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The SPEAKER pro tempore. Without objection, the previous question 18 ordered.
The resolution was agreed to.
A motion to reconsider was laid on the table.
report to the Congress his recommendations for a formula for fund apportionment in future years. A state's highway funds may be reduced 10 percent alter January 1, 1968, 11 the State has not moved to Institute & program for highway safety under this title.
In developing the uniform performance standards and criteria, the Secretary 18 required to work with State ofcials and other interested public and private organizations. Other Federal agencies may also be consulted.
The Secretary is directed to use funds made avallable for the purpose in making grants to promote research in safety to State, private, or Federal agencies and organizations. Types of projects for which funds will be available include: First, research fellowships; second, training of highway safety personnel; and third demonstration projects.
A National Highway Safety Advisory Committee is established in the Department of Commerce. The Secretary is Chairman: 29 members, appointed by the President, are to be selected as follows: 6 Governors, or mayors of major cities, 4 public administrators in the field, 4 from allected Industries, 1 auto englneer, 1 highway engineer, 1 tramc englneer, 4 research scientists, and 8 from the general public. The Committee will advise, consult with, and make recommendations to the Secretary, review research programs, and review prior to Issuance the performance standards and criteria the Secretary is required to establish.
Authorizations under this new chapter are:
First. For the setting up of State safety programs and the setting of standards of criteria: $55 million for fiscal 1967; $80 million for fiscal 1968; $80 million for fiscal 1969.
Second. For the program of grants in the fields of research and training: $10 milion for nscal 1967; $20 million for decal 1968: 325 million for Necal 1969.
The highway trust fund cannot be used to provide funds for the program in an amount which exceeds 1 percent of the current excise tax on motor vehicles plus additional amounts, all of which are appropriated from the general fund to the highway trust fund for such purposes.
An annual report to the Congress on March 1 1 required.
There are no minority or additional views.
I would like to comment at this point, n the gentleman Irom California did. that I believe we are in the right direction with this bill and looking forward to having standardized speed limits in all of our States, where & person leaving one State and driving on the Interstate System can be geared to a certain speed. This in my opinion will promote tramc safety and reduce accidents. This is applicable not only to passenger cars but to trucks as well.
Mr. Speaker, I know of no objection to the rule, and I urge that it be adopted. Reserving the balance of my time, I have no further requests for time.
Mr. SISK. Mr. Speaker, I urge adoption of the resolution. I move the previous question.
NATIONAL TRAFFIC AND MOTOR
VEHICLE SAFETY ACT OF 1966 Mr. STAGGERS. Mr. Speaker, I move that the House resolve itself into the Committee of the Whole House on the State of the Union for the consideration of the bill (H.R. 13228) to provide for a coordinated national safety program and establishment of salety standards for motor vehicles in interstate commerce to reduce tramc accidents and the deaths, Injuries, and property damage which occur in such accidents.
The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there obiection to the request of the gentle. man from West Virginia ?
There was no objection.
The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the motion odered by the gentleman from West Virginia. The motion was agreed to.
IN THE COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE Accordingly, the House resolved itself into the Committee of the Whole House on the State of the Union for the consideration of the bill H.R. 13228, with Mr. DADDARIO in the chair.
The Clerk read the title of the bill.
By unanimous consent, the Arst readIng of the bill was dispensed with.
The CHAIRMAN. Under the rule, the gentleman from West Virginia (Mr. STAGGERS) will be recognized for 1972 hours and the gentleman from Illinois (Mr. SPRINGER) will be recognized for 1%2 hours.
The Chair recognizes the gentleman from West Virginia.
Mr. STAGGERS. Mr. Chairman, I yield mysell 10 minutes.
Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee, I might say Nrst that this biu came out of our committee with a unantmous vote. We had 13 days of hearings and 17 days of executive sessions marking up the bill. I believe that every sentence and every word was gone over very carefully.
The committee came out with a bill the members thought was a good bill for this land of ours.
Many things have been sald about the bil, but some of those who talk about it do not understand that it is a package program. The other part comes out of the Public Works Committee and follows this bill. Originally, when it came to the HINI, this was connected with our bill, but It was divided up by the Parliamentarian, because of the different areas of jurisdiction. Really, this is a package to be considered together.
The bill we present to the Committee today primarily has to do with the manufacture of cars and their performance. Someone has said it has to do with design, but we do not want to set the design, we want to require the Secretary to set performance standards.
I commend the bill to the Committee and to the Members, because I believe it has been carefully worked upon.
