FMCSA, NHTSA should study side underride guards, GAO says

From Transport Topics.

A federal government watchdog study has recommended that federal regulators take steps to collect better data on underride guard crashes and share information with police departments in identifying underride crashes.

“Although reported underride crash fatalities represent a small percentage of total traffic fatalities, they present a greater risk of fatalities or serious injuries,” said a report released this month by the Government Accountability Office.

An underride guard is designed to withstand the force of a crash to prevent a car from sliding under a truck. From 2008-17 there were an average of 219 fatalities in truck-involved underride crashes annually, about 5.4% of the total 4,015 truck-involved crash fatalities each year, GAO said.

Current federal requirements issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration exist for the installation of rear guards on most large trucks. NHTSA has proposed strengthening rear guard requirements for trailers, but estimates about 95% of all newly manufactured trailers already meet the stronger requirements that exist in Canada.

See the complete article from Transport Topics online.