Economic Research for Policy
This project combines two pre-existing projects (Financial Responsibility and Delay/Environmental Crash Costs), each of which will involve updating reports FMCSA released in 2013. The Financial Responsibility portion of the project will provide new information, data, and analysis regarding the adequacy of the current insurance requirements for motor carriers. The Delay/Environmental Crash Costs portion of the project will conduct research and analysis on the delay and environmental costs of large truck and bus crashes.
Background for Financial Responsibility portion of project:
FMCSA is required to submit quadrennial reports to Congress regarding the appropriateness of financial responsibility requirements; this update will attempt to address the issue comprehensively, in a manner similar to the report released in 2013 (“Financial Responsibility Requirements for Commercial Motor Vehicles”).
Background for Delay/Environmental Crash Costs portion of project:
A report (“Delay and Environmental Costs of Bus and Truck Crashes”) FMCSA released in March 2013 presented estimates of costs related to large truck and bus crashes, including vehicle delay costs, emission costs, and fuel consumption costs. This report needs to be updated for potential use in future research and rulemakings.
Summary for Financial Responsibility portion of project:
This study will conduct an analysis of available data to determine the adequacy of the current levels of financial responsibility for property, HM, and passenger carriers. Research questions will include:
How have insurance premiums changed in real terms since the current levels of financial responsibility were set in the 1980s?
What percentage of crash settlements/judgments exceed the current minimum financial responsibility limits broken down by carriage type (property, passenger, hazmat)?
For those crashes that exceed the limits, by how much (on average) do they exceed the limits?
Do insurance rates and minimum financial responsibility requirements affect carrier (property, HM, and passenger) behavior?
Summary for Delay/Environmental Crash Costs portion of project:
Updates to the methods by which FMCSA determines the delay and environmental costs of fatal, injury, and property-damage-only crashes involving large trucks and buses will provide more current information, which FMCSA will use in conjunction with recently updated methods for the costs of fatalities, injuries, and property damage. These estimates will together produce the total costs per fatal, injury, and property-damage-only crash involving large trucks and buses, amounts which will be used in FMCSA’s research and rulemakings. This research will also serve as a foundation for determining the economic impact of greenhouse gases and other emissions.
US DOT Volpe Center