Lois Durso traveled from her home in Florida and I traveled from my home in North Carolina to Washington, DC, to attend a Senate Subcommittee on Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrasturcture, Safety, & Security Hearing: “Continuing to Improve Truck Safety on our Nation’s Highways”.
Union Station, Washington, DC
A real-life underride death prevented by a new rear underride guard: New Stoughton Rear Underride Guard Proven Successful In Real Life Crash; Driver Survives
A real-life rear underride tragedy in a crash into an old, weak, and ineffective rear underride guard: Carroll deputy killed in crash
Seems like a no-brainer to me to require that all of the 15.5 million trucks on the road have the best possible underride protection.
Note: How many trucks are on the road?
“2016 Top 25 North American Truck-Trailer & Chassis OEMs
Successful side guard crash test at 33-34 mph — one year after we helped Aaron Kiefer with his first one. No Passenger Compartment Intrusion (PCI). If this had been a real-life crash, the people in the car would not have experienced deadly, severe underride of the side of the truck.
Lengthier video shows the construction of the side guard, as well as the prep work and aftermath clean-up by Aaron’s volunteer crew:
Thank you, Aaron, for your confidence that this is a solvable problem — and your commitment to follow this project through to its life-saving goal.
Aaron Kiefer’s website: Collision Safety Consulting
I found out which crash the new Stoughton rear underride guard was in. Here is a photo of a recent crash on the New York State Thruway.
Photo from Syracuse.com crash story: At least 3 people injured in pileup on NYS Thruway in Warners
Imagine. The new guard did what it was supposed to do! There was no Passenger Compartment Intrusion. The driver in this car survived.
Thank you, Lord. Thank you, Stoughton. Thank you, Trucking Industry for responding to the research and our pleas. Thank you, everyone who has supported this effort.
Here are the crash tests done by IIHS on the 5 major trailer manufacturers who have voluntarily improved their rear underride guard:
2 Moms Collaborate With Innovative & Insightful Truck Industry Leaders
Research and development for ways to protect road users from deadly underride could and should be part of 21st Century Truck Partnership efforts and the millions of dollars being poured into the Super Truck project.
Here’s the information which I have pulled together on side underride:
I have shared this information with multiple individuals and organizations in Washington, DC (DOE, DOT, The Hill, and truck industry leaders). I am trying to organize a meeting, with them all, for when I am in DC next week. It needs to be discussed and moved on quickly. Lives are at stake.
Seems like a no-brainer to me.
I just noticed that the Department of Energy employees have an Office of Ombudsman. It reminded me that Vulnerable Victims of Vehicle Violence do not have a National Traffic Safety Ombudsman to advocate on their behalf.
I aim to do my part in advertising this Rear Underride Guard Retrofit Kit from Stoughton Trailers. Owners of a Stoughton Trailer can buy this new part and make their truck better able to prevent deadly rear underride by passenger vehicles.
Why would someone not do this — for $500-600?
By the way, I have also heard that Great Dane will make their new & improved rear underride guard available as a retrofit solution on their trailers.
Please help me get the word out.
I have seen quite a few underride guard crash tests in the last two years. It’s not something I ever planned to do and it is never easy. Some of them ended in severe underride and it always shakes me up at how quickly life can change forever. In a matter of seconds.
The crash test I viewed at IIHS on January 19, 2017, was particularly hard to watch. It was a test of Great Dane’s newly designed rear underride guard. A Great Dane trailer was what our Crown Vic collided with on May 4, 2013 — with tragic results.
Demonstration of Improvement in Rear Underride Guard; Great Dane Trailers Crash Test at IIHS, January 19, 2017:
They have proven that creative minds can come up with better underride protection. The cars are damaged from the crash, but underride and Passenger Compartment Intrusion (PCI) are prevented. Lives are preserved.
Here is a Youtube video, posted by Cars-Trucks TV, which demonstrates the effectiveness of the improved rear underride guards designed by five of the major trailer manufacturers — Great Dane, Manac, Stoughton, Vanguard, and Wabash — from 2013 to 2017. They received a Toughguard award from IIHS — as announced on March 1, 2017.
Last year, about this time, I posted this: March Historically a Momentous Month for Truck Underride Safety Advocacy; Beware the Ides of March!
Here is an excerpt: It is my fervent hope that, when March 2017 rolls around, we will be celebrating a vastly improved federal standard–enthusiastically and immediately adopted by the trucking industry–for all-around-the-truck underride protection at higher speeds, including now-exempt single unit trucks as well as retrofitted to existing trucks and trailers.
If this seems like a costly venture, try comparing it to the price paid by thousands upon thousands of individuals and families during the past decades of ineffective underride protection–added to the countless precious people who will be saved in the years to come from tragic, preventable death by underride.
We aren’t finished yet, but we have come a long ways!