Latest Articles

May 2018
The FMCSA issues a Request for Comments to Identify Regulatory Barriers to Introducing Automated Driving Systems on Commercial Motor Vehicles in Interstate Commerce

This month's Spotlight article highlights another opportunity for stakeholder input for revising current regulations and/or drafting new ones regarding autonomous ...

April 2018
New Brazilian Resolution on Side Impact Protection Published

In January 2018, the Brazilian National Traffic Council (CONTRAN) published a new Resolution covering vehicle occupant protection requirements in the event of a side ...

March 2018
Draft ECE Regulation on International Whole Vehicle Type Approval (IWVTA) Adopted

In November 2017, at their 173rd session, the World Forum for Harmonisation of Vehicle Regulations (WP.29) finally adopted the new United Nations Economic Commission for ...

2018

February 2018
The NHTSA and the FHWA Issue Requests for Comments / Information to Identify Regulatory Barriers to Introducing Automated Driving Systems

Automated Driving Systems (ADSs) are increasingly being tested and introduced onto the public roadways. Although predicted by most to save lives and decrease injuries ...

January 2018
EU Proposes Mandatory Fitment of Onboard Fuel Consumption Measuring Devices

On 12th December 2017, the European Commission published a draft Regulation proposing the mandatory fitment of onboard fuel consumption measuring devices to all light ...

2017

December 2017
EU Proposes Post 2020 CO2 Emissions Targets for Light Duty Vehicles

The European Commission have recently published a draft Regulation proposing average CO2 emissions targets to be applied to light duty vehicles for the period beyond 2020 ...

November 2017
NHTSA and the U.S. DOT Update Voluntary Guidance Policy for Automated Vehicles

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are continuing their quest to support the introduction of ...

October 2017
EU Updates Requirements on Acoustic Vehicle Alerting Systems (AVAS)

EU Regulation No. 2017/1576, which was published on 19th September 2017, amends EU Regulation No. 540/2014 on the sound levels produced by motor vehicles to introduce new ...

September 2017
ECE Clarifies Anti-Lock Brake System Deactivation Switch Requirements for Motorcycles

On 26th July 2017, an 04 series of amendments to United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) Regulation No. 78 covering the braking requirements for all L ...

August 2017
New EU Regulations on Light Duty Vehicle Emissions Published

On 7th July 2017, five important new EU Regulations on light duty vehicle emissions were published in the Official Journal of the European Union. These new EU Regulations ...

July 2017
Updated ECE Requirements on Automatically Commanded Steering Functions Proposed

To address the rapid development and deployment of advanced driver assistance systems that has occurred in the last couple of years, the World Forum for Harmonisation of ...

June 2017
Amendments to EU Requirements on Access to Repair and Maintenance Information Proposed

At a Technical Committee - Motor Vehicles (TCMV) meeting on 11th May 2017, the European Commission presented draft amendments to both the light duty vehicle and heavy ...

May 2017
Draft Indian Standard on New Mandatory Safety Features Published

In October 2016, the Indian Ministry of Transport and Highways published a proposal to mandate the fitment of speed warning devices, safety belt reminders, manual ...

April 2017
Expanded ECE Requirements on Safety Belt Reminder Fitment Proposed

United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) Regulation No. 16 on safety belts and restraints systems currently mandates the fitment of a safety belt reminder ...

March 2017
European Commission Guidance Document on "Defeat Devices" Published

To address the highly publicised "emissions scandal", the European Commission have instigated a number of changes to the European Union's legal requirements on emissions ...

February 2017
EU Regulation on the Technical Requirements for eCall Systems Published

Following the publication of EU Regulation No. 2015/758, which mandated the fitment of in-vehicle eCall systems to all new types of M1 and N1 category vehicle from 31st ...

January 2017
NHTSA Issues Final Rule to Reduce the Risk of Pedestrian Crashes by Establishing Minimum Sound Requirements for Electric and Hybrid Vehicles

Listen for those electric and hybrid vehicles -- soon to be heard. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a Final Rule on December 14, 2016 ...

2016

December 2016
New UN ECE Regulations Created Due to "Splitting" of Existing Regulations

At their 169th session, the World Forum for Harmonisation of Vehicle Regulations (WP.29), formally adopted three new United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE ...

November 2016
Further Draft European Union Regulation on Real Driving Emissions Published

At a Technical Committee - Motor Vehicles (TCMV) meeting on 3rd October 2016, the European Commission presented their first draft of the "third package" of ...

