Road Safe America Timeline

Significant Milestones in Road Safe America History

2015

January

  • Steve Owings addresses US Conference of Mayors’ annual meeting in Washington, DC as part of a Panel on Transportation. The panel included the US Secretary of Transportation, the honorable Anthony Foxx.

February

  • RSA joins other safety groups petitioning NHTSA to require collision avoidance technology on heavy commercial trucks

March

  • RSA launches American Highway Hero trucker recognition program

December

  • Final rule mandating use of Electronic Logging Devices becomes law.

2014

June

  • US Conference of Mayors issues a Resolution calling for speed governor-setting to be required on our heaviest trucks, during their Dallas, TX conference
  • Celebrity Tracy Morgan badly hurt in rear-end truck crash bringing spotlight to driving hours of professional truckers

November

  • RSA Facebook Fan pages reaches 10,000 Fans

December

  • Lame Duck Congress reverses the part of the 34-hour restart provision for truckers, which had reduced their maximum work hours from 82 to 70 per week. They can now legally work 82 hours in a week again.
  • Joint Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee / Medical Review Board recommendation for eliminating exception allowing truck drivers to use Schedule II opioids while driving.

2013

January

  • Steve Owings begins tenure as Chairman of Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee (MCSAC)

July

  • 10th Annive

rsary of the founding of Road Safe America

September

  • Steve Owings leads a safety advocacy meeting with new DOT Secretary Foxx to discuss Safety Agenda

2012

February

  • Both the House and Senate debate long-term transportation funding bills. House draft included provisions for heavy trucks up to 97,000 pounds but was replaced via our efforts with several safety groups with a study of the topics
  • ATA sues FMCSA over new Hours of Service rules

June & July

  • The US Congress negotiates and passes the first comprehensive Transportation Bill (MAP-21) in seven years
  • Several RSA initiatives including tougher insurance requirements and ELD mandates are included in MAP-21
  • Co-Founder Ste

ve Owings testifies before Congress supporting the FMCSA’s Compliance/Safety/Accountability program

August

  • Steve and Susan Owings win FMCSA Safety Hero Award

2011

January

  • NHTSA issu

es a “Grant Order” on RSA’s 52 month old petition to require speed governor use on heavy commercial vehicles.

February

  • Administrators Ferro and Strickland provide RSA a second private briefing of the FMCSA and NHTSA rulemaking plans
  • FMCSA issues a Notice of Proposed Rule Making which should lead to ELD (Electronic Logging Device) usage for nearly all interstate trucks in just a few years

June

  • RSA Facebook Fan Page launched

September

  • 7th District Court upholds argument from OOIDA that ELDs could be used for harassment of drivers and sends ruling back to FMCSA for correction

December

  • FMCSA makes final ruling on Hours of Service keeping the 11 hour driving rule, but including several rest periods and similar elements that are supported by Road Safe America

2010

April

  • Steve Owings, Co-Founder of Road Safe America is asked by US Senate Commerce Committee to provide comments regarding highway safety, for consideration in the next Transportation Reauthorization Bill.

July

  • The Honorable Anne Ferro of FMCSA and the Honorable David Strickland of NHTSA invite RSA to a private briefing to hear our six-part agenda for safer highways

August

  • Bi-partisan staff of US Senate Commerce Committee invites RSA to provide additional highway safety detail for their pending legislation

November

  • Sixth Drive Safer Sunday is supported again by the US Senate and ten states

2009

March

  • Road Safe America hires Executive Director, Tom Hodgson

July

  • Northwestern Mutual Financial Network honors Steve Owings with the top prize for philanthropy for his efforts with Road Safe America

October

  • RSA is invited by Sec. of Transportation Ray LaHood to first Distracted Driving Summit in Washington, DC

November

  • Drive Safer Sunday is recognized for the fifth year by the United States Senate. Six states’ governors make similar proclamations

2008

June

  • RSA marks its 5-year anniversary

July

  • Steve Owings is re-appointed to the congressional advisory committee of FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration)
  • Steve Owings speaks at the National Press Club in D.C.

