Another effort to prevent the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration from creating a regulation requiring speed limiters on commercial motor vehicles is underway.
On Wednesday, July 12, the House Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Subcommittee advanced its appropriations bill for fiscal year 2024 through a voice vote. The bill includes a provision that stops FMCSA from using funding toward its speed limiter rulemaking.
“None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available by this act or any other act may be used to promulgate any rule or regulation to require vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of more than 26,000 pounds operating in interstate commerce to be equipped with a speed limiting device set to a maximum speed,” the bill text states.
Jay Grimes, OOIDA’s director of federal affairs, said that this provision provides another avenue to fight speed limiters on heavy-duty trucks.
“Typically, some form of a transportation appropriations bill is enacted every year, and this is another legislative opportunity to prevent FMCSA from advancing any type of harmful speed limiter mandate,” Grimes said.
Last year, FMCSA issued an advance notice of supplemental proposed rulemaking that considers requiring commercial motor vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of 26,001 pounds or more to be equipped with speed-limiting devices. The agency plans to unveil a notice of supplemental proposed rulemaking later this year.
Thousands of truck drivers filed comments in opposition to a mandate.
OOIDA strongly opposes any attempts to mandate speed limiters, pointing to concerns about dangerous speed differentials the requirement could cause. Safety groups have advocated for a top speed of 60 mph. Considering that some states have speed limits as fast as 85 mph, opponents contend that the speed differential would lead to increased interactions and road rage among frustrated drivers of passenger vehicles.
Other efforts to stop speed limiter mandate
In May, Rep. Josh Brecheen, R-Okla., introduced HR3039, which would prohibit the FMCSA from moving forward with any rule or regulation to mandate speed limiters. It is separate from the appropriations bill that passed through the THUD subcommittee on July 12.
OOIDA also supports Brecheen’s bill and is encouraging its more than 150,000 members to use FightingForTruckers.com to contact their lawmakers about becoming a co-sponsor.
“Speed limiting devices on large trucks have been proven to create unnecessary congestion and dangerous speed differentials among all vehicles,” OOIDA wrote in a recent Call to Action email to its members. “This results in higher rates of vehicle interaction and higher crash rates.”
HR3039 now has 21 co-sponsors as Rep. Troy Nehls, R-Texas, offered his support on July 11. LL