In a move that demonstrates Road Safe America has earned the respect of policy-makers in DC, the bi-partisan staff of the US Senate Commerce Committee recently called upon RSA to identify safety changes that would improve our highways and save lives. RSA President and Co-founder Steve Owings, Executive Director Tom Hodgson and Rob Hall, RSA’s advisor in DC providing pro-bono consulting from Dutko Worldwide spent the morning of August 3rd in a Senate board room detailing the multi-item outline we feel is not only needed, but possible. Our report was a six item agenda including the following points:
- A) Required use of Speed Governors on Class 7 & 8 trucks set at 65 mph
- B) Use of Electronic Logging to monitor drive time for all heavy trucks
- C) Significantly increase the minimum liability insurance for heavy trucks thereby raising the bar for entry into the industry
- D) Change Hours-of-Service rules to allow for more rest for all heavy truck drivers
- E) Drop any plans to allow heavier trucks on American highways
- F) Change the compensation policies to eleminate pay-by-the-mile
Our invitation to provide this agenda was a direct result of Steve Owings’ testimony provided to the Commerce Committee in April of this year. The Committee is working towards a reauthorization of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and is seeking input from all stakeholders that might provide reasonable and affordable ideas. For years Road Safe America has traveled to Washington speaking to almost any elected official or staffer who we thought could help our cause. Now, they hear our message and want to know more. We have learned not to expect immediate action but the tone of the meeting was such that RSA feels closer to seeing substantial safety improvements on our roads.