Posted by: rbmcarriers | October 8, 2008

Backing the Speed Limiter

Bringing the issue of the speed limiter to the forefront again, this article was posted in Today’s Trucking last month.  We will all see how this legislation will affect the trucking industry very soon.

US carriers back Ontario speed limiter plan — with conditions

The American Trucking Associations reinforced its support for Ontario’s plan to mandate speed limiters set at 105 km/h, but is also urging rulemakers to revise the current legislation.

The carrier group has in the past sided with the Ontario Trucking Association in its campaign to get speed limiter legislation passed in Canada and is also quietly pushing for a 68 mph speed limiter policy in the U.S.

While that’s still the case, the ATA is concerned with how the Ontario rule would be applied to vehicles and how it would be enforced, according to the ATA’s official publication Transport Topics.

The Ontario policy requires all trucks built after 1995 be programmed through the engine’s ECM to electronically controlled speeds but ATA said the requirement should only apply to new trucks and be extended to buses as well.

In its final comments to the Ontario Ministry of Transportation last month, ATA urged the government to include a provision that would allow manufacturers to “embed a security code [or] software that would minimize the potential for tampering” after a truck is sold.”

Furthermore, ATA says drivers and carriers should not be cited if a faulty speed limiter failed to govern speed below 105 km/h.

The ATA also wants to see a speed limiter policy
in Canada and the US, but urges changes to the plan first

ATA also objected to a provision holding that a driver charged with a speeding offense “will be deemed not to have a functioning speed limiter.”

“Many factors influence the maximum governed speed of a vehicle,” ATA said. “Even with a properly set and calibrated speed limiter, various components on a truck can influence the vehicle’s potential speed.”

Despite the perception that OEMs are generally supportive of mandatory limiter rules for heavy trucks, comments by the Truck Manufacturers Association and Engine Manufacturers Association to Transport Canada show that equipment suppliers are uneasy with the rule for some of the reasons cited by ATA.

A Transport Canada report related to technical and tampering issues associated with speed limiters highlights several flaws revealed by the association.

Asked by Transport Canada if a 100-percent tamper-proof speed limiter is a reality, the TMA, answers: “We don’t foresee any possible way to make such a system completely tamper-proof … A fully tamper-proof system is highly unlikely.”

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