October 2016
USDOT and NHTSA Issue Federal Automated Vehicles Policy - Accelerating the Next Revolution in Roadway Safety

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued the long-awaited guidance document covering usage of ...

September 2016
ECE Regulation on Rear Vision Updated to Permit Camera Based Systems

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) Regulation on indirect vision requirements, ECE 46.04, has recently been amended to allow the fitment of camera ...

August 2016
Draft EU Regulation on Acoustic Vehicle Alerting Systems (AVAS) Published

Acoustic vehicle alerting systems (AVAS) are sound generating systems fitted to pure electric and hybrid electric vehicles. Their purpose is to generate sound when the ...

July 2016
NHTSA Issues Final Rule to Standardize Lighting and Marking Requirements for Agricultural Equipment in US

The National Highway Transportation Association (NHTSA) has issued a rare Final Rule regarding agricultural equipment. NHTSA has not regulated the manufacture of most ...

June 2016
European Union Proposal on Heavy Duty Vehicle CO2 Emissions Published

At a Technical Committee - Motor Vehicles (TCMV) meeting on 12th May 2016, the European Commission presented a first draft of an EU Implementing Regulation to introduce ...

May 2016
New European Union Requirements on Real Driving Emissions Published

The new EU requirements on real driving emissions (RDE), which introduce a new "on road" emissions test using a portable emissions measuring system (PEMS), have now been ...

April 2016
Proposal to Introduce the WLTP into the EU Emissions Requirements

To address concerns that the test procedure and drive cycle currently used for light duty vehicle emissions testing, known as the New European Drive Cycle or NEDC, does ...

March 2016
European Commission Proposes New Regulation to Replace 2007/46/EC

On 27th January, 2016, the European Commission published a draft new EU Regulation on the type approval and market surveillance of motor vehicles and their trailers, ...

February 2016
NHTSA Requests Comments on Proposals for Revising the New Car Assessment Program

The National Highway Transportation Association (NHTSA) considers the New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) a success as indicated by the continued growth in consumer ...

January 2016
New ECE Regulation on Frontal Impact Adopted

At the 167th session of the World Forum for Harmonisation of Vehicle Regulations (WP.29) in November 2015, a new UN ECE Regulation on frontal impact was adopted. This new ...

2015

December 2015
ECE Regulation on Glazing Updated to Permit Plastic Windscreens

On 9th November, 2015, Supplement 4 to the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) Regulation on glazing, ECE 43.01, was published. This Supplement ...

November 2015
Amendments to the EU General Safety Regulation Proposed to Update the List of UN ECE Regulations that Apply on a Compulsory Basis

At a Technical Committee - Motor Vehicles (TCMV) meeting held on 6th October, 2015, the European Commission submitted a proposal to amend the General Safety Regulation, ( ...

October 2015
Proposal to add Particulate Matter Measurement into the EU Heavy Duty In-Service Emissions Testing Requirements

At a Technical Committee - Motor Vehicles (TCMV) meeting held on 10th September, 2015, the European Commission submitted a proposal to amend the implementing Regulation ...

September 2015
New ECE Regulation on Electric Vehicles of Category L Adopted

To compliment ECE 100.02, which covers safety requirements for vehicles of categories M and N equipped with an electric powertrain, the United Nations Economic Commission ...

August 2015
ECE Regulation on the Prevention of Fire Risks Updated to Mandate Rear Impact Testing

The 03 series of amendments to UN ECE Regulation No. 34 on the prevention of fire risks were published on 22nd June 2015. This new series of amendments requires all M1 ...

July 2015
The NHTSA Issues Final Rule to Add New Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 136 Electronic Stability Control Systems for Heavy Vehicles

On June 23, 2015 the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published a Final Rule in the Federal Register that establishes a new Federal Motor Vehicle ...

June 2015
EU Regulation on eCall In-Vehicle Systems Published

On 19th May 2015, the European Union published a new Regulation, (EU) No. 2015/758, covering eCall in-vehicle systems. With effect from 31st March 2018, this new ...

May 2015
EU Regulation on Advanced Emergency Braking Systems Updated

EU Regulation No. 661/2009 introduced a requirement for the mandatory fitment of advanced emergency braking systems (AEBS) to M2, M3, N2 and N3 Category vehicles and EU ...

April 2015
The NHTSA Issues Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to Amend Seat Belt Anchorage Systems Regulation

Responding to Comments Received for the March 2012 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a Supplementary Notice of ...

