OOIDA: Misguided Speed Limiter Regulation Will Cost Innocent Lives - Restricted Truck Speeds Mean Rolling Roadblocks, Road Rage
Washington, DC… - The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) has released the below statement in response to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) announced intention to mandate that commercial trucks have speed limiting devices set to 68 miles-per-hour (MPH).
“Forcing trucks to speeds below the flow of traffic increases interactions between vehicles and leads to more crashes. It’ll be like an obstacle course for passenger vehicle drivers on our highways. This isn’t safe for truckers, but especially not safe for passenger vehicle drivers sharing the road with trucks. The unintended consequences of this misguided regulation will cost innocent lives,” said OOIDA President Todd Spencer.
Speed limiting devices on large trucks have been proven to create unnecessary congestion and dangerous speed differentials among vehicles. This results in higher rates of vehicle interaction and higher crash rates. The FMCSA rulemaking process was initially announced in April 2022. The agency has received more than 15,000 comments on the proposal, the majority from truck drives expressing opposition.
Earlier this year, Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) introduced the Deregulating Restrictions on Interstate Vehicles and Eighteen-Wheelers (DRIVE) Act (S. 2671) to prohibit the FMCSA from promulgating any rule or regulation mandating speed limiters on large commercial motor vehicles (CMVs). An identical House of Representatives version of the legislation (H.R. 3039) was also introduced earlier this year by Congressman Josh Brecheen (R-OK).
“Montana truckers play an essential role in the Treasure State’s economy and ensuring they stay safe on the job is one of my top priorities,” Senator Daines said. “Overreaching, out-of-touch D.C. mandates oftentimes make truckers’ jobs harder and can even put their lives at risk—I’ll keep fighting for Montana truckers and against big government.”
“This overreach by the Biden Administration has the potential to negatively impact all facets of the agricultural and trucking industries. I know from experience driving a semi while hauling equipment, and years spent hauling livestock, that the flow of traffic set by state law is critical for safety instead of an arbitrary one-size-fits-all speed limit imposed by some bureaucrat sitting at his desk in Washington, D.C.,” said Congressman Josh Brecheen. “This rule will add one more needless burden and Congress must stop it. For example, if a rancher is transporting cattle in a trailer across state lines, under this rule, the federal government would require a speed limiter device when above 26,000 lbs. Out-of-control bureaucrats are trying to impose ridiculous regulations on Americans who are trying to make ends meet.”
“The Montana Trucking Association would like to thank Senator Steve Daines for leading the efforts to inhibit FMCSA from implementing a requirement that trucks over 26,000 pounds have speed limiters. In rural states like Montana, a truck speed limiter will create additional speed differences between trucks and cars, which does not enhance the safety of our highways. Trucks should not be treated differently than cars by governing their speed. Thank you, Senator Daines, for promoting the decision to let the individual states (who know their roads best), establish the proper speed limit for cars and trucks.” – Duane Williams, CEO, Montana Trucking Association
“A mandated speed limiter rule on trucks would cause rolling traffic jams on many interstate highways, where there’s varying terrain or when trying to pass two or more governed trucks. The resulting speed differentials between governed trucks and private vehicles will reduce highway safety. Thus, the National Association of Small Trucking Companies heartily supports the DRIVE Act. NASTC is very pleased to see this bill introduced in the Senate, and we thank Senator Daines for sponsoring the DRIVE Act,” said David Owen, President, National Association of Small Trucking Companies.
“Cattle producers have full faith in our highly trained livestock haulers. Adding another piece of government-mandated technology to their trucks will make them less prepared to adjust to road conditions while actually making the roads less safe. NCBA is a strong supporter of the DRIVE Act, and we appreciate Senator Daines supporting legislation that is backed by livestock haulers and makes the roads safer,” said National Cattlemen’s Beef Association President Todd Wilkinson.
“The Towing and Recovery Association of America, Inc. (TRAA) thanks Senator Daines for his support in opposition of speed limiting devices. We appreciate that he shares our concerns regarding responder and motorist safety. Any proposal that prevents operators from adhering to state Move Over Laws, limits their ability to react to roadway hazards, or has the potential to increase interactions and crashes is dangerous to responders and the motoring public,” said Cynthia J. Martineau, Executive Director of the Towing and Recovery Association of America.
Organizations Opposed to the Speed Limiter Rulemaking
* American Farm Bureau Federation
* Livestock Marketing Association
* Montana Trucking Association
* National Association of Small Trucking Companies
* National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA)
* Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA)
* Towing and Recovery Association of America.
* Western States Trucking Association