Recent Posts Related to the STOP Underrides! Bill

  1. We are grateful for these Co-Sponsors of the STOP Underrides! Bill. On December 12, 2017, Senator Gillibrand, Senator Rubio, Congressman Cohen, and Congressman DeSaulnier introduced the STOP Underrides! Bill as a bipartisan/bicameral effort to end preventable truck underride tragedies. Since that day, additional legislators have joined with them to co-sponsor this life-saving legislation.Information on the bill — including bill text, co-sponsors, and legislative activity — can be found here. . .
  2. 4,180 Comments by Signers of the STOP Underrides! Petition in answer to the question, ” Why do you think Congress should pass the STOP Underrides! Bill?” Out of the 42, 950 U.S. signatures on the STOP Underrides! Bill Petition, about 4,180 people chose to make a comment in answer to the question, Why do you think Congress should pass the STOP Underrides! Bill? . . 
  3. STOP Underrides! Bill Petition Signers By State How many are enough signatures to make Congress listen? How many underride tragedies are enough to make us — the government, the trucking industry, and We the People — act decisively to end these senseless and preventable deaths?. . .
  4. Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the STOP Underrides! Bill Here is a FAQ document with answers to frequently asked questions about the STOP Underrides! BillFAQ STOP Underrides Bill.I hope that it helps to get us all on the same page and moving more quickly toward effective collaboration to end truck underride tragedies with Win/Win solutions. . .
  5. Interactive Underride Crash Map Launched This Week We launched an Interactive Underride Crash Story Map earlier this week. We have only just begun to add links for the thousands of underride tragedies which are too well remembered in the decades of neglect of this problem.  Many families may not even have realized that they lost their loved one because of preventable underride.If you have information on an underride crash, or would like to add more details about the people touched by these tragedies, email the crash location (and any photos or memories which you would like us to include) to underridemap@gmail.com. We will be adding them to the map one at a time. Here is the map. . .
  6. STOP Underrides Bill to be Introduced 12/12/17; Petition launched on first day of #UnderrideAwarenessWeek We have launched the Stop Underrides Bill Petition today. Please sign & share. Public support is crucial to ending Death by Underride.  #underrideawarenessweekSign Here: Congress, Act Now To End Deadly Truck Underride!
  7. Sen. Gillibrand questions Chris Spear, CEO of ATA, on truck underride protection. This morning, Senator Gillibrand took the opportunity at a Senate Environment & Public Works Committee Hearing on to ask Chris Spear, CEO of the American Trucking Associations, some questions about truck underride. . .
  8. I am a truck crash survivor & mom (of two who died) on a mission to make truck crashes more survivable!I am the survivor of a terrible truck crash. I am the mom of two daughters who did not survive. The difference? Their part of the car went under the truck; mine did not.In the aftermath, I found out that the rear underride guard could have been made stronger to withstand the crash so that AnnaLeah and Mary might — like me — have been survivors of a terrible truck crash. . .
  9. Discovery of AnnaLeah’s Book Collection Catalogued Online in LibraryThing I can’t tell you how it felt to look online and find my daughter’s book collection all thoroughly catalogued. I knew that she had a LibraryThing account where she had kept track of her extensive set of books. But never until just a few moments ago had I looked it up. . .
  10. Holiday memories of AnnaLeah & Mary; Treasure the old for there will be no new.To be honest, I hate the fact that I spend almost every waking hour figuring out ways to move the needle on comprehensive underride protection. I also hate the fact that AnnaLeah & Mary have no more chances to create new memories while the rest of us go on with our lives — getting older and making new memories without them.I hate the fact that no one effectively took on the underride problem in time to let AnnaLeah & Mary live to see another day after their underride crash on May 4, 2013. And it keeps on happening to other families.  . .
  11. Why Has the Truck Underride Problem Been Left Unchecked for Decades? Truck underride is what frequently happens when a passenger vehicle collides with a large truck. Because the truck was unfortunately defectively designed to be above the level of the crush zone of the smaller vehicle, the passenger vehicle goes under the truck and the crashworthy safety features of the car are not able to work. Or, to put it another way, the truck enters the occupant space of the passenger vehicle — too often resulting in horrific death and debilitating injuries. . .
  12. Spotlight on Introduction of Bipartisan/Bicameral Bill to STOP Underride Tragedies I am very thankful for the media coverage of the Introduction of the Bipartisan/Bicameral STOP Underrides! Act of 2017. The problem of underride has been poorly understood, and I am hopeful that this action on the part of four legislators — Senator Gillibrand, Senator Rubio, Congressman Cohen, and Congressman DeSaulnier — will get the ball rolling toward greater awareness and decisive action. . .

The guard didn’t break off AS the car went under the truck; the car went under BECAUSE the guard broke off!

