2019 Operation Safe Driver Week Results

2019 Operation Safe Driver Week Results

Results have been tallied for the Operation Safe Driver Week enforcement effort hosted by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance with the focus. The enforcement blitz took place in the United States and Canada from July 14-20 and resulted in 46,752 citations and 87,624 warnings to drivers. 

Law enforcement officers were particularly concentrated on the violations of speeding/driving too fast for conditions. These two offenses accounted for 17,556 total citations to all drivers. Passenger vehicle drivers received 16,102 citations and the remaining 1,454 citations were distributed to commercial vehicle drivers. Speeding was the top offense for both commercial and passenger vehicle drivers.

The CVSA reports drivers’ actions contribute to 94 percent of all traffic crashes. Operation Safe Driver Week is an attempt to bring awareness to this safety issue. The goal of the safety week is to deter bad driving behaviors and correct those offenses with a citation when drivers show risky behaviors behind the wheel. Law enforcement monitored and stopped large trucks, motorcoaches and passenger vehicles.

Speeding Is Top Driving Offense

Speeding and driving too fast for conditions were the top offenses during the safety week, but the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Highway Loss Data Institute says speeding has been the leading transportation problem for more than a decade.

According to the institute’s data, speeding has been a factor in more than a quarter of crash deaths since 2008. As a result, law enforcement agencies and motor carriers throughout North America promoted a core message through Operation Safe Driver Week: Late won’t kill you, speeding will. To spread the word, an estimated 12,000 postcards were distributed in the weeks leading up to the safe driver week.

Drivers Ignore Simple Safety Step

Law enforcement officials say the single most effective things drivers and passengers can do to protect themselves in a vehicle is buckle up. Despite the simplicity of that task, failure to wear a seatbelt was the second highest violation for both types of drivers during the enforcement week. Commercial vehicle drivers received 954 citations for failing to wear a seatbelt, while passenger vehicle drivers received 1,794 citations.

The U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) 2016 Safety Belt Usage by Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers Survey reveals Canadian drivers take more heed to safety belt laws than American drivers. The data reveals seatbelt usage among CMV drivers was 86.1 percent. Among passenger vehicle drivers, the national seatbelt use rate was 89.6 percent in 2018. In Canada, 95 percent of vehicle occupants wear seatbelts.

Distracted Drivers

The U.S. reported 3,166 distraction-related fatal crashes in 2017. Distractions are defined as “anything that takes the driver’s attention off the road, such as talking or texting on a cellphone, eating, talking with passengers, adjusting vehicle or navigations controls, etc.”

Throughout the operation week, 249 citations and 170 warnings were given to CMV drivers for using a handheld phone/texting while operating the vehicle; 416 citations and 400 warnings were given to passenger vehicle drivers.

Operation Safe Driver Week is sponsored by CVSA, in partnership with FMCSA. Click here for the complete results of the week’s top 10 offenses and citations distributed.