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Full text of "Federal motor vehicle safety standards and regulations, with amendments and interpretations"

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Table I 


-PLIES 










2 Ply-4 Ply (4 Ply Rating) 


4 Ply (6 Ply Rating) 


4 Ply (8 Ply Rating) 


Tire Size 


Maximum 
Load 


Maximum 
Inflation 
Pressure 


Maximum 
I,oad 


Maximum 
Inflation 
Pressure 


Maximum 
Load 


Maximum 
Inflation 
Pressure 


fiOO-13 


1010 


32 
32 
32 
32 
32 
32 
32 
32 


1080 
1230 
1360 
1200 
1310 
1450 
1600 
1730 


36 
36 
36 
36 
36 
36 
36 
36 


1140 
1300 
1440 

1270 
1390 
1540 
1690 
1830 


40 


fi.ftO-13 


1150 


40 


7.00-13 


1270 


40 


6.45-14 


1120 


40 


6.95-14 


1230 


40 


7.35-14 


1360 


40 


7.75-14 


1500 


40 


8.25-14 


_ 1620 


40 


8.55-14 


_ 1770 


32 


1890 


36 


2000 


40 


8.85-14 


_ 1860 


32 


1990 


36 


2100 


40 


5.60-15 


_ 970 


32 


1040 


36 


1105 


40 


5.90-15 


1050 


32 
32 
32 
32 


1130 
1320 
1480 
1590 


36 
36 
36 
36 


1200 
1390 
1570 
1690 


40 


6.85-15 


1230 


40 


7.35-15 


1390 


40 


7.75-15 


_ 1490 


40 


8.85-15 


_ 1610 


32 


1720 


36 


1820 


40 


8.25-15 


_ 1620 


32 


1730 


36 


1830 


40 


8.45-15 


_ 1740 


32 


1860 


36 


1970 


40 


8.55-15 


_ 1770 


32 


1890 


36 


2000 


40 


8.85-15 


_ 1860 


32 


1980 


36 


2100 


40 


9.00-15 


_ 1900 


32 


2030 


36 


2150 


40 


9.15-15 


_ 1970 


32 


2100 


36 


2230 


40 


8.90-15 


_ 2210 


32 


2360 


36 


2500 


40 



^si^o^^^^^^^m 



PART 571; S 117-3 






ms 



Sil^^S? 






