I feel sad that we are still playing politics with this issue after twenty years. It was clear to me that at least 6000 extra men, women, and children died in the U.S. when the Clinton underride guards already on the road were legalized in 1996. It was also clear that another 100,000 and beyond died around the world as the U.S. refused it’s responsibility to properly set International safety standards and Europe unfortunately followed this mass death corporate giveaway. We must not ever again excuse this behavior, legalizing guards already on the road kills and will be used legally to ban proper civil justice for victims. I feel strongly we will gradually see the end of low speed crashes with the advent of crash avoidance technology. I also strongly feel that showing strong performance of guards at 30 mph is a lie to the American and International public that promotes a false sense of safety. Luis Otto would say “Phony safety and phony guards”. Guards kill at 50 mph on American roadways not at 30 mph.
I hope the Vision Zero petitions are the beginning of the end of corporate interference in safety in the U.S. but I fear the cities model of Vision Zero will prevail. Cities like New York are using Vision Zero as a shield to launch side guards that do nothing to enhance safety for side of trailer car crashes. We will see twenty years of side guards that are phony safety that save a few lives while killing thousands that could have easily and cheaply been saved. I certainly dread the Internationalization of these death guards re-publicized as life-savers.
The day after tomorrow is the last day for comments to the proposed standard so make sure everyone comments. We still have the pre-made comment sheets at the Underride Network site that you can re-edit for friends and relatives to make quick comments, we just ask that the MUARC recommendations remain as the minimum we will accept for guards, https://www.underridenetwork.org .
Let us keep the truth alive for those that would listen.
Coordinator, Underride Network