Jan. 24, 2008
Proposed Roof Crush Rule Remains Inadequate; Bush Administration Ignores Rollover Ejections
Statement of Joan Claybrook, President, Public Citizen*
The Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking released today by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) concedes that testing vehicles for roof crush on both sides of the roof is effective, but the proposal makes no mention of the safety advantages of doing this.
The proposal is still a static test – one based on mathematical calculations, rather than a dynamic physical test – and it still is at 2.5 times the weight of the vehicle.
The proposal absolutely ignores ejection and containment in the vehicle during rollovers, in which 10,500 people die each year and another 17,000 are seriously injured. To justify a strong rollover protection standard, the agency should address roof crush, ejection and containment as one standard.
By dividing it into three standards, the roof crush portion of the protection proposal continues to be totally inadequate.
* Joan Claybrook was NHTSA administrator from 1977-1981.