f^c« 



Table I— PLIES-Continued 





2 Ply-4 Ply (4 Ply Rating) 


4 Ply (6 Ply Rating) 


4 Ply (8 Ply Rating) 


Tire Size 


Maximum 




Maximum 


Maximum 


Maximum 


Maximum 




T.oa(1 


Inflation 
Pressure 


1,08(1 


Inflation 
Pressure 


IiORd 


Inflation 
Pressure 


A70-1S 


_ 1060 


32 


1130 


36 


1200 


40 


D70-13 


_ 1320 


32 


1410 


36 


1490 


40 


070-14 


_ 1320 


32 


1410 


36 


1490 


40 


E70-14 


_ 1400 


32 


1490 


36 


1680 


40 


P70-U 


_ 1500 


32 


1610 


36 


1700 


40 


G70-14 


_ 1620 


32 


1730 


36 


1830 


40 


H70-14 


1770 


32 


1890 


36 


2010 


40 


J70-14 


_ 1860 


32 


1980 


36 


2100 


40 


L70-14 


_ 1970 


32 


2100 


36 


2230 


40 


C70-1B 


_ 1230 


32 


1320 


36 


1390 


40 


D70-1B 


_ 1320 


32 


1410 


36 


1490 


40 


E70-15 


_ 1400 


32 


1490 


36 


1580 


40 


F70-15 


_ 1500 


32 


1610 


36 


1700 


40 


070-15 


_ 1620 


32 


1730 


36 


1830 


40 


H70-15 


_ 1770 


32 


1890 


36 


2010 


40 


J70-15 


_ 1860 


32 


1980 


36 


2100 


40 


K70-15 


_ 1900 


32 


2030 


36 


2150 


40 


L70-15 


_ 1970 


32 


2100 


36 


2230 


40 



PART 571; S 117-4 



Table I-PLIES-Continued 





2 Ply-4 Ply (4 Ply Rating) 


4 Ply (6 Ply Rating) 


4 Ply (8 Ply Rating) 


Tire Size 


Maximum 


Maximum 


Maximum 


Maximum 


Maximum 


Maximum 




Load 


Inflation 
Pressure 


Load 


Inflation 
Pressure 


Load 


Inflation 
Pressure 


16Ii-13 


1050 


32 
32 


1130 
1240 


36 
36 


1200 
1350 


40 


17R-13 


_ 1150 


40 


185-13 


_ 1270 


32 


1390 


36 


1510 


40 


1SSR13 


950 


32 


1015 


36 


1075 


40 


155R14 


_ 1010 


32 


1080 


36 


1140 


40 


165R15 


_ 1015 


32 


1085 


36 


1150 


40 


16SR13 


_ 1010 


32 


1080 


36 


1140 


40 


165R14 


_ 1120 


32 


1200 


36 


1270 


40 


165R1S 


_ 1130 


32 


1200 


36 


1270 


40 


175R14 


_ 1230 


32 


1310 


36 


1390 


40 


185R14 


_ 1360 


32 


1450 


36 


1540 


40 


185/70R13 


_ 1090 


32 


1140 


36 


1190 


40 


145-14* 


_ 865 


32 


905 


36 


935 


40 


145-15 


_ 895 


32 


940 


36 


975 


40 


195-15 


_ 1550 


32 


1680 


36 


1820 


40 


205-15 


_ 1700 


32 


1840 


36 


2000 


40 



• Dash Radial-Not an "R" Radial 



36 F.R. 7315 
April 17, 1971 



PART 571; S 117-5 



EffK«v*i Fabnniy 1, 1*71 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 118 

Pow«r-Op«rated Window Systems for Passenger Cars and Multipurpose Passenger Vehicles 

(Docket No. 69-1 la) 



In May 1968 the Director of the National 
Highway Safety Bureau issued a public advis- 
ory, stating that numerous cases of injury and 
death from accidental operation of power win- 
dows had been reported to the Bureau. He 
warned that many of those injuries and deaths 
had occurred because power windows could be 
closed when the ignition switch was oflf. In the 
advisory, the Director cautioned owners of ve- 
hicles with power-operated windows to have the 
wiring adjusted to prevent closure of the win- 
dows when the ignition switch is off. 

It has been determined that the interests of 
motor vehicle safety require the imposition of a 
safety standard which will reduce, if not elimi- 
nate, the toll of deaths and injuries resulting 
from accidents involving power-operated win- 
dows. 

A notice of proposed rule making relating to 
power-operated window systems in passenger 
cars and multipurpose passenger vehicles was 
published in the Federal Register on August 23, 
1969 (34 F.R. 13608). Comments were requested 
concerning two objectives of the proposal: (1) 
To minimize the likelihood of personal injury 
or death occurring when a person is caught be- 
tween a closing window and the frame, channel 
or seal, and (2) to insure that vehicle occupants 
can make emergency exits from vehicles equipped 
with power-operated windows in the event of a 
severe accident. 

The comments received have been given careful 
consideration in the formulation of the safety 
standard issued today. To achieve the first major 
objective it wsis proposed that a power-operated 
window, once opened, not close when the igni- 
tion key of the vehicle is not in the "on" or 
"sftart" position. This proposal would have pro- 



hibited operation of windows when the key was 
in the "accessory" position, a position provided 
to avoid battery discharge and possible damage 
to the electrical system. The proposal would 
also have prohibited activation of power tailgate 
windows from the exterior of the vehicle. Sev- 
eral commenters objected that the proposal would 
in these respects prohibit widely accepted con- 
venience features without corresponding safety 
benefits. These comments have been determined 
to have merit, and the standard as presently 
issued has been modified to require that a power- 
operated window system not be operative, except 
by muscular force or by operating an outside 
lock, when the key is removed from the ignition 
lock or is in an off position. This permits opera- 
tion of windows with the key in the "accessory" 
position, as well as by a key-locking system on 
the exterior of the vehicle. 

To achieve the second objective, it was pro- 
ix)sed that a control be required that would open 
power-operated windows from inside the pas- 
senger compartment of the vehicle, regardless of 
the key position. Allowance of such a control, 
however, might tend to defeat the first major 
objective, and also make it easier for thieves to 
enter a locked vehicle. Further, an accident se- 
vere enough to jam a vehicle door very likely 
would be severe enough to jam the window in 
its channel or to interfere with the power source 
for emergency operation of the window. For 
these reasons this proposal has not been adopted 
in Standard No. 118. The standard does, how- 
ever, permit installation of master control 
switches for overriding control of power-operated 
windows when the ignition key is in a position 
other than off. 



PART 571; S 118— PRE 1 



MkHv*: February 1, 1971 



Comments indicated an assumption that power- 
operated interior partitions were covered, as they 
were intended to be, though not specifically men- 
tioned in the preamble of the proposal. To 
insure that there is no ambiguity on the point, 
Standard No. 118 includes partitions in the re- 
quirements. 

The subject matter covered by this rulemaking 
action is being adopted at this time because it 
has been determined that it is feasible and that 
it can be implemented at an early date. The 
notice of proposed rule making upon which this 
rulemaking action is based was issued in con- 
junction with an advance notice of proposed rule 
making (34 F.R. 13609, Aug. 23, 1969) on power- 
operated window systems that dealt with the 
subject of mechanisms that would interrupt, stop, 
or reverse the direction of the window when a 
predetermined force is exerted on an object be- 
tween the glazing and the frame, channel, or 



seal upon which it closes, and other fail-safe 
considerations. The advance notice involved 
engineering and economic problems of a substan- 
tial magnitude. Those problems and their solu- 
tions are undergoing further study and will be 
given consideration for rulemaking based on the 
results thereof. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
571.21, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, 
is amended by adding Standard No. 118, Power- 
Operated AVindow Systems 

Eflfective date : February 1, 1971. 

