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Study confirms benefits of speed-limiters in 18-wheelers

Semi-trucks, also known as 18-wheelers, are a common sight on Texas highways. Unfortunately, if these powerful machines are operated negligently, accidents can happen, and they are often fatal. In effort to prevent accidents caused by truck drivers who are speeding, technology has been developed that limits the maximum speed a semi-truck can reach.

Recently, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration released a report indicating that there are obvious safety benefits to the speed-limiting technology. After evaluating data collected from 20 carriers over three years, researchers concluded that there is a "profound safety benefit for trucks equipped with an active [speed limiter]."

The study found that between 2007 and 2009, the overall crash rate for trucks without speed-limiting devices was higher than the crash rate for trucks equipped with the speed-limiting devices. Researchers said that while the regular trucks had a crash rate of 16.4 crashes per 100 trucks per year, trucks equipped with the speed-limiting technology only experienced 11 crashes per 100 trucks per year.

In 2006, the American Trucking Association reportedly asked the National Highway Safety Administration to order all commercial motor vehicles manufactured since 1992 to be equipped with speed limiters. The president of the ATA said he hopes the findings of this study help to convince regulators of the importance speed-limiting technology serves.

There is no doubt that many trucking accidents in Texas are caused by truck drivers who are exceeding the speed limit and either lose control of the truck or are unable to stop before slamming into another vehicle. It appears that this speed-limiting technology could save lives in Texas and elsewhere.

Source: TruckingInfo.com, "New Study Finds Safety Benefits of Limiting Truck Speeds," March 29, 2012

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