I have read many news reports of truck crashes. It often strikes me how little the media, along with everyone else, understands the underride problem. Last night I read an article about a truck crash which happened in November in Dallas; it was a good example of this common misunderstanding of what an underride is.

A car was traveling northbound along Harry Hines Boulevard when it started coming up on a UPS truck at the Lombardy Lane stoplight. The 18-wheeler’s 53-foot trailer was empty at the time. However, the car’s driver did not stop and slammed into the back of the big rig. The UPS truck’s rear bumper broke as the car went underneath the trailer.   http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2017/11/13/car-slams-into-big-rig-dallas/

What the reporter apparently misunderstood was that the rear bumper did not break off as the car went underneath the trailer. No, the car went underneath the trailer because the bumper broke off!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was too weak — just like on the majority of the millions of trucks on the road today. Underride tragedies waiting to happen.

At first I was frustrated with the way underride gets reported (or rather does not get reported). But then I realized that this is a perfect example of the common misperception that something about the severity of the crash forces/dynamics itself is what leads to the car knocking off or bending the rear underride guard. In fact, it is the weak guard which gives way, fails, and bends or comes right off the trailer and then there is nothing to stop the car from going into the empty space under the truck.

In contrast, see what happens when there is an effective underride protective device to cause the car to bounce off the guard (deflects the crash forces) and allows the car’s crush zone, airbags, and seat belts to work like they were supposed to upon collision.

Improved Rear Underride Guard Crash Test:

Side Guard Crash Test:

The car is damaged, but the passengers are safe:

I hope this helps people to better understand the dynamics of an underride crash.

How much more data do we need to convince us to take action that will STOP Underride tragedies?

This is old news. But I just saw it. It is news that will haunt the families involved forever. And it could have been prevented.

 A car was traveling northbound along Harry Hines Boulevard when it started coming up on a UPS truck at the Lombardy Lane stoplight. The 18-wheeler’s 53-foot trailer was empty at the time. However, the car’s driver did not stop and slammed into the back of the big rig. The UPS truck’s rear bumper broke as the car went underneath the trailer.

The reporter didn’t understand. The rear bumper did not break off AS the car went under. The car went under because the bumper broke off!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was too weak — just like on the majority of the millions of trucks on the road today. Underride tragedies waiting to happen.


Why do we let this continue to happen year after year? Do we value life so little? How much more data do we need to convince us that we need to take immediate action?

From the Library of AnnaLeah Karth, 1995-2013: She hadn’t read them all yet; Death By #Underride

I wanted to mark AnnaLeah’s books so that they will always be a part of “her library”. Her sister Susanna picked out this bookplate & just finished putting one in each book. Now they are ready to donate.

Her 600-book collection. . . many of them from a used bookstore where she had volunteered. She hadn’t read them all yet. A precious life ended too soon.

Death By #Underride

#stopunderrides

AnnaLeah’s Very-Thorough 30-Category Booklist

In Memory of Eddie D. Phillips

An Ohio man was killed in a horrific crash with a semi-truck on Saturday afternoon, resulting in the northbound lanes of Interstate 75 being shut down between Exit 41 in London and the Livingston Exit 49.

Eddie D. Phillips, 54, of Cincinnati, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash that occurred near the 46 mile marker. Phillips was the sole occupant of the 2011 Mitsubishi that slammed into the rear of a 2016 Peterbilt. The driver of the semi-truck, 52-year-old Michael S. Tilotta of Houston, Texas, was not injured in the crash. He was stopped in traffic due to another accident just north of the 46 mile marker. Ohio man killed in Interstate crash

See more underride tragedies at Underride Crash Memorials and on our Interactive Underride Crash Map. To add more information on this story or to add other underride crashes to this map, send an email to underridemap@gmail.com; use this Interactive Underride Crash Map Crash Location Input Form.

1969 Chicago Cubs Baseball a Thing of the Past; Same Year DOT Planned to Require Side Guards on Trucks

I recently moved into a new house. This morning I passed a box that has yet to be unpacked.  In some past move, I had labeled it “1969 Chicago Cubs Mug” (owned by my diehard Cubs fan husband Jerry).

That caught my attention because, in the last few years, the year 1969 (a fateful Cubs season, now a Thing of the Past) sticks out in my mind as the year that DOT said that they intended to “extend underride protection to the sides” of large trucks.

Well, that would have been wonderful if they had actually done so. But they did not.

Hundreds of people every year could have survived truck crashes. If we estimate 200 people each year, who could still be alive had side guards been required on every truck, times the 49 years since that fateful 1969 baseball season, that would be 9,800 people — almost 10,000 deaths that could have been prevented.

Add to that another 800/year from front and rear underride deaths = 39,200. Almost 50,000 deaths could have been prevented with comprehensive underride protection.

Let’s all work together to make sure that, in the next 49 years, it will be a different story and Death By Underride will become a Thing of the Past.

Previous related post: March Historically a Momentous Month for Truck Underride Safety Advocacy; Beware the Ides of March!

