Tag Archives: side guards

In underride, first point of contact with the truck is your windshield, then your head.

Just yesterday, as Isaac and I were nearing the end of our road trip from the Atlantic coast to the Pacific coast, Isaac said, “Maybe next time we make this trip, the trucks will look different and be a whole lot safer.”
 
I am very grateful that we are seeing significant progress in underride protection. And the gathering of almost 100 people at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety on August 29 has helped to continue the work of many people to make that possible.
 
Dawn King, president of the Truck Safety Coalition, with photos and video, describes the recent Underride Roundtable at the IIHS and why it was so important. Because a truck underride crash can happen to anyone. To AnnaLeah & Mary. To you or somebody you care about.
 
As Dawn explained,
“When you slide under a trailer your car’s safety features aren’t activated because your front bumper doesn’t hit anything. The first part of your car to come in contact with the trailer is your windshield. And then your head.”
 
“Someday soon the results of lots of peoples dreams will come to fruition. And it will happen because people from all walks of life sat down and talked. Trailer manufacturers, truck companies, safety experts, devastated families, government officials.”
 
Just what I’ve been hoping for:
 
After our crash, Jerry wrote to numerous trailer manufacturing companies asking them to voluntarily step up their underride guard standards. We got some positive response and stirred up interest in companies — to whom he also wrote — who purchase trailers–enlightening them as well. One of the manufacturers, Great Dane, invited us to tour their Research & Design Center on June 25, 2014.
 
Afterwards, I posted this: Underride Guards: Can we “sit down at the table together” and work this out? with this video: “Underride Guards: Now What?” to summarize what I saw as the frustrating lack of progress on improving underride guards and the seeming lack of communication among the various responsible parties with the authority to do something about it.
 
Of course, we weren’t the only ones frustrated with the inaction on what seems to be a drastically-needed change. When we took our 11,000+ signed petitions to DC in May 2014, we met with the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). At that time, they put it like this: “It is safer to run into a brick wall than into the back of a truck.” Yet, seemingly, nothing was being done about it. So we helped to organize the first and then the second Underride Roundtable.
 
Now something is being done about it.
 
We don’t have to let this continue to happen. We can do something to prevent deadly truck underride crashes. I’ve put together some ways that YOU, too, can help make trucks safer: http://annaleahmary.com/how-you-can-help/
 
See more video and media coverage here: Media Coverage of the Second Underride Roundtable

Media Coverage of the Second Underride Roundtable

The Second Underride Roundtable was held at the IIHS Vehicle Research Center in Ruckersville, Virginia, on August 29, 2017. Read media reports of this successful gathering of various stakeholders to work together to improve comprehensive underride protection:

  1. Insurance Institute Conducts Successful Test of Side Underguard Protection http://www.ttnews.com/articles/insurance-institute-conducts-sucessful-test-side-underguard-protection 
  2.  Side guard on semitrailer prevents underride in 40 mph test http://www.iihs.org/iihs/news/desktopnews/side-guard-on-semitrailer-prevents-underride-in-40-mph-test
  3. Advocates for Truck Safety Hold Underride Roundtable and Crash Test at IIHS http://www.nbc29.com/story/36245364/advocates-for-truck-safety-hold-underride-roundtable-and-crash-test-at-iihs
  4. Grieving parents break down after crash test shows life-saving technology http://www.wusa9.com/news/investigations/underrides/grieving-parents-break-down-after-crash-test-shows-technology-that-could-have-saved-their-kids/469019354
  5. “Hall of Crashes” may hold the key to safer cars and roads  http://www.wusa9.com/news/investigations/underrides/hall-of-crashes-may-hold-the-key-to-safer-cars-and-roads/466377388
  6. Once again, Eric Flack and WUSA 9 continued an in-depth investigation of the truck underride problem & solution with insight, energy, & intent. Facebook Live at the Roundtable Crash Test:  https://www.facebook.com/marianne.karth/posts/10214194153315951

How You Can Help Us Get Comprehensive Underride Protection On Trucks

I know that I can’t be the only person in this country (or the planet for that matter) who would like to see trucks made safer to drive around. So, for anyone else who would like to help get comprehensive underride protection on trucks in the U.S., here are some ideas:  http://annaleahmary.com/how-you-can-help/

 

See a side guard installed on a truck: “It’s What’s Behind the Skirt that Saves Lives™”

Andy Young, attorney and CDL-holder, narrates this video in which an Angel Wing side guard system is installed on a tractor-trailer. He explains in detail why a side guard is so important and how it can save lives.

