Big Rig Truck Driver Incentive Programs.

Trucking Industry Safety-Related Rewards and Incentives.

Research indicates that a commitment to safety from management carries over to drivers. Companies surveyed said that since their safety

incentive programs were initiated, the incidence of insurance claims, workers’ compensation claims, and crashes have been reduced by

65 percent.

The features carriers include in their safety programs vary widely, and can include incentives in the form of monetary rewards (e.g., savings

bonds), bonuses, gifts, discounts at truck stops, and recognition programs (e.g., patches, pins, plaques, etc.). Table 1 lists a series of elements

that research has shown are necessary for truck driver incentive programs to be effective.

Table 1: Elements Needed for Truck Driver Incentive Programs to be Effective

• Managerial vigor

• Rewarding the “bottom line”

• Attractiveness of the reward

• Progressive safety credits

• Simple rules

• Perceived equity and attainability

• Short incubation period

• Stimulating peer pressure towards safe conduct

• Involving the family

• Employee participation in program design

• Prevention of accident under-reporting

• Rewarding multiple levels of the organization

• Supplementing rewards with safety training

• Maximizing net savings versus maximizing benefit-cost

Many safety-related incentive programs include recognition for passing certain milestones for “accident-free” miles driven. Safety bonuses

also are very popular. For some carriers, bonuses are earned through a point system, which transfers to bonus money that gets included in

their paychecks. Other carriers reward drivers who are crash free for a full year with a savings bond. It would be expected that incentive

programs that offer progressively increasing safety bonuses for longer periods of crash-free operation would give drivers a material reason

for staying with their employers rather than moving to another place of work, where they would have to start again to accumulate safety

credits.