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Posts Tagged ‘national highway traffic safety administration’

Automakers Can’t Sacrifice Safety in Rush to Autonomous Driving, Warns Transportation Sec. Foxx

“People who start a trip” should “finish it.”

by on Jul.20, 2016

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said safety must be the top concern when it comes to the development of autonomous vehicles.

Safety, rather than the rush to be first to market, must be fundamental to the development of autonomous vehicle technology, according to U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.

The government will move ahead with plans to release new guidelines covering the development of self-driving vehicles later this summer, Foxx said during a speech in San Francisco. But regulators are clearly keeping in mind the series of collisions that have involved Google autonomous vehicle prototypes and the May 9 fatal crash of a Tesla Model S being driven in semi-autonomous Autopilot mode.

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“We want people who start a trip to finish it,” Foxx said. And while “Autonomous doesn’t mean perfect,” he cautioned that, “We need industry to take the safety aspects of this very seriously.” (more…)

NHTSA Planning to Make Three “History-Making” Announcements

Agency believes nation could be heading towards era of zero highway fatalities

by on Jan.12, 2016

NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind is pushing for stronger policies to make U.S. roads safer.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the U.S. Department of Commerce plan to make a series of “potentially history-making” announcements this week and then later in January, NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind announced during a visit to Detroit.

One of the three developments in the works would bring together all too frequently confrontational regulators and industry leaders as part of a new safety consortium. The goal, according to several of those set to join the group, would be to bring new safety technology and processes to market faster, often years sooner than would be possible through the normal regulatory process.

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“These actions going forward (will) change the nature of the auto industry,” said Mark Rosekind, the head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. (more…)

Takata Faulty Airbag Recall May Expand

NHTSA questions makers about use of dangerous airbags.

by on Sep.29, 2015

The latest Takata incident involved the side-image airbag in a 2015 Volkswagen Tiguan

Federal safety officials plan to shine a spotlight on more automakers that installed Takata airbags in their vehicles. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration contacted seven more automakers about their use of Takata airbags and their plans for dealing with them.

On Sept. 22, NHTSA sent letters to Volkswagen AG, Tesla Motors Inc., Daimler AG’s Mercedes-Benz unit, Jaguar Land Rover, Suzuki Motor Corp., Volvo Trucks and Spartan Motors, asking questions about the Takata inflators they use.

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The letters, which the agency released last Friday, ask each of the makers how many vehicles have Takata airbag inflators, and whether they are considering recalls. The airbags, which explode with too much force sending metal shrapnel into the cabin of the vehicle, have caused at least eight deaths and more than 100 injuries. (more…)

“No Way” Nation “Should Tolerate 33k Highway Deaths Annually, Says NHTSA Chief

Rosekind promises crackdown on industry, changes at federal safety agency.

by on Jul.20, 2015

NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind said he plans to crackdown on automakers and his own agency during a visit to Detroit.

There is “no way our country should tolerate 32,917 people dying on our roadways,” the new head of federal traffic safety enforcement declared during a visit to Detroit. Likening that to the crash of a fully loaded 747 “every single week,” Mark Rosekind promised to crack down on the auto industry – while also taking steps to fix problems at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The one-time head of the National Transportation Safety Board said it is time to for a complete change in the way both industry and government look at automotive safety. The focus has to be “proactive, rather than reactive,” explained Rosekind, who was sworn in as NHTSA administrator last December.

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“We have a lot of catch-up to do,” stressed Rosekind, in a roundtable meeting in which he was perhaps tougher on his own agency than on the automakers it regulates. (more…)

New Truck Standards Cut Emissions, Fuel Consumption

Critics slam plan due to $12,000 per-truck cost increase.

by on Jun.22, 2015

New rules on trucks, buses and even large pickup trucks will cut emissions and improve fuel efficiency, but add costs to the truck.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are proposing controversial new standards that would improve fuel efficiency and cut carbon pollution for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, including the largest pickup trucks sold by General Motors, Ford and FCA U.S.

The proposed rules would apply to semi-trucks, large pickup trucks and vans, and all types and sizes of buses and work trucks. The rules would require a 24% carbon dioxide emissions cut and fuel consumption less than an equivalent vehicle scheduled for sale in 2018, based on the fully phased-in standards for the tractor alone in a tractor-trailer vehicle. The proposed rules would cover model years 2021-2027.

