The potential for effective training of logging truck drivers


The logging industry relies on owner-operators and employed commercial drivers, who comprise up to 40% of logging employment, to transport products from the forest to the mill gate. Truck drivers are exposed to many of the same risks as logging workers as well as additional risks from vehicle crashes. Vehicle crash risks contribute to risk of personal injury and liability related to public safety, which are critical reasons for enhancing driver qualifications. Driver qualifications can be influenced by hiring better drivers and improving drivers’ skills through training even after they have received their commercial driver’s license. To explore the effectiveness of driver training in the logging industry, we reviewed studies of commercial driver training assessment and training interventions that included lectures (on-line or in-person) as a main component. Decision errors and violations are important in crash causation and involve cognitive skills, which are addressed by this type of training. Additionally, lecture training is more accessible than behind-the-wheel or simulator training for logging operations that employ just a few drivers. In their efforts to improve driver qualifications, large commercial carriers often provide driver training, reinforce the training through monitoring, and rely heavily on driver selection. The literature supports the effectiveness of training related to cognitive factors, including fatigue management, behavior, and sit-uational awareness. Successful lecture training interventions are accompanied by individual feedback or coaching. Training that produces measurable outcomes (behavior or crash risk) is supported by a suite of factors involving the trainee, the training, and the company or supervisor.

  • Citation: Smidt, Mathew F.; Mitchell, Dana; Logan, Kristi K. 2021. The potential for effective training of logging truck drivers. Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health. 27(1): 29-41.
  • Keywords: Commercial Vehicles, Logging, Training, Trucking
  • Posted Date: February 1, 2021
  • Modified Date: February 3, 2021
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