Most government bureaucracies start off with the benefit of the public’s safety in mind. Over time, they grow because concern for the public’s safety only grows, it never diminishes.
The Department of Transportation (DOT) oversees the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). The primary mission of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is to reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks and buses. Initiated in the year 2000, it continues to oversee efforts that will result, ultimately, in less trucking-related disasters. It does this by focusing upon high-priority hazards being carried such as poison gas, radioactive, and explosive carriers.
When an accident occurs, administratively, the operator of the large vehicle is responsible for following up with the feds and the state as to said incident and possible spill. Aside from the sheer physical aspects that deal with infrastructure, equipment, environment, and personal injury, the FMCSA is interested in how a large vehicle armed with abnormal transport loads has impacted the said accident.
Looking at “cause and effect”, the FMCSA ascertains if there are any new actions or restrictions that would minimize harm in future related incidents. With this in mind, legislation is put forth that would change laws that guide the operator and the transport of high-hazard cargo loads.
With a FY 2015 budget request of $215MM, FMCSA has witnessed a 33.7% drop in the fatality rate from 0.205 fatalities in large truck and bus crashes per 100 million vehicle miles traveled by all motor vehicles to 0.136 in 2011.
They employ three core principles:
- Raise the bar to enter the motor carrier industry
- Maintain high safety standards to remain in the industry
- Remove high-risk carriers, drivers, and service providers from operating
FMCSA partners with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to leverage and pool its resources to enhance roadway safety.