Take a behind the scenes look at an installation of AngelWing, AirFlow Deflector’s Side Underride Protection Device. Narrated by Andy Young, follow him as he explains what is the problem and what can be done to save lives. It’s What’s Behind the Skirt that Saves Lives™.

Thanks, Andy!

Together we are making the roads safer!

Underride crash in NY this week kills 4; Ball’s in your court, Congress, to end these preventable tragedies.

Yet another tragic side underride crash occurred in New York this week. Could crash avoidance technology have prevented the collisions of two cars into the side of a jack-knifed milk tanker? Perhaps.

Could comprehensive underride protection — including side guards — have prevented the tragic outcome of 4 lives abruptly ended? Probably.

When will we take action to mandate and install effective underride protection around every part of large trucks to end these preventable tragedies? The ball’s in your court, Congress.

Let’s get The Roya, AnnaLeah and Mary Comprehensive Underride Protection Act of 2017 introduced and passed. Post haste. No more of this senseless highway carnage.

Ready-to-introduce bill:  RAMCUP Draft 15 with Cover

 

 

RAMCUP Capitol Hill Briefing, June 15, 9-noon: Be Part of the Solution to STOP Truck Underride Tragedies

2 Moms are returning to DC with a week full of meetings on The Hill — including meetings with 13 House Transportation Committee Member Offices. Then, on Thursday, June 15, Lois Durso and I will be hosting a Capitol Hill Briefing on the Roya, AnnaLeah & Mary Comprehensive Underride Protection Act of 2017 (RAMCUP) from 9 a.m. to noon. Our goal is to get Congress on board with the importance of this doable plan to end preventable truck underride tragedies.

How You Can Help: We will be providing refreshments to those attending the Briefing and would appreciate donations (not tax deductible) to help us cover the costs. If you can help in this way, please email me at marianne@annaleahmary.com or PM me.

Manufacturer of Side Guards Offers Incentive to City Truck Fleets In Response to Recent Pedestrian Fatality

I received the following email after a pedestrian died under the side of a garbage truck in NYC:

Hello, everyone.

Not sure if you saw this accident in NYC this week.  A very sad and preventable story.  http://nypost.com/2017/05/17/horrified-bystanders-watch-as-woman-is-killed-by-garbage-truck/

To this end and to help with the cause, Airflow Deflector will now be offering an additional shared credit of $500.00 towards the purchase and installation of our side guards before the end of June, 2017.   The credit is optional and each certified garage is optional.

In addition, Airflow Deflector is prepared to offer a finance package to those who want to install side guards on their fleet under this program.

Here is our post with more details   http://airflowdeflector.com/subvention_bic/

Thank you for sharing.

Robert Martineau

Toll-Free Line | 866-717-8737 extension 634

www.airflowdeflector.com

 

Question for the ATA: Is it necessary to choose EITHER crash avoidance OR occupant protection — not BOTH?

After the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) released their news about side underride crash testing, I began searching online for media reports on the results of their dynamic crash testing of a collision into the side of a trailer with and without a guard.

Among other things, I found —  in at least one article — explanations from the IIHS and a reaction from the American Trucking Associations (ATA):

“These guards can reduce the likelihood the car will go underneath the trailer and therefore save some lives,” said David Zuby, chief research officer for IIHS. “We wanted to show it is possible to provide a counter-measure.”
 
Since 1952, the federal government has required underride guards for the back of trucks as protection in rear-end collisions.
 
It does not have a similar rule for safety systems like the one tested by IIHS, a relatively new device known as an AngelWing side underride guard.
 
The crash protection “has several complicating factors,” said Sean McNally, a spokesman for the American Trucking Association.
 
Side guards add significant weight and can cause cracks in the frame rails of trailers, creating another safety issue, McNally said.
 

“Avoiding the crash in the first place is even more effective than trying to manage the impact of a crash,” he said. 

