Six of the best truck drivers in America participated in a special one-day training program hosted by insurance giant Liberty Mutual to discuss ways to improve safety on America's roads. Members of the American Trucking Assns.' Road Team 2000, the drivers shared their experiences and participated in driving exercises at Liberty Mutual's Research Center for Safety and Health in Hopkinton, Mass.

The purpose of this annual event is to gain insight into the best and worst driving practices, from a trucker's perspective, displayed on America's highways. "They provide valuable insight into driver training techniques and help us to validate our programs," said David Melton, Liberty Mutual's product director of transportation services. "Their real- world experiences help us fine tune our approaches to safe driving."

Road Team members also put their emergency driving skills to the test on Liberty Mutual's three-acre "skid pan," which is part of the company's 86-acre testing facility. The skid pan is but one facet of the research capabilities Liberty Mutual uses to identify causes and consequences of occupational hazards.

Created in 1986, ATA's Road Team is part of a campaign designed to promote highway safety to the general public, using professional truck drivers with above-average skills and long-term safety records.