March 2015
The NHTSA Issues NPRM to Amend Child Restraint Regulations to Improve Ease of Use

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking which proposes to amend Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards 225 and 213 ...

February 2015
EU Regulation on Passenger Car Mandatory CO2 Emissions Limits Updated to Increase the Average Vehicle Mass Value

Compliance with EU Regulation No. 443/2009 on the CO2 emissions limits for new passenger cars is demonstrated using a formula specified within the Regulation. The formula ...

January 2015
European Union Proposes New Requirements on Real Driving Emissions

To address concerns that the real world emissions performance of light duty vehicles has not improved in line with the most recent reductions in the applicable type ...

2014

December 2014
European Type Approval Requirements for Multi Stage Built Vehicles Updated

Although EC Directive 2007/46/EC on European type approval has always contained specific requirements for vehicles built in multiple stages, experience gained in the ...

November 2014
UN ECE Requirements on EMC for "Plug-in" Vehicles Updated

The 05 series of amendments to UN ECE Regulation No. 10 on electromagnetic compatibility were published on 16th October, 2014. This new series of amendments introduces ...

October 2014
New Brazilian Resolution on Interior Material Flammability Published

In August 2014, a new Resolution on the flammability of interior materials was published by Brazil's National Traffic Council (CONTRAN). In this new Resolution, ...

September 2014
The NHTSA Issues Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for Vehicle-to-Vehicle Communications

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking which proposes to create a new Federal Motor Vehicle Safety ...

August 2014
NHTSA Proposes to Remedy Two Issues by Publishing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for Tire Identification and Recordkeeping

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to increase the manufacturer identifier portion of the tire ...

July 2014
New EU Regulation on Noise Emissions Published

New EU Regulation No. 540/2014 on the sound level of motor vehicles and of replacement silencing systems represents the most significant change in the European legal ...

June 2014
Global Technical Regulation on Light Vehicle Emissions Test Procedure Published

With its publication as Global Technical Regulation (GTR) No. 15 on 12th May 2014, the finalised worldwide harmonised light vehicle test procedure (WLTP) represents a ...

May 2014
NHTSA Issued Final Rule for Rear Visibility

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a Final Rule expanding the required field of view for all passenger cars, trucks, multipurpose ...

April 2014
FHWA Issues Request for Information for Connected Vehicle Pilot Deployment Program

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has issued a Request for Information (RFI) seeking comments to help refine plans, for one or more pilot programs that combine ...

March 2014
Amendments to the EU Light Duty and Heavy Duty Emissions Requirements Proposed

The European Commission have recently published a proposal for a new EU Regulation that would introduce amendments to both the light duty and heavy duty emissions ...

February 2014
NHTSA Issues Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for FMVSS 213 Child Restraint Systems

Supplementing the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for Part 572 - Anthropomorphic Test Devices (see InterRegs Spotlight Article - December 2013), the National Highway ...

January 2014
EU Requirements on Motorcycle Emissions and Lighting Installation Updated

Amending Directive 2013/60/EU was published on 10th December 2013. It increases the stringency of the emissions requirements applicable to L1e, L2e and L6e category ...

2013

December 2013
NHTSA Issues Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for 3 Year Old Side Impact Dummy

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that would amend Part 572 - Anthropomorphic Test Devices ( ...

November 2013
ECE Requirements on Driver's Vision Updated

In order to enhance the fields of vision available to the drivers of motor vehicles, two of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) Regulations ...

October 2013
ECE Regulation on Electric Power Trains Updated

The 02 series of amendments to ECE 100 on electric power trains, which introduce new requirements, and associated test procedures, on the performance of rechargeable ...

September 2013
NHTSA Issued Final Rule for 49CFR Parts 573, 577 and 579

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a Final Rule adopting amendments to certain provisions of the early warning reporting (EWR) rule and ...

August 2013
Second "Eco-Innovation" Approval Published by the European Commission

On 29th June 2013, the European Commission granted "approval" to a second eco-innovation. This "approval", details of which are given in Commission Implementing Decision ...

July 2013
South Africa Proposes Mandatory Compliance with ECE 100.01 for Electric and Hybrid Vehicles

On 31st May 2013, the South African Department of Trade and Industry published proposed amendments to the compulsory specifications for both M1 and N1 category vehicles ...

