Fatigued driver crash data ‘misleading,' trucking association claims

Washington – Some traffic safety advocacy groups have used a “misleading” interpretation of research data to exaggerate the role of fatigue in truck crashes as part of a push for stricter hours-of-service regulations, claims a new white paper (.pdf file) from the American Trucking Associations.

The white paper, released Oct. 7, states some advocacy groups have cited a 1990 National Transportation Safety Board study that found about one-third of the crashes studied were attributable to fatigue. The paper claims that although traffic safety advocates have cited the finding as generalizable to all truck crashes, the study focused on a non-representative sample of 182 single-truck crashes that occurred at night.

“We have often been told by self-appointed ‘experts’ that fatigue is the leading cause of truck-involved crashes, and this report clearly demonstrates that is not true,” ATA President and CEO Bill Graves said in a press release.

ATA is the nation’s largest trade association for the trucking industry.

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