A new rule by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) that would require the use of speed limits could drastically reduce the amount of fatal crashes involving heavy-duty trucks.
The FMCSA, which indicated that it plans to produce the speed limiter rule after it was suggested by the American Trucking Associations, is scheduled to be sent to Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx for approval May 21, according to the Department of Transportation’s monthly report on significant rulemakings.
Pending its approval, the speed limiter rule would then be forwarded to the White House Office of Management and Budget on June 26.
While the DOT report did not designate what the proposed speed may be, it did indicate the rule may be published as a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking by the beginning of October.
The rulemaking development is a mutual initiative with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, according to the DOT report, and it would affect trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 26,000 lbs.
The FMCSA said the proposed speed limiter rule “would decrease the estimated 1,115 fatal crashes” each year involving heavy-duty trucks that would be subject to the new regulation.
Larry Minor, the FMCSA Associate Administrator for Policy, said at the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee in February the rule could even be “retroactive,” and the agency would investigate whether the speed limiter rule would need to apply to new trucks only or all heavy-duty trucks, meaning that a retrofit on older vehicles would need to be provided.
In a 2012 legal case regarding speed limiters, a judge ruled that they were unsafe and a violation of rights.
How Safety Analytics Software Increases Trucking Safety
GPS devices that feature safety analytics software empower fleet managers to receive insight into vehicle safety based on key performance metrics and recorded events, such as speeding and harsh braking.
With a properly enabled telematics system, the results, including a measurable safety score, are showcased on pre-set or customizable dashboards with data-filled charts and graphs that can be toggled and viewed simultaneously at any time.
This feature can help fleets of heavy-duty trucks by pinpointing safety violations and inefficiencies for an entire fleet or a single vehicle.
Trucking managers can use this effective option to help monitor unsafe driving behavior and prevent vehicle abuse before the speed limiter rule is put in place.