclear Verdicts and Safety Sensor Calibration

Most trucking companies are relying on safety sensors to help manage driver safety and protect against litigation. Plaintiff attorneys are looking into the calibration of these sensors during discovery. Now, if you’re not careful, these sensors could be your downfall during litigation.

The new target during litigation is technicians. If any safety sensors are out of calibration during an accident, plaintiff attorneys will now drag the technicians that worked on the vehicle into the lawsuit. This adds to an already stressful situation.

Nuclear verdicts cause significant loss in the trucking industry. Now the very tools used to reduce this threat are being turned against the trucking companies. This means further vigilance and training are necessary for your company’s risk management program.

Protecting Against Litigation

Miscalibration can happen for many reasons. Daily use and environmental factors such as temperature change or vibrations can cause calibration issues. Replacing parts and accidents also affect the calibration of sensors.

This makes it essential to check the calibration of all sensors regularly. Technicians need to pay close attention after any repairs or replacements on vehicles. All records of repairs and recalibration processes should be updated and easily accessed in case of a lawsuit.

Maintaining this documentation is essential to protect your shop. Every time vehicles are worked on, technicians need to complete documentation to show that all safety sensors were working properly when the vehicle left.

Proper training is also vital to reduce your risk. Make sure technicians are prepared to check after all work done on the vehicles. Also, make sure they have thorough knowledge of the recalibration process. Keep up with this training along with other documentation to keep your company safe.

Manage Risk

In the trucking industry, risk management and safety management go hand-in-hand. You must remain vigilant to plug any holes in your safety training to protect your company against litigation. It would be best if you also remained vigilant with all documentation.

You need safety management solutions in place that will help you stay on track without disrupting the workflow. Infinit-I Workflow Solutions can help you keep your company safe and reduce risk from over-zealous lawyers.

Request a free demo today. Let Infinit-I be your partner in protecting your company and your workers.