Funding bill says no to truck speed limiters, yes to truck parking

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The House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday released the Fiscal Year 2025 funding bill for the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) Subcommittee, which includes provisions that would block a potential speed limiter mandate and allocate additional funding for truck parking.

The bill will be considered by the THUD Appropriations subcommittee Thursday, June 27, and with the full House Appropriations Committee on July 8.

Notably for the trucking industry, the bill's text currently includes:

[Related: Safe truck parking availability critical to retain women truck drivers]

The truck parking provision received expected support from both the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association and the American Trucking Associations. OOIDA President Todd Spencer said that, without a safe place to park, truck drivers “are put in a no-win situation. We must either continue to drive while fatigued or out of legal driving time, or park in an undesignated and unsafe location like the side of the road or abandoned lot.”

ATA President and CEO Chris Spear said the truck parking shortage “places an enormous burden on truck drivers, who often don’t know if they will be able to find a safe place to sleep when they finish their shift. This significant investment to expand parking capacity would help alleviate stress on truck drivers, move freight more efficiently, and make the roadways safer for all motorists.”

[Related: Paid truck parking generally not utilized, resented by many truckers]

OOIDA also expressed support for the provision barring a speed limiter requirement for trucks. (Inclusion in the THUD bill followed introduction of standalone legislation last year that contained a similar provision.

“The highest priority of America’s truck drivers is roadway safety,” Spencer noted. OOIDA applauded draft language “that prevents FMCSA from pursuing a dangerous speed limiter mandate on large trucks. Such a mandate would result in drastic speed differentials on America’s roadways, increased crash rates, and would put innocent lives of all road users at risk.”

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FMCSA's work toward a potential speed limiter mandate has seemingly stalled, as the agency's most recent update in February indicated a proposed rulemaking was expected to be published in May. Now almost July, a speed limiter proposal has yet to even reach the White House's Office of Management and Budget for approval, much less be published in the Federal Register to open a comment period.

[Related: 'Potential adverse safety impacts': Speed limiters, truck parking discussed in Senate hearing]