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On March 29, 2017, about 12:20 p.m., a 2007 Dodge Ram 3500 pickup truck, occupied by a 20-year-old driver, was traveling north on US Highway 83, near Concan, Texas, when it crossed into the southbound lane and collided with a medium-size bus. The crash occurred near milepost 553.4, near the end of a right-hand curve. The bus was a 2004 Ford E350 Turtle Top Van Terra medium-size bus occupied by a 66-year-old driver and 13 passengers and operated by the First Baptist Church of New Braunfels, Texas. As a result of the crash, the bus driver and 12 passengers were fatally injured. The driver of the truck and one bus passenger sustained serious injuries.
TO THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION: Develop and disseminate best practices, identify model specifications, and create a conforming products list for oral fluid drug screening devices.
Original recommendation transmittal letter:
Open - Acceptable Response
Concan, TX, United States
Preliminary Report: Highway: HWY17MH011
Pickup Truck Centerline Crossover Collision With Medium-Size Bus on US Highway 83, Concan, Texas, March 29, 2017
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status:
NHTSA (Open - Acceptable Response)
Safety Recommendation History
We note that you are monitoring developments with these devices to determine future guidance needs. As we noted in our report, although some states have engaged in pilot programs to test the reliability of roadside oral fluid drug screening devices, widespread implementation of the equipment is unlikely without your support. In addition, we agree that law enforcement can use the devices without your guidance; however, federal leadership is important in this area and many states are waiting for your best practices and model specification guidance before using the devices. We encourage you to move forward with your development of the recommended guidance. Pending our receipt and review of the documents, Safety Recommendation H-18-56 is classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.
-From Jonathan Morrison, Chief Counsel: NHTSA believes oral fluid drug screening devices could assist law enforcement in establishing probable cause for a quantitative blood drug test. Oral fluid drug screening devices are not as accurate as laboratory tests. They need to be reasonably accurate, reliable and sensitive as screening devices as their use could result in arrests and convictions for drug-impaired driving. There is insufficient research to know the accuracy, reliability, and sensitivity of current versions of these devices marketed to law enforcement. Given the lack of basic research on devices, we are not yet in a position to develop model specifications or create a conforming products list, nor is it obvious that NHTSA needs to do so in order for law enforcement to use these devices. Development of best practices for use of these screening devices requires there be evidence that some uses, policies, and/or procedures are better than others. This evidence is not yet available. NHTSA requests that this recommendation be classified as Open, Acceptable Response.
On October 16, 2018, the NTSB adopted its report Pickup Truck Centerline Crossover Collision With Medium-Size Bus on US Highway 83, Concan, Texas, March 29, 2017, NTSB/HAR 18/02. The details of this investigation and the resulting safety recommendations may be found in the attached report, which can also be accessed at www.ntsb.gov. Among the safety recommendations are four new recommendations and one reiterated recommendation issued to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which can be found on pages 46 and 47 of the report. The NTSB is vitally interested in these recommendations because they are designed to prevent accidents and save lives. We would appreciate a response within 90 days, detailing the actions you have taken or intend to take to implement these recommendations. When replying, please refer to the safety recommendations by number. We encourage you to submit your response to email@example.com. If it exceeds 10 megabytes, including attachments, please e-mail us at the same address for instructions. Please do not submit both an electronic copy and a hard copy of the same response.
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