The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a Final Rule granting parts of the petitions for reconsideration of the December 29, 2021, Final Rule establishing Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 227, “Bus Rollover Structural Integrity.” This standard is designed to enhance the rollover structural integrity and reduce the likelihood of ejection from over-the-road buses (motorcoaches), other vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) greater than 26,000 pounds. School buses are excluded from this requirement. The compliance date for this Final Rule is December 30, 2024.
Click here for the link to the Final Rule.
NHTSA Recall ID Number: 23C005
Synopsis: Evenflo Company, Inc. (Evenflo) is recalling one Titan 65 child seat. The child seat is missing the warning labels. As such, this child seat fails to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard number 213, "Child Restraint Systems." A child seat missing warning labels will not inform the owner of critical safety information, which can increase the risk of injury for the child seat occupant. The child seat has been returned to the manufacturer to be destroyed, and therefore, no owner notification letter will be sent. Owners may contact Evenflo customer service at 1-800-233-5921.
July 28, 2023
Contact: NHTSA Public AffairsEmail: NHTSAmedia@dot.govPhone: (202) 366-9550
USDOT Proposes Updated Fuel Economy Standards to Strengthen Energy Security, Save Americans Hundreds of Dollars at the Gas Pump
Proposal kicks off public comment period and engagement with stakeholders on how to make cars and light trucks more fuel efficient, with the average light-duty vehicle estimated to reach 58 miles per gallon by 2032
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration today issued a proposal to update fuel economy standards for passenger cars and light trucks. A 60-day public comment period will begin after the proposal is published in the Federal Register.
NHTSA will engage with a broad set of stakeholders during this period, including consumers, unions, automakers, states, environmental groups and others. The proposal would also drive fuel efficiency improvements for heavy-duty pickup trucks and work vans.
If finalized as proposed, the updated standards would save Americans hundreds of dollars at the pump, all while making America more energy secure and less reliant on foreign oil. NHTSA estimates that the combined benefits of its proposal exceed costs by more than $18 billion.
“Better vehicle fuel efficiency means more money in Americans’ pockets and stronger energy security for the entire nation,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said.
NHTSA’s proposed fuel economy standards complement and align with the Environmental Protection Agency’s recently proposed emissions standards for similar vehicle fleets. NHTSA will coordinate with the EPA to optimize the effectiveness of its standards while minimizing compliance costs, consistent with applicable statutory factors. With the release of today’s proposal, NHTSA invites comments from all stakeholders on how this goal can be achieved.
The proposed rule sets targets that are consistent with Congress’ direction to conserve fuel and promote American energy independence and American auto manufacturing, while providing flexibility to industry on how to achieve those targets. Though NHTSA does not take electric and other alternative fuels into account in setting the standards, manufacturers may use all available technologies – including advanced internal combustion engines, hybrid technologies and electric vehicles – for compliance.
The new proposal also supports the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to cutting costs for Americans and reducing harmful greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution in communities near freeways and other heavily trafficked roads, which are disproportionately low-income communities of color. Since the lowest-income households spend nearly 20% of income on transportation fuels, which is three times the average U.S. household, this proposal is consistent with the Administration’s commitment to advancing environmental justice.
“CAFE standards have driven the auto industry to innovate in improving fuel economy in ways that benefit our nation and all Americans,” NHTSA Acting Administrator Ann Carlson said. “The new standards we’re proposing today would advance our energy security, reduce harmful emissions, and save families and business owners money at the pump. That’s good news for everyone.”
As one of the range of options on which the agency is taking public comment, the preferred alternative in NHTSA’s proposal includes a 2% per year improvement in fuel efficiency for passenger cars, and a 4% per year improvement for light trucks, beginning in model year 2027 and ramping up through model year 2032, potentially reaching an average fleet fuel economy of 58 miles per gallon by 2032.
It also includes a 10% improvement per year for commercial pickup trucks and work vans (with gross vehicle weight ratings of more than 8,500 pounds and less than 14,001 pounds) beginning in model year 2030 and ramping up through model year 2035.
If finalized as proposed, this alternative would:
The proposal also models a range of additional alternatives. NHTSA requests comment on the full range of standards from the no-action alternative to the most stringent alternative modeled, including comment on combinations of standards that may not be explicitly identified in the proposal.
You can read the proposal here. For more information, please see NHTSA’s Corporate Average Fuel Economy page.
The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Automatic Emergency Breaking Systems in Heavy Vehicles was posted in today’s Federal Register. Comments are due by September 5, 2023.
Click Here to review the notice.
