LaHood orders motorcoach safety review

Posted on May 1, 2009

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, this week, ordered a full departmental review of motorcoach safety.

A Departmental Motorcoach Safety Action Plan will be created from the review’s findings. The plan will outline the additional steps needed to improve motorcoach safety for the millions of Americans who rely on these vehicles for safe transportation.

“Motorcoaches have been a safe form of transportation in the United States for many years, but even a single crash or accident is unacceptable” said Secretary LaHood. “We will continue our efforts to make them as safe as possible. As Secretary of Transportation, safety is my top priority.”

United States Department of Transportation agencies participating in the creation of the Action Plan include the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Federal Highway Administration, and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. The review will also consider outstanding recommendations to U.S. DOT from the National Transportation Safety Board.

"The motorcoach industry looks forward to working constructively with all of the federal agencies involved in this review and recommendation process to achieve the shared vision of making the safest form of surface transportation even safer," said ABA President/CEO Peter J. Pantuso. "The motorcoach industry has been calling on federal regulators to devote more resources to motorcoach safety research, testing and enforcement since 1997, so we welcome the actions announced by Secretary LaHood."

The full departmental review follows a recent NTSB hearing concerning the motorcoach crash in Utah in January 2008 that resulted in nine fatalities. The report is expected to be completed and released by August 2009.

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