Maine and Vermont Press Release 12-23-10

In 2015, 4,067 people were killed in large truck crashes in the United States

Maine and Vermont Press Release 12-23-10

Daphne Izer, founder of Parents Against Tired Truckers (P.A.T.T.) after her son Jeff and three of his friends were killed in a truck crash, the Truck Safety Coalition (TSC) and other safety organizations sent a letter to Governor Baldacci today urging him to take action to stop trucks that weigh 100,000 lbs. from traveling on Maine?s state roads. The one-year pilot program, included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2010 (Public Law No. 11-117, H.R. 3288), that allowed 100,000 lb. trucks on sections of Maine?s Interstates and 99,000 lb. trucks on Vermont?s Interstates expired on December 17, 2010.

Read More…

What is Driver Fatigue?

• Truck driver fatigue has been recognized as a major safety concern and a contributing factor to fatal truck crashes for over 70 years.
• Studies sponsored by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reveal that 65% of truck drivers report that they often or sometimes feel drowsy while driving and nearly half of truck drivers admit that they had actually fallen asleep while driving in the previous year.
• In spite of the industry wide safety issue of truck driver fatigue, in 2003, the truck driver hours of service rule (HOS) was increased from 10 to 11 hours behind the wheel during a 14 hour work day.
• The FMCSA HOS rule allowing 11 hour driving shifts has been overturned in court two different times. In 2011, the FMCSA issued a new HOS rule that kept the 11 hour maximum rather than return to the prior 10-hour rule as advocated by leading safety organizations. In response, safety groups returned to court, for the third time seeking to return the HOS rule to the 10 hour maximum. The case was argued in the U.S. Court of Appeals in March, 2013, and a decision is pending.

The Truck Safety Coalition Supports Efforts to Reduce Truck Driver Fatigue Including:

Immediate Rulemaking and Implementation of Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) – Despite a provision in the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Law, MAP-21 (P.L. 112-141) requiring ELDs in all commercial vehicles, FMCSA has yet to issue a rule. The TSC urges immediate rulemaking and implementation to ensure accurate logging of truck driver hours behind the wheel, increased compliance with HOS regulations, and a reduction in paperwork and stopping time for HOS reviews.

Preventing Exemptions to HOS Regulations – Exemptions to Federal motor carrier safety regulations compromise safety, erode uniformity and weaken enforcement efforts. Safety is not unique to certain types of commercial motor vehicles, carriers, cargo or routes. If the same types of vehicles are being operated on the same roadways, the same set of rules should apply. Allowing industry-specific exemptions to safety regulations is not only dangerous, but it also sets an unsafe precedent for other industries to request similar exemptions. The TSC opposes exemptions to HOS regulations.

Changes to Truck Driver Compensation – A large portion of the trucking industry is paid by the mile rather than by the hour. Truck drivers spend up to 70 hours a week behind the wheel, and then work additional hours, for less pay than similar industries (the hourly average pay is $11.15 for truck drivers, compared to $25.00 for manufacturing or construction), and as a result of their pay structure, are incentivized to drive longer and faster in order to make more money. Paying truck drivers an hourly wage will ensure that they are paid for every hour worked, and will promote healthier drivers and safer trucking.

Assuring Truck Driver Fitness – The TSC supports rulemaking for sleep apnea screening to ensure medical examiners are testing for and monitoring this widespread fatigue producing condition. Additionally, MAP-21 included the Safe Roads Act of 2012 (S.754/H.R.2459) which requires an alcohol and controlled substances testing clearinghouse to be used only for disseminating test results. We urge expedited creation and careful oversight of the clearinghouse and we urge that that it be expanded to include prescription drugs (particularly those which list drowsiness and fatigue as side-effects). Finally, we support funding to expand parking areas and services for truck drivers (a MAP-21 provision known as Jason’s Law) once the survey to determine existing facilities is completed.

Maine and Vermont Overweight Truck Pilot Program

Maine Vermont FOIA Information Released

Press Release

Fact Sheets


FHWA Reports


Letter on Maine and Vermont Truck Weight Exemption

Anti Safety, Special Truck Provision for Maine and Vermont has no place in the continuing resolution.  Consumer health, safety, and environmental groups, and truck crash victims and survivors strongly oppose extending the federal truck weight exemptions.

Read More…

Letter from Maine and Vermont – Email
Thursday, May 06, 2010 9:24 AM
; Getchell, Chip
RE: Letter from Maine and Vermont

Response to Letter from Secretary Dill and Commissioner Cole – Email
Thursday, May 13, 2010 2:34 PM
; Getchell, Chip; Elder, Robert
Response to letter from Secretary Dill and Commissioner Cole
Letter to Commissioners ME-VT.pdf

3 killed, 13 Hurt in I-57 Crash


“MATTOON — A Louisiana truck driver triggered a fatal nine-vehicle accident when he looked down at a map as he approached slowing traffic on an eastern Illinois highway, police said.