June 2013
Updates to EU Requirements on Special Purpose Vehicles Proposed

At the Technical Committee - Motor Vehicles (TCMV) meeting on 8th May 2013, the European Commission presented their first draft of a Regulation to update the special ...

May 2013
NHTSA Requesting Comments on Revisions to New Car Assessment Program (NCAP)

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a Request for Comments asking the public for assistance in improving the New Car Assessment Program ...

April 2013
New EU Type Approval Framework Regulations for Motorcycles and Agricultural Tractors Published

On 2nd March 2013, two new EU type approval "framework" Regulations were published; EU Regulation No. 167/2013 covering agricultural and forestry tractors and EU ...

March 2013
NHTSA Moving Ahead with Rulemaking for Quiet Vehicles

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued an NPRM to require minimum sound requirements for hybrid (HV) and electric vehicles (EV), Federal ...

February 2013
EU Publishes new Regulation on Masses and Dimensions

On 21st December 2012, the new EU Implementing Regulation on masses and dimensions, (EU) No. 1230/2012, was finally published. This new Implementing Regulation not only ...

January 2013
Rulemaking to Rescind FMVSS 219-Windshield Zone Intrusion is Withdrawn

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has withdrawn a proposal to rescind Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 219 - Windshield Zone ...

May 2018

The FMCSA issues a Request for Comments to Identify Regulatory Barriers to Introducing Automated Driving Systems on Commercial Motor Vehicles in Interstate Commerce

On March 26, 2018 in Federal Register Vol. 83 Number 58 the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued a Request for Comment (RFC) in Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0037). The RFC is focused on Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) which may need to be updated, modified, or eliminated to allow the safe testing and deployment of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) equipped with automated driving systems (ADS) on public roads. Prior to this RFC, FMCSA commissioned the U.S. Department of Transportation's John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center (Volpe) to conduct a preliminary review of the FMCSRs to identify regulations that may relate to the development and safe introduction of ADS. The Volpe report is titled "Review of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations for Automated Commercial Vehicles: Preliminary Assessment of Interpretation and Enforcement Challenges, Questions, and Gaps," number MCSA-RRT-17-013, August 2017.

The FMCSA is responsible for the safety oversight of motor carriers operating CMVs in interstate commerce, the drivers of CMVs and the vehicles. CMVs as defined in 49 CFR 390.5, include:

  • Vehicles with gross vehicle weight (GVW)/gross combination weight (GCW) of 10,001 lb or more
  • Passenger-carrying vehicles designed or used to transport 9 to 15 passengers for direct compensation
  • Passenger-carrying vehicles designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers
  • Any size vehicle transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards

If regulation is required to allow the operation of a commercial motor vehicle without a person in the driver's seat, the FMCSA has authority to grant waivers for up to three months, grant exemptions for up to five years (with the possibility of renewals of the exemptions), or allow pilot programs for up to three years, provided certain conditions are satisfied (49 CFR Part 38).

Specifically, the FMCSA is seeking comments on the Volpe report and information about:

  • Scenarios and environments where entities expect that ADS will soon be tested and integrated into CMVs operating on public roads or in interstate commerce
  • Operational Design Domains (ODD) in which these systems are being operated or would be tested and eventually deployed
  • Measures believed to be required to ensure the protection of any proprietary or confidential business information that is shared with the FMCSA

Some specific questions raised are:

Inspection, Repair and Maintenance

  • Should there be minimum requirements for motor carrier personnel responsible for maintaining the equipment used to achieve certain levels of automated operations?
  • What information technology (IT) security/safety assurances can be provided by maintenance personnel and CMV drivers/operators that the ADS are functioning properly?
  • What types of malfunctions or damage on an ADS equipped CMV should be considered an imminent hazard?

Roadside and Annual Inspections

  • How could an enforcement official identify CMVs capable of various levels of automated operation?
  • Would making these vehicles so easily identifiable cause other road users to interact unfavorably with CMVs with ADS?

Distracted Driving and Driver Monitoring

  • For a level 3 human-monitored ADS, what changes, if any, should be made to the distracted driving regulations for human drivers of CMVs with ADS while in automated mode?
  • Should a human driver in a CMV with ADS be allowed to use a handheld wireless phone while the ADS is in complete control of the vehicle?
  • Should driver fatigue monitoring be required, and what method(s) should be used to conduct such monitoring?
  • Should these systems be required to provide "alertness assistance" to human drivers?
  • Should these systems be required to periodically request input from human drivers, or should they be required to request input from human drivers only when the driver appears to be losing focus or when the ADS in control of the vehicle is confronted with situations outside its parameters?
  • What level or length of time of human driver inattentiveness should be allowed in a vehicle controlled by an ADS before the vehicle is required to enter its minimal risk condition?
  • How long and what requirements need to be met after entering the minimal risk condition must a human driver wait to re-engage an ADS?