NHTSA Recall ID Number: 23C004
Synopsis: Baby Trend, Inc. (Baby Trend) is recalling certain Hybrid 3-in-1 Combination Booster Seat-Desert Blue child seats. The latch assembly webbing that secures the child restraint system to the lower anchorages may fray, which can reduce the strength of the webbing and fail to properly restrain a child in a crash. As such, these child seats fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard numbers 213, "Child Restraint Systems," and 209, "Seat Belt Assemblies." A child seat that fails to properly restrain a child increases the risk of injury in a crash. Baby Trend, Inc. will mail owners a replacement latch assembly webbing and installation instructions, free of charge. Owner notification letters are expected to be mailed June 30, 2023. Owners may contact Baby Trend customer service at 1-800-328-7363.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released a Final Rule today amending the U.S. Department of Transportation’s regulated industry drug testing program to include oral fluid testing. This additional methodology for drug testing will give employers a choice and provide a less intrusive means of achieving the safety goals of the program. In order for an employer to implement oral fluid testing under the Department’s regulation, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will need to certify at least two laboratories for oral fluid testing, which has not yet been done. The final rule includes other provisions to update the Department’s regulation and to harmonize, as needed, with the Mandatory Guidelines for Federal Workplace Drug Testing Programs using Oral Fluid established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This Final Rule is effective on June 1, 2023.
Here's a link to the rule: 2023-08041.pdf (govinfo.gov).
Click Here to View the Press Release
To learn more about the clean school bus grant program, applicant eligibility, selection process, and informational webinar dates, visit www.epa.gov/cleanschoolbus.
Key Messages and Background Information
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced a two-day virtual public hearing to be held May 2 and May 3, 2023, on its recently released proposal titled ‘‘Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards for Heavy-Duty Vehicles—Phase 3’’. An additional session may be held on May 4, 2023, if necessary. This proposal would promulgate new Greenhouse Gas (GHG) standards for heavy-duty highway vehicles, including school buses, starting in model year (MY) 2028 through MY 2032. If you are interested in attending this virtual meeting and/or testifying, please see the following link for registration information:
NASDPTS wanted to make you aware of reports out of Fairfax, VA yesterday of suspicious buses attempting to pick up students. (Washington Post Article | April 13, 2023 at 4:24 p.m. EDT.)
When communicating with parents it is helpful to remind them of general school transportation safety tips, which include but are not limited to the following:
In addition, we want to remind you that NASDPTS member Truckers Against Trafficking has several resources on trafficking. While police are still investigating these incidents, the media is also reporting that human trafficking is popular in this area. You can find those resources here: https://truckersagainsttrafficking.org/get-our-materials/#botl-materials.
Biden-Harris Administration Proposes Strongest-Ever Pollution Standards for Cars and Trucks to Accelerate Transition to a Clean-Transportation Future
Building on rapid advancements and investments in clean vehicle manufacturing, including investments in domestic manufacturing in the Inflation Reduction Act, EPA’s proposed standards would deliver on President Biden’s agenda to tackle the climate crisis
April 12, 2023
Contact Information: EPA Press Office (email@example.com)
WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced new proposed federal vehicle emissions standards that will accelerate the ongoing transition to a clean vehicles future and tackle the climate crisis. The proposed standards would improve air quality for communities across the nation, especially communities that have borne the burden of polluted air. Together, these proposals would avoid nearly 10 billion tons of CO2 emissions, equivalent to more than twice the total U.S. CO2 emissions in 2022, while saving thousands of dollars over the lives of the vehicles meeting these new standards and reduce America’s reliance on approximately 20 billion barrels of oil imports.
“By proposing the most ambitious pollution standards ever for cars and trucks, we are delivering on the Biden-Harris Administration’s promise to protect people and the planet, securing critical reductions in dangerous air and climate pollution and ensuring significant economic benefits like lower fuel and maintenance costs for families,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “These ambitious standards are readily achievable thanks to President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, which is already driving historic progress to build more American-made electric cars and secure America’s global competitiveness.”
Since President Biden took office, the number of EV sales has tripled while the number of available models has doubled. There are over 130,000 public chargers across the country – a 40% increase over 2020. The private sector has also committed more than $120 billion in domestic EV and battery investments since President Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law. The new standards proposed today reflect the advancements and investments in clean vehicle manufacturing, which have been accelerated by President Biden’s Investing in America agenda and complement the ongoing transition in the market towards cleaner vehicles.
The new proposed emissions standards for light-, medium-, and heavy-duty vehicles for model year (MY) 2027 and beyond would significantly reduce climate and other harmful air pollution, unlocking significant benefits for public health, especially in communities that have borne the greatest burden of poor air quality. At the same time, the proposed standards would lower maintenance costs and deliver significant fuel savings for drivers and truck operators.