Three people were killed and 13 were hospitalized Monday evening when the truck driver crashed into the back of a vehicle near a construction zone, setting off a chain reaction that eventually included nine vehicles on Interstate 57 north of Mattoon, police Capt. Stuart Shaver said … “

Click to Read Full Article (This takes you to

Appeals Court Again Rejects Hours of Service Rule

Appeals Court Again Rejects Hours of Service Rule
July 24, 2007

A federal appeals court today struck down for the second time a Bush administration regulation that increased the number of hours that truck drivers are permitted to drive without rest.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit again sided with Public Citizen in its contention that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Continue reading “Appeals Court Again Rejects Hours of Service Rule”

NHTSA Study Confirms Value Of Reflective Tape On Trucks

New NHTSA Study Confirms Reflective Tape On Big Trucks Reduces Crashes, Fatalities
April 30, 2000 (OA)

WASHINGTON, April 30 /PRNewswire/ – A new study by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) confirms that the reflective tape now being required to make trailers on big trucks easier to see is effective in preventing crashes.

Continue reading “NHTSA Study Confirms Value Of Reflective Tape On Trucks”

Victory for truck crash victims

A Tenacious Volunteer Achieves Legislative Victory in North Carolina

Jennifer Tierney has helped to achieve numerous advances in truck safety through her involvement with CRASH and the Truck Safety Coalition, and this year she added to her list of accomplishments.  When Jennifer learned about Senate Bill 1695 (S1695) which would allow longer trucks, wider boats and some

Continue reading “Victory for truck crash victims”

30 percent of tractor-trailers, dump trucks overweight

In ‘cat-and-mouse game’ with truckers, FDOT has dull claws; As many as 30 percent of tractor-trailers, dump trucks overweight
By: Fred Hiers / Star-Banner (Ocala, Florida); Monday, October 22, 2007

OCALA – Carlos Reinoso sat with the door of his dump truck slung open and his legs dangling over the side. He couldn’t have looked more bored.

Continue reading “30 percent of tractor-trailers, dump trucks overweight”

Some Truck Drivers Rigged For Danger

Reported by: David Rose / Web produced by: Neil Relyea / Photographed by: 9News
First posted: 2/8/2006 11:15:04 PM

There are some drivers that have no business being on the road.

But what 9News uncovered is that “business” is exactly what they’re doing.

9News takes a look at how some drivers are rigged for danger.

Continue reading “Some Truck Drivers Rigged For Danger”

Trucks, tired drivers can be deadly mix

By LISE FISHER – Sun staff writer / February 19. 2006 6:01AM

A truck driver carrying a gym bag heads for the showers at the Pilot Travel Center in Ocala Thursday evening. Richard Darley has been driving rigs since 1970 and he knows something about driver fatigue.

Continue reading “Trucks, tired drivers can be deadly mix”

Hours Of Service Regulations: (FAQ’s)

1. Do trucks pose a significant safety problem?

Yes. More than 5,000 people have been killed annually in truck-related crashes for the past several years. Large trucks are severely over represented in annual crash figures. Although they are only 3 percent of the registered vehicles, they are responsible for 12 to 13 percent of passenger vehicle occupant deaths each year Continue reading “Hours Of Service Regulations: (FAQ’s)”


Fatigue Is A Killer: Operator fatigue and sleep deprivation are serious, worldwide safety problems in all transportation modes. Operator fatigue has been identified by national governments and the European Union as a major contributor to air, maritime, railroad, and passenger vehicle crashes. In the United States, the Department of Transportation and the National Transportation Safety Board have cited fatigue as a major factor in truck crash causation. These crashes lead to losses of life Continue reading “THE DANGERS OF FATIGUED, SLEEP-DEPRIVED TRUCK DRIVERS”

Three fatal truck accidents draw national attention

By Jill Dunn

Three headline-making fatal truck accidents occurred in a 15-hour period this week, killing 19 people, though one accident may have been caused by a four-wheeler.

Continue reading “Three fatal truck accidents draw national attention”

Truck Driver Faces 5 Homicide Charges in Bus Crash

By ROBERT IMRIE  / Associated Press Wausau Bureau

EAU CLAIRE Continue reading “Truck Driver Faces 5 Homicide Charges in Bus Crash”

Links – Sorrow to Strength 2007


Useful links for those attending the conference or otherwise supporting it.

Identify & Contact Your Elected Officials

Contact the U.S. Senate

Contact the U.S. House of Representatives

Know the Issues

Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration (FMCSA)

Department of Transportation (DoT)

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)

Maps of D.C. and Capitol Hill


Hyatt Arlington
Details on reservations coming soon.


