truck speedometer

Aussie truck drivers and operators have been working with onboard speed limiters for decades, now our counterparts in the U.S. could have the same requirement.

Reports out of the U.S. today say Federal regulators plan to propose setting a truck speed limit using electronic engine devices next year.

While there was no word yet on what that speed limit might be, a notice from the U.S. Department of Transport says interstate commercial motor vehicles with a gross vehicle weight above 11,794 kilograms would be affected.

It will only affect trucks that are equipped with an electronic engine control unit (ECU) capable of governing the maximum speed.

And owners will be responsible for maintaining that ECU setting for the service life of the vehicle.

The no-doubt controversial move has now been put out for public comments for 30 days.

Why introduce speed limiters in heavy commercial vehicles? Authorities say it’s all about preventing speeding and saving lives.

“The number of commercial motor vehicle (CMV) crashes in which speed is listed as a contributing factor is unacceptable.” – Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

Interestingly, the American Trucking Associations President and CEO Chris Spear welcomed the updated plan for a speed limiter rule.

“We intend to thoroughly review FMCSA’s proposal, and we look forward to working with the agency to shape a final rule that is consistent with our policy supporting the use of speed limiters in conjunction with numerous other safety technologies.” 

But not everyone is in favour.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) opposes mandating speed limiters, saying the move would lead to increased interactions between trucks and passenger cars, thereby decreasing safety.

“Studies have demonstrated that a higher variance of vehicle speeds in traffic flow increases the risk of an accident, and speed limiters cause speed variance.” – OOIDA statement