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June 2017 Newsletter: Training Equips You to Incorporate Traffic Safety at Your Organization

Our Driving Concern Senior Program Manager Lisa Robinson speaks to issues and concerns all employers face when trying to make their workforce safe on the road:

Q: After I attend an Our Driving Concern train-the-trainer workshop, am I certified or endorsed by the National Safety Council?

A: The short answer is, “No.” The training equips you to go back to your company and incorporate transportation safety in an on-going manner. The goal is to provide you with assistance to promote safe driving behaviors. Crashes, whether they occur on or off the job, are costly for any organization.

Moving forward, this training most likely will get a new name and simply be called “Our Driving Concern Training” instead of the current title, Train-the-Trainer, due to the confusion it seems to cause. The training is simply that – training.

Q: I get asked all the time, “Can I have training materials without attending a training?”

A: No. Why not? Let me explain: Would I hand someone a textbook (think geometry) and assume they can use it without instruction? I know I couldn’t do that. The same type of thinking applies here. We need to equip the person receiving the resources so they know how to use them, gain an understanding on the various transportation topics as well as why one-and-done doesn’t work very well or very often in promoting safe driving behaviors. Traffic safety is not just for your workforce, nor is it solely for those who drive as part of their job. You save money and save lives by reaching your entire workforce and their families.

Also, when a representative of your organization attends one of our training sessions, they gain free resources they can take back to the workplace and use as well as learning how to gain access to additional resources as they are made available. Again, this is all at no cost. Getting the materials without training is like getting a toy without the batteries to make it operate.

And the Emmy Goes to … MedStar Mobile Risk Safety Manager

Earlier this year, MedStar Mobile Healthcare was recognized for its exemplary commitment to traffic safety through the Our Driving Concern Texas employer awards program. One reason why: MedStar’s DriveCam Emmy’s.

DriveCam event recorders have been installed in every MedStar vehicle.

When employees started to use the manual button on the recorders to submit “fun” videos, Dallas/Fort Worth Area Risk and Safety Manager Shaun Curtis seized the opportunity to actively seek out safe driving behaviors. He started with a scavenger hunt and asked employees to look for items while behind the while or riding in the co-pilot seat, including a four-second following distance, scanning the road ahead and proper parking at a crash scene.

Soon, he was receiving all sorts of clips, including one of a driver singing into a banana microphone (he was not responding to call, but instead sitting behind the wheel of his rig in a parking lot). Curtis shared the clips at safety committee meetings to promote participation. Then, he began dividing the clips into categories: Top Comedy, Top Musical, Top Drama and Top Safety.

Finally, the top five videos in each category were selected, and winners were announced at MedStar’s “DriveCam Emmy Awards.”

“We’ve not only seen a reduction in collision and a reduction in severity of collisions, we’ve seen a sustained improvement across the board,” Curtis said.

He said coachable behavior incidents (including seat belt use, speeding and following distance) dropped from more than 400 in May 2014 to less than 150 in March 2017. Collisions dropped, too, both in number and cost to MedStar (from $80,000 in 2013 to $15,000 in 2016).

Curtis presented his data at the Texas Safety Summit in May in Austin. His presentation: Shifting Gears in Your Driving Culture.

“I’d love to see more organizations capitalize on their opportunities to engage drivers to make our communities safer,” he said.

Live with Lisa: When it Comes to Seat Belts, Who Are the Risk-Takers?

Our Driving Concern Senior Program Manager Lisa Robinson tackles traffic safety issues you confront regularly in the workplace – as well as at home – in a snappy format.

Live with Lisa is a collection of short video clips you can share with employees to promote traffic safety, both on and off the job. The clips cover everything from distracted driving to the impact of off-the-clock incidents on your organization’s bottom line.

Save Your ‘Game Face’ for Different Venue: In this video, Lisa says those who refuse to buckle up are playing a game of traffic safety roulette — and that game is costly to employers in Texas.

New e-Learning Module Helps You Address Risks of Aggressive Driving

Strong emotions, impatience and running late all can lead to aggressive driving behavior. The problem is, aggressive driving means different things to different people.

In our new e-Learning module, we define aggressive driving. We talk about the impact: Aggressive driving should be a real concern for employers, because it can not only hurt employees and others on the road, but it can affect a company’s reputation if a company’s drivers come to be known as aggressive drivers.

And we share a dash-cam video clip to highlight what aggressive driving looks like – are you a habitual lane-changer?

Take traffic safety learning with you everywhere: Our e-Learning modules are fully compatible with your mobile device.

Do You Know the Odds? Safe + Sound = Smart Business Plan

What are your odds of dying after being bitten or struck by a dog? If you said 1 in 112,400, you are right. What are your odds of dying in a motor vehicle crash? A quick check of the National Safety Council Odds of Dying chart shows the answer is 1 in 114.

Share the odds with your workforce and plan to participate in the first OSHA Safe+Sound Week June 12-18. OSHA picked the week to coincide with the observance of National Safety Month, celebrated each year in June by NSC and its partners and thousands of organizations around the country.

This year’s National Safety Month theme is “Keep Each Other Safe.”

Promoting safe driving behaviors is one way to do that. One way to participate in OSHA’s Safe+Sound Week is to plan activities (perhaps a public event) at your workplace. OSHA is making available tools to help you plan and promote your event – and also making the case for implementing a safety and health program.

Did you know more than 4,500 workers are killed on the job every year in the U.S. – about 12 per day? Or that 4.1 million suffer serious job-related injury or illness? Seat belts prevent injuries and save lives. Here is how you can implement a six-week worksite usage campaign.

Travel Tips: How You Can Help Employees Plan for Summer Safety

During the summer months, many of your employees will be taking time off the job. Because an incident on a road trip can impact your bottom line, it’s important to highlight travel safety tips. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has produced materials to make this task easier.

NHTSA’s Summer Driving Tips fit into four categories:

  • Before You Go: Get your car serviced (tune-up, oil change, battery check)
  • Safety First: Be sure everyone buckles up (every trip, every time)
  • On the Road: Stay alert (take driving breaks, change drivers if you’re tired or drowsy)
  • Summer Safety: Avoid heatstroke (never leave kids alone in cars; the temperature inside a vehicle can rise nearly 20 degrees in 10 minutes)

Print and post: Cool Tips for a Safe Summer Trip.

Learn: AAA expects to rescue 7 million American drivers this summer, the majority with battery, lock and tire-related issues.

Two Texas Employers Earn Lone Star Safety Award

Two East Texas employers have been honored with the Lone Star Safety Award, presented by the Texas Department of Insurance Division of Workers’ Compensation.

TDI recognized Frankston Packaging Corporation and Tyler Beverages, Inc., for exemplary safety and health programs.

Karen Puckett, director of workplace safety at the Division of Workers’ Compensation, visited Frankston to mark the occasion and congratulate employees who manufacture paper and vinyl boxes for the food industry.

Back to Basics: Save Money, Reduce Risks By Caring for Tires

Nearly 11,000 crashes every year are the result of tire-related issues, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

NHTSA’s TireWise site is a resource you can use to assist your drivers and employees in choosing and caring for their tires. Some tips you will find on the site:

  • Check your tire’s tread and air pressure at least once a month
  • Properly inflating your tires can save you as much as 11 cents per gallon on fuel
  • Rotating your tires can help reduce irregular wear

You also will find important safety information and links to report tire complaints and to look up tire recalls.