A new federal rule that would require all single-unit commercial trucks to be equipped with rear impact guards has been cleared by the White House’s Office of Management and Budget, so it is likely to be published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in the near future. The rule was first proposed last July.
Rear Impact Guard Rails Prevent Underride Accidents
The rule is designed to help minimize the damage caused when passenger vehicles collide with the rear end of a commercial truck. Because commercial trucks sit higher off of the ground, passenger vehicles are prone to being crushed underneath the trailer upon impact. This type of truck accident is also called an underride accident. Rear impact guards are installed on the back of the trailer and lower to the ground. They serve as somewhat of an additional bumper that prevents vehicles from being wedged beneath the trailer.
The agency believes this new rule will save countless lives and prevent serious injuries when passenger vehicles are involved in underride accidents.