May 2020

Summaries of timely road safety news, events, and alerts
Message from NETS' Executive Director, Joe McKillips
As we close yet another busy month, the past several weeks seem to have blended together. What was once routine for many of us prior to the COVID-19 pandemic – such as managing everyday activities throughout our communities or normal travel and movements within our jobs – has now become much less certain. This uncertainty has caused NETS to look both near and long-term at various issues and initiatives impacting our valued members and sponsors. 

First and foremost for NETS is our Annual Strength IN Numbers®
Benchmark Conference planned for October. After extensive internal review with the NETS Board of Directors, as well as consultation with various members and sponsor partners, we have made the decision to shift our annual conference from an in-person event to a virtual experience. While this decision did not come easily it was clearly the right direction for our organization as we place the safety and well-being of conference attendees on the top of our priority list. 

While these changes will be unique for everyone, we are excited about the opportunity this also presents. With uncertainty caused by the pandemic expected to continue in the coming months, one thing we CAN be certain of is the continued high quality conference event and speakers we plan to bring to fellow NETS members, road safety advocates and sponsor partners. On this end, efforts are already underway in planning the virtual event which will take place during he same week as noted in previous communications – the week of October 12th, 2020.  In the coming weeks, the exact dates and timing of sessions during the NETS “virtual week” will be shared and we are excited about this new and creative opportunity.

On a related note, looking at recent road safety trends and future needs, it is clear that road safety challenges have not gone away, let alone lessened during the pandemic. This trend is not only concerning for fellow NETS members but to many others who dedicate their time and efforts to reducing risk on the nation's – and global – roadways. On many levels these recent trends can and should serve as a “call to action” as the challenges posed by the pandemic simply make our roles as road safety professionals even more vital. Recent communications from our friends and partners at the NSC and NTSB have called attention to these issues, and relevant articles from each of them have been included within the newsletter below.

Having dedicated my entire 30-year professional career to serving the health and safety profession, I look forward to the challenges which lie ahead and remain as focused as ever on the important role NETS plays in making a difference in people’s lives through our mission of advancing road safety.

Thanks for your on-going efforts and wish you, your family and fellow colleagues continued safety and well-being.

Hold the date for
NETS VIRTUAL 2020 Strength IN Numbers® 
Week of October 12th
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, NETS conference will be virtual this year! Stay tuned for ad ditional details coming soon including exact dates, conference registration, agenda, and presentation links. More information, as available, can be found on our conference page:
Focus on Health and Wellness with NETS Driven to Wellness Toolkit

During this time of pandemic crisis, the health and wellness of your employees is likely a top concern. Employers can take action to encourage employees to develop and maintain their general health and reduce stress by using the information and materials provided in the Driven to Wellness toolkit. This includes reaching a healthy weight, being more active, quitting smoking, getting to bed earlier, or starting and maintaining other habits of good health.  

The coronavirus pandemic is a difficult situation for everyone, but it has created particular challenges for employers trying to maintain business operations while still keeping their employees and family members safe. NETS understands these challenges and realizes while the focus of road safety has shifted due to COVID-19, fleet safety is still a priority for employers continuing to maintain their business plan. Therefore, we are providing links to the following resources which may be helpful during this trying time.
COVID-19 Transport Toolkit

Driving for Better Business, in partnership with FleetCheck, has created a unique toolkit to give fleets an overview of all the major issues with links to many additional resources. We will be adding to the toolkit with more resources and advice...

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NSC: SAFER Playbooks

SAFER: Safe Actions for Employee Returns is a comprehensive initiative to guide employers through the process of safely resuming traditional work and operations now and in a post-quarantine environment. SAFER was created by the National Safety...

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COVID-19: Speeding Not the Only Dangerous Driving Behavior

New data suggests that drivers aren't just speeding up on our empty roads - they're also braking harder, scrolling cell phones longer, and crashing more. Drivers aren't just speeding up on our empty roads - they're also braking harder, scrolling...

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Despite Fewer Drivers, Motor Vehicle Death Rate Up

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to "open lanes of traffic and an apparent open season on reckless driving," National Safety Council President and CEO Lorraine M. Martin said after the release of NSC preliminary estimates showing that,...

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NTSB Calls for Renewed Road Safety Effort as Nation Reopens

The National Transportation Safety Board is calling on Americans to practice highway safety with the same sense of responsibility they applied to reducing the spread of the coronavirus when they take to the nation's...

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OSHA Says Employers Must Record COVID-19 Cases

OSHA has revised its enforcement policy for recordable cases of COVID-19, adding that it will increase workplace inspections. Announced in a May 19 press release, the new enforcement policy overrides an April 10 guidance memo that...

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What is COVID-19 Teaching Us About Sustainable Mobility?

In this session, facilitated by Mario Alves, International Federation of Pedestrians, the panel explored the issues and solutions for sustainable mobility emerging from the COVID-19 response. Fewer cars, more pedestrians and cyclists and an...

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NETS is proud to partner with the following PLATINUM Fleet Safety Sponsors:

eDriving is the driver risk management partner of choice for many of the world’s largest organizations, supporting over 1,000,000 drivers in 96 countries. Over the past 23 years, eDriving’s research-validated programs have been recognized with 70+ client awards around the world.

