More than 700 government officials, enforcement and industry members attended the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s (CVSA) Annual Conference and Exhibition Sept. 23-27, 2018, in Kansas City, Missouri. This event had the highest number of attendees at a CVSA event to date. The conference also saw a record number of exhibitors and sponsors.
The general session, which kicked off the conference, included regulatory updates from the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
CCMTA President Allison Fradette provided an update on Canada’s National Safety Code mechanical fitness standards and safety fitness framework, the upcoming October nationwide legalization of cannabis, the implications of highly automated vehicles on roadways (from both a testing and operational implementation perspective), and the agency’s short- and long-term action plan for addressing the dangers of distracted driving.
During his remarks, FMCSA Administrator Raymond Martinez talked about the agency’s recent advance notice of proposed rulemaking on hours of service and in-person and online opportunities for comments. He encouraged participation from industry and enforcement in this important process.
FMCSA Director of Safety Programs Thomas Keane announced the jurisdictions that received Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program (MCSAP) Awards in the categories of safety enforcement, safety enforcement improvement, comprehensive investigation, comprehensive investigation improvement, data quality and data quality improvement, commercial motor vehicle fatality rate and commercial motor vehicle fatality rate improvement.
Special guest speaker National Safety Council President and CEO and Road to Zero Coalition Chair Deborah Hersman gave a presentation on Eliminating Traffic Deaths on Roadways. Hersman stated the ways in which we can continue along a path to zero roadway deaths by doubling down on what works, such as accelerating technology and prioritizing safety.
The general session included a presentation on the State of the Alliance by CVSA Executive Director Collin Mooney where he talked about enforcement initiatives of the past year, the Brake Safety Symposium last May and the success of CVSA’s debut industry courses, offered to associate members this summer. Mooney also presented a live demonstration of CVSA’s new 2018 Out-of-Service Criteria mobile app. Award winners were also acknowledged from last month’s North American Inspectors Championship and CVSA’s 2018 College Scholarship Award Program.
As one of his last duties as CVSA president, Capt. Christopher Turner of Kansas Highway Patrol presented the coveted CVSA President’s Award to three individuals – Tom Whitaker with the Kansas Motor Carriers Association, FMCSA’s Daniel Meyer and CVSA Executive Director Collin Mooney. The President’s Award is reserved for individuals who have made significant contributions to CVSA. The three award winners have joined an exclusive and distinguished group of honorees from past years.
Each year, at the annual conference, a raffle is held and the proceeds are donated to a charity selected by the current CVSA president. 2017-2018 CVSA President Capt. Christopher Turner selected the Sunflower CASA Project, a volunteer-based agency of court-appointed special advocates (CASAs) who provide a voice for abused and neglected children involved in the court system through no fault of their own. CVSA membership raised more than $10,000, which will all go toward the Sunflower CASA Project.
On Sept. 26, 2018, CVSA transitioned to its new leadership team for the 2018-2019 term. Lt. Scott Carnegie with the Mississippi Highway Patrol is the new president of the Alliance. Sgt. John Samis with the Delaware State Police is CVSA’s vice president. Capt. John Broers with the South Dakota Highway Patrol was elected by the membership to the position of secretary. Capt. Christopher Turner will serve as past president.
Next year’s CVSA Annual Conference and Exhibition will take place on Sept. 22-26, 2019, in Biloxi, Mississippi.