Lack of oversight at issue in fatal crash

Original article published by National Transportation Safety Board
​At-rest position of the truck-tractor and Chevrolet. (Source: AZDPS with annotations by the NTSB.)

Crash highlights need for fatigue management and more action on collision avoidance and connected vehicle technologies

WASHINGTON (March 28, 2023) – A program to manage driver fatigue in agricultural transportation and collision avoidance technology would have prevented a fatal 2021 multivehicle collision in Phoenix where a tractor-trailer carrying milk crashed into stopped traffic, the NTSB said at its virtual public board meeting Tuesday.

“Generally, motor carriers must make a compelling safety case before regulators will grant them an exemption from safety rules. But, once Congress mandated and then expanded the agricultural hours-of-service exemption, the oversight of the carriers’ fatigue risk largely disappeared,” said NTSB Chair Jennifer Homendy. “Drivers operating under an hours-of-service exemption are at a greater risk of fatigue: an unacceptable — and avoidable — danger to every road user.”

The board met to discuss the findings and recommendations of an investigation into the multivehicle crash on June 9, 2021 that killed four and injured 11.

Following the initial impact, the milk truck crossed the eastbound travel lanes, struck a concrete median barrier and separated. The truck cab and one passenger vehicle were consumed by fire. Video footage showed the truck driver was facing forward before the crash and did not slow down as he approached the line of cars. Investigators found the driver had less than a six-hour opportunity for sleep the day of the crash and regularly worked 70 – 80 hours per week.

The trucking company, Arizona Milk Transport, operated under an “hours-of-service exemption” that allows unlimited driving hours for certain agricultural commodities within a 150 air-mile radius. Investigators said the safety impact of the hours-of-service exemption is unknown, as is the prevalence of its use, and called for more data.

Although exempted from hours of service, Arizona Milk Transport did not have a program to manage driver fatigue. The investigation found the company had poor oversight over its drivers and did not enforce its own policies regarding the maximum hours employees could work.

The NTSB called for the U.S. Department of Transportation to study the prevalence of driver fatigue in companies operating under the exemption and require them to seek authority to implement a fatigue management program. The NTSB also recommended milk industry associations encourage their members to adopt a fatigue management program.

In addition, the NTSB reiterated multiple recommendations on collision avoidance technology that would have prevented this crash from occurring in the first place. This includes recommendations to NHTSA to develop standards for forward collision avoidance systems in commercial vehicles and mandate connected vehicle technology on all new vehicles.

Further, the NTSB voted to reclassify two recommendations to the U.S. DOT and the Federal Communications Commission related to connected vehicle or vehicle-to-everything implementation. The NTSB changed the recommendations’ status to “open, unacceptable response” due to the lack of progress. The responses had been classified “open, await response.”

Vehicle-to-everything, or V2X, technology allows vehicles and infrastructure to relay important safety information to other vehicles to avoid crashes. The NTSB currently has 14 open recommendations related to collision avoidance systems and V2X technologies​ and the issue is on its Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements.

The executive summary, probable cause, findings, and safety recommendations are in the report abstract available on the investigation web page. The final report will be published on the NTSB website in several weeks.

The public docket for the investigation includes more than 1,800 pages of factual information, including reports, interview transcripts, and other investigative materials.


McCraren Compliance can help you understand and comply with FMCSA, USDOT and ADOT and ensure your drivers and your vehicles operate safely and efficiently.

Call us Today at 888-758-4757 or email us at info@mccrarencompliance.com to schedule your free FMCSA Compliance Assessment.

National Mining Association

Original article published by MSHA

Alliance Signed: February 11, 2003
Renewed: March 29, 2023

Photo: NMA

The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) and the National Mining Association (NMA) recognize the value of continuing a collaborative relationship to foster safer and more healthful working conditions at the Nation’s mining and milling operations.

MSHA and NMA hereby renew their Alliance under the authority of 30 U.S.C. § 962 to provide coal and metal and nonmetal mining personnel with information, guidance, and access to training resources that will help protect the health and safety of those working at coal and metal and nonmetal mines, and in preparation plants and mills.

