The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) says it is proposing to develop and implement a demonstration program to determine the efficacy of a program to conduct preventability determinations on certain types of crashes that are generally less complex.
The program will allow carriers to have non-preventable crashes stricken from their record. Under FMCSA’s proposed demonstration, carriers would be able to challenge certain crashes where it is plainly evident the commercial vehicle is not at fault.
FMCSA proposed to include crashes in which an opposing motorist was driving under the influence, driving the wrong direction or struck the truck in the rear or while it was properly parked. Also included are single vehicle accidents involving an animal strike, suicide by truck or infrastructure failure.
The agency proposes to accept requests for data reviews (RDRs) that seek to establish the non-preventability of certain crashes through its national data correction system known as DataQs. FMCSA’s notice proposes that the agency would accept an RDR, as part of this program, when documentation established that the crash was not preventable by the motor carrier or commercial driver.
“Since FMCSA began using crash history to rate motor carriers’ safety, ATA has argued that crashes a driver could not have prevented shouldn’t be counted on a carrier’s safety record,” said ATA President and CEO Bill Graves. “Today’s announced pilot project is a step toward that goal and we appreciate FMCSA adopting ATA’s call to provide a way for carriers to strike these tragic, but non-preventable crashes from their record.”
The proposed minimum time period for this crash preventability demonstration program would be 24 months.