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Could reducing trucking regulations mean more truck accidents?

Every day, large commercial trucks travel on major roadways throughout Pennsylvania and other states across the nation. While these massive tractor-trailer trucks present many risks to other drivers, federal trucking regulations exist to mitigate these risks. However, with the recent election and the impending change in the nation's highest political office, it is possible that some of these regulations might be eliminated. While these changes could mean improvements in the trucking industry, they could have unwanted consequences.

Could reducing trucking regulations mean more truck accidents? A Congressional group sent a report to President-elect Trump in early December in which the group recommended eliminating over 200 existing rules and regulations. A Congressman from North Carolina stated that these regulations, many which were implemented during the Obama Administration, have hurt working families, businesses and taxpayers across the nation.

Of the 232 regulations listed in the report, two of them are major trucking regulations that were expected to greatly impact the safety and overall function of the trucking industry in the coming years. The first is the Electronic Logging Device and Hours of Service regulation. This device is supposed to improve compliance with current hours of service regulations and determine cause and liability in a truck accident. However, opponents of the regulation argue that it is costly and that it does not accurately track the time that drivers spend during loading and unloading of the truck. This presents issues when it comes to hours of service and whether there are compliance issues.

The second major regulation is the one regarding Speed Limiting Devices. While this could reduce the number of incidents caused by speeding and negligent truck drivers, a truck driver's advocacy group asserted that this regulation puts small fleet owners at a huge disadvantage.

Because the President-elect promised to cut 70 to 80 percent of federal regulations, the trucking industry could see changes. While some benefits will certainly be experienced, these changes could also increase the number of truck accidents occurring.

Those harmed in a truck accident should understand the cause of the accident, and who might be legally liable for any damages. If a truck driver or trucking company was negligent, it is possible to hold them accountable. This could help the injured party recover compensation for losses and damages.

Source: Livetrucking.com, "House Republicans Ask Trump To Eliminate Two Controversial Trucking Regulations," Stevie Wilcox, Dec. 28, 2016

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