MSHA and NMA will work together to achieve the following education and training goals designed to improve worker health and safety:

  • Provide information, education, training, and technical assistance to raise safety and health awareness within the coal and metal and nonmetal mining industry and to help prevent injuries and illnesses and protect worker safety and health;
  • Conduct annual summary analyses of incidence rates for coal and metal and nonmetal mines, preparation plants and mills, and perform worker injury and illness case studies to identify hazardous safety and health conditions and practices;
  • Analyze injury, illness, and citation data to develop training and education tools to improve injury and illness incidence rates;
  • Develop education and training programs for operator and contractor employees working at coal and metal and nonmetal mines and in preparation plants and mills;
  • Develop and share best practices and effective approaches to improve operator and contractor safety and health at coal and metal and nonmetal mines and in preparation plants and mills;
  • Collaborate on emergency response, rescue and recovery techniques for facility operations located at coal and metal and nonmetal mines, preparation plants and mills;
  • Develop resources to support excellence in mine rescue preparedness and keep current a centralized data bank of mine emergency preparedness capabilities, equipment and resources that will be available to mine safety personnel in the event of a mine emergency, disaster, or rescue;
  • Ensure that health and safety programs are fair and inclusive, and reach all persons in the industry workforce, including those who do not speak English as their primary language; and
  • Ensure that personal protective equipment (PPE) is available, accessible, and suitably fitted to all workers in the industry, including those who are hard to fit, and that workers understand how and when to properly use PPE.

MSHA and NMA will strive to achieve the following outreach and communications goals:

  • Provide statistical information regarding injuries and illnesses that occur in coal and metal and nonmetal mines and in preparation plants and mills;
  • Develop and disseminate information on worker safety and health issues at conferences, events or through print and electronic media, including links from MSHA’s and NMA’s websites;
  • Raise awareness and demonstrate commitment to worker safety and health whenever MSHA or NMA leaders address groups;
  • Convene or participate in workshops, conferences, round table discussions, or stakeholder meetings to forge innovative solutions to worker health and safety issues;
  • Collaborative exchange of timely information on Injury and Employment data; and
  • Publicize the results of worker injury and illness case studies through print, electronic media, promotion at conferences, or other means of outreach.

McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

Women In Mining

Original article published by MSHA

Alliance signed: March 24, 2023

Photo:  U.S. Department of Labor

WIM USA and MSHA will work together to achieve the following training and education goals:

  • Update and develop education and training program resources for outreach efforts used to educate various audiences about the mining industry;
  • Ensure that health and safety programs are fair and inclusive and reach all persons in the industry workforce, including persons with limited English proficiency or low-literacy skills; and
  • Ensure that personal protective equipment (PPE) is available, accessible, and suitably fitted to all workers in the industry, including those who are hard to fit, and that workers understand how and when to properly use PPE.

MSHA and WIM USA will work together to achieve the following outreach and communication goals:

  • Develop and disseminate information through print, electronic media, and links from MSHA’s and WIM USA’s websites;
  • Speak, exhibit, or appear at WIM USA conferences, local meetings, or other training events;
  • Speak, exhibit, or appear at MSHA and industry training events such as the Training Resources Applied to Mining Conference (TRAM), the Joseph A. Holmes Safety Association’s National Meeting, and National Mine Rescue, First Aid, Bench, and Technician Team Contest and other mine rescue contest training;
  • Share information on best practices through training and education programs and materials; and
  • Identify and publish health and safety practices that address equitable and inclusive workplace needs and practices.

WIM USA and MSHA will work together to achieve the following goals related to promoting the national dialogue on workplace safety and health:

  • Convene or participate in workshops, conferences, roundtable discussions, or other meetings to forge innovative solutions to worker health and safety issues at mines, with emphasis on workplace equity and inclusion.

McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

MSHA – Mine Fatality #10

Original article published by MSHA

MINE FATALITY – On March 1, 2023, a miner died when the bulldozer he was operating went over an embankment, ejecting him from the operator’s cab.

Accident scene where a miner died when the bulldozer he was operating went over an embankment, ejecting him from the operator’s cab.
Photo property of MSHA
Best Practices

Operators should train miners to:

  • Wear a seat belt while operating mobile equipment.
  • Examine ground conditions before beginning work in an area and as ground conditions warrant during the work shift.
  • Operate equipment safely, and to identify and report hazards.
  • Be aware of their position relative to edges of roadways and benches.
Additional Information

This is the tenth fatality reported in 2023, and the third classified as “Machinery.”


McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

Do your organization’s safety efforts measure up?

Original article published by Safety+Health

The-State-of-Safety-2023.jpg

Photo: AlertMedia

Austin, TX — Three out of 4 workers aren’t satisfied with their employers’ safety efforts, results of a recent survey show.

Researchers at AlertMedia, a threat intelligence and emergency communication provider, surveyed a nationally representative group of nearly 2,100 U.S. adults who work full-time. Most of the workers (71%) said their organizations aren’t following through on safety promises, and 65% suggested their employers aren’t doing enough to improve safety training.

Nearly half (46%) of the workers indicated that safety is a factor they consider when determining whether they’ll stay with their organizations.

