NHTSA and the Next 50 Years: Time for Congress To Act Boldly (Again) 2016-01-7000
In 1966, Congress boldly reshaped the American approach to road safety and thereby established the United States as the worldwide leader in vehicle safety. Congressional action led to the establishment of the Department of Transportation, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, and the motor-vehicle safety defects and recall system. However, the safety environment that gave rise to these responses has evolved substantially. Fifty years later, the United States is unable to properly regulate rapidly advancing safety technologies, and the recall system is wholly unsuited to ensuring the safety of software-driven systems. Congress must act to update the road safety system in order to enable the United States to meet the challenges and seize the opportunities of the new transportation era.