New commercial vehicles over 10,000 pounds would be required to have automatic emergency braking systems and stability control systems to mitigate the frequency and severity of rear-end crashes, under a new proposed rule from two Department of Transportation agencies.
According to HDT, the rule announced by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration on June 22 in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), would apply only to newly manufactured vehicles. It would not require a retrofit of existing vehicles.
An AEB system uses multiple sensor technologies that work together to detect a vehicle in a crash-imminent situation. The system automatically applies the brakes if the driver has not done so, or, if needed, applies more braking force to supplement the driver’s braking.
According to NHTSA statistics, there are approximately 60,000 rear-end crashes a year in which the heavy vehicle is the striking vehicle. Once implemented, NHTSA estimates the proposed rule will prevent 19,118 crashes, save 155 lives, and prevent 8,814 injuries annually.
The proposal would require the technology to work at speeds ranging between 6-mph and roughly 50-mph situations.
It would change Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations to require the electronic stability control and AEB systems to be on during vehicle operation. And it would require the ESC and AEB systems to be inspected and maintained in accordance with federal safety regulations part 396.3.
The American Trucking Associations welcomed the announcement.
“ATA has long supported the use of AEB on all new vehicles,” said ATA Vice President of Safety Policy Dan Horvath in a statement. “With NHTSA’s recent regulation requiring AEB on all new passenger vehicles, this proposal for heavy-duty trucks is timely and appropriate.
“The trucking industry supports the use of proven safety technology like automatic emergency braking,” Horvath said. “We look forward to reviewing this proposal from NHTSA and FMCSA and working with them as it is implemented.”
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