Omnitracs report identifies most hazardous areas for truckers

August 16, 2021

Land Line Staff

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Motorists, including truckers, can have higher insurance premiums if regularly driving through hazardous areas. Omnitracs created a database of the most hazardous areas in the U.S. to avoid.

In addition to potentially more expensive insurance, carriers who consistently put drivers in hazardous areas are more likely to see a reduction in driver retention. To pinpoint where these areas are for commercial drivers, Omnitracs used a predictive model and third-party data. For the most part, a large concentration of hazardous areas are found in Florida, Texas and the mid-to-upper East Coast.

Omnitracs, a Dallas-based company offering fleet intelligence software platforms, defines a hazardous area as places where crashes or critical events (e.g., lane departures and hard braking) occur.

When using a heat map format of number of hazardous locations per 1,000 state road miles, Florida and Maryland lead the pack. In Baltimore alone, there are nearly 900 locations, most of which are crash zones.

Maryland has 40 or more hazardous areas per 1,000 state road miles, followed by Florida and other East Coast states.

On the west side of the country, Nevada has the most hazardous locations per 1,000 state road miles.

Hazardous areas map
This map shows where hazardous areas in the U.S. are located by hazard type. (Source: Omnitracs)

According to Omnitracs’ analysis, half of the top 10 trucking crash factors deals with locations, including:

  • Traffic flow interruption and congestion.
  • Traveling too fast for conditions.
  • Unfamiliarity with roadways.
  • Roadway problems.
  • Missing required stops.

In June, the Transportation Research Information Program – a private, nonprofit organization that researches, evaluates, and distributes economic and technical data on surface transportation issues – released a report titled “America’s Interstate Highway System at 65,” which provides the latest information on the interstate system, including pavement conditions, bridge conditions, travel trends, traffic congestion levels, truck use and traffic safety.

TRIP’s report found that the interstate system is in poor shape and getting worse. Nearly 90% of urban interstates are congested in California, the highest rate in the nation (47% national average). There was a nearly 70% increase in vehicle miles traveled on the interstates from 2000-19 in Nevada, the largest increase (26% national average). California also leads the pack in daily interstate travel per lane mile at nearly 21,000 miles (14,742 national average). Nearly a quarter of Hawaii’s interstate pavement is in poor condition, the worst in the U.S. (3% national average). Lastly, West Virginia has the worst bridges, with 13% of interstate bridges in poor/structurally deficient condition (3% national average).

Omnitracs points out that its hazardous areas map aligns with TRIP’s analysis and chart. LL

WW Williams