As promised, President Donald Trump and his administration are rolling back regulations throughout the federal government. According to a review by The Associated Press (AP), the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) has recently slowed prior efforts to make transportation safer for all Americans (Transport safety rules for trucks and trains have been sidelined under President Trump).
Numerous transportation safety rules, including requiring software that automatically limits the speed of heavy trucks and additional inspections for bus operators, have been rescinded or deferred. The AP notes that federal safety rules are often opposed by powerful industries whose former members now run the agencies charged with regulating them.
“These rules have been written in blood,” said John Risch, the legislative director of the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail, and Transportation Workers. “But we’re in a new era now of little-to-no new regulations no matter how beneficial they might be.”
Arguing that excessive government interference hinders economic growth, Trump signed an executive order requiring that two federal regulations be revoked for every new regulation that is passed. However, USDOT claims it is not ignoring safety at the expense of supporting big business.
“We will not finalize a rule simply because it has advanced through preliminary steps,” said USDOT deputy general counsel James Owens. “Even if a rule is ‘one step away,’ if that rule is not justifiable because it harms safety and imposes unnecessarily high economic costs, for example, that rule will not advance.”
According to USDOT’s own estimates, the proposed rule limiting top speeds for tractor-trailers could save approximately 500 lives and up to $500 billion dollars per year. Nevertheless, the American Trucking Association opposes the rule because it would allegedly cause unsafe speed differentials between heavy trucks and cars.
Under the current presidential administration, it is more important than ever to urge the federal government to protect the American people from powerful corporate interests. If you have been injured in an accident with a large truck or tractor-trailer, please contact Shamberg, Johnson & Bergman for a free consultation. We only receive a fee in the event of a successful resolution of your case.