Other results:

  • 84% of the workers think their employers could better prepare them and their co-workers for emergencies.
  • 40% believe safety training should be “mandatory and regular.”
  • 40% would feel unsafe at work if their employer didn’t notify them about a safety incident.

“Ensuring employees feel safe and valued at work will require better training, more effective communication about safety plans and policies, and plenty of consistency and transparency about how safety incidents are being handled across the organization,” a report detailing the survey findings states.


McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

USDOT Partners with NASCAR and Arizona 811, Releases Spotify Ad to Promote National Safe Digging Month

Original article published by USDOT

WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) announced strategic communication partnerships with NASCAR, Arizona 811 and other states, and the National Volunteer Fire Council. During the month of April, National Safe Digging Month, the partnership will focus on increasing awareness among Americans about the importance of contacting “811” before doing any digging on their property. The public can contact 811 by phone or by visiting Call811.com.

“Whether you’re doing construction on your property or simply putting in a new mailbox, digging without contacting 811 can have serious consequences for your family and community,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “This National Safe Digging Month, and every month, remember to always contact 811 before you dig.”

In 2005, “811” became the national one-call number connecting homeowners, contractors, and other professionals to state call centers to arrange the marking of underground utilities in areas for any planned, digging projects. Since 2007, governors across the country officially proclaimed April as Safe Digging Month to reduce damage to underground utilities caused by digging – a leading cause of serious pipeline incidents that can be prevented by contacting “811”. State laws also require contacting “811” at least two days prior to beginning any digging project, no matter how large or small.

The “Call 811” message will be displayed on NASCAR vehicle, fire and pit crew suits, and other placements in more than 30 races during the 2023 season of the NASCAR Xfinity Series. Additionally, the National Volunteer Fire Council will promote free excavation damage incident training resources to first responders through a 30-second ad on streaming service Spotify.

“Incidents caused by unsafe digging put workers, the public, and first responders at risk—that’s why we’re partnering with NASCAR and states from across the country to raise the public’s awareness about this important safety issue,” said PHMSA Deputy Administrator Tristan Brown.

The most recent version of the Common Ground Alliance’s Damage Information Reporting Tool (DIRT) report identified more than 192,000 damages to underground facilities caused by unsafe digging in 2021.

PHMSA awarded nearly $2.8 million through its State Damage Prevention Grant and One Call Grant programs in 2022 to help support damage prevention efforts at the state level.


McCraren Compliance can help you understand and comply with FMCSA, USDOT and ADOT and ensure your drivers and your vehicles operate safely and efficiently.

Call us Today at 888-758-4757 or email us at info@mccrarencompliance.com to schedule your free FMCSA Compliance Assessment.

Mark your calendars for the National Stand-Down to Prevent Struck-By Incidents

Original article published by Safety+Health
CPWR_StandDown2023.jpg
Photo: CPWR

Washington — An annual event intended to raise awareness of struck-by hazards – and how to prevent them – is set to take place April 17-21.

The National Stand-Down to Prevent Struck-By Incidents, scheduled in conjunction with National Work Zone Awareness Week, will kick off with a webinar hosted by CPWR – The Center for Construction Research and Training.

OSHA says the four most common struck-by hazards involve falling, flying, swinging or rolling objects.

“The national stand-down encourages employers and workers to pause voluntarily during the workday for safety demonstrations; training in hazard recognition and fall prevention; and talks about hazards, protective methods, and the company’s safety policies, goals and expectations,” states the National Work Zone Awareness Week website, managed by the American Traffic Safety Services Association.

Resources related to work zone, lift zone and heavy equipment safety are available from CPWR.

NIOSH’s National Occupational Research Construction Sector Council coordinates the stand-down, while partnering with OSHA, CPWR, and the American Road and Transportation Builders Association.


McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.

USDOL announces findings of impact inspections at US mines with histories of repeated health or safety violations

Original article published by MSHA

Photo: U.S. Department of Labor

Inspections resulted in 113 significant and substantial violations, 13 unwarrantable failure findings

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration today released the findings of monthly impact inspections at 25 U.S. mines in January and February 2023. MSHA conducts impact inspections at mines that merit increased agency attention and enforcement due to factors that include poor compliance history; previous accidents, injuries, and illnesses; and other compliance concerns.
The impact inspections resulted in the issuance of 374 violations and two safeguards, including 113 significant and substantial and 13 unwarrantable failure findings. An S&S violation is one that is reasonably likely to result in a reasonably serious injury or illness. Violations are designated as an unwarrantable failure when an inspector finds aggravated conduct that constitutes more than ordinary negligence. MSHA conducted inspections at mines in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin, and West Virginia.

