Should Truck Industry Regulations Be Stricter On NJ Roads? - My9 New Jersey

Should Truck Industry Regulations Be Stricter On NJ Roads?

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Trenton, New Jersey (My9NJ) - The crash involving Tracy Morgan along with three other fatal crashes in New Jersey in a little over a week have led to a discussion of ways to make our roads as well as the trucking industry safer.

The trucking industry is arguing that it’s time to lessen regulations and allow drivers more freedom and longer hours because they feel like the roads are safe. However, those in opposition say that idea is crazy, specifically in light of what we’ve seen recently.

Yesterday, Senators Booker and Menendez held a conference call to discuss safety concerns in the trucking industry. It was suggested that the industry feels the roads are safe, but Senator Booker said that statistics tell a very different story.

“You know the data, we can maybe have our own opinions, but we can’t have the wrong facts. I’ve read you the data before you know with 3,921 people killed,” he said.

Most of the talk about truck safety has been in response to the high profile crash involving Tracy Morgan. So are NJ Senators now just cracking down on the industry because a celebrity was involved? Senator Booker acknowledged that there’s more attention now, but both senators explained that their involvement pre-dated the Morgan crash and they feel this is an important topic regardless of who’s involved.

The traffic issues in New Jersey are likely to get worse as yesterday was the first day that upper lanes of the George Washington Bridge will be closed for 12 weeks for evening construction.

The latest update on Tracy Morgan indicates that he continues to improve slowly, but is a long way from getting out of the hospital. Meanwhile the trucking industry is arguing that even with high profile cases, New Jersey roads are safer.

In fact, according to the New Jersey State police from 2002 through 2012 New Jersey deaths involving both driver fatigue and trucks declined drastically.

The American Trucking Association also released a statement on road safety saying: “Insinuating that the trucking industry wants to roll back the hours-of-service rules couldn’t be further from the truth. What we support is temporary suspension of the rules while the agency studies the safety impact of more daytime driving. Research has not been done yet.”


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