I recently discussed a proposal in Congress which would make our highways much more dangerous. The proposal would allow longer trucker hours, heavier loads, and bigger trucks. Statistics indicate 4,000 people are killed and up to 100,000 people suffer personal injury annually in large truck crashes. My earlier post asks the question — Why change the rules and make our highways even more dangerous?
The plan to change the rules puts all drivers at risk. It’s a plan pushed by trucking industry lobbyists that puts profits over people. And, it’s wrong. I felt compelled to write this update after reading an article in a Mississippi newspaper. The article, titled The Longer Haul Debate, cites an effort by Mississippi officials to oppose the dangerous proposal to alter trucking rules. One official urged the Senate to squash the proposal saying:
I’m a whole lot more interested in the safety of Mississippi’s drivers than I am the financial welfare of a national corporation.
I admire the courage of this official to put safety before profit. In a letter to Mississippi Senator Thad Cochran, the officials noted a proposal to allow larger trucks:
would endanger motorists, worsen our crumbling roads and increase the fiscal burden shouldered by Mississippi taxpayers.
I wish Alabama officials would also advocate for the safety of drivers on our roads. Here is a chance for our officials to put public interests before corporate interests.