Mobile device distractions put employees in danger and companies at risk. So why would anyone settle for safety measures that simply report what went wrong, or only work when people remember to turn them on? TRUCE Software automatically suspends distracting mobile apps and functions depending on what your employee is doing, where they are working or even the workgroup they are part of. You define the policy and TRUCE ensures compliance when and where it’s needed. Supporting more than 100,000 subscribers and some of the largest brands worldwide, our patented technology is making workplaces everywhere safer.
Learn about all of NETS Fleet Safety Sponsors
AAA: "100 Deadliest Days" Begin for Nation's Teens

New AAA data examines ten years of fatal teen crash rates during the summer. This week marks the start of the "100 Deadliest Days" for teen drivers, which is the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day when fatal crashes involving teen drivers...

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Vehicle Thefts Spike Due to Unattended Cars During Pandemic

Millions of drivers haven't been in their vehicle in months and yet the coronavirus has made them even more vulnerable. With more people than ever staying home to lessen the spread of COVID-19, their sedans, pickup...

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Will a Hand Sanitizer Bottle Explode in Your Car?

If you're carrying alcohol-based hand sanitizer wherever you go, congratulations-it's what we've been advised to do by public-health authorities during the coronavirus pandemic. However, don't leave it inside your car, because the very alcohol...

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Allergy Meds Can Pose Driving Hazard, FDA Says

Allergy medications may help you get through the spring and summer months, but it's important to know that the drugs could affect your ability to drive, the Food and Drug Administration is reminding...

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Commercial Drivers See Rise in Distracted Driving

Netradyne released findings from a recent online survey of commercial drivers that indicates commercial drivers feel safe but acknowledge they could be safer, and that AI-powered driving technology can be both beneficial and concerning.

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Rear-Seat Occupant Alerts Standard on All Cars by 2025

Two major automaker groups have agreed to equip all their passenger vehicles with rear-seat occupant reminder technology, starting in the 2025 model year. Vehicles will start rolling out the reminder systems in new models starting in 2022. The...

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Infotainment Systems Weaken Reactions

Apple CarPlay and Android Auto infotainment systems weaken reactions more than alcohol and cannabis A new study by the UK's transport research laboratory (TRL) shows that the latest in-vehicle infotainment systems that display smartphone apps on...

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Cars With Teen Safety Features May Not Be Obvious

Modern cars, more than ever, provide parents with more control over the way their teenagers drive the car when it's their turn to slide behind the wheel. Unfortunately, owners aren't getting proper training and information on how or what these...

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What Can Tesla, Waymo Learn From A Human's Ability To Focus

The article " Is Progress In Autonomous Technology Gated By Research In Animal Communication " explored the not very well understood "low level" perception and communication which helps humans navigate through the physical world. Humans (and...

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How Safe Are Teslas with Autopilot Activated?

Tesla has released internal data showing the number of crashes its electric cars in the U.S. have incurred with Autopilot engaged compared to the national average of automobile crashes.

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Driver Death Rates Remain High Among Small Cars

Among late-model vehicles, small cars and minicars remain the most dangerous, according to new driver death rates calculated by IIHS. Nearly half of the 20 models with the lowest death rates are luxury SUVs.

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Europe Instituting Even More Stringent Crash-testing

While American car culture blooms in the California sunshine and rides the prevailing winds eastward, many of the restrictions on vehicles travel the other way, starting in the European Union. Take, for example, Volvo's recent statement that all...

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Reports Point Out Problems with HGVs, Need to Eliminate Risk

Perhaps, as traffic levels begin to return to more normal rates, it is a good time to examine two recently published reports, both of which aim to highlight and inform regarding the risks run on the road every day, particularly by professionals...

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Germany's Freedom From Speed Limits May Be Running Out

Germans' right to drive fast is facing its biggest challenge in a generation, sparked by intensifying fears about the environmental and public safety impact of the country's need-for-speed culture.

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UK Fleet Champions Awards | Global Fleet Champions

The UK Fleet Champions Awards (previously known as the UK Fleet Safety Awards) recognise the achievements of those working to prevent crashes and reduce pollution caused by vehicles used for work purposes. Our 2020 Awards programme is now open...

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NHTSA Postpones Scheduled Traffic Safety Campaigns

NHTSA recognizes that States and our law enforcement and first responder partners are working tirelessly to respond to the current public health emergency. In order for States to prioritize public health, NHTSA is postponing its currently...

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Global Fleet Conference 2020 Goes Virtual

In-person events are essential for all stakeholders to engage with communities, partners and clients. But the current global crisis acts as a major restraint for many companies, which is why we came up with a solution of making the Global Fleet...

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4th of July: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving

Americans love to celebrate the 4th of July with family, friends, food, and fireworks. But all too often the festivities turn tragic on the nation's roads. This iconic American holiday is also one of the deadliest...

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Child Passenger Safety Week: September 20-26, 2020

NHTSA has launched a new series of public service ads (PSAs) that urge parents and caregivers to protect their child's future at every stage of life, by making sure they secure them in the correct car seat for their age, height, and weight.

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Do you have a particularly successful road safety example to share? NETS Members are encouraged to share best practices, ask questions or contribute their expertise to the NETS Road Safety Leaders Forum, an online discussion forum exclusively for NETS Members and Sponsors. Not yet a member? Check out the benefits at .
Note from the editor:
All links to stories have been tested and are active 24 hours prior to distribution; however, links may become inactive over time at the discretion of the publication source.
About NETSWork®
NETSWork is published electronically each month by the Network of Employers for Traffic Safety, Susan Gillies, editor, and Joe McKillips, Executive Director.
Network of Employers for Traffic Safety
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