The National Transportation Safety Board will hold the third in a series of truck safety hearings in Los Angeles this week, this one on safety issues raised by the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Officials from the truck and bus industry, public advocacy groups, organized labor, and U.S. and Canadian governments are expected to testify. Topics to be covered include harmonization of safety standards, hours of service, commercial driver's license issues, the medical certification process, vehicle inspections, motor carrier oversight and exchange of data across the borders.
The hearing begins at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 22, and runs through Friday, Oct. 22. It will be held at the Los Angeles Airport Hilton. The hearing is open to the public and no registration is required.
Earlier this month, NTSB Chairman Jim Hall spoke on truck safety during his closing speech at the three-day Second International Truck and Bus Safety Symposium at the University of Tennessee Transportation Center. He criticized state governments and the U.S. Department of Transportation. "The DOT needs to get with the times," he said regarding the agency's failure to act on NTSB's recommendations that on-board recorders be made mandatory on heavy trucks.
Hall also noted that truckers can't be held solely accountable for trucking industry safety. Shippers and brokers, he said, can force truckers to violate safety regulations by setting unrealistic demands for delivery.
For more information, go to http://www.ntsb.gov.