The Truck Safety Coalition (TSC) supports S.2033, The Cullum Owings Large Truck Safe Operating Speed Act of 2019. This bill would require all new commercial trucks with a gross weight of 26,001 pounds or more to be equipped with speed-limiting devices, which must be set to a maximum speed of 65 miles per hour and be used at all times while in operation. The maximum speed requirement would also be extended to existing trucks of that size.
The faster big trucks are going, the bigger the stopping differential becomes between them and much smaller cars. This is pure physics. The speed limiter rule will reduce the maximum speed at which large truck can travel on our roads, in turn reducing the maximum potential amount of distance required in an emergency braking situation as well as the maximum potential force in the event of a collision. In short, this rule will prevent hundreds of fatalities and injuries resulting from speed-related truck crashes. This rule is common sense and something the motoring public needs, wants, and deserves.
The United States is shamefully the only leading country without such a rule. The European Union countries, Japan, Australia and the most populous Canadian provinces (Ontario and Quebec) all require speed governors to be set on heavy commercial vehicles at speeds varying from 55 mph in Japan to 65 mph in Canada.
As the agencies noted in the Notice of Propose Rulemaking (NPRM), speed-limiting devices have been built into most big rigs since the 1990s.
No capital expense required to include them on trucks with this technology.
The NPRM notes that limiting the speed of heavy vehicles to:
- 60 mph would save 162 to 498 lives annually,
- 65 mph would save 63 to 214 lives annually,
- 68 mph would save 27 to 96 lives annually.
A Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) study concluded that trucks not using speed governors were involved in high-speed collisions at twice the rate of trucks that were using them.
Studies released by the Ontario Ministry of Transportation found that speed-related, at-fault truck crashes fell by 73 percent and fatalities in all crashes involving big rigs dropped 24% after mandatory speed limiter technology took effect in Ontario.
Articles on Ontario Studies:
The improves safety, results in other countries prove it & the technology is already there on the vast majority of these trucks (no capital expense). Also, many such trucks on our roads already have them set because it is profitable to do so (saves fuel & maintenance costs for brakes & tires, both of which last longer).