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February 2016 Archives

Trucking Accidents, Exemptions and Roadside Inspections

Roadside inspections are conducted to ensure that commercial trucks and truck drivers are complying with Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations and Hazardous Materials Regulations. According to the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance, roadside inspectors are facing undue burdens in performing their duties. The CVSA wrote a letter to the FMCSA about concerns that the number of exemptions handed out to drivers and trucking companies is complicating the roadside inspection process.

Preventing Auto Accidents with an Airline Safety Model

The U.S. Department of Transportation includes 12 agencies dedicated to various transportation concerns. Among those agencies are the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The Secretary of the USDOT, Anthony Foxx, is pushing the NHTSA to use FAA programs and culture as a model for the future. The NHTSA has been beset with controversy after two years of record highs in vehicle recalls and high profile auto defect problems. Mr. Foxx has referred to the new direction as a "proactive safety culture."

Call for New Rules to Prevent Airplane Fires

An investigation into a 2011 Asiana Airlines fire prompted the National Transportation Safety Board to call for stricter rules about the transport of lithium-ion batteries. The batteries in question are used in a number of applications, including cell phones, laptops and cars. The rechargeable batteries can heat up and ignite if they become damaged or are exposed to extreme temperatures. Proper storage and packaging of these batteries is necessary to combat the risk of fire.

Distracted Driving Accidents and Cultural Change

Among the ten items listed on the National Transportation Safety Board's Most Wanted List for 2016 is a call to disconnect from deadly distractions. Distracted driving has been identified as a large and growing problem among highway safety experts. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 3,179 died in fatal accidents in 2014 due to distracted drivers. State Farm reports that nearly 30 percent of survey respondents acknowledged using the Internet while driving in 2015. That figure is up from 13 percent in 2009.

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