Issued on July 17, 1970. 

Douglas W. Twns, 

Director, 

National Hit^hway Safety Bureau 

35 F.R. 11797 
July 23, 1970 



PART 571; S 118— PRE 2 



BbcMv*: July 29, 1975 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 118 

Power-Operated Window Systems 

(Docket No. 74-1; NoHco 3) 



The purpose of this notice is to amend Stand- 
ard No. 118, Power-Operated Window Systems, 
49 CFR 571.118, to permit the operation of 
power windows under certain conditions when 
the ignition is not in the "on" position. 

On September 23, 1974, the agency published 
a notice (39 F.R. 34062) proposing to allow the 
operation of power windows, when the key that 
controls the vehicle's engine is in the off position 
or is removed from the lock, only in circum- 
stances where (1) only muscular force is used, 
or (2) a key-locking system on the vehicle's ex- 
terior is activated, or (3) a door that has no 
frame meeting the upper edge of the closed 
window is opened a specified amount and a 
switch separate from the normal power window 
switch is activated. 

Nine comments were submitted to the docket, 
all of which approved of the basic proposal to 
allow operation of the power windows when the 
vehicle engine is not running. Greneral Motors, 
who suggested the proposal as it was published, 
supported its adoption. However, most of the 
commenters objected to the proposed provision 
that a separate switch be required to operate a 
window when the door is open to a degree suf- 
ficient to permit a ball the size of a child's head 
to pass between the top edge of the fully closed 
window and the vehicle's roof rail. The objec- 
tion was based on a contention that the separate 
switch provision was design restrictive and not 
necessary from a safety standpoint. According 
to the comments, required use of a separate 
switch for activation of the windows when the 
doors are opened would not assure a higher level 
of safety than use of the normal power activa- 
tion switch. 



The NHTSA finds merit in commenters argu- 
ments. It is the considered opinion of the agency 
that the absence of a separate switch requirement 
will have no effect on the safety of the power- 
operated window system since no switch would 
be capable of activation unless the vehicle's door 
were opened to the specified distance. For this 
reason the proposed separate switch requirement 
is deleted. Manufacturers will thus be free to 
install whatever type of activation system they 
wish, as long as the criteria of S3(c) are satis- 
fied. 

In addition, the description of the locations 
between which the test ball must fit appears to 
need clarification. It is the agency's intention 
that the ball be capable of passing between the 
upj)er rear comer of the fully closed window 
and the vehicle's roof rail. Therefore, the term 
"trailing edge" in S3(c) is changed to "upper 
rear comer." 

In consideration of the foregoing, S3, of 
Standard No. 118, Power-Operated Window 
Systems (49 CFR 571.118) is amended. . . . 

Effective date: Because this amendment re- 
lieves a restriction and imposes no additional 
burden on any person, it is found for good cause 
shown that an immediate effective date is in the 
public interest. 

(Sees. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 
(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority 
at 49 CFR 1.51.) 



Issued : July 23, 1975. 



James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

40 F.R. 31773 
July 29, 1975 



PART 571; S 118— PRE a-4 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 118 

Power-Operated Window Systems 
[Docket No. 82-07; Notice 2] 



ACTION: Final Rule. 

SUIMMARY: This notice amends Federal Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 118, Power- 
Operated Window Systems, to permit the operation 
of a vehicle's pwwer windows and partitions dur- 
ing the interval between the shutting off of the 
engine and the opening of a front door on the ve- 
hicle. This amendment, which was proposed in 
response to a petition from General Motors Cor- 
poration (GM), would permit the manufacturers to 
offer power window systems which are more con- 
venient than current systems. The agency believes 
the amendment would increase design flexibility 
without adversely affecting safety. 

DATES: This amendment is effective on May 5, 
1983. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In 1970, 
NHTSA issued FMVSS 118 in response to 
numerous cases of injury and death resulting from 
accidental operation of power windows. The stan- 
dard sought to address the main source of these ac- 
cidents, the unsu{>ervised use of power windows by 
children, which could result in the child being 
caught between the closing window or partition 
and the window or partition frame. 

The standard provides that power-operated win- 
dow and partition systems may be operable only 
in certain specified circumstances. First, operation 
is permitted when the vehicle's ignition switch is 
in the "ON," "START," or "ACCESSORY" posi- 
tion. The rationale for permitting operation in that 
situation is that the driver would presumably still 
be in the vehicle to supervise the operation of the 
windows by any children who are passengers. Sec- 



ond, the standard permits operation of the systems 
by "muscular force." Third, the systems may also 
be operated by a key-locking system on the exterior 
of the vehicle. Here again, the driver would 
presumably be able to observe the window or par- 
tition being closed to assure that the closing track 
is clear. Fourth, the standard permitted operation 
of the systems when the key is in the "off" posi- 
tion or removed from the vehicle and the door is 
opened a specified amount. This provision, which 
applies only to vehicles having doors with no frame 
meeting the upper edge of the closed window, was 
added to the standard in 1975 in response to a peti- 
tion from GM. However, neither GM nor any other 
manufacturer ever produced the system which this 
provision was intended to permit, and it appears 
that no manufacturer plans to offer such a system 
in the future. 

