In March, the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) released its Report of Significant Rulemaking, which details big changes coming to the world of transportation. In this report was a particularly interesting bit about the use of speed governors—also known as Electronic Control Modules (ECM).

The report stated that the DOT would be mandating the use of speed governors on many of the larger trucks that occupy our highways today. A relatively easy rule to implement, as almost all new trucks are manufactured with governors and many trucking companies have outfitted their own trucks with them, it is thought that the rule will set all trucks’ speed limit to 68 mph.

Would it Make Us Safer?

Unlike many federal regulations that are proposed, this particular proposal has been backed by industry safety groups such as the American Trucking Association as well as nine carriers. A study by the DOT was performed on the causes of large truck crashes, and it revealed that many of the crashes could have been avoided or less serious if speed was not a factor.

In general, large trucks are involved in less accidents per mile than other vehicles, but when trucks crash, the results are often fatal. By reducing top speeds fleet wide, the DOT and safety groups aimed to reduce overall stopping distances and increase controllability.

The rule may not be as effective, however, without a speed governor mandate also being put into effect for passenger vehicles. Most standard vehicles have already have a governor to limit speeds to about 110 mph, while sports cars tend to set limiters at about 150 mph. The question remains however, if—and some say when—limits will be set on passenger vehicles, and what the limit will be.

Without governors on all vehicles on the road, there could be a dangerous speed differential between cars and trucks that will only make roads more dangerous. Many accidents occur when cars maneuver to get around slower-moving trucks—with trucks moving even slower, the problem could be worse.

Regulations for a Reason

These rules are being proposed for a good reason—speeding trucks are dangerous. If you have been hurt by a truck that was speeding negligently, you deserve compensation—contact our law firm today by clicking on the live chat link, and find out what we can do to help you find justice.


Damian Mallard, Esq.
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Board Certified Sarasota Personal Injury Attorney