DOT Issues NPRM on Trailer and Semitrailer Underride Protection

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a notice of proposed rulemaking that focuses on upgrading the federal motor vehicle safety standards that address underride protection against vehicle crashes into the rear of trailers and semitrailers.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a notice of proposed rulemaking that focuses on upgrading the federal motor vehicle safety standards that address underride protection against vehicle crashes into the rear of trailers and semitrailers. Earlier this year, NHTSA published a notice of proposed rulemaking on rear underride crash protection and visibility conspicuity of single-unit trucks, according to its news release.

"A key component of DOT's safety mission is ensuring that trucking, an essential element in our transportation system, operates not just efficiently, but safely," U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said. "Today's proposal is another important step in that effort."

NHTSA proposes to require more robust rear impact guards on trailers and semitrailers. This would improve underride protection in higher speed crashes than current rear impact guards are built to withstand.

"Robust trailer rear impact guards can significantly reduce the risk of death or injury to vehicle occupants in the event of a crash into the rear of a trailer or semitrailer," said NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind. "We're always looking at ways to safeguard the motoring public, and today's announcement moves us forward in our mission."

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