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Mike Byrnes & Assoc. , Inc. Names the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as Bumper To BumperŪ People of the Month for April, 2009


Those big commercial vehicles on the highway are impressive. But if it weren't for PEOPLE, those trucks would be sitting idly in terminal yards. With an eye to shining the spotlight on the PEOPLE behind the trucking industry, this month Mike Byrnes and Associates, Inc., highlights the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. 

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the Department of Transportation. It describes its mission as "Save lives, prevent injuries and reduce economic costs due to road traffic crashes, through education, research, safety standards and enforcement activity.

As part of its activities, NHTSA is charged with writing and enforcing standards for

  • safety
  • theft-resistance
  • fuel economy

for motor vehicles. NHTSA also
crash test dummy

  • licenses vehicle manufacturers and importers
  • allows or blocks the import of vehicles and safety-regulated vehicle parts
  • administers the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) system
  • develops the "crash-test dummies" used in safety testing, as well as the tests themselves
  • provides vehicle insurance cost information.

Under authority granted by Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), the NHTSA issues Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) and Regulations. Manufacturers of motor vehicle and equipment items must conform and certify compliance to these standards and regulations. FMVSS 209 was the first standard to become effective on March 1, 1967. A number of FMVSS became effective for vehicles manufactured on and after January 1, 1968. Since then, other FMVSS have been issued. New standards and amendments to existing standards are published in the Federal Register. Many of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations refer to FMVSS standards.

These Federal safety standards are regulations written in terms of minimum safety performance requirements for motor vehicles or items of motor vehicle equipment. These requirements are specified in such a manner "that the public is protected against unreasonable risk of crashes occurring as a result of the design, construction, or performance of motor vehicles and is also protected against unreasonable risk of death or injury in the event crashes do occur." When inspecting a truck as part of the required pre-trip inspection, you will be checking to see that parts and equipment meet standards set by the FMVSS.

The National Center for Statistics and Analysis (NCSA) is an office of the NHTSA. NCSA is responsible for providing a wide range of analytical and statistical support to NHTSA and the highway safety community at large.

You can learn more about the NHTSA and the NCSA and find many useful studies, reports and bulletins at the Web site,