What is wrong with this analysis of a fatal truck crash?

On July 27, 2017, three teens were killed when their car went under a truck in the state of Washington.  A report was published last week with a detective’s analysis of what led to their deaths. His conclusion bothered me because it represents the common misunderstanding of what causes people to die in truck crashes.

See if you can figure out what is missing in his analysis of this horrific truck crash.

Read the report from the lead detective below:

“There are several key factors involved in this collision that resulted in the death of three teenagers. . . Given the estimated speed of the driver’s vehicle it is unknown whether or not the rear bumper would have been able to withstand the impact to prevent an under-ride of the semi-trailer.

Driver had THC in system when car slammed into parked semi, killing 3 teens

 

 

When I see underride tragedies which involve a parked truck, I often wonder if the car driver was confused by the truck’s location and made the unconscious assumption that the road went that way and they would be following another vehicle in front of them by steering their car in that direction. This study/article addresses the visual challenges involved in split-second driving decisions: http://www.visualexpert.com/Resources/underride.html

Even if the car was going 35 mph and there had been a rear underride guard (designed to meet the current federal standard), the car would have gone under the truck. And in another crash earlier that year, a man rear-ended a truck which had an improved rear underride guard at perhaps 50 mph and survived!

AnnaLeah & Mary: With Their Sister’s Wedding Dress, Allison’s Angel Gowns Sewed A Dress For A Baby Who Never Made It Home

Allison’s Angel Gowns takes donated wedding dresses and creates outfits for babies who don’t go home from the hospital. I just received a message that Deb has taken the wedding dress which I sewed for Rebekah Karth Chojnacki in 2013 and made this beautiful little dress.

This is the message which the seamstress sent to me:

I’m sorry to be invading your FB page but I just wanted to thank you for allowing me to create angel gowns in honor of your beautiful daughters. I need to apologize for the delay, You see, your dress touched me in ways I never expected. I know the pain of losing adult children and I had a hard time getting past my own grief when I worked with your dress which was the very reason I jumped at the chance to sew for you. I think of you every time I sit at my machine. I wish you and your family peace Friend of the heart, Deb

Families of Underride Victims Unite to Support Development of a TrailerGuard System To Save Others

Aaron Kiefer, a crash reconstructionist, has been working for almost three years now to design and crash test a TrailerGuard System to prevent cars from sliding under trucks. The project is currently at a stage where he needs to move beyond a simple prototype to begin manufacture of a product which can be installed on a set of trucks to demonstrate its practicality.

In 2015, Aaron reached out to the Karth family, who lost two daughters, AnnaLeah (17) and Mary (13), due to a truck underride crash. They had set up a non-profit organization — AnnaLeah & Mary For Truck Safety — for the purpose of encouraging underride research. Since that time, Jerry and Marianne Karth, have been working alongside Aaron to support his crash testing efforts. The ALMFTS website, fortrucksafety.com, serves as a means for other families and organizations  to support this project by making donations which may be considered tax-deductible.

The Karths have offered to keep a record here of the names of those whose lives are being remembered by their loved ones through contributions to this life-saving project. Photos and memories can be included. Their stories can also be included in the Interactive Underride Crash Map.

If you would like to know more about this, or would like to contact us about joining in to support our efforts, please email us at marianne@annaleahmary.com. Hope to hear from you soon!

What people are saying about the STOP Underrides! Bill

Out of the 43,008 U.S. signatures on the STOP Underrides! Bill Petition, over 4,000 people chose to make a comment in answer to the question, Why do you think Congress should pass the STOP Underrides! Bill?

Find out how they answered that question: Comments on the STOP Underrides! Bill Petition

What would you say? Sign the petition here: Congress, Act Now To End Deadly Truck Underride!

We are grateful for these Co-Sponsors of the STOP Underrides! Bill.

On December 12, 2017, Senator Gillibrand, Senator Rubio, Congressman Cohen, and Congressman DeSaulnier introduced the STOP Underrides! Bill as a bipartisan/bicameral effort to end preventable truck underride tragedies. Since that day, additional legislators have joined with them to co-sponsor this life-saving legislation.

Information on the bill — including bill text, co-sponsors, and legislative activity — can be found here: 

This is the list of current co-sponsors (to be updated as additional legislators jump on board):

SENATE

  1. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand(D-NY) (lead)
  2. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) (co-lead)
  3. Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL)
  4. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ)
  5. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D–CT)
  6. Senator Edward Markey (D-MA)

HOUSE

  1. Congressman Steve Cohen (D-TN-9) (lead)
  2. Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA-11) (co-lead)
  3. Congressman Richard Nolan (D-MN-8)
  4. Congressman Matt Cartwright (D-PA-17)

How many votes will be needed for the STOP Underrides! Bill to pass?  Needed: 51 votes in the Senate and 218 in the House