Light- and Medium-Duty Vehicle Proposed Standards
The first set of proposed standards announced today, the “Multi-Pollutant Emissions Standards for Model Years 2027 and Later Light-Duty and Medium Duty Vehicles,” builds on EPA’s existing emissions standards for passenger cars and light trucks for MYs 2023 through 2026. The proposal retains the proven regulatory design of previous EPA standards for light-duty vehicles, but leverages advances in clean car technology to further reduce both climate pollution and smog- and soot-forming emissions.
Between 2027 and 2055, the total projected net benefits of the light- and medium-duty proposal range from $850 billion to $1.6 trillion. The proposal is expected to avoid 7.3 billion tons of CO2 emissions through 2055, equivalent to eliminating all greenhouse gas emissions from the entire current U.S. transportation sector for four years and would also deliver significant health benefits by reducing fine particulate matter that can cause premature death, heart attacks, respiratory and cardiovascular illnesses, aggravated asthma, and decreased lung function. EPA analysis shows that severe health impacts related to particulate matter exposure will also be reduced – including lung disorders (including cancer), heart disease, and premature mortality.
EPA’s proposal considers a broad suite of available emission control technologies, and the standards are designed to allow manufacturers to meet the performance-based standards however works best for their vehicle fleets. EPA projects that for the industry as a whole, the standards are expected to drive widespread use of filters to reduce gasoline particulate matter emissions and spur greater deployment of CO2-reducing technologies for gasoline-powered vehicles.
The proposed standards are also projected to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles. Depending on the compliance pathways manufacturers select to meet the standards, EPA projects that EVs could account for 67% of new light-duty vehicle sales and 46% of new medium-duty vehicle sales in MY 2032. The proposed MY 2032 light-duty standards are projected to result in a 56% reduction in projected fleet average greenhouse gas emissions target levels compared to the existing MY 2026 standards. The proposed MY 2032 medium-duty vehicle standards would result in a 44% reduction compared to MY 2026 standards.
Heavy-duty Truck Proposed Standards
The second set of proposed standards announced today, the “Greenhouse Gas Standards for Heavy-Duty Vehicles - Phase 3,” would apply to heavy-duty vocational vehicles (such as delivery trucks, refuse haulers or dump trucks, public utility trucks, transit, shuttle, school buses) and trucks typically used to haul freight. These standards would complement the criteria pollutant standards for MY 2027 and beyond heavy-duty vehicles that EPA finalized in December 2022 and represent the third phase of EPA’s Clean Trucks Plan.
These “Phase 3” greenhouse gas standards maintain the flexible structure that EPA previously designed through a robust stakeholder engagement process to reflect the diverse nature of the heavy-duty industry. Like the light- and medium-duty proposal, the heavy-duty proposal uses performance-based standards that enable manufacturers to achieve compliance efficiently based on the composition of their fleets.
The projected net benefits of the heavy-duty proposal range from $180 billion to $320 billion. The proposal is projected to avoid 1.8 billion tons of CO2 through 2055, equivalent to eliminating all greenhouse gas emissions from the entire current U.S. transportation sector for an entire year, and deliver additional health benefits by reducing other pollutants from these vehicles. The standards would result in improved air quality nationwide, and those who live near major roadways and are disproportionately exposed to vehicle pollution and heavy-duty activity, which often includes low-income populations and communities of color, would benefit most directly.
Investing in America’s Clean Transportation Future
The proposed standards align with commitments made by automakers and U.S. states as they plan to accelerate clean vehicle technologies in the light- and medium-duty fleets in the next 10 to 15 years. Car and truck companies are moving to include electric vehicles as an integral and growing part of current and future product lines, leading to an increasing diversity of clean vehicles for consumers.
These developments are bolstered by President Biden’s investments in America, which provide unprecedented resources to support the development and market for clean vehicle technologies and associated infrastructure and represent significant investment in expanding the manufacture, sale, and use of zero-emission vehicles. As these technologies advance, battery costs continue to decline and consumer interest in electric vehicles continues to grow. President Biden’s legislative accomplishments are also supporting critical generation of clean electricity and production of clean hydrogen needed to decarbonize transportation. EPA considered this rapid innovation in its assessment that tighter emissions standards are feasible.
EPA’s proposals are informed by robust and inclusive stakeholder engagement with industry, labor, advocates, and community leaders. EPA’s proposals will be published in the Federal Register and available for public review and comment, and the agency will continue to engage with the public and all interested stakeholders as part of the regulatory development process.
Proposed Rule: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards for Heavy-Duty Vehicles – Phase 3
Proposed Rule: Multi-Pollutant Emissions Standards for Model Years 2027 and Later Light-Duty and Medium-Duty Vehicles
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