Honorable Deborah Hersman, NTSB Board Member

Closing Statement
Chairman Deborah A.P. Hersman
National Transportation Safety Board
Washington, DC - June 5, 2012
Highway Accident Report - Motorcoach Run-Off-the-Road
and Collision with Vertical Highway Signpost
New York, NY - March 12, 2011
(As Prepared for Delivery)

In closing, I want to recognize the NTSB staff members for their work in bringing this report to the Board, in particular, the staff from the Office of Highway Safety and from the Office of Research and Engineering. Robert Accetta, Investigator-in-Charge, and his team did an outstanding job.

We learned from this accident, again, that it is imperative to have drivers with a safe driving history and drivers that are alert.

A safe and well-rested driver is a key safety factor and can be, as we have seen too many times, the crucial difference between an uneventful trip and a tragic one. This is why the safety recommendations we issue today address onboard monitoring systems, commercial driver license history, and speed-limiting technology.

Equally important in assuring safety is enforcement of existing safety regulations. We commend the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's actions last week to shut down 26 unsafe bus operators. A strong safety message was delivered. However, preventing unsafe bus operators to operate on our roadways requires constant vigilance from the FMCSA and its state enforcement partners. For every unscrupulous carrier they put out of business, FMCSA and the states must effectively use their limited resources to identify, target, and shut down the next rogue operators.

We stand adjourned.