Another NHTSA Research Plan Released

Updating its 2009-2011 agenda, the agency is now out with a Final Vehicle Safety Rulemaking and Research Priority Plan 2010-2013.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has released its Final Vehicle Safety Rulemaking and Research Priority Plan 2010-2013, which is an update of a 2009-2011 plan issued more than a year ago. That previous plan (likewise available at www.regulations.gov in Docket No. NHTSA-2009-0108) was warmly received by stakeholders including the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers and the American Trucking Associations (ATA), both of which submitted comments in August 2009.

They and other stakeholders said they appreciated seeing a roadmap of NHTSA's priorities, which include programs and projects to prevent rollover crashes and increase fuel economy. For example, ATA said it favored fuel economy standards if they are "technically feasible and also economically sound," and it also supported NHTSA's plan to develop performance requirements or heavy-vehicle electronic data recorders.

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers urged NHTSA to estimate the societal benefit for each program it has identified to help it prioritize them.

NHTSA's latest update indicates it is currently developing a longer-term motor vehicle safety strategic plan that will encompass 2014 to 2020. Both the 2009-2011 plan and the 2010-2013 plan include 56 priority or significant projects.

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