Ronald Reagan National Airport

Washington Dulles International Airport

Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (Metro & Bus Transportation)

Press Kit – Sorrow to Strength 2007


March 12, 2007 – Press Kit

Sorrow to Strength 2009 – Press

Press Coverage

Press Conference – Media Information


    (Seattle, Washington), widow of University of Washington professor and seismologist Anthony Qamar who was killed October 5, 2005, along with his colleague, when an overloaded logging truck with multiple safety citations lost its load on Highway 101.  The tragedy prompted Dr. Ellsbury to lobby for passage of the Tony Qamar and Daniel Johnson Act to improve motor carrier safety in her state.
    (Davisburg, Michigan), whose father, William Badger, was killed December 23, 2004, when a tractor trailer driver fell asleep at the wheel and collided with his car.  Dawn has since joined the Board of Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways (CRASH) and has participated in its First Response program to assist other grieving truck crash victims.
    (Falls Church, Virginia), whose daughter Dana Wood and her East Carolina University classmate were killed October 15, 2002, when their car was struck and pushed 1,500 feet by a careless trucker with a suspended license who had clocked nine hours of driving that day.
    (Laurel, Maryland), mother of University of Maryland senior Channing Quinichett who was killed January 21, 2009, when a tire flew off a truck being towed and smashed through her windshield.   Channing was to receive her early childhood education degree from the state university on May 22.  She wanted to be a teacher.

Sorrow to Strength 2009

The Truck Safety Coalition is pleased to announce our 2009 Sorrow to Strength Conference.

Sorrow to Strength is specifically designed for survivors of truck crashes and families/friends of those who have died or been injured. The conference allows us to come together for a weekend of sharing, remembrance, workshops and public policy actions to advance truck safety. This conference is open to all survivors, advocates, and legal/medical professionals interested in advancing truck safety.

The last Sorrow to Strength Conference in 2007 produced an agenda of important truck safety priorities. It also included visits arranged by TSC staff with key lawmakers in Congress, senior officials with the U.S. Department of Transportation, and National Transportation Safety Board Members. Additionally, we released a report card on the most lethal states for truck crashes and on the lack of federal leadership by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in 10 key categories such as truck driver fatigue, truck size and weight, and safety regulation enforcement, at a well-attended press conference in Washington, DC.

This year’s conference comes at a critical crossroads in truck safety as Congress will soon be taking up a multi-billion dollar transportation spending bill, the successor to the 2005 Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act-A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). Trucking interests have been lobbying Congress to increase the federal truck size and weight limits while also continuing to push for other measures to rollback lifesaving truck safety rules and laws. We need your help and voice in the truck safety debate to counter the views of the trucking industry.

Saturday, May 2nd (tentative start time 1 p.m.) – Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

Hyatt Arlington, 1325 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA
For reservations, please call the hotel directly at 800-233-1234 or go to

The rate for all nights is $99 per room per night (tax not included). The code you need to mention to get this rate is G-TSC1. There is no fee for the conference itself. Need-based scholarship funding is available to assist with travel costs.

This conference will be organized to discuss both personal experiences and how to work as a powerful, effective constituency. Throughout Sorrow to Strength, you will have the opportunity to meet with safety experts, elected officials, and safety supporters. You play an important role in the fight to improve truck safety and bring down truck crash deaths and injuries. Please, join us for this importantmeeting.

For more information or to answer any questions about Sorrow to Strength, please contact us here or at 1.888.353.4572.

We hope to see you in May!

Sorrow to Strength

2011 Sorrow to Strength Conference

We are pleased to announce the 2011 Sorrow to Strength Conference. The conference will be held in Washington, DC from Saturday, April 30th to Tuesday, May 3rd.

This conference is designed to bring together families and friends of truck crash victims and truck crash survivors.   There is no charge, and the conference is open to all survivors, advocates, and legal/medical/other related professionals interested in truck safety.  The conference provides the opportunity to come together for a weekend of sharing, remembrance, and workshops. On Monday and Tuesday we will bring our messages for improved truck safety policies and laws to Capitol Hill and the Department of Transportation during meetings which will be pre-arranged for you and attended by a Truck Safety Coalition staff person with you.

If you are interested in attending, please call the office at 888.353.4572 or 703.294.6404.  You can also email us at More information will be posted at in the near future.  Please forward this message along to anyone you believe may be interested.

Please mark these dates on your calendar and start thinking about your arrangements to attend. As soon as you have decided if you will be attending, please let us know so that we can begin lining up meetings for you. We look forward to helping you with this process and especially to seeing you there.

Help Us Spread the Word

1. Share this on Social Media. Click one of the buttons below.


2. Post this banner on social media or your website.

Maine and Vermont Overweight Truck Pilot Program

To save the image to your desktop right click on it and click “save image as”. Or you can use the html code below to add the banner and link to your website.

<a href=””><img src=”” alt=”Maine and Vermont Overweight Truck Pilot Program” width=”220″ height=”80″ border=”0″ /></a>