The Biggest Overhaul to Road Safety May Be Underway — And Nobody Knows
The trucking industry is attempting to make major changes to our country’s highway safety rules, revisions that could seriously jeopardize the safety of countless drivers. And yet few people even know that such sweeping revisions are even being discussed.
As you read this blog, consider that almost four thousand people were killed from truck wrecks in 2013 alone.
Dangerous proposed revisions to important highway safety rules include:
Going Over 80,000-Pounds
Trucking industry lobbyists are urging Congress to increase the 80,000-pound haul load. Going above 80,000 pounds may allow the trucking industry to carry more goods on each truck, but it also seriously jeopardizes the safety of everyone else on the road, as the heavier the truck, the harder it is for the truck to break quickly for unforeseen traffic events.
Revising Rest Breaks
The trucking industry is also pushing for more “flexibility” with rest breaks — but not the good kind. Instead, they want to push the accelerator on the 70-hour work limit, permitting truck drivers to work up to 82 hours in one stretch before taking a break. We believe this brand of “flexibility” would push drivers who are tired and need a break to keep on going, meeting tighter deadlines and testing their ability to stay awake on the road.
Expanding to 33 Feet
Currently, there’s a 28-foot limit on double trailers. However, the trucking industry is pushing to increase the limit to 33 feet, making each rig an 80-foot-long giant. Again, just another way to potentially jeopardize the safety of everyone else on the road.
Minimize Labor Costs
As if the above isn’t enough, there’s have also been talks about minimizing labor costs via hiring drivers available for lower pay, such as permitting drivers as young as 18 — instead of the current age limit of 21 and older — to get behind the wheel.
Failing to disclose the federal motor carrier safety ratings for unsafe trucking companies? Disallowing federal regulators from raising insurance requirements set during the Reagan years? Yep, the trucking industry may even be going so far as to recommend dishonorable ideas to cut corners such as these.
If you agree that Congress should not allow these changes that could seriously impair our safety, please share this blog and sign this petition: http://www.roadsafeamerica.org/get-involved/sign-our-petition/
And if you or someone you know has ever been seriously injured in an accident involving a large truck, we want to hear from you. Contact us here to find out about your legal options.