I will outline some of the provisions of the bill.
I do not pretend that the bill will take care of every possible present or future salety consideration, but I do proudly support it as a far-reaching and wellconsidered initiation of a new safety program.
I will outline briefly what the bill contains and how the provisions of the bill will be administered.
I believe that both members of the Rules Committee, in their explanations, gave very good statements on the bill in their recommendation for the passage of the rule.
Mr. Chairman, the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce has reported H.R. 13228 and I speak in behall of the bul as amended. This legislation 15 known as the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. Its purpose is to reduce trafic accidents and thereby reduce the deaths and injuries which result from trafic accidents. This would be accomplished by establishing a new program in the Department of Commerce. Under this legislation the Secretary of Commerce must issue and enforce Federal safety standards. These standards would apply to the manufacture of motor vehicles and to the manufacture of motor vehicle equipment. The legislation also requires the Secretary to undertake and support safety research and development and it provides for the expansion of the national driver register.
The Committee on Interstate and For. pirn Commoroo hu dotorminod to its complete satisfaction that the slaughter on the highways will not be materially reduced without the active and formal participation of the Federal Government. The principle of Federal participation was endorsed by the vast majority of the witnesses who appeared in our public hearings. In the opinion of the committee the need for legislation in this deld may be accepted as a fact.
The Secretary, after thorough consultation with State, industry and other public and private interests will have to set standards which will anect every motor vehicle manufactured and each item of motor vehicle equipment that is manufactured. This should, in the very near future, lead to a marked upgrading of all of the safety aspects of motor vehicles and motor vehicle equipment. This part of the tramic problem and it is but & part is covered in detall in title I of the bul.
In the calendar year of 1966, we have every reason to believe that 50,000 persons will lose their lives in this country as & direct result of trafic accidents. Some have predicted that it is just as certain that 100.000 will be killed in traf. fic accidents in 1975. I do not think it necessary to recall in detall the statistics concerning loss of life and the millions who have been injured and permanently malmed in past years. I am sure that each Member of the House is aware of the past situation.
The challenge now is to achieve improvement. I believe that this can be done by enactment of this legislation together with that which has been reported by the Public Works Committee, H.R. 13290.
Drivers are, of course, & fundamental part of the problem. No doubt, most acaidents could be prevented it it were not for the human error of the driver. But to my way of thinking, there is no merit In merely dismissing our deplorable tralnc accident record with the time-honored wisecrack about the "nut behind the wheel." This ignores the necessity of considering the safety aspects of the vehicle and the safety aspects of highways, roads and streets on which the vehicle is operating. AU of these, together with the driver, need improvement.
The Secretary will be able to give his attention to all of these under this and the related legislation.
I do not pretend that this bull takes care of every possible present or future safety consideration, but I do proudly support it as a far-reaching and wellconsidered initiation of a new safety program.
I will outline briefly what the bill contains and how the provisions of the bill will be administered.
As I have stated, its basic or central purpose is to reduce accidents and thereby deaths and injuries. This would be accomplished by establishing a new program in the Department of Commerce: First, the Secretary of Commerce would be required to issue and enforce Federal safety standards; second, these standards would apply to the manufacture of all motor vehicles and to the manufacture of all motor vehicle equipment; third, the Boorotary would be required to undertake and support safety research and development, and fourth, the present National Driver Register would also be expanded under this legislation and virtually all drivers who have had their licenses revoked will be registered.
The Secretary will be required to issue initial standards based on known standards on or before January 31, 1967. On or before January 31, 1968, he must issue new and revised safety standards8ection 103. He will have the assistance of a National Motor Vehicle Safety Advisory Council. This will be made up of members of the public, members of industry, and members of State or local governments. The Secretary will consult with them before Issuing, amending, or revoking standards section 104.
The Judicial review provisions of the bill should afford protection to any interested party 11 he wishes to challenge orders of the Secretary. Essentially the judicial review provisions are those of the Food and Drug Act and the Administrative Procedure Act section 105.
There are provisions in the bill to permit the necessary research, testing, development, and training to assist the Secretary in carrying out the purpose of this legislation section 106.
A number of prohibitions are contained in the act which should preclude the manufacturing or importation of vehicles and vehicle equipment which do not meet Federal standards-section 108. Civil penalties section 109-are provided for violations of the prohibited acts. Injunctive relief will also be available to the Secretary-section 110.
