FMCSA renews proposal for speed limiters on large trucks and buses

First published by Safety+Health an NSC publication
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Photo: Missouri Department of Transportation Flickr

Washington — The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is moving forward with – and seeking comment on – a proposed rule that would require the installation of speed-limiting devices on trucks, buses and multipurpose passenger vehicles weighing more than 26,000 pounds.

According to an advance notice of supplemental proposed rulemaking published in the May 4 Federal Register, the proposal expands upon a 2016 joint proposal from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and FMCSA. The latter is the sole agency listed on the proposed rule, which doesn’t specify a top speed. The 2016 proposed rule suggested capping speeds at 60, 65 or 68 mph.

FMCSA offers a number of questions on which stakeholders may comment, including:

  • What percentage of the commercial motor vehicle fleet uses speed-limiting devices?
  • If in use, at what maximum speed are the devices generally set?
  • What training or skill sets are needed for motor carriers’ maintenance personnel to adjust or program electronic engine control units to set speed limits?
  • What equipment or tools are needed to adjust or program/reprogram ECUs? How long would the process take, and where can it be completed?
  • Since publication of the notice of proposed rulemaking in 2016, how has standard practice or technology changed as it relates to the ability to set speed limits using ECUs?

The American Trucking Association backs the proposed rule.

“ATA is pleased that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is pursuing a constructive, data-driven approach to the issue of truck speed limiters in its latest proposal,” ATA President and CEO Chris Spear said in a press release. “We intend to thoroughly review FMCSA’s proposal, and we look forward to working with the agency to shape a final rule that is consistent with our policy supporting the use of speed limiters in conjunction with numerous other safety technologies.”

Citing data from NHTSA’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System showing that fatal large-truck crashes involving speeding climbed around 50% from 2009 to 2019, the safety advocacy group Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways said the rule “has the potential to save hundreds of lives every year.”

In May 2021, Reps. Lucy McBath (D-GA) and John Katko (R-NY) introduced legislation (H.R. 3523) that would require the transportation secretary to mandate speed-limiting technology in large CMVs while capping their speed at 65 mph – or 70 mph for vehicles equipped with adaptive cruise control and automatic emergency braking. The bill hasn’t advanced past the House.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, meanwhile, contends that the bill will negatively impact safety.

“Studies and research have already proven what we were all taught long ago in driver’s ed classes, that traffic is safest when vehicles all travel at the same relative speed,” OOIDA President and CEO Todd Spencer said in a press release. “Limiting trucks to speeds below the flow of traffic increases interactions between vehicles, which can lead to more crashes.”

Comments are due June 3.


McCraren Compliance can help you understand and comply with FMCSA, USDOT and ADOT and ensure your drivers and your vehicles operate safely and efficiently.

Call us Today at 888-758-4757 or email us at info@mccrarencompliance.com to schedule your free FMCSA Compliance Assessment.

FMCSA Announces Call for Applications for Women of Trucking Advisory Board

First published by FMCSA

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced the launch of the Women of Trucking Advisory Board (WOTAB) to recruit, support, and ensure the safety of women commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers and the trucking industry at large.

The launch of the Advisory Board is mandated by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and part of the Biden-Harris Trucking Action Plan, which aims to improve job quality and recruit more people to the truck driving profession. As part of the Trucking Action Plan, the Administration has also expanded registered apprenticeship programs, announced a driver compensation study, and is engaging the entire trucking industry around issues of retention and recruitment. Secretary Buttigieg has led roundtable discussions and has also ridden along with a truck driver.

“We’re proud to launch the Women of Trucking Advisory Board to work together with drivers and trucking companies to help eliminate barriers that keep women from entering and staying in the trucking profession,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “This advisory board is a key part of our Trucking Action Plan, which is focused on improving job quality for truckers and recruiting more people to join their ranks.”

“The establishment of the Women of Trucking Advisory Board furthers our commitment to collaboration, equity, and safety across the trucking industry by evaluating existing and potential opportunities for women throughout the trucking industry,” said FMCSA Acting Administrator Robin Hutcheson.

Women are significantly underrepresented in the trucking industry, holding only 24 percent of all transportation jobs. The formation of the Advisory Board kicks off this month amid Women’s History Month.

WOTAB will coordinate with trucking companies, nonprofit organizations, and trucking associations to support women in trucking. The Board will provide recommendations to the Administrator of FMCSA and the U.S. Secretary of Transportation as well as tackle many areas, including:

  • Evaluating barriers and trends that impact women in trucking across the country and ways to support women pursuing careers in trucking.
  • Identifying opportunities to expand roles for women and increase the number of women in the trucking industry
  • Advising on policies that provide education, training, mentorship, or outreach to women in the trucking industry
  • Reviewing opportunities to enhance safety, training, mentorship, and education for women in the trucking industry

The Board will include a minimum of eight members with diverse backgrounds, experience, and certifications to provide balanced points of view. The group will include:

  • Women representing small, mid-sized, and large trucking companies, nonprofit organizations in the trucking industry
  • Trucking business associations
  • Independent owner-operators and professional truck drivers
  • And an institution of higher education or trucking trade school

WOTAB’s charter runs through February 11, 2024. If you are interested in applying, please visit www.fmcsa.dot.gov/wotab.


McCraren Compliance can help you understand and comply with FMCSA, USDOT and ADOT and ensure your drivers and your vehicles operate safely and efficiently.

Call us Today at 888-758-4757 or email us at info@mccrarencompliance.com to schedule your free FMCSA Compliance Assessment.