By John Stewart on Wednesday, 12 November 2014
Category: MUIRNet News

Action Needed on Side-by-Side Standards

The Consumer Product Safety Commission has proposed mandatory standards for Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles; also known as "side-by-sides".

Regardless of what type of off-highway vehicle you most enjoy, it is important that you contact all of your federal legislators and the Senate Committee Members listed below. As an OHV community, we can pull together and speak with one, very loud voice.

Please read the information below, then send an Email now to the Relevant Senate Committees Opposing CPSC’s Proposed Mandatory Standards for ROVs (Side-by-Sides)

As we alerted you last week, there is more to do to make sure Congress understands how important the CPSC ROV standard is to OHV enthusiasts. Last week we asked you to reach out to your Members of Congress, and you responded. Now we urge you to click take action to make sure the relevant decision makers in the Senate hear from you.

It is imperative that you send an email to The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation and Senate Appropriations Committee Members. These Senators have jurisdiction and will be important to the future of this issue let them know how important this is to you.

Background:

On October 29 the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) voted 3-2 to move forward on a proposed rule to impose a mandatory product standard for recreational off-highway vehicles (ROVs), commonly referred to as side-by-sides. CPSC voted to move forward despite the fact that the proposed rule relies heavily on CPSC assumptions, rather than on scientific conclusions drawn from relevant testing or incident data. In addition, CPSC’s proposed rule would inappropriately apply standards developed for on-highway vehicles, without ensuring that those principles apply in off-highway environments. The rule also ignores the risk of unintended consequences for vehicle users.

The proposed rule, if ultimately approved, would limit the ability of ROV manufacturers to design vehicles to safely provide the level of performance that is expected by OHV enthusiasts.

Page 131 of the CPSC’s briefing package emphasizes the proposed rule’s fundamental weakness:

“Although the Commission believes that the dynamic lateral stability and vehicle handling requirements will reduce the number of deaths and injuries involving ROVs, it is not possible to quantify this benefit because we do not have sufficient data to estimate the injury rates of models that already meet the requirements and models that do not meet the requirements. Thus, we cannot estimate the potential effectiveness of the dynamic lateral stability and vehicle handling requirements in preventing injuries.”

There will be opportunities to comment on the proposed rule and ARRA will reach out to you and ask you to get involved in the near future.

The CPSC’s 592-page briefing package can be viewed here.

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