How bureaucratic delays are causing further deaths

Business travel this month followed by a full week of training for new investigators in our offices have meant fewer than normal blog articles. However, the following article in The Washington Post has caught our attention and needs to be brought to everyone’s attention who flies or drives around the U.S.

Serious safety measures which could save lives have been delayed – in some cases for decades, due to inefficient Government delays.

The first example given is a recommendation by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) on de-icing of aircraft wings. During the past 30 years,more than 710 people have died in plane accidents related to ice build-up on the wings. Unbelievably, the Federal Aviation Administration has taken 30 years to “consider” these life saving-recommendations.

Need another example? Eight years ago, the NTSB made a recommendation to keep medically unfit bus and truck drivers off the roads. Seems like a fairly intelligent recommendation to me, especially when you consider that since 2002, unfit bus and truck drivers have caused more than 800 fatal road accidents. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has yet to fully implement the recommendation.

Our Government and our elected officals – both Republican and Democrat over the years should be ashamed of themselves for allowing innocent people to needlessly die. These deaths have occurred due to the lobbying efforts of special interest groups pushing against safety measures they fear will be expensive and hurt their “bottom line”.

Since 1967, the NTSB has been investigating transportation accidents and making important recommendations – more than 13,000. Unfortunately, they have had to give up on nearly 2,000 recommendations for some of the afore mentioned reasons.

In 1995, a proposal was made to reduce flying hours by pilots in an effort to reduce fatigue and potential crashes. The proposal was fought by pilots’ Unions and airline companies. They prolonged the fight for 14 years until the FAA had to recently give-up, saying that the proposal was so old that it had become outdated.

Where is the public outcry? People’s lives are being jeopardized while much needed measures are being put on hold.

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