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Navigating Trucking Accidents: Essential Steps for Supply Chain Safety


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Accidents are an unfortunate reality in the trucking industry. With a truck crash occurring in the U.S. every 15 minutes, especially during busy summer months, knowing how to handle these incidents is crucial. Proper post-accident procedures not only ensure safety but also prepare your team for potential legal aftermath.


Immediate Actions at the Accident Scene

As soon as an accident occurs, priority actions include:

  • Contacting local authorities to secure the scene and get medical help for the injured.

  • Informing dispatch to facilitate quick insurance notification.

  • Gathering critical information such as witness accounts, photos, and details of the damage.


Follow-Up Procedures in the Office

Once the immediate concerns are addressed, the focus shifts to thorough documentation and review:

  • Documentation handover to the safety manager ensures all data from the scene is preserved and analyzed.

  • Mandatory post-accident testing such as drug and alcohol screening may be needed depending on the severity of the incident.


Long-Term Safety Management

  • Accident Review Board: Establishing a review board including management and driver representatives can help dissect what happened and why.

  • Regular Training: Ongoing education on safety policies and accident management should be a staple to prepare everyone potentially involved in future incidents.

Daniel Vega, Director of Safety at Reliance Partners, emphasizes the importance of preparedness, stating, "Every company, regardless of size, needs to have a solid accident response plan. Regular reviews of policies, procedures, and the critical steps post-accident during driver orientations are essential for fostering a proactive safety culture."


Final Thoughts

Accidents are stressful, but being prepared can significantly mitigate their impacts. Equip your drivers with the knowledge and tools they need, like an in-truck accident kit, and ensure your team is trained to handle and learn from these unfortunate events. This proactive approach not only safeguards your operations but also builds a foundation for a safer work environment.


Learn More: For more detailed insights into post-accident procedures and expert recommendations, read the original article by Mary O'Connell on FreightWaves:

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