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Friday, August 22, 2014
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Published: Sunday, 7/13/2014

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Safety up to all drivers, not just truckers

Tractor-trailers park at a stop along I-95 near Jessup, Md. Tractor-trailers park at a stop along I-95 near Jessup, Md.
NEW YORK TIMES Enlarge

In response to your June 29 article “Trucking bucks U.S. rest rules as drowsy-driving debate rolls; Feds: Sleepy operators big cause of deadly highway crashes”: Most professional commercial-vehicle drivers are maligned for the actions of a few.

Your article claims that drowsy driving is a leading cause of crashes and fatalities. While a large truck may have been involved in a crash, that does not necessarily indicate it was responsible for or caused the crash. More often than not, the driver of the other vehicle caused the accident by performing unsafe maneuvers.

The commercial trucking industry is highly regulated by the federal government. With every rule change and update in regulations, we provide our drivers with training and education.

Trucking companies must keep their customers informed of changes and require them to update their delivery expectations. We cannot deliver loads that do not meet the realistic time frame allowable by law.

Washington never takes into consideration that there really are no normal sleep patterns. To think that an entire industry can be forced to sleep for 10 hours at a time is unrealistic. But that’s what we must deal with.

We monitor our drivers’ every move — including their break and sleep time. Our drivers are subject to annual physicals, random drug and alcohol screening, fingerprinting, background checks, and motor vehicle records screening. Passenger-vehicle drivers are not subject to these things.

Spotlighting a tragic accident and declaring that the industry is to blame inflames public opinion about something that is not true. Safety is our number-one concern.

KEITH TUTTLE

Founder Motor Carrier Service, Inc. Northwood



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