Read more here: ‘These crashes are catastrophic.’ The deadly impact of truck underride crashes, Patrick Terpstra, Cox Media Group Washington News Bureau, May 10, 2017

Sean McNally, as spokesman for the American Trucking Associations (ATA), is also quoted in another recent article:

The American Trucking Associations said the industry hasn’t come to an agreement on guardrails because they require trade-offs, including added weight. Side guardrails require stiffer trailers that can develop cracks in their frames, which presents another safety risk, ATA spokesman Sean McNally said.

McNally said the trucking industry wants to avoid crashes in the first place, and is supporting efforts to deploy safety technology like automatic emergency braking and forward collision warning systems. Electronic logging devices, which track truckers’ driving and will be required by the end of this year, will also help to prevent crashes, he said.

“It’s important to recognize that all crashes are tragedies, but we also need to recognize that these guards are collision mitigation — and not collision avoidance — equipment and ATA’s primary safety goal is to prevent crashes,” McNally said. Safety group says truck guard rails could prevent deaths, Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto writer, Detroit, May 10, 2017

I have some questions for Sean McNally, as a representative of the ATA, but also for anyone else who might share his stated concerns:

  1. Have you seen the specifications for the AngelWing side guards, including weight and installation requirements?
  2. Have you spoken with (Perry Ponder) the designer and (Airflow Deflector) the manufacturer of the AngelWing side guard? I have.
  3. Have you considered that concerns about added weight can be addressed innovatively? For example, Stoughton Trailers was able to creatively engineer a way to offer stronger rear guards at no added cost or weight penalty to their customers (a guard which, I might add, has already saved at least one life!). Likewise, side guards used in conjunction with side skirts can offer fuel savings/efficiency to trucking companies.
  4. Upon what are you basing your conclusion that the Angel Wing side guards require stiffer trailers — which you say can cause cracks in the frame rails of trailers?
  5. You said, “Avoiding the crash in the first place is even more effective than trying to manage the impact of a crash.”  I assume that you are inferring that crash avoidance technology is more effective at saving lives than underride protection. Do you draw the same conclusion about other safety countermeasures, including air bags, seat belts, and crush zones in cars, as well as rear underride guards? Are you suggesting that it is not advisable to use available (and/or to develop new) safety countermeasures to protect occupants of passenger vehicles, as well as pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcyclists?
  6. Is it necessary to choose either one or the other strategy to save lives, i.e., either crash avoidance or occupant protection? Why would we not proceed with both/and?
  7. I would also like you to clarify your statement that “ATA’s primary safety goal is to prevent crashes.” Just what does that mean anyway? Does that mean it is your only safety goal? Does that mean that you are unwilling to take whatever steps are necessary/possible in order to preserve life and health when a crash does occur?
  8. You made the statement that “all crashes are tragedies.” What is your definition of a tragedy? I think that it must differ from my definition of a tragedy. I do not agree that every crash is a tragedy. A “totaled” vehicle is not a tragedy. A life ended or a life permanently altered by physical injuries — especially when that outcome could have been prevented — that is a tragedy.
  9. I was in the horrific truck crash which killed my daughters, AnnaLeah and Mary. Because the truck’s rear underride guard was not effective in preventing underride, the truck entered my daughters’ occupant space and caused them to suffer fatal injuries. But, unlike them, I survived because the truck did not enter my occupant space.
  10. It was not the initial collision of our car with the truck which caused my daughters to die. It was underride which caused the “Second Collision” of the truck with their innocent, unprotected bodies.
  11. Therefore, to say that every crash is a tragedy is a misleading statement. Words are important. Words have power. Let’s make sure that our words are accurate — based on facts and truth — because those words may well shape the beliefs and decisions of those who have the authority to take actions which could prevent future tragedies.

Really, sorting out this decades-old dilemma can be whittled down to answering a simple question. Will we choose to:

  • continue to allow underride deaths?

OR

  • act responsibly and compassionately to prevent these tragedies?

It is my fervent hope that any confusion or misconceptions will be appropriately addressed and cleared up and that the excellent research, undertaken by the IIHS to verify the underride problem and its solutions, will aid us all in working out together a more humane way to protect vulnerable road users.

2 Moms, Sick & Tired of Waiting, Draft Truck Underride Legislation

Why COMPREHENSIVE Underride Protection Legislation?

 

Hard-to-watch Video Footage of IIHS Side Underride Crash Testing

Watch the video footage of this historic IIHS side underride crash testing at 35 mph on March 30 and 31, 2017 — with and without a side guard. It speaks for itself.

Now decide what we should do about this deadly but preventable public health problem.

The Roya, AnnaLeah & Mary Comprehensive Underride Protection Bill calls for ALL kinds of underride tragedies to come to an end! RAMCUP Draft 9 Comprehensive Underride Protection Act of 2017

Share this video with your U.S. legislators; tell them to take action!

Find your U.S. Senators here:  https://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

Find your U.S. Representatives here: http://www.house.gov/representatives/

See the IIHS news release & new truck crash fatalities data here: IIHS Proves That Side Underride Crashes Are Deadly But Preventable: Seeing Is Believing

 

IIHS Proves That Side Underride Crashes Are Deadly But Preventable: Seeing Is Believing

On March 30, Jerry and I witnessed a crash test at 35 mph of a car into the side of a trailer  — with an AngelWing side guard installed — at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) Vehicle Research Center in Ruckersville, Virginia. The guard was successful in stopping the car from riding under the trailer, i.e., passenger occupants would have survived.

The next day, another car was crashed at 35 mph into the side of a trailer — with a side skirt but no side guard. The car went under the trailer. Occupants would not have survived.

See it for yourself because Seeing Is Believing:

This one may be tough to watch:

The IIHS released the news today:

Note this quote from David Zuby, IIHS Chief Research Officer:
 

“Our tests and research show that side underride guards have the potential to save lives,” says David Zuby, the Institute’s executive vice president and chief research officer. “We think a mandate for side underride guards on large trucks has merit, especially as crash deaths continue to rise on our roads.”

The wheels on a tractor and trailer offer some underride protection if a passenger vehicle were to strike them. With no side underride guard, only 28 percent of a 53-foot trailer’s length would be protected from underride. With the AngelWing side underride guard in place, 62 percent of the trailer’s length would be protected. Side underride guards can be retrofitted to existing semitrailers.

The IIHS also released data from their recent in-depth analysis of NHTSA FARS truck crash fatality information:

Passenger vehicle occupant deaths in 2-vehicle crashes with tractor-trailers, 2005-15

IIHS analysis of NHTSA FARS Data

Year

Passenger vehicle

strikes side

of tractor-trailer

Passenger vehicle

strikes rear

of tractor-trailer

All crashes

with tractor-trailers

2015

301

292

1,542

2014

308

220

1,409

2013

274

213

1,377

2012

306

216

1,376

2011

246

189

1,362

2010

319

181

1,417

2009

269

174

1,237

2008

290

180

1,526

2007

417

218

1,771

2006

394

260

1,853

2005

441

258

1,932

Per Matt Brumbelow and Eric Teoh, IIHS, May 10, 2017

March 30, 2017, AngelWing Crash Test: Lois Durso, John Lannen, Andy Young, Marianne Karth, Jerry Karth, Martin Fleury, Perry Ponder, Mariella Amoros, Robert Martineau

If this many people were dying from an automotive defect and we knew it and we knew how to fix it, would we stand by and let those deaths continue?! Maybe that is the wrong question to ask because those kinds of deadly defects have been neglected as well. But the point is,

What will we choose to do at this crossroads?

Continue to allow underride deaths?

OR

Act responsibly to prevent these tragedies?

This is not the first time we have witnessed successful prevention of deadly side underride:

Let’s mandate/install comprehensive underride protection — all around all large trucks — now! RAMCUP Draft 9 Comprehensive Underride Protection Act of 2017

Stay tuned for results of the March 30 & 31 Side Underride/Guard Crash Tests at IIHS

We were privileged to attend the first crash test into the side of a semi-trailer at IIHS on March 30. The AngelWing side guard successfully prevented underride and Passenger Compartment Intrusion (PCI).

In other words, the people in the car would have been saved from catastrophic injuries!

The IIHS also crashed a car at 35 mph into the side of a trailer without a side guard. Stay tuned for the devastating results of that crash compared to the amazing difference with a side guard.

Underride Roundtable Planning Group members who attended the March 30, 2017, IIHS side guard crash test: Lois Durso, John Lannen, Andy Young, Marianne Karth, Jerry Karth, Perry Ponder, Robert Martineau

Previous 2012 side guard video from Perry Ponder, with his AngelWing invention: