Tug of War over truck/highway safety: Something’s wrong with this picture!

Two years ago a truck crash killed our two youngest daughters, AnnaLeah (17) and Mary (13).

One year ago, we garnered over 11,000 signatures on a petition asked Secretary Foxx to advance 3 measures to improve factors related to safety on our roads.

We have seen step-by-step progress toward our goals but get concerned when we see signs that a tug of war continues over this life & death battle.

“Two Different THUD Bills Set Up Congressional Showdown on Trucking Issues” http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryId=29323#.VZUr1_lViko

  • In our AnnaLeah & Mary Stand Up For Truck Safety Petition, we asked for Electronic Logging Devices to be required as soon as possible due to our concern about the impact of Driving While Fatigued (DWF) on truck drivers’ ability to respond in emergency situations (e.g., in work zones or when traffic is backed up due to a crash ahead–as in our case) http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2014-10-01/mom-takes-on-truckers-after-highway-wreck-kills-daughters
  • Yet, there is still opposition to this method of keeping track of the hours that drivers are behind the wheel (paper log books are a joke, not considered reliable, & never shown to us after our crash).
  • From that report on the THUD Bills: “The House version also chose not to expedite mandates for electronic logging devices or speed limiters, which – like the insurance issue – are items opposed by OOIDA and small-business truckers but supported by large carriers and the American Trucking Associations.” – See more at: http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryId=29323#.VZUr1_lViko
  • You’ve got to be kidding!
  • In our petition, we also asked for increases in minimum liability insurance for truckers–currently at $750,000 for over 35 years.
  • This, too, is being opposed. Read what that article said, “The House of Representatives has already passed its version of HR2577 for Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD). That occurred on June 9. OOIDA and small-business truckers won a victory in that version because it contained language to prohibit the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration from pursuing an increase to insurance requirements for motor carriers.” – See more at: http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryId=29323#.VZUr1_lViko
  • At least there is some hope for moving the insurance issue forward, “Specific to the insurance issue, the Senate version says FMCSA may continue pursuing an increase to insurance requirements, but only if the Department of Transportation secretary reports to the Appropriations Committee about the effects of raising the financial responsibility. The report would have to include an assessment of crashes that exceed the damage limits and assess the effects of higher insurance premiums on large and small motor carriers.”While hardly a glowing endorsement for increasing insurance requirements, the Senate version of HR2577 does not prohibit an increase as the House version does.” – See more at: http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryId=29323#.VZUr1_lViko
  • See what I found out on estimated liability insurance rates if the minimum is raised: http://annaleahmary.com/2015/06/uncovering-new-information-on-trucking-minimum-liability-insurance-rates/

And while I’m at it, here are some other things going on with truck safety:

  1. “Tractor-trailer hitches could be faulty, 6,000 may be in use”  http://bigstory.ap.org/article/b9a33284cb604dc79f7e7d8ecd3c18ef/tractor-trailer-hitches-could-be-faulty-6000-may-be-use
  2. “Senator Goes After Reform of FMCSA” http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryID=29305#.VZUqSPlViko     Comment by Steve Bixler
    “I applaud Sen. Fischer for her work on this bill. I have been saying for years, and hopefully it can be added to this or another bill soon, that what we need is a panel of veteran truck drivers, not company executives or industry stakeholders, but the actual guy who has his butt in the seat everyday, to oversee and review all existing FMCSA Regs, and also to be a part of all new regulation writing, so we can finally get rules and regs that are actually about safety and not money.”

Something’s wrong with this picture! When will it end?

Let’s make sure that it is not just about $.

And let’s not just point our finger at someone else to take the blame. Let’s figure out what we can do to end this senseless, tragic heartache happening on our roads. Let’s work together.

We Rescue Jesus Saves 018

Safety Is Not A Priority

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