A report that was requested by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's Office of Analysis last year showed the benefits of speed limiters being installed in commercial trucks – so why don't all trucks have them by now? The report showed that trucks equipped with speed limiters had a 50 percent lower speed-related crash rate. A speed limiter can be programmed with a top speed for a specific vehicle, making it so that the trucker is unable to drive at dangerous speeds.


Researchers analyzed data from 20 truck fleets, about 138,000 trucks and more than 15,000 crashes. Around 15 percent of the trucking collisions were identified as speed limiter-relevant. In determining whether a crash was speed limiter-relevant, they looked at the location of the crash, the type of crash, contributing factors (like weather) and the crash narrative. Some data the report shared that proved the effectiveness of speed limiters included:


  • The crash rate for trucks without speed limiters was 5 crashes per 100 trucks over a year


  • The crash rate for trucks with speed limiters was 1.4 crashes per 100 trucks over a year


Right now about 60 to 80 percent of fleets use speed limiters, but that number should be 100 percent when so many lives are at stake. The American Trucking Associations, the Truckload Carriers Association and safety advocates are all for a federal regulation that requires speed limiters in commercial trucks. The ATA actually petitioned FMCSA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration seven years ago to request that all commercial vehicles manufactured since 1992 should be required to use speed limiters.


It is great that so many fleets have speed limiters in place, but we hope to see many more come on board in the future to prevent trucking collisions. If you have been injured in a trucking collision in Texas, Oklahoma or Arkansas, contact Girards Law for a free consultation at 888.897.2762