The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has unveiled a new plan to significantly reduce truck related crash fatalities by 2016. To do this, the agency plans to develop new credentialing and driver safety standards, create new programs designed to weed out high-risk motor carriers and expand its regulatory reach to include shippers and receivers.
Key points of the FMCA 'five-year plan' include:
- Stepping up efforts to only allow qualified drivers behind the wheel of commercial vehicles
- Preventing poor carriers from operating under new names
- Addressing safety issues in more sectors of the industry
- Improving the effectiveness and efficiency of rule enforcement
- Reducing unsafe or risky commercial driver and carrier behaviors
The goal of these steps, according to the plan, is the creation of a "Safety 1st Culture," which will focus on all groups involved in transportation: shippers, receivers, brokers and freight forwarders. Since the FMCSA does not yet have regulatory control over shippers and receivers, and would need to seek congressional legislative action to change that fact, the agency instead plans to create "the safest commercial motor vehicle industry (by) focusing on outreach, oversight and enforcement resources."
While road accident fatalities have steadily fallen over the past few years, fatalities in accidents involving large commercial vehicles have risen. Clearly, the FMCSA is correct about the need for a reduction in unsafe industry practices that allow for these fatal crashes to occur. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving an unsafe commercial vehicle operator, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact a truck accident attorney from Arnold & Itkin today for a free and confidential consultation.