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Proposed mandate for semi-truck speed-limiting devices hit snag

Motorists across Alabama and the United States have little choice when it comes to sharing the road with large trucks, and a proposal intended to make roadways safer has hit an unanticipated snag. Per the Insurance Journal, the president recently signed an order that places the implementation of the proposed speed-limiting devices in jeopardy, citing that doing so would hinder hiring and hurt business interests.

Many safety advocates see the move as questionable, citing the fact that the devices, which limit how fast commercial trucks can travel on roadways, offer abundant benefits for the nation. These devices offer as much as $6.5 billion in annual benefits, and they also reduce fuel consumption and have the potential to save hundreds of lives. Furthermore, most developed countries outside of the United States already require their use in commercial trucks.

At the root of the problem, per Autoblog.com, is an executive order signed by the president known as the “Presidential Executive Order on Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs.” Essentially, it dictates that, in order for the speed-limiting devicemandate, or any other newly proposed regulations to move forward, the U.S. Department of Transportation would have to eliminate two other existing rules. 

Proponents of the speed-limiting devices include the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Road Safe America and the American Trucking Association. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also expressed its support for speed regulations, proposing that commercial trucks not travel above 60, 65 or 68 mph. The organization revealed that such regulations would save more than $1 billion annually in fuel costs in addition to improving highway safety for all motorists. 

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