October

  • The American Trucking Association changes their position on speed governors to align with RSA’s both on speed, from 68 to 65 miles per hour, and application, from just new trucks to all trucks manufactured since 1992
  • First Advisory Board Meeting

2007

January

  • US DOT requests comments on the petition. The comment period will last from 1/26/07 – 3/27/07. Road Safe America immediately launches a campaign to educate the public to comment through email, print advertising (full-page ad in USA Today), satellite tour, press releases, and direct mail. The Owingses appear on The Today Show, MSNBC, and numerous local morning TV shows across the country

March

  • All comments are reviewed by RSA. Our petition received 3,827 comments, the third most in department history, 2,808 of which were in favor of the petition – about 75%

May

  • Steve Owings is appointed to the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee (A Congressional Advisory Committee) to the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration)

June

  • First Road Safe America newsletter mailed

August

  • Accept offer from GMAC Insurance to sponsor Drive Safer Sunday 2007

October

  • Microsite – www.drivesafersunday.org launched, full page ad taken in USA Today promoting Drive Safer Sunday, DSS also promoted in movie theatre ads and radio spots nationally

November

  • Media tour for DSS in New York

2006

February

  • The American Trucking Association (ATA) changes its position on speed governors, calling for them to be ‘hard set’ on all newly manufactured trucks at 68 mph

March

  • Road Safe America’s Board creates sub-committees: Finance, Communications, Advocacy, Research and Membership

September – October

  • RSA partners with a local attorney, Clay Porter, to write and file a petition with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to require the use of speed governors at 68 mph (NOTE: we filed at 68 mph to get ATA’s support). RSA works to identify trucking companies who would be willing to co-file the petition with us. Petition is filed along with ten large trucking companies
  • Two weeks after Road Safe America filed, ATA petitions US DOT to limit the maximum speed of new large trucks to no more than 68 mph

November

  • 2nd annual Drive Safer Sunday campaign, RSA receives widespread media attention, including TV, radio, and print

2005

February

  • Road Safe America launches national focus – Owingses meet Congressional and US DOT officials in D.C.

April

  • Media packet distributed to obtain national media coverage for Road Safe America
  • Website updated with driving strategies for sharing the road safely for truck drivers and passenger car drivers

May

  • Board members travel to other states to visit with trucking companies and build relationships with them
  • Idea surfaces for looking into a requirement in the industry for trucks to have speed governing devices set at 65 mph

July

  • Road Safe America produces a video for distribution, Steve and Susan are interviewed by WGST in Atlanta

November

  • The Sunday after Thanksgiving, usually the busiest traffic day of the year, is coined Drive Safer Sunday (DSS) by Road Safe America and proclaimed by the Governor of Georgia, and the U.S. Senate
  • Associated Press story on Drive Safer Sunday runs broadly (even overseas)

2004

January

  • Cullum’s Law, an effort launched in Georgia, gets significant news coverage across the state

April

  • First Board Meeting

July

  • First D.C. trip made by the Owingses

September

  • Original Mission statement finalized – To reduce collisions between heavy commercial trucks and passenger vehicles by effecting change to improve safety on US highways

November

  • Name officially changed to Road Safe America

December

  • Road Safe America brochure created for distribution and to be used as an educational tool

2003

July

  • Concerned Americans Advocating Interstate Roadway Safety (CAAIRS), the precursor to Road Safe America (RSA) is founded by Steve and Susan Owings (established as a 501c3)

2002

December 1

  • Cullum Owings, on his way back to school after Thanksgiving break, is killed when his car – stopped in an interstate traffic jam – was crushed from behind by a heavy commercial truck going eight mph over the posted speed limit using cruise control

The term “tractor-trailer” or "big-rig" used on this website
refers to all Class 8 trucks which is the heaviest class.

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