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The proposed standards are expected to lower carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 1 billion metric tons, cut fuel costs by about $170 billion, and reduce oil consumption by up to 1.8 billion barrels over the lifetime of the vehicles sold under the program, according to U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. (more…)

New Bill Ties Collision Avoidance to Crash Ratings

NHTSA’s five-star rating would be tied to technology.

by on Jun.11, 2015

Sen. Ed Markey and several other politicians introduced a new bill requiring NHTSA include active safety technology be included in its safety ratings.

A proposed bill would force federal automotive safety regulators to consider the presence of collision avoidance technology when determining safety ratings on new vehicles.

The legislation proposed by U.S. Sens. Dean Heller, R-Nev., and Ed Markey, D-Mass., and U.S. Reps. Todd Rokita, R-Ind., and Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., comes as the National Transportation Safety Board called once again for collision avoidance technology to be standard equipment on new vehicles.

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The Safety Through Informed Consumers Act, if passed, it would require the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to integrate “active safety technology” into its five-star crashworthiness ratings. (more…)

Backers Hope Recall Crisis Will Push Through Do-Not-Rent Bill

Sen. Schumer challenges Republicans to vote against legislation.

by on May.06, 2015

Sen. Charles Schumer is pushing legislation that would prevent vehicles needing repairs from being rented by rental car companies or auto dealers.

After a year of record automotive safety recalls, proponents are hoping Washington lawmakers will finally pass a long-stalled measure meant to prevent rental firms and auto dealers from renting vehicles with unrepaired defects to consumers.

Re-introduced into both the Senate and House last week, the Rachel and Jacqueline Houck Safe Rental Car Act of 2015, the measure is named after two sisters killed in the 2004 crash of a Chrysler PT Cruiser they had rented that had a serious defect that hadn’t been fixed.

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A similar measure died at the end of the last Congress in the face of strong resistance from, among others, U.S. auto dealers. But the mood on Capitol Hill appears to be changing, according to New York Sen. Charles Schumer, a lead sponsor, after automakers recalled more than 60 million vehicles in 2014, and GM set up a victims fund to compensate those killed or injured due to a defective ignition switch. (more…)

Ford Recalls 390K Vehicles for Door Latch Problem

Latest action puts number at 1.4 million with latch issues.

by on Apr.27, 2015

Ford is recalling 2012-2104 Fiestas for door latch problems. The maker has recalled 1.4 million vehicles due to latch issues.

Ford continues to battle problems with door latches recalling 390,000 late model Fiestas, Fusions and MKZs.

Door latch problems have been a running dilemma for the automaker and the latest action raises the total number of vehicles recalled for them to 1.4 million.

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Ford’s latest recall covers 389,585 2012-14 Ford Fiesta and 2013-14 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ cars with 337,000 of those vehicles in the U.S., 30,000 in Canada and the remainder in Mexico. (more…)

Battle to Make Tractor-Trailers Safer: Speed v Tires

Tires rated only to 75 mph, but trucks often exceed that speed.

by on Mar.31, 2015

The tires used by tractor-trailers are only rated for 75 mph. If driven faster than that, they can rupture.

The nation’s big rigs are often exceeding the 75 mph speeds that their tires are designed to handle, often with disastrous results. The problems may expand as many states consider raising speed limits beyond 70 mph.

According to the Associated Press, 14 states, most of them west of the Mississippi River, now have speed limits of 75, 80, even 85 mph in part of Texas. While car tires are rated to handle speeds up 112 mph, truck tires haven’t been raised to the same performance level.

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In large measure, most trucks are limited to 65 or 70 mph by governors put in place by fleet owners. However, the many of the state transportation agencies approved the new highway speeds without consulting the tire makers or industry advocacy groups. (more…)

Hyundai Recalls 205,000 Elantra Sedans

Power steering problem forces latest action.

by on Mar.02, 2015

Hyundai is recalling more than 200,000 Elantras in the U.S. due to a power-steering problem.

The new leader of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said the agency would be an “enforcer” under his leadership, and thus far, Mark Rosekind is making good on his word as Hyundai announced a recall of more than 200,000 Elantra sedans.

The South Korean automaker is recalling 205,000 Elantras in the U.S. and another 58,000 in Canada from model years 2008 through 2010. An electronic power steering sensor could malfunction, disabling the power steering making steering the vehicle more difficult.

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That could increase the likelihood of a crash, according to NHTSA. Hyundai Motor America has not reported any injuries or accidents. The company plans to notify owners. Dealers will fix the problem at no cost to the owners. Owners with questions can call 855-671-3059. (more…)