On April 1, 1982, in 47 FR 13845, the agency pro- 
posed to permit operation of power windows and 
partitions in a fifth circumstance, in response to 
another petition from GM. Under this proposal, 
these systems would be operable during the inter- 
val between the time the vehicle's ignition key is 
shut off to the time one of the vehicle's doors is 
opened. This provision would permit windows to 
be operable in situations such as refueling stops 
at service stations, an added convenience for the 
driver. However, it would also assure, except in 
rare circumstances that the driver is still in the 
vehicle and able to supervise the operation of the 
windows. The provision was proposed as a method 
of increasing driver convenience and was antici- 
pated to have no impact on safety. 

The agency received 28 comments on the pro- 
posal. Comments from the vehicle manufacturers 
favored the proposal, with some having proposals 



PART 571; S118-PRE 5 



for slight refinements of the proposed regulatory 
language. Comments were also received from a 
number of individuals, most of whom opposed the 
amendment. After careful consideration of these 
comments, the agency has determined to prom- 
ulgate the proposed amendment. 

The individuals who opposed the proposed 
amendment generally Eirgued that the change 
would permit the operation of power windows by 
unsupervised children and therefore would be a 
detriment to safety. Based on the agency's review 
of the comments and conversations with several of 
these individuals, it appears that they were 
unaweire that the window systems would cease be- 
ing operational as soon as the engine is shut off and 
a door is opened and would remain nonoperational 
even if the door were again closed. Thus, the pro- 
posal would tend to assure that the driver is in the 
car when the windows can move. Once this aspect 
of the proposal was explained to the individuals, 
they no longer opposed the amendment. 

While there is a possibility under the new option 
for power windows to be operational without the 
driver being present in the vehicle, that possibility 
could arise only in rare circumstances. Further, 
similar possibilities exist under one of the existing 
options. For example, under the new option, a 
driver could get out of a vehicle, leaving the engine 
running and close the door. The windows would 
still be operational. Then, if the driver's window 
were open so that he or she could reach through 
the open window instead of opening the door to 
shut the engine off, the windows would continue 
to be operational. Similarly, under one of the cur- 
rent options, power windows would be operable in 
the same circumstances, at least until the driver 
reached into the vehicle and shut of the engine. The 
agency believes that these circumstances would 
rarely occur and would be even less likely to occur 
when children were in the car. Accordingly, the 
agency believes that this potential detriment 
would, if it occurs at all, be very small. Even if it 
does occur, it could be offset by a small benefit sug- 
gested by other commenters. They felt that the 
amendment would provide a security advantage, 
by permitting drivers to quickly close the vehicle's 
windows for protection without first having to turn 
on the ignition switch. Overall, the agency does not 
anticipate that the proposal would result in any in- 
crease in injuries or deaths. 

Several manufacturers argued for certain 
modifications to the proposed rule. Mercedes-Benz 



argued that the interval after engine shut-off dur- 
ing which the windows are operable should end 
when one of the front doors is opened. American 
Motors made a similar suggestion. The agency 
agrees that, in the case of four door automobiles, 
it is unlikely that the driver would exit from one 
of the rear doors and entry to or exit from rear seats 
should not impede the ability of the driver to super- 
vise children in the vehicle. Therefore, the agency 
has adopted this suggestion. 

Fiat Motors suggested that the agency permit the 
use of systems incorporating a 20 second time 
delay, i.e., windows would be operable for 20 
seconds after the engine is shut off regardless of 
whether a door had been opened. Such a system 
could provide a brief interval during which 
children in a vehicle would be unsupervised and 
the power window system would be operational, 
possibly increasing the risk of the types of accidents 
FMVSS 1 18 was designed to prevent. The agency 
believes, on the basis of current information, that 
adoption of the proposal is not appropriate. If Fiat 
or any other commenter wishes to present data or 
arguments with regard to the safety impacts of 
such a system, the agency will reconsider permit- 
ting the use of this type of system. 

American Motors Corporation (AM) also sug- 
gested several clarifications to the proposed rule. 
First, AM suggested that the rule explicitly state 
that power window and partition systems may be 
operable when the ignition switch is in the 
"ACCESSORY" position after a door is opened. 
Since the standard always permitted systems to be 
operable whenever the ignition key is in the 
"ACCESSORY" position, no substantive change 
would be involved. The agency has attempted to 
clarify this point. AM further suggested that 
references in the standard to the "key that controls 
activation of the vehicle's engine" be replaced by 
"ignition switch." However, the standard would 
apply to any systems used in electric vehicles or 
other motor vehicles which operate by energy pro- 
duced by means other than ignition. Therefore, the 
latter suggestion has not been adopted. 

