Rockefeller Commends Bipartisan Safety Measures in Surface Transportation Bill

Remarks come amid renewed federal push to crack down on unsafe bus operators

May 31, 2012

SCom: TransportationWASHINGTON, D.C.— Chairman John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV today applauded a group of parents, safety advocates, and pediatricians endorsing the Senate Commerce Committee's bi-partisan safety measures included in the Senate bill. Rockefeller also praised the strong work by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) today to go after unsafe bus operators.

“I am encouraged by the strong showing of support from families, pediatricians and safety advocates who realize that we can and must further improve the safety of our transportation system,” Rockefeller said. “We took common-sense steps to reduce distracted driving, increase seatbelt use, and modernize the federal safety agencies. We know that surface transportation programs play a critical role in all aspects of our lives.  The safety improvements in this bill are essential to this legislation.  Without these provisions, far too many people will continue to get injured or lose their lives on the road. The bottom line is that the Senate bill contains a range of smart safety provisions with wide bipartisan support and I will continue to fight hard to preserve the safety pieces in final legislation.”

“Good to see the FMCSA’s crackdown on bad actors in the motorcoach industry,” Rockefeller said.  “While shutting down 26 companies who were imminent hazards to the public is a huge victory for safety, it also shows that unsafe operators are determined to skirt the law and continue to operate.  Motorcoaches are a popular and generally safe way to travel, but we must continue to provide rigorous oversight of this industry and implement the new safety requirements in the Senate’s transportation bill to make sure FMCSA has the tools it needs to be as effective as possible.  Senators Hutchison and Brown have been leaders on this issue and I will continue to fight for motorcoach safety in the surface transportation reauthorization process.”