Posts Tagged ‘Motor Vehicle Safety Act’

Michael Green Contact TileWASHINGTON (Nov. 19, 2014) — “AAA applauds the nomination of Mark Rosekind to be the next NHSTA administrator. Mr. Rosekind’s experience with and commitment to motorist safety will be a tremendous asset to an agency that faces important questions about breakdowns in the recall process and is tasked with overseeing the emergence of vehicle safety technologies. AAA urges Congress to act swiftly to approve this nomination and fill the administrator position that has been vacant for far too long.”

ORLANDO, Fla., May 26, 2010

Nancy WhiteToday, a House Committee gave further consideration to the Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 2010, legislation responding to crashes associated with recently-reported vehicle failures.

As an organization serving over 51 million motorists and an advocate for transportation safety, AAA shares the public’s concern about deaths and injuries related to vehicle failures.

The attention garnered in the aftermath of the Toyota incidents has served as a wake-up call to Congress that the nation’s leading transportation safety agency, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), needs better resources to quickly respond to vehicle safety problems. Not only do manufacturers have a responsibility to produce safe vehicles, but consumers have a right to expect that manufacturers and regulators have made every possible effort to ensure their safety.

A debate about how best to improve the vehicle recall process is appropriate. It is just one part, however, of Congress’s larger role in traffic safety. As a nation, we lose more than 37,000 people and injure 2.3 million in over 5.8 million crashes each year. Relatively few are related to vehicle failures. AAA urges Congress not to lose sight of the bigger picture.

Unintended acceleration, which in part prompted the introduction of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 2010, has reportedly contributed to 102 deaths over the past decade. Since every life lost on the nation’s roads is tragic, the goals of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act are indeed laudable. However, significantly more deaths result each year in crashes associated with alcohol-impaired driving (11,773), speeding (11,674), and non-use of seat belts (12,865). If safety is truly a top priority, Congress should take swift action to reduce the deaths and injuries that occur on our roadways each year by passing a multi-year transportation bill with the same urgency and commitment given to the Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 2010.

Congress has delayed action on a long-term transportation bill for too long. Current law expired on September 30, 2009, and programs have been funded through a series of short-term extensions. To meet our 21st Century transportation challenges, changes are needed and are best addressed in the context of a comprehensive, multi-year bill.

AAA calls for at least 10 percent of all transportation investment to be spent on safety (currently we devote less than 4% to safety) to fund better data collection systems, road improvements and use of evidence-based strategies to change the culture of complacency about transportation safety. We need to ensure that legislation and regulation result in funding for the countermeasures that have the greatest impact on saving lives, and reducing crashes.

It’s great to see Congress move quickly to address this particular issue. But there are 37,000 reasons why they should focus on passing a long-term transportation bill with a bigger commitment to safety. It will provide the funding needed to modernize our transportation system, and help save thousands of lives lost in the millions of preventable crashes on our nation’s roadways each year.

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