AM also favored the deletion of the provision per- 
mitting the operation of power windows in certain 
vehicles when a door is opened a specified amount, 
since that provision never has and likely never 
would be used. Since this provision is apparently 
obsolete, it has been deleted. 

The agency is making this amendment effective 
immediately upon publication, since the amend- 



PART 571; S118-PRE 6 



ment "relieves a restriction" within the meaning 
of 5 U.S.C. 553(dXl), by permitting the use of cer- 
tain systems which were previously unauthorized. 
The agency also finds that making this amendment 
effective immediately is in the public interest, in 
accordance with section 103(e) of the National Traf- 
fic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act, since doing so 
will permit the use of more convenient power win- 
dow systems at an early date. Also, since the 
amendment relieves a restriction in FMVSS 118, 
providing 180 days lead time is unnecessary. 

NHTSA has determined that this proceeding 
does not involve a "major rule" within the mean- 
ing of section 1, paragraph (b), of Executive Order 
12291 because it is not likely to have an effect on 
the economy of $100 million or more, to result in 
a major increase in costs or prices, or to have a 
significant adverse effect on competition, employ- 
ment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the 
ability of United States firms to meet foreign com- 
petition. Similarly, this action is not deemed 
"significant" for purposes of Department of 
Transportation procedures for internal review of 
regulatory actions. The economic impacts of this 
Amendment Eire so minimal as to not warrant 
preparation of a full regulatory evaluation, since 
the amendment merely permits the use of certain 
systems which were previously prohibited. 

Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act, the 
agency has considered the impact of this rule- 
making action on small entities. I certify that this 
action will not have a significant economic impact 
on a substantial number of small entities, in- 
cluding small organizations or governmental units. 
Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis is not 
required for this action. The agency has concluded 



that few, if any, manufacturers of power window 
systems are small entities and that the impacts of 
this rule on those companies which decide to take 
advantage of the new alternative method of com- 
pliance should be minimal. There would be no 
significant impact on the cost of new vehicles 
manufactured in accordance with the new provi- 
sion. Therefore, there should be no significant im- 
pact on small entities which purchase vehicles with 
power windows. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 § 571.118 
is amended as follows: 
1. Section 3 is revised to read as follows: 
S3. Power window or partition systems may be 
operable only in the following circumstances. 

(a) When the key that controls activation of the 
vehicle's engine is in the "ON", "START", or 
"ACCESSORY" position; 

(b) By muscular force unassisted by a vehicle 
power source; 

(c) Upon activation by a key-locking system on 
the exterior of the vehicle; or 

(d) During the interval between the time a run- 
ning engine is turned off and the opening of either 
of a two-door vehicle's doors or, in the case of a vehi- 
cle with more than two doors, the opening of either 
of its front doors. 

Issued on April 29, 1983 



Raymond A. Peck, Jr., 
Administrator 

48 F.R. 20237 
May 5, 1983 



PART 571; S118-PRE 7-8 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 

FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 118 

Power-Operated Window Systems 

[Docket No. 82-07; Notice 3] 



ACTION: Final rule, response to petition for 
reconsideration. 

SUMMARY: This notice responds to a petition for 
reconsideration filed by General Motors Corporation 
with regard to the agency's recently issued rule 
amending Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 
(FMVSS) No. 118, Power-Operated Wmdow Systems. 
GM requested that the agency clarify the language 
of this amendment, which jjermits ojjeration of pwwer 
windows during the interval between the shutting 
off of a vehicle engine and the opening of a door. 
NHTSA agrees that the clarification suggested by 
GM is consistent with the agency's intent in ori- 
ginally amending the standard, and the agency is 
therefore further amending the standard 
accordingly. 

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 14, 1983. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On May 5, 
1983, NHTSA published a final rule amending 
FMVSS 118 (49 CFR 571.118), in response to a 
rulemaking petition filed by General Motors Corpora- 
tion. The GM petition requested that the standard 
be amended to permit operation of power windows 
during the interval between the shutting off of a 
"running engine" and the opening of the vehicle's 
front doors. GM sought this amendment to permit 
it to offer power window systems which GM believes 
are more convenient to use. Prior to this amendment, 
vehicles had to be designed so that a driver who shut 
his or her vehicle's engine off but remained in the 
vehicle would have to turn the vehicle ignition back 
to the "ON" or "ACCESSORY" position in order 
to operate the windows. 

FMVSS 118 was originally issued to prevent in- 
juries resulting from automative power windows 
closing on small children. Prior to the issuance of that 



standard, such injuries most often occurred when 
children operated the windows without the driver 
present. The standard seeks to minimize the 
likelihood of this unsupervised operation of the win- 
dows by requiring that operation of the windows be 
controlled by a key, typically the ignition key. This 
requirement assures, in most instances, that the 
driver is present in the vehicle when power windows 
are operable. 

