Drivers of new large vehicles that weigh more than 26,000 pounds may be forced to lower their speed limit in Kentucky and throughout the country if a proposal from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is enacted. The regulation would require the installation of a device that would cap speeds at 60, 65 or 68 miles per hour, depending upon what the agencies ultimately decide.

The proposal has been in the works since it was first suggested by the nonprofit organization Roadsafe America in 2006. The nonprofit was created by the parents of a man who lost his life in an accident with a tractor-trailer in 2002. According to government agencies, the proposal will reduce the more than 1,100 fatal accidents involving large vehicles that happen each year. Furthermore, since all large trucks have speed-limiting devices installed, the cost is not likely to be high.

Some industry groups oppose the initiative. A spokeswoman for the Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association said that the different speeds among vehicles would result in greater interaction between vehicles and a higher chance of an accident. However, according to the Associated Press, some states have speed limits set at rates higher than trucks can handle. Above 75 miles per hour, tires may fail resultingin blowouts and accidents. There will be a 60-day period of public comment before the agencies decide whether to implement the regulation.

Truck accidents that result from excessive speed, driving under the influence, driving while fatigued or for other reasons might seriously injure other people who are on the road. A person who is injured in such an accident might want to consult an attorney to see about the advisability of seeking compensation through a personal injury lawsuit.