The United States Department of Transportation has unveiled a plan to require large trucks to have speed limiter devices installed. These devices keep trucks from exceeding a given speed, typically suggested to be in the sixty to sixty-five miles per-hour range. The requirement would apply to any truck over 26,000 pounds, and as most commercial trucks weigh in at over 80,000, the regulation would be widespread within the industry. Truck accidents account for a significant portion of roadway injuries and fatalities in the United States each year, with large trucks and buses involved in roughly 4,000 fatalities in 2014.
Responses are mixed as to whether this policy would actually reduce trucking accidents. Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York says that installing limiters would save lives and stop injuries, making the roads safer. The American Trucking Associations, however, stated that the proposition does not offer enough data, and that road rage could actually increase collision risk. Aside from pure safety concerns, some industry regulators feel that there are other advantages to implementing the speed limiters. Drivers operating at slower speeds could save the industry over $1 billion in fuel consumption each year. Currently, low gas prices are seen as a contributor for increased speeds across the industry, which in turn has led to increased accident rates for large trucks.
According to the Department of Transportation, lower maximum speeds for commercial vehicles force drivers to be more cautious, especially during lane changes and merges. The lower speeds not only reduce truck accidents, but the severity of injuries from those accidents when they occur. Steve Owings, the co-founder of Road Safe America, expressed that the proposal is being considered about a decade after his organization initially petitioned for it. Owings also expressed concern over the fact that the regulation would only apply to new trucks, not those already in operation, and argued against waiving the requirement for existing trucks.
Cherry Hill Truck Accident Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Represent Victims of Truck Crashes
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a truck accident in South Jersey, the Cherry Hill truck accident lawyers at DiTomaso Law can help. We serve clients across both New Jersey and Philadelphia. Call 856-414-0010 to schedule a consultation, or contact us online to speak with us today.