The GM petition was found by the agency to be con- 
sistent with this concept of positive key control of 
power window operation. Between the time a run- 
ning engine is shut off and the opening of a front 
door, the driver of the vehicle would in all likelihood 
still be in the vehicle and able to assure that children 
in the vehicle were not playing with the windows. 
Therefore, the agency granted the GM rulemaking 
petition and amended FMVSS 118 to permit window 
operation during that time interval. See 48 FR 20237, 
May 5, 1983. 

On June 3, 1983, GM requested that the agency 
clarify' the langauge adopted in the May 5th amend- 
ment, either by issuing an interpretation concerning 
the specified language or by amending the language. 
The problem pointed out by GM is that most power 
window systems do not actually sense whether an 
engine is running. Instead, they sense the position 
of the ignition locking device, which usually cor- 
relates very closely with the operation or nonopera- 
tion of the engine. Thus, for example, in a system 
designed to comply with the amended standard by 
sensing the key position, if the ignition key were 
turned to the "ON" position and then the "OFF" 
position, the power windows would remain operable 
until a front door opened. However, strictly speak- 
ing, this hjTKithetical situation might not involve 
turning off a "running engine" (for example, when 
the engine stalls). Therefore, such a system could be 
considered in violation of the standard. 



PART 571; S 118-PRE 9 



The agency agrees with GM that there is no signifi- 
cant safety-related difference between window 
systems which sense key position and those which 
sense engine operation. The important consideration 
from the agency's perspective is the assurance that 
the driver is likely to be present in the vehicle to 
supervise operation of the power windows. These 
two possible system designs appear to provide equal 
assurance that the driver is present. Requiring that 
the power window system sense engine operation in 
addition to key position would, on the other hand, 
add substantially to the cost of such systems. 
Therefore, NHTSA is herein amending FMVSS 118 
to clarify the time interval during which power win- 
dow operation is permissible, consistent with the GM 
request. This action is being taken in the form of an 
amendment to the standard rather than as an inter- 
pretation, to provide the clearest public notice of the 
requirements of FMVSS 118. This amendment is con- 
sistent with the original intent of the May 5th 
amendment. 

The agency is making this amendment effective im- 
mediately upon publication since the amendment 
merely clarifies an existing provision of FMVSS 118. 
The agency finds that making this amendment effec- 
tive immediately is in the public interest in accord- 
ance with Section 103(e) of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act, because the amendment 
will facilitate the use of more convenient power win- 
dow systems at an early date. Also, since the amend- 
ment does not add any substantive requirements to 
FMVSS 118, providing 180 days lead time is 
unnecessary. 

NHTSA has determined that this proceeding does 
not qualify as a "major rule" vdthin the meaning of 
section 1, paragraph (b), of Executive Order 12291 
because it is not likely to have an effect on the 
economy of $100 million or more, to result in a major 
increase in costs or prices, or to have a signficant 
adverse effect on competition, employment, invest- 
ment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of the 
United States firms to meet foreign competition. 
Similarly, this action is not deemed "significant" for 
purposes of Department of Transportation pro- 



cedures for internal review of regulatory actions. The 
economic impacts of this amendment are so minimal 
as to not warrant preparation of a full regulatory 
evaluation, since the amendment merely clarifies 
regulatory language permitting the use of certain 
systems which were prohibited prior to May 5, 1983. 

Pursuant prior to the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 
the agency has considered the impact of this rulemak- 
ing action on small entities. I certify that this action 
will not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities, including small 
organizations or governmental units. Therefore, a 
regulatory flexibility analysis is not required for this 
action. The agency has concluded that few, if any, 
manufacturers of power window systems are small 
entities, and that the impacts of this rule on any 
manufacturer should be minimal. There would be no 
significant impact on the cost of new vehicles 
manufactured in accordance with the new provision. 
Therefore, there should be no significant impact on 
small entities which purchase vehicles with power 
windows. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 571.118 
is amended as follows: 

1. Section 3(d) is revised to read as follows: 

(d) During the interval between the time the lock- 
ing device which controls the activation of the 
vehicle's engine is turned off and the opening of 
either of a two-door vehicle's doors or, in the case 
of a vehicle with more than two doors, the opening 
of either of its front doors. 

Issued on October 7, 1983. 



Diane K. Steed 
Deputy Administrator 

48 FR 46793 
October 14, 1983 



PART 571; S 118-PRE 10 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 118 

Power-Operated Window Systems 
(Docket No. 69-1 la) 



51. Purpose and scope. This standard 
specifies requirements for power-operated window 
and partition systems to minimize the likelihood of 
death or injury from their accidental operation. 

