The NIOSH Center for Motor Vehicle Safety (CMVS) is taking up the challenge of communicating to employers and workers about the risks of driving for work and how to avoid motor vehicle crashes.
Crash risk affects workers in all industries and occupations, whether they drive tractor-trailers, cars, pickup trucks, or emergency vehicles, and whether driving is a primary or occasional part of the job. Because of the diversity of these work settings, one size does not fit all when it comes to either research or communication.
Striking a balance, the CMVS prioritizes workers who are at highest risk for crashes and injuries—truck drivers, emergency responders, and oil and gas workers—while at the same time accommodating the wide range of other employers and workers who need motor vehicle safety information.
The CMVS recently sponsored several focus groups that explored the varying communication needs of companies whose workers drive on the job. With a focus on small businesses, participants came from four industry segments: trucking, oil and gas, emergency response, and employers from other industries whose workers drove light vehicles.
The results showed the importance of developing products tailored to the needs of each audience. In work settings such as emergency response or oil and gas, employers wanted materials that acknowledge the specialized nature of workplace driving in their industry and speak to them using familiar terms.
NIOSH recommends staying updated on CMVS progress and communication products by subscribing to Behind the Wheel at Work eNewsletter, following @NIOSH_MVSafety on Twitter, and visiting Motor Vehicle Safety at Work for existing resources.