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New study statistically proves trucking companies with association membership have safer drivers

New study statistically proves trucking companies with association membership have safer drivers

The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) released a new study that statistically proves motor carriers who are active in state and national membership associations are safer than both former association members and carriers who have never been association members.

According to the American Trucking Associations (ATA), it has always been anecdotally assumed that association membership supports safety through a variety of association services and resources, but the necessary industry safety data and methodology had never before been assessed. This new empirical research processed public safety data from the Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS) through a series of statistical tools to confirm the relationship between association membership and safety performance.

"PMTA does a lot for safety – between regular safety training, speakers, and events; monthly Safety Management Council meetings; and connecting our members to safety products and services, we’re proud to have built our culture around safety. Ask any member, and they’d probably tell you that their companies are safer because they are members of PMTA. But until now, we didn’t have the data to back that up," said President and CEO of PMTA Rebecca Oyler. "Now we have the statistic information to prove that PMTA membership makes a difference. If you want to be a safer trucking company, PMTA is a great place to start."

The research compared motor carrier MCMIS crash and violation data for trucking fleets that are members of trucking associations, are former members and those who have never been members. According to ATRI, this carrier status data came from a geographically representative sample of state trucking associations as well as from ATA.

"I have been involved in Motor Carrier Safety since 1985 and have found that companies working together in the trucking industry to share best practices and the like could always be counted on to do the right thing," said PMTA Safety Director John Rigney. "This study confirms my conviction.  Our member companies promote safety every day with employees from top to bottom."

The research data confirms that among the three carrier groups, current members of an association, like the Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association, have fewer overall crashes and violations than former members and companies who have never been members. Companies with previous membership also had fewer crashes and violations than fleets who have never been members. 

“All safety stakeholders in the trucking industry are looking for strategies and solutions for improving large-truck safety,” said Dr. Brenda Lantz, Associate Director of the Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute. “This new ATRI research confirms that association membership is another important and proven safety tool for trucking companies.”

The ATRI association safety research also provides some guidance on how the findings might be applicable to commercial transportation insurers, enforcement agencies and academic researchers.

You can find a full copy of ATRI's report here.

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