The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance is announcing plans to collect data on rear impact guards, also known as underride guards, on trailers and semi-trailers in the United States.
During the week of Aug. 27-31, each state’s commercial motor vehicle law enforcement department may select one day of that week to capture data on rear impact guards, according to a news release issued by CVSA on Monday.
The data collection is prompted in part by a bill in the U.S. Senate that aims to reduce the number of preventable deaths and injuries caused by underride crashes.
Last year, the Stop Underrides Act of 2017 was introduced by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., and Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. CVSA received a letter from Senators Gillibrand and Rubio on Feb. 8, asking the Alliance to consider updating its current North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria to add rear underride guards.
The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has previously voiced its opposition to the bill, claiming a mandate for underride guards would force truckers to “install costly devices that have no proven record of enhancing safety.”
The release states that CVSA is gathering data on rear impact guards “to be well informed and properly equipped to assess and address rear impact safety requirements on CMVs.”
“(CVSA) is often asked to weigh in on policies related to safety and enforcement and to provide guidance to enforcement, industry and policy makers,” the release states. “As a data-driven organization, any decisions to support or oppose an issue must be supported by data analysis and strategic planning.”
The data collected during the Rear Impact Guard Check safety initiative will be reported to the CVSA Vehicle Committee at the CVSA Annual Conference and Exhibition in Kansas City, Mo., in September. Based on that data, the committee will make a recommendation to the CVSA Board of Directors on how to proceed with this important issue.
"The Alliance uses data to support its decision-making process," said CVSA President Capt. Christopher Turner with the Kansas Highway Patrol. "Using quality, verifiable data and analytics allows the Alliance to assess and analyze information that can be used to support our stance on various issues, topics and propositions."
“It's important to note that inspectors will be conducting business as usual and will not be doing anything differently during Rear Impact Guard Check, other than filling out a data collection form that they'll submit to CVSA," Capt. Christopher Turner, CVSA president stated in the release. “Drivers and motor carriers should not be impacted by this initiative.”
Rear Impact Guard Check is a one-time, one-day CVSA enforcement initiative. Data on rear-impact guards may be collected during Level I, II, IV or V Inspections.
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