Medical Qualifications

  • FMCSA's regulations include physical qualification standards for humans driving CMVs to ensure that they are medically qualified to do so. What medical conditions currently precluding issuance of a medical card could become inapplicable as ADS technology develops?
  • What medical conditions currently precluding issuance of a medical card should NOT be considered disqualifying for a human driver who is simply monitoring a CMV with ADS?

Hours of Service for Drivers

  • Current regulations require that all time spent at the operating controls of the CMV be recorded as on-duty, driving time. FMCSA seeks public comments on how drivers' hours of service should be recorded if the ADS is relied upon to perform some or all of the driving tasks.

Commercial Driver's License (CDL) Endorsements

  • Due to potential variations in ADS technology across various providers, FMCSA seeks to ensure that human drivers and operators of CMVs with ADS receive training for the specific technologies present in the vehicles they operate. Should an endorsement be considered for human drivers and operators of CMVs with ADS to ensure they (1) understand the capabilities and limitations of the advanced technologies, and (2) know when it is appropriate to rely on automatic rather than manual operation? What types of tests (knowledge, skills, or both) should be required to obtain such an endorsement; and should there be separate endorsements for different types of ADS?
  • If an ADS equipped CMV is to be deployed without a human driver onboard, should the computer system be required to demonstrate autonomous capabilities for the same maneuvers included on the CDL skills test?

Data Sharing

  • If you are a developer or tester of ADS technologies, what types of data and/or safety measures do you currently or plan to collect during testing How often is this data collected?
  • How can FMCSA ensure that data and/or safety measures collected are presented in a comparable format?
  • How can FMCSA assess whether a CMV equipped with an ADS is being operated as safely as a traditional CMV operating on a public roadway?
  • What pieces of information are entities using to evaluate how a driver is using an ADS equipped commercial vehicle?

Testing and Interstate Operations of CMVs with ADS on Public Roadways

  • What type of ADS equipped CMVs are currently being tested? Are they Level 4 ADS equipped vehicles that can only operate on certain roadways, Level 4 vehicles with more extensive ODDs, or full Level 5 vehicles?
  • Do vehicles currently being tested have operational limitations to ensure safe operations? Examples of operational limitations might include time of day, weather conditions, types of roads, specific routes within an ODD, maximum allowable operational speed, markings showing that the vehicle is capable of highly automated operations, etc. In moving forward what actions, if any, should FMCSA consider to ensure the safe operation of ADS equipped CMV's in various ODDs?
  • How can FMCSA assess whether a CMV with ADS operating within its ODD can perform on certain maneuvers, such as emergency brake performance, crash avoidance maneuvers, etc.?
  • Should FMCSA consider approaching CMVs that carry persons or hazardous materials differently than other CMVs?
  • For State representatives, would you consider changing certain requirements (for example, higher versus lower levels of insurance) for an ADS equipped CMV? If yes, based on what factors; and how would you implement such requirements?

Beyond Compliance Program

  • FMCSA may authorize qualified entities to monitor motor carriers that receive "Beyond Compliance" recognition. To what extent, if any, should the various levels of automation be considered as part of the Beyond Compliance Program?

Regulation of Manufacturing versus Operation

  • The regulation of CMVs is a function shared by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and FMCSA, with manufacturing regulated by NHTSA and operation regulated by FMCSA (and its State partners). Does this separation of functions create unique problems, or perhaps offer unique solutions, for operators of ADS equipped CMVs?

Confidentiality of Shared Information

  • The Agency is seeking information from interested parties on how it might further protect non-public information necessary to assess whether ADS equipped CMVs meet performance standards and accurately document safety related events during a waiver, temporary exemption, or pilot program. What measures would original equipment manufacturers and developers expect of FMCSA before sharing confidential business information? How might the Agency obtain information sufficient to assess the safety performance of CMVs with ADS without collecting confidential business information?

Comments submitted are not limited to the specific questions and example above, but can address additional aspects of CMVs and ADS development, testing and introduction to public roadways

Written comments must be filed by May 10, 2018.

Bob Pheiffer