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Rule aimed at reducing truck accidents stalled

As our readers in Aurora may remember, this blog previously reported on a proposed federal rule by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration that would make it so that newly manufactured semi-trucks would not be able to be driven faster than 68 miles per hour, enforced through speed limiters. The purpose of such a rule boils down to basic physics -- collisions involving slower moving vehicles will not be as severe as those involving faster moving vehicles. And, the American Trucking Association supports the proposed federal rule.

Advocates who have been pushing for such a rule since 2006 claim it will increase the safety of America's highways. They hope that the rule will be enacted before the end of President Barack Obama's term.

But, advocates of the rule fear that when President-elect Donald Trump takes office, the rule will not be enacted. Though, Trump's transition team has not commented on the rule, stating its focus right now is on building the new administration.

Nonetheless, the NHTSA says it can take at least 12 months after the publication of a regulation for the regulation to become effective. The NHTSA stated that the rule was only just published in August by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. And, the two agencies must now sift through over 2,200 comments before they can decide on it as the public comment period ended in December.

It remains to be seen whether this rule will be enacted in 2017. However, even if this rule is enacted, it will not eliminate semi-truck accidents entirely. There will still be truck drivers who drive dangerously, like driving while drowsy or under the influence, causing accidents that injure or kill others. Therefore, those who have suffered injuries in a truck accident may want to explore whether they are able to seek compensation through a personal injury lawsuit.

Source: Claims Journal, "Safety Advocates Think Truck Speed Limiter Rule Could Stall," Tom Krisher, Dec. 21, 2016

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