NHTSA Launches Quiet Campaign to Protect Industry

WASHINGTON, D.C. - If you didn't already know it was there, you might have missed it entirely in the 45-page proposal to upgrade the roof crush resistance standard: a one-sentence clause tucked in Part 13 amid federal boilerplate, indemnifying manufacturers who met the proposed standard from lawsuits alleging a defect.

Known as a preemption clause, NHTSA's August 19 proposal was the second time in as many months the federal agency has wrapped civil justice reform and auto safety standards into one package that is rousing the ire of consumer advocates, plaintiffs' attorneys, and those concerned about Federalism and cost of care transfer from the industry to the public sector.

Ford Continues Fight to Seal Volvo Roof Strength Documents

Since Ford Motor Company purchased Volvo in 1999 and made the company a division of its Premier Auto Group, Ford has reaped significant profits from the Swedish automaker whose hallmark is safety. But, Ford is also inheriting a headache as Volvo's position on important safety issues conflicts with those of it corporate parent-and these conflicts keep surfacing in the public despite Ford's efforts to keep them secret. This conflict is playing out in litigation and in has seeped into the public in one of the most controversial areas of motor vehicle safety-occupant protection in rollover crashes.

Frontal Offset Crash Test Regulation Scrapped

To the dismay of some highway safety groups, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration has decided to withdraw a proposal to add a high speed frontal offset crash test to its occupant crash protection standard.

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