A National Tramc Safety Agency will be established and headed by a Presiden
tlally appointed administrator. This would denne and identify the Federal Government's interest in and responsibility for trainc safety.
Title I is applicable to the manufacture of all motor vehicle equipment and would be totally applicable therefore to tire safety standards. The committee included in title II of the bill, however, certain specinc Information and other reqwrements with respect to these standards as they apply to tires.
Title III authorizes a study of existing research and test faciuties and requires & report to Congress as to what facilities exist and what facilities are needed by December 1, 1967.
Title IV amends the existing National Driver Register law and under this amendment virtually all drivers who have had their licenses revoked or suspended will be Usted.
I have briefly summarized the reasons for and the provisions of the legislation. You have the committee's report and you will find a section-by-section summary beginning on page 12 and a more detailed explanation of the bill beginning on page 14.
The comments that I have heard and read on this legislation are generally lavorable. Specincally under the bill as reported, the Secretary will be required to issue and enforce safety standards. As introduced, the Secretary would have had discretion and would have issued standards only 18 and when he doter. cinad . nood for such standarda.
The Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce added a number of provisions which do not appear in other versions of the proposed legislation on the subject of tradic safety and which are not in the bill reported by the other body. Your attention is directed to the dennition section of H.R. 13228 wherein all motor vehicles driven or drawn by mechanical power and manufactured for use on the highways are covered. As reported by the other body, vehicles subject to part II of the Interstate Commerce Act or the Transportation of Explosives Act. would have been excluded. This would have substantially limited the Secretary's authority to set safety standards for the manufacture of vehicles and, in addition, no one has been able to state with any certainty just what vehicles would have been excluded.
The committee also included Title I: Tire Salety, which sets forth certain specinc requirements as to tires and makes clear that tires are within the ambit of the legislation.
Other important additions which do not appear in the legislation referred to by the other body, appear in section 104 where a National Motor Vehicle Safety Advisory Council is created. This will be made up of 13 members drawn from industry. State and local governments, and from the public. The Secretary is required to seek the advice and recommendations of the Council before establishing safety standards. This assures not only & method for expert consultation but also a method for active participation in the program by State, local, and other persons interested in traffic safety,
In section 115, the Secretary is required to establish in the Department
ov. I feel door, one
of Commerce a National Tradic Safety Agency which will be administered by an Administrator appointed by the President. This should go a long way to unify the now scattered trafic safety responsibility. The Administrator will be primarily responsible for carrying out this tramc safety program.
These are some of the improvements that the committee has made since the bill was introduced.
Subsequent to reporting the bill there have been several adverse remarks particularly as to the Inspection provisions of the bill and the absence of any criminal penalty provisions.
Section 112 authorizes the Secretary to conduct any inspections which aro necessary to enforce safety standards. As to criminal penalties, it is true that
19630 the seat belt and brake fuld laws had criminal penalty provisions. However, from enactment to the present date, no enforcement proceedings have been brought under these provisions.
The committee determined that the civil penalties and injunction provisions of sections 109 and 110 will be sumicient to assure compliance with Federal safety standards.
Finally, Mr. Chairman, as has been stated many times this legislation is second in importance to the Nation only to Vietnam. I am proud of the work which the committee has put into this legislation and I commend each member of the committee. They participated both in the 13 days of public hearings and in the 17 days in which we held executive sessions with great interest and energy. I feel that we have brought & good bill to the floor, one which will lead to happier days on our highways, and I recommend and earnestly urge favorable action.
Mr. SPRINGER. Mr. Chairman, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
The next war will involve every man, woman and child in our country. Everyone will bo in personal joopardy.
Statements of this kind are used to impress upon us the all too real horrors of modern warfare. And we are impressed. The thought of subjecting whole famules to possible extinction in one tell swoop horrifes any thinking citizen. He resolves to avoid such & turn of events.
But all the while, swirling about us, and being fought every day, is & war which can and may cut down members of our families or strike suddenly and devastatingly to wipe out the family Itsell. This is the war of tramc safety which we have been losing to the tune of 50,000 lives a year. It is a war which in terms of numbers killed and maimed makes combat service look like a haven of salety. It is a war which shows no regard for the rules of war, international agreements, the Red Cross, or the age, sex, or status of its victims. It is & war which we must fight every day, every year, because it has no rest and rehabilitation areas, no reassignment, no compassionate leave. When we go to work or to the market, we are actively engaged in it. When we go on vacation to visit the wonders of our country. our whole family is thrust into it as a unit.
I can remember seeing scenes in movies of frontier familles being wiped
out by hostiles. After the sudden raid we see crumpled, mutilated bodies of wives and children strewn about. One asks himsell why the head of a family, knowing the risk, would subject his famlly to the dangers inherent in isolated frontier living. But for some reason the same feeling has not always occurred to me when my neighbor piles his family, plus a few extras, into his station wagon and drives off. Statistics and horrible examples indicate that I should feel the same and should visualize a sudden horrendous incident which leaves them all dead or injured. Such is the possibility while living in a motorized age which has not as yet demanded safety measures commensurate with its dangers.
I encerely hope that the turning point of the safety war now has been reached. Bills before Congress should reverse the trend. Nothing will quickly and dra. matically solve the problem. No flag of truce can suddenly result in & ceasefire. Doing everything possible, we can only hope to see a gradual change. This is caused by the extremely complex nature of the things needed to be done and the additional subjective elements supplied by public reaction and human nature.
Congressional action has taken two approaches and two lines of attack on the problems involved because of these complications. Several factors must be kept in balance and several facts of life must be recognized in coping with the situation.
First of all, the Federal Government cannot be the end-all. We must remember that roads are built in the States and the localities. Laws are enforced there. Cars are driven there. Hopefully, they are Inspected there. There must be realIstic balances between absolute safety and freedom to use vehicles and the roads.
Il possible, we want Arst of all to cut the accident rate to & minimum-in other words, keep the accident from happening. That is done by starting with a safe car to be used on safe highways by a safe driver guided by adequate trafic control devices and subject to proper enforcement of the laws.
Knowing the realities of life we also know that no such utopia will be forthcoming and that accidents will continue to happen. That being the case, we need to minimize the damage to life and limb which will be caused by the second collision--that of the occupant with his own vehicle. Obviously, this is where new car standards fit the picture and this is primarily what H.R. 13228, the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966, is meant to provide. By this I mean more adequate standards of performance for new cars.
As rapidly as possible, all known safety devices and features will be incorporated into new automobiles as they come from the assembly lines. Then, as new and better systems and devices are developed, either by the automobile industry itself, the equipment manufacturers, or by research and experiment supported by private or government sources, those devices will become part of the expected standard for later models.
The Federal Government is a buyer of automobiles in large numbers, and in
the last 2 years it has been looking very critically at its own requirements with & view to buying cars equipped as salely as present technology will permit. That, Incidentally, is a complete switch from the former practice of buying the barest models produced. Even before H.R. 13228 becomes law, the General Services Administration is updating its requirements further in order to have in being the best standards possible as initial standards under the new legislation. In this way such standards can afect automobiles delivered to the public at least a year sooner than otherwise.
But what does the bill do to make can saler for you? It directs the Secretary of Commerce to establlah standards for new cars which will make them as safe as possible consistent with commonsense and the realities of auto manufacturing It is not the intention to deprive the pubUc of cars by making them inordinately expensive or outlawing types and models. It is intended to put in them better and better safety features which will make them less apt to be involved in accidents and less apt to injure occupants if and when they are.
So standards will be set and then amended and revised as knowledge groups. In the course of establishing the standards, the Secretary of Commerce will have at his disposal a safety advisory council made up of those best able to help him, including the people who build cars, those who create parts and equipment, and the States and localities.
In H.R. 13228 and H.R. 16515—the bi Introduced by me-all motor vehicles. including passenger cars, trucks of all kinds and buses, would be included in the standards as rapidly as possible. This is a difference from the bill passed by the other body and a significant one. The other bill would exempt all vehicles subject to regulation by the Interstate Commerce Commission. Here we have uniformity in manufacturing, and the ICC can require other devices as it finds necessary for trucks and buses engaged in specific roles of interstate commerce.
Also different and additional in the House bills are the provisions for the setting of standards for used cars which make up 80 million of the 93 million vehicles on the roads today. Further is the creation of a National Traffic Safety Agency within the Department of Com. merce headed by & Presidential appointee to unity and carry out the various programs under this and other laws alfecting the overall problem of tramc safety.
And what about those who actually build the new cars--what must they do under this bill? Taking the steps in sequence, the first thing they will do is cooperate and assist the Secretary of Commerce in his deliberations and decisions about sensible, practical safety standards. They will not dominate this activity, but they will contribute. Then, of course, they must adhere to the standards when actually building production models. Having built one, the manufacturer must place & certificate in a permanent fashion which indicates that the vehicle does in fact measure up to the standards in effect when it was built.
Records must be kept which can be inspected to determine compliance.
II, arter all precaution and surveillance, cars do get by and are delivered which have defects, the manufacturer must notify the owner and dealer, if they are not still the same. Such notice must also be given to a later owner if he has taken over a warranty still in effect. Then the car builder must remedy the defect. In the case of autos still in the dealer's intentory, they may be returned or fixed by the dealer at the expense of the manufacturer. Those in the hands of owners will be Axed promptly by dealer. Should the manufacturer fall or refuse to carry out his responsibilities under ther sections, it can be assessed penalties of $1,000 per car, and the Secretary may also seek the help of the courts by way of injunction to force compliance and stop the violation.
Because an automobile is no more reliable than the equipment built into it or added to it, the bill provides for standards in this area also. Things Uke seat belts and brake fluid which already have standards will continue, and other things will be included.
Obviously, the most important piece of equipment which comes to mind is the tire. The other body treated this subject in separate legislation, but it seems to me, and it did to our committee, that tire standards must be part and parcel of any legislation which seeks to impose standards of safety for the cars on the highway. Consequently, a portion of the bill was devoted specifically to this subject. It requires minimum standards for all tires, and then sees to it that the buyer will have all the information he needs to make a decision as to the tire he needs. He will know who makes the tire, the number of plies and the maximum load it should carry. Also, there will be a uniform grading system established.
Equally important to informing the buyer of replacement tres, is the requirement that the original equipment tires be adequate for the purposes the vehicle is designed to be used for. For example, & manufacturer must put strong enough tires on a nine passenger station wagon to hold the weight of nine passengers plus & reasonable amount of luggage. If all of the standards for the vehicle, plus adequate tires, make such a wagon ride like a truck, then there has been something terribly wrong with wagons up to now. Probably this will not happen. In any event, this bill should afford great additional protection to the car buyer when he makes the purchase and when he replaces the original tires with new ones.
All of this, plus accelerated government and private research in the field of auto safety devices and construction, should contribute quickly and significantly to reducing injuries and death among auto passengers. As I said in the beginning. it is an important factor, but only one factor. Many other things must. And I trust will be done to have these safer cars run on safer roads under the direction of safer drivers.
For these reasons, I believe that HR. 13228 is & sensible bill. It is tough enough to get action. It is sensible enough not to fall for the demands for revolutionizing our whole personal transportation system. It recognizes the complexities of automobile designing and manufacture. It avoids imposing on the buying public a complete standardization to humdrum, dreary vehicles. But 1t also leaves enough power and discretion with the Secretary of Commerce to recognize new factors and create new standards as needed.
Mr. STAGGERS. Mr. Chairman, I yield 5 minutes to the gentleman from Florida (Mr. ROGERS).
Mr. ROGERS of Florida. Mr. Chairman, I rise in support of H.R. 13228, the National Tramc and Motor Vehicle Safe
CXI- 1238 Part 16 ty Act of 1966. This is an excellent piece of legislation, the product of extensive hearings before the committee and will do much to safeguard the public in the trafic safety field.
I am pleased to have participated, as & member of the committee, in this legislation and am gratified by the committee's approval of several of any amendments to the bull. As a member of the committee, I was pleased to have played & part in the trafic safety hearings previously conducted by the Subcommittee on Public Health and Safety during the 87th Congress.
The entire Nation is shocked at the rising toll of highway accidents which result in loss of life, injury, and damage to property. The entire Congress is aware that the tramc toll costs the Nation 50,000 lives and $9 billion in damage each year. The legislation before the House today is a significant step toward auto safety and I am very hopeful and believe that it will contribute to a reduction in highway casualties.
The committee adopted the amendment which I introduced to create a National Motor Vehicle Safety Advisory Council, consisting of 13 members. I strongly feel that this Council is essential to the effective operation and administration of this act. During the hearings, It was brought out before the committee that the Federal Government does not now have the technical expertise necessary to establish Federal Safety standards for motor vehicles. It is clear that while there have been voices in remote corners of the Federal Government echoing concern for auto safety for some time now, efforts at the Federal level to stem auto accidents have been less than decisive. The first real significant Federal action concerning auto safety came during the 87th Congress, when Public Law 87-637 was enacted and during the 88th Congress, when Public Law 88–201 was enacted. It will be recalled that those statutes provide for brake fluid and seat belts meeting Federal safety standards.
It is also worth mentioning that the legislation authorizing the General Seryices Administration to establish safety