The impact inspections resulted in the issuance of 374 violations and two safeguards, including 113 significant and substantial and 13 unwarrantable failure findings. An S&S violation is one that is reasonably likely to result in a reasonably serious injury or illness. Violations are designated as an unwarrantable failure when an inspector finds aggravated conduct that constitutes more than ordinary negligence. MSHA conducted inspections at mines in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin, and West Virginia.

“These impact inspections uncovered serious violations, demonstrating that they remain an important enforcement tool to address safety and health issues at mines with poor compliance histories,” said Assistant Secretary for Mine Safety and Health Chris Williamson. “The Mine Safety and Health Administration is focused on identifying conditions that can lead to serious accidents given the number of fatalities the mining industry has experienced so far this year. We will continue to use every tool that Congress gave us to protect miners’ safety and health, and we ask the entire mining community to work with us to eliminate safety and health hazards that can cost miners their lives.”

The details of two of the inspections are listed below:

MSHA conducted an impact inspection on Feb. 1 at Frontier Coal Company, Belcher Branch Mine, in Wyoming County, West Virginia. In October 2022, the mine operator was issued two unwarrantable failure violations for failing to follow the MSHA-approved roof control plan and not conducting an adequate pre-shift examination; unwarrantable failure violations of the same mandatory standards were found during the impact inspection. MSHA inspectors issued 25 citations and 7 orders, finding unwarrantable failure violations for:

  • Failure to comply with the roof control plan because the operator exceeded the maximum cut depth approved by MSHA at a coal face.
  • Failure to conduct adequate workplace examinations, including an adequate examination of the continuous mining machine where MSHA found 11 of 28 water sprays were not working.
  • Miners not wearing proximity detection system equipment—technology that can prevent pinning, crushing, and striking accidents—and a faulty machine mounted PDS component which prevented the system from functioning properly.
  • Failure to identify and clean up loose coal and coal dust in active travelways.

Don’t drive distracted

Original article published by Safety+Health
DDAM_2022-Drivers-on-their-phone.jpg
Photo: National Safety Council

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month – the perfect time to review some safe driving tips from the National Safety Council.

Before driving:

  • Adjust your mirrors, seat position and air temperature.
  • Set the radio.
  • Program your navigation system, and then check the route.

While driving, DON’T:

  • Reach down or behind you if you drop or need to grab an item. Wait until you’ve pulled over to a safe location and have stopped your car.
  • Eat or drink. Safe driving requires two hands on the wheel at all times.
  • Try to take care of other passengers, including children. Pull over to a safe spot and then take care of their needs.

And remember: Hands-free or handheld, cellphones have no place behind the wheel. According to NSC, drivers talking on cellphones can fail to see up to 50% of their surroundings. Keep the phone stored in your bag or put it in the glove compartment to resist temptation.

Learn more about Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

Take the pledge to avoid distracted driving.


McCraren Compliance can help you understand and comply with FMCSA, USDOT and ADOT and ensure your drivers and your vehicles operate safely and efficiently.

Call us Today at 888-758-4757 or email us at info@mccrarencompliance.com to schedule your free FMCSA Compliance Assessment.

“Work with us” on work zone safety

Original article published by Safety+Health

“You play a role in work zone safety. Work with us.” That’s the theme of this year’s National Work Zone Awareness Week, set for April 17-21.

In 2020, 117 workers died in work zones, according to the campaign’s website.

“Work zones need traffic controls identified by signs, cones, barrels and barriers,” OSHA says. “Drivers, workers on foot, and pedestrians must be able to see and understand the proper routes. Construction project managers determine traffic control plans within construction/demolition worksites.”

Keep your work zones safe by following these tips from OSHA:

  • Use traffic control devices, signals and message boards to instruct drivers to follow established paths away from where work is being done.
  • Deter unauthorized entry into work zones by using concrete, water, sand, collapsible barriers and other impact-absorbing materials.
  • Make sure flaggers are wearing high-visibility clothing with a fluorescent background and made of retroreflective material. This makes them visible from at least 1,000 feet. They also should be using “STOP/SLOW” paddles or paddles with lights, and be trained on authorized signaling methods.
  • Ensure work zones are well lit. “Lighting for workers on foot and for equipment operators should be at least 5 foot-candles or greater. Where available lighting is not sufficient, flares or chemical lighting should be used. Glare should be controlled or eliminated.”
  • Buckle up. “Seat belts and rollover protection should be used on equipment and vehicles as the manufacturer recommends.”

Learn more about the campaign at nwzaw.org.


McCraren Compliance offers many opportunities in safety training to help circumvent accidents. Please take a moment to visit our calendar of classes to see what we can do to help your safety measures from training to consulting.