52. Application. This standard applies to 
passenger cars and multipurpose passenger 
vehicles. 

53. Requirements. Power window or partition 
systems may be operable only in the following cir- 
cumstances. 

(a) ^\^len the key that controls activation of the 
vehicle's engine is in the "ON", "START", or 
"ACCESSORY" position; 

(b) By muscular force unassisted by a vehicle 
power source; 



(c) Upon activation by a key-locking system 
on the exterior of the vehicle; or 

(d) IDuring the interval between the time the 
locking device which controls the activation of the 
vehicle's engine is turned off and the opening of 
either of a two-door vehicle's doors or, in the case 
of a vehicle with more than two doors, the opening 
of either of its front doors. (48 F.R. 47693-Oc- 
tober 14, 1983. Effective: October 14, 1983)1 



35 F.R. 11797 
July 23, 1970 



(Rev. 10«14/B3) 



PART 571; S 118-1-2 



Efhctiv*: Upfmbtr 1, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 119 

New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 
(Docket No. 71-18; Notice 3) 



This notice establishes a new Motor vehicle 
safety standard No. 119 New pneu7natic tires for 
vehicles other than passenger cars, 49 CFR 
571.119, which specifies performance and label- 
ing requirements for new pneumatic tires de- 
signed for highway use on multipurpose 
passenger vehicles, trucks, buses, trailers and 
motorcycles manufactured after 1948, and which 
requires tread wear indicators in tires, and rim 
matching information concerning those tires. 

Notices of proposed rulemaking on this sub- 
ject were published on August 5, 1971 (36 F.R. 
14392), and July 8, 1972 (37 F.R. 13481). 

The July 1972 notice prpposed that, instead of 
including the voluminous "tire tables" of tire 
size designations, maximum loads and inflation 
pressures, and dimensions in the standard, the 
manufacturers continue as at present to use the 
industry association tire and rim manuals for 
the purpose of product standardization. Since 
the only tire characteristics relevant to the safety 
performance tests of the standard are general 
tire type, speed restrictions, maximum load rat- 
ing, load range, and rim diameter, all of which 
are readily available or labeled on the tire itself, 
the tables are not necessary for the performance 
requirements. To prevent these private associa- 
tions from having ultimate regulatory power 
over individual manufacturers, a provision was 
included in the proposal by which a manufac- 
turer who wished to differ from the values in 
the association tables could do so by providing 
separate information to the XHTSA, to his deal- 
ers, and to the public upon request. To prevent 
the under-rating of tires of an established size 
designation, another provision would prohibit 
the assignment by a manufacturer of a maximum 
load rating to a particular tire size designation 



that is lower than the load rating already pub- 
lished elsewhere for that tire size designation. 

Many domestic tire manufacturers objected to 
lack of tire tables on the grounds that it in effect 
endorsed non-standardization of tire specifica- 
tions. They and some representatives of the 
trucking industry speculated that there might 
be danger of mis-match arising from the pro- 
duction of tires whose dimensions deviate sub- 
stantially from the published dimensional 
specifications for tires of that size designation. 
Several of the domestic manufacturers recom- 
mended inclusion of the (American) Tire and 
Rim Association tables in the standard because 
of the experience that domestic manufacturers 
have with road conditions in the United States. 

Other manufacturers, however, supported the 
deletion of tire tables for several reasons. They 
argued that a single standard would discourage 
innovation in tire design and suggested that the 
complexities of selection and maintenance of 
truck tires could not be reduced to a single table 
of values. They asserted that standardized new- 
tire dimensions do not eliminate the need to 
measure tires for proper dual matching, because 
tires wear differently in use and thereafter rarely 
match new or used tires of the same size. 

Upon consideration of all relevant informa- 
tion, the XHTSA has concluded that the posi- 
tion taken in the proposal is sound, and it is 
adopted in the rule. The inclusion in the Code 
of Federal Regulations of load-inflation and di- 
mension tables for every road tire sold in this 
country (they presently are included in Standard 
109 only for passenger cars) would be a vastly 
cumbersome process, not only in its inception but 
as a continuous maintenance task. The XHTSA 
finds no justification at this time for undertaking 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 1 






to monitor substantively the manufacturer pro- 
cesses and testing that lead to the continual 
changes in the standard association tables, so its 
function in this regard would be largely clerical. 
The point is not, as the (U.S.) Rubber Manu- 
facturers Association asserted, primarily one of 
"administrative convenience". It is that no 
justification has been found for locking both the 
government and the world tire industry into a 
restrictive and unwieldy system by which the 
Code of Federal Regulations is formally 
amended every time a manufacturer decides to 
add a tire size, or change the load rating or di- 
mensional specifications of one of its tires. There 
are many reasons to avoid over-regulation; 
"administrative convenience" is among the least 
of them. 

This agency has no intent to dilute the etand- 
ardizing function of the trade-association table 
systems that presently are used to provide neces- 
sary tire and rim information to dealers and 
users. These systems monitor the safety aspects 
of tire dimension and load rating satisfactorily 
now without government regulation, and the 
NHTSA expects that they will continue to do so. 
No evidence has been presented of under- or 
over-sizing of tires that would warrant the in- 
stitution of a massive government regulatory 
program in that area. If such a practice should 
arise in the future to a degree that constitutes 
a public hazard, the NHTSA has ample author- 
ity to deal with it specifically, ae a safety-related 
defect, and prospectively, under its rulemaking 
powers. 

The argument that the agency should include 
only the domestic Tire and Rim Association 
tables, thereby requiring foreign tire manufac- 
turers to build tires under the specifications, and 
presumably the approval, of the domestic asso- 
ciation, is found to be without merit. The word- 
ing and the legislative history of the National 
Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act show a 
clear Congressional intent to give evenhanded 
treatment to domestic and foreign manufactur- 
ers of motor vehicles and equipment, and this 
has always been the policy of the NHTSA. This 
agency has no evidence that foreign associations 
or manufacturers lack the information necessary 
to produce safe tires for the American market. 



Finally, the argument that the agency could ( 
or should by some means prevent "proliferation" 
of new tire sizes is without substance. No con- 
crete justification has been presented for at- 
tempting to limit the introduction of new tire 
sizes, and to date no significant safety problems 
have been found caused by the addition of new 
tire sizes. The NHTSA assumes that the com- 
petition and consumer demand forces of the 
private sector will operate as in other areas of 
our economy, to produce a satisfactory product 
population. 

The criteria for tire failure in the endurance 
and high speed laboratory tests have been sub- 
stantially modified from those of the proposal 
in response to comments to this docket and 
Docket 71-10, Notice 2 (37 F.R. 19381, Septem- 
ber 20, 1972), which proposed identical changes 
in the passenger car tire failure criteria. This 
regulation adopts the same failure criteria as 
were adopted in final form for passenger car 
tire tests on September 28, 19T3 (38 F.R. 27050), 
and relies on several new and revised definitions 
foimd in Standard 109. The preamble to the 
passenger car tire amendment fully explains the 
modifications made, and it is only noted here | 
that the changes are substantially in agreement 
with manufacturers' requests to specify the tire 
failures with particularity. A pre-test inspec- 
tion has been added to discover failures in con- 
struction evident without dynamic testing. 
Additionally the required air pressure following 
the test run has been raised to 100 percent of the 
original pressure. 

Several comments questioned the inclusion of 
all non-paasenger car tires in one standard, 
pointing out that tire design differs radically to 
optimize desirable characteristics for each vehicle 
type and application. However, this standard 
does not attempt to measure the optimum char- 
acteristics of each type of non-passenger tire. 
This standard only establishes minimtun per- 
formance characteristics which any type of tire 
must satisfy to be safely used on public high- 
ways. Passenger car tires have been subjected 
to such a standard in the past and this proposal 
extends a comparable minimum standard to all 
other tire types designed for highway use. The 
requirements recognize the design differences a 



PART 571; S 11^-PRE 2 



ElfecHv*: S«pt«inb*r \, 1974 



between tire types by establishing different test 
values for different tire types, size, construction, 
load ranges, and si^eed restrictions. 

Comments to the docket requested physical 
tolerances and related accommodations for test 
purposes. These arise from misunderstanding 
of the legal nature of the safety standards, which 
are performance levels that each vehicle or item 
of motor vehicle equipment must meet, and not 
instructions for manufacturer testing. The tem- 
perature conditions for tire testing have been 
reworded to reflect the legal meaning and the 
NHTSA testing practices relative to tire stand- 
ards. The proposed standard would make clear 
that the tire must be capable of meeting the 
requirements when tested at any ambient tem- 
perature up to 100° F. The legal significance 
of this requirement is explained in a general 
provision of Part 571, § 571.4, Explanation of 
usage. In XHTSA compliance testing, the am- 
bient temperature would be maintained in a 
range between 90° and 100° F., and any test 
failure under those conditions would be consid- 
ered a failure to meet the standard. Manufac- 
turer testing should be directed at proving the 
tire's capability in the exercise of due care, by 
testing under conditions at least as adverse as 
any that could be established in accordance with 
these procedures. 

The trucking industry questioned the advis- 
ability of labeling maximum inflation and load 
rating on the tire because it appeared to prohibit 
the adjustment of pressures to road conditions. 
The purpose of the labeling is to establish test 
values for the tire and to warn the user of the 
tire's maximum capabilities . The label does not 
prohibit adjustment of pressure to suit road con- 
ditions or prevent a manufacturer from recom- 
mending other inflation-load combinations on the 
tire or in accompanying literature to suit specific 
circumstances. 

European manufacturers objected to the re- 
quirement that load rating be indicated by a 
"load range" index not in world-wide )ise. The 
primary purpose of the load range index is to 
indicate categories of strength within the size 
designations, for user information and test pur- 
poses. It should be understood that a manu- 
facturer may use whatever additional systems 
he chooses to indicate his assessment of tire 



strength. Information such as metric equiv- 
alents and ply ratings, for example, may be 
added to sidewall labeling as long as the required 
information appears in the required foi-mat on 
the tire. 

Several manufacturers suggested that labeling 
appear on only one side of a tire when both sides 
of the tire, as mounted, will be available for 
inspection. Accordingly, motorcycle tires must 
now be labeled on one side only, but the inac- 
cessibility of both sidewalk on truck and bus 
tires for visual inