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Auto Law | 1/05/2022

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is Tightening Up On Truck Safety Regulations. Here’s What You Need To Know.

Truck accidents are some of the most devastating types of collisions on the road, which warrant safety precautions and preventative measures that fit the bill. The injuries, losses, and damages one could suffer in a tractor-trailer crash can be nothing short of catastrophic – both upon impact and throughout their lifetime. Fortunately, improved truck safety regulations are underway in Pennsylvania to help mitigate these all-too-often preventable tragedies. Here is what PA motorists can expect moving forward.

Evolving Standards for Annual Truck Inspections

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires that every commercial vehicle, including each segment of a combination vehicle, be inspected at least every 12 months. If a truck does not pass certain inspection items in the report or can cause danger when operated, it may be placed out of service (OOS).

Recently, there have been many discussions of whether or not a faulty rear or side guard on a tractor-trailer is enough to place it OOS. There have been numerous accidents and fatalities where a car slides beneath the rear guard of a truck. Most notably, in 2013, Pennsylvania citizen Marianne Karth’s family car collided with another vehicle and slid under the back of a tractor-trailer, killing both of her teenage daughters in the back seat. Since then, Karth has been an avid truck safety advocate, intending to prevent tragedies like hers from ever happening again.

New Rear Guard Inspections In Place

Recently, Karth’s activism has made a difference. As of December 9th, 2021, rear impact guard inspections are now part of the FMCSA’s annual commercial vehicle inspection. Trucks, tractor-trailers, and other combination commercial vehicles that fail to pass will not be placed OOS. However, violations could have a max fine of $15,876 for carriers and $3,969 for drivers. In addition, inadequate rear guards must be corrected prior to receiving the annual inspection decal. Marianne Karth and the FMCSA, along with other trucking safety organizations such as the Truck Trailers Manufacturers Association, have all zoned in on this significant move towards a safer road for everyone.

Fighting For Truck Accident Victims Around Pennsylvania

On average, over 6,000 tractor-trailer accidents occur each year in Pennsylvania, leaving victims and their families facing an immense amount of pain and hardship. At Freeburn Law, we aim to help victims on the road to healing and justice. If you or a loved one have been involved in a truck accident, contact the tractor-trailer accident lawyers at Freeburn Law today by calling 717-777-7777 or submitting a free consultation form online.

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