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Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Operation Safe Driver strives to prevent large-truck crashes - Intensified traffic safety enforcement from October 18 to 24

MADISON - Last year in Wisconsin, there were more than 7,300 traffic crashes involving large trucks that resulted in 63 fatalities and more than 2,100 injuries. To help prevent crashes involving large trucks, buses and other commercial motor vehicles, inspectors from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's Division of State Patrol will participate in Operation Safe Driver from October 18 to 24.

Sponsored by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the mission of Operation Safe Driver is to improve the behavior, habits and decision-making of commercial motor vehicle operators and all other motorists on the road through traffic safety law enforcement and education.

"During Operation Safe Driver, State Patrol inspectors and other law enforcement officers throughout North America will be cracking down on violations such as speeding, following too close, improper lane changes, failure to obey traffic signs and impaired driving by all motorists," says State Patrol Captain Brian Ausloos of the Motor Carrier Enforcement Section. "In addition, commercial motor vehicle drivers will be checked for compliance with license requirements as well as regulations governing medical card and hours of service standards. Our inspectors will remove unsafe and fatigued commercial drivers from the road and ensure that all safety equipment on large trucks and other commercial vehicles is operating properly."

During last year's Operation Safe Driver, the State Patrol conducted 815 inspections that found 1,886 safety violations. A total of 116 vehicles and 62 drivers were placed out of service until the violations were corrected.

"In fatal crashes between cars and large trucks, driver error by the car driver, truck driver, or both is to blame 88 percent of the time," says Captain Ausloos. "Lives can be saved and injuries prevented by reducing irresponsible and dangerous driving behavior like speeding, tailgating and aggressive driving by all motorists as well as ensuring commercial motor vehicle drivers are in compliance with all regulations."

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