Safety and compliance should be at the forefront of your business as a trucking company. It’s essential for protecting the lives of your drivers, customers, and the public. Maintaining safety and compliance requires hard work, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. With the right resources and strategies, you can ensure your trucking company is always in compliance with federal and state regulations.
From keeping up with the latest advances in technology to creating a culture of safety, there are a few simple steps you can take to ensure your trucking company is always running safely and efficiently. Read on to find out how you can easily maintain safety and compliance for your trucking company.
What is safety and compliance in the trucking industry?
Safety and compliance are the two most significant areas a trucking company should focus on. Safety, of course, is about keeping drivers and other company employees safe on the job. To do this, you must ensure you’re meeting (or exceeding) all applicable safety standards and regulations.
Conversely, compliance refers to meeting all the government regulations that regulate the trucking industry. Many federal and state agencies, such as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Federal Highway Administration, and the Department of Transportation, have a say in how trucking companies operate.
If you own a trucking company, you must know which regulations to comply with. Otherwise, you could face hefty fines and penalties.
Creating a culture of safety
To create a safety culture, you need to understand the factors that affect your trucking company’s safety. For example, you need to pay attention to everything from the number of accidents your company has experienced to the hours your drivers spend on the road. With the help of technology, tracking these and other factors that affect your safety is much easier.
You can do a few things to improve safety and reduce risk at your trucking company.
Create a safety committee: Every member of your organization needs to be involved in safety. With a safety committee, you can encourage open communication and better collaboration among your employees. This committee can also review and update your company’s safety policies.
Create a company culture that emphasizes safety: The best way to create a safety culture is to emphasize its importance. You can do this by using tools such as posters and videos that encourage safe driving practices.
Training and certifying drivers
As a trucking company owner, you are responsible for hiring and training your drivers. A trucking company with poorly trained drivers is a safety concern for everyone on the road. To avoid this, follow these best practices regarding training and certifying your drivers.
Review hiring requirements: Before hiring a driver, ensure you know their conditions. Depending on whether you’re hiring a long-haul or short-haul driver, you may need to certify them differently.
Use checklists when certifying drivers: If you’re permitting drivers, you can make the process easier with checklists. Not only will they help you stay organized, but they’ll also make sure you don’t miss any crucial steps.
Strict vehicle maintenance policies
A trucking company’s maintenance policies can help or hinder safety and compliance. If your vehicle maintenance policies aren’t strict enough, your drivers may try to push their vehicles beyond their limits. When this happens, it can increase the risk of an accident. Ensure your maintenance policies are strict enough to protect your drivers and the public. Here are a few maintenance policies you should include:
Maintenance checklists: Create a rigorous checklist that your drivers must use when performing vehicle maintenance. This will help ensure that they’re completing essential maintenance tasks.
Preventive maintenance inspections: While maintenance checklists help keep your drivers on track, preventive maintenance inspections prevent unnecessary wear and tear.
Ensuring driver safety
Drivers play a significant role in your trucking company’s safety and compliance. To ensure their safety, make sure you’re following a few key steps.
Include fatigue awareness in employee training: Most trucking companies require their drivers to take a few hours of training before they can hit the road. During this training, make sure fatigue awareness is a top priority.
Have strong rest break policies: It’s easy for your drivers to get behind on their rest breaks. After all, they’re on the road for long stretches. Make it clear that rest breaks are mandatory.
Provide regular health screenings: Another way to ensure your drivers are healthy is to require regular health screenings. This will let you know if any of your employees are struggling with a specific condition that may affect their driving.
Keeping up with government regulations
To start a trucking company, you must understand which government regulations you must follow. While this list changes occasionally, a few key areas may affect your business. Know what commercial vehicle types you’re allowed to operate- depending on your business model, you may only be allowed to operate certain commercial vehicle types.
For example, if you want to operate a short-haul trucking business, you must use trucks with a commercial vehicle type of 6 or 7. – Understand your hours of service requirements: If you’re running a long-haul trucking business, your hours of service (HOS) requirements may be stricter. For example, you may only be able to operate your long-haul truck for up to 11 hours per day.
As a trucking company owner, you have a lot on your plate. Luckily, you don’t have to do it alone. You can easily maintain safety and compliance with the right team, strategies, and solution partner. From creating a safety culture to keeping up with the latest government regulations, you can take a few simple steps to ensure your trucking company is always running safely and efficiently.
At TMS-Digital, we understand that driver safety is a priority for all trucking businesses. That’s why we develop a custom-tailored strategic plan to provide you with the best solutions for your trucking needs. Our experts are committed to providing you with the highest quality services and ensuring that your drivers are safe on the roads. With our reliable and experienced team of professionals, you can rest assured that your driver’s safety is our top priority. Contact us today to learn more about how TMS-Digital can be your trusted trucking solution partner.