Abstract

The logistic activity most visible to the general population is the presence of trucks transporting goods across the nation's highways. Transportation also represents the largest portion of total logistics costs and a large percentage of the problems. At times, these problems arise in the form of accidents, even tragedies, as trucks collide with automobiles. Car-truck accidents, though expensive, are an unfortunate cost of doing business and motorists' behaviors are out of the control of the transportation manager. Recently, the federal government and private industry have attempted to educate motorists concerning dangerous spots around trucks. Programs such as the Share the Road campaign, though mildly successful at directing behaviors of motorists near trucks, do not address motorists' perceptions of trucks—which may determine how they behave around the larger vehicles. This article is one of the first that directly examines motorists' perceptions of trucks on the highway and the effect these perceptions have on support for stricter safety regulation of the trucking industry. Based on a national random sample of U.S. motorists, these results suggest that the general U.S. driving population's perception of trucks is predominately negative, and these perceptions are significant predictors of support for stricter truck speed regulation.

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