I heard back tonight from David Friedman, deputy director of the NHTSA. (See previous post for my email to him earlier today. http://annaleahmary.com/2014/12/trucking-fatalities-increase-for-fourth-year-in-a-row-hours-of-service-rules-rolled-back/ )
This is what he said, “Thank you for reaching out.
“We are heartened to see overall progress, but as Secretary Foxx said today on a call with reporters, ‘32,719 lives were lost on our roads in 2013. And even one is far too many.’
“And as I noted, ‘As we work each day at NHTSA, these are tragic reminders of the importance of our efforts and how we must build on our many successes and continue to work even harder to protect the American public.’
“And yes, fatalities involving large trucks is one of the areas of disappointment because we saw an increase. We are working hard on multiple steps to turn that around, from electronic stability control, speed limiters, vehicle-to-vehicle technology and more. And, as you know, another area we are trying to make progress is on underride guards.”
On the matter of underride guards, he said, “The schedule is for an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) on rear impact protection for straight trucks to tentatively move forward around the beginning of the year and a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on rear impact protection for trailers to tentatively move forward around the middle of the year.”
Here is the recent Bloomberg News article on our story & underride guards: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-12-16/dead-girls-mom-says-100-truck-fix-may-have-saved-them.html
I hope that 2015 will bring vast improvement in preventing ghastly deaths from underride.