ARLINGTON, Va. – The American Trucking Associations renewed its call for the Department of Transportation to move forward with a rule requiring the electronic speed limiter on all large trucks be set no higher than 65 miles per hour.
“In 2006, as part of our longstanding commitment to highway safety, ATA petitioned the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to require the speed limiter on all large trucks be set in order to electronically limit their top speed to no more than 65 mph,” ATA president and CEO Bill Graves said. “We waited patiently until the government finally said in January 2011 they would move ahead with a speed limiter mandate, but this commonsense regulation has been mired in bureaucracy for over four years now. It is long past time for NHTSA and FMCSA to move ahead with this rule.”
The ATA argues that slowing trucks down will reduce the frequency and severity of crashes, as federal data shows that driving over the speed limit was the main reason for almost 20% of fatal crashes where a large truck was deemed at fault.
“In addition to slowing truck speeds, ATA believes in slowing down all traffic,” Graves said. “That’s why we back a national speed limit for all vehicles of 65 mph and are disturbed by the recent trend of states raising their speed limits to 70, 75, 80 or in some areas even 85 miles per hour. These limits are reckless and are needlessly endangering millions of motorists.”
ATA chairman Duane Long added: “We limit the speeds of our trucks to 65 mph because it makes good safety sense, and as a bonus, it makes good economic sense. Our safety record is better because we limit speeds, we use less fuel because we limit speeds and we spend less on repairs and maintenance of our trucks because we limit our speeds.”
“Even though roughly 70% of trucking companies use electronic limiters, that is not enough,” Graves said. “So we are again calling on NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind – who recently touted the benefits of speed limiters in the press, FMCSA General Counsel Scott Darling and Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx to move this important regulation forward. Further, I urge them to use their positions to push states to do the right thing – the safe thing – when it comes to speed limits for all vehicles and stem the dangerous tide of higher ones.”
To participate in the speed discussion on social media, the ATA urges people to use the hashtag, #SlowDownSaveLives.
You can watch a video of the ATA’s efforts, here.
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