The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced today that it has awarded more than $70 million in grants to various states and educational institutions.
The grants are designed to enhance commercial motor vehicle (CMV) safety.
The FMCSA safety grant funding opportunities are primarily available to state and local government agencies in one of the 50 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, Guam, and the US Virgin Islands.
U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao commented, “Our shared goal of a safer transportation system is a top priority. These grants will further assist state and local officials in their efforts to prevent commercial motor vehicle crashes and injuries each year, and have the potential to save hundreds of lives.”
FMCSA awarded the grant money as follows:
- $41.5 million in High Priority (HP) grants to enhance states’ commercial motor vehicle safety efforts, as well as advance technological capability within states,
- $30.7 million in Commercial Driver’s License Program Implementation (CDLPI) grants to enhance efforts by states to improve the national commercial driver’s license (CDL) program, and
- $1 million in Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Safety Training grants to nine education institutions to help train veterans for jobs as commercial bus and truck drivers.
Chao further explained the Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Safety Training initiative:
“The Department is proud to recognize the sacrifices of our nation’s heroes by providing more veterans with the opportunity to contribute to the safety of our roadways through training grants for the next generation of commercial drivers.”
The FMCSA is recognizing the large number of veterans in the U.S. that are unemployed and unable to find work. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that in 2016 there were at least 453,000 unemployed veterans.
“Safe drivers lead to safer roadways, and safer roadways ensure that our loved ones return home at the end of their journey,” said FMCSA Deputy Administrator Daphne Jefferson. “These grants will help ensure that our state partners have the tools and resources they need to support FMCSA’s mission of reducing crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks and buses.”
For a complete list of awardees, click here.
The goal for these grants is to lessen the severity of accidents and to improve state compliance efforts concerning driver’s license standards and programs.
The FMCSA is estimating that this focus on driver training will provide CMV education for more than 350 students. The grants were awarded to places like the Johnson County Community College in Kansas and the Cape Fear Community College in North Carolina.