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June 29, 2016 11:05 AM, EDT

Trucking Industry Invests $9.5 Billion in Safety, ATA Says

Jeff Kraus/Flickr

The trucking industry invests at least $9.5 billion in safety annually according to a report released June 29 by American Trucking Associations.

The investments include technologies on trucks such as collision avoidance systems, electronic logging devices for driver hours of service compliance and video event recorders. In addition, they include driver safety training, driver safety incentive pay, and compliance with safety regulations that include driver drug testing and records checks, according to the ATA report.

The investment numbers were based on data compiled in two industry surveys taken in 2014 and the fall of 2015, ATA said.

The largest investment category is in driver safety training, equaling 36% of all investment. Driver safety training was followed by expenditures in compliance with safety rules (26%), onboard safety technologies (25%) and driver safety incentive pay (13%), ATA said.

“We know this industry prioritizes and invests in improving safety on our nation’s highways,” said ATA Executive Vice President of National Advocacy Dave Osiecki. “With the results of this survey, we now can put a dollar figure on that investment and that figure is significant.”

ATA President Bill Graves added, “Since economic deregulation in 1980, we have seen marked declines in truck-involved crashes and crash rates on our highways, and in the past decade, those declines have been particularly steep.”

The $9.5 billion figure does not include general and routine maintenance costs such as purchasing new brakes, tires or trucks, which would increase the total significantly, ATA said.