New York, NY- There is no denying that speed is a major factor in car commercial truck accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that one in three accidents can be attributed to speed. That fact along with the results of a recent investigation have reignited the call for mandatory speed limiters on commercial trucks, but one trucking group is pushing back against the requirement, stating the rule won’t make highways any safer.
In a letter to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the NHTSA, the Owner-Operator Independent Driver’s Association is urging the agency to drop the mandate for speed limiters, stating that speed disparity will actually make highways more unsafe.
“Your agencies must ensure you do not produce a mandate that will arbitrarily add dangerous car-truck speed differentials to our nation’s highways,” the OOIDA wrote in the letter.
Citing several studies, the OOIDA states that having passenger vehicle motorists and commercial truck drivers traveling at different rates of speed will actually increase the chances that an accident will occur. The letter says that when all motorists are allowed to travel at the same speed, “interactions between those vehicles, such as overtaking and passing, are minimized, and the opportunities for crashes to occur are reduced.”
The OOIDA said they aren’t pushing for faster speed limits, they simple believe that all vehicles should have the same speed limits “in order to foster a predictable, safer highway driving environment.”
The FMCSA and the NHTSA initiated the rulemaking process for speed limiters in early April on the heels of an investigation that linked excessive speed to tire failure in commercial trucks.
That investigation, which was initiated by a trucking company, found that tire failure in commercial vehicles were not caused by manufacturing defects but by excessive speed. According to the study, commercial truck tires were manufactured maximum speeds of 75 mph or less and driving on these tires for long periods of time can cause them to overheat and fail, possibly sending a tractor-trailer out of control.
While the OOIDA objects to making speed limiters mandatory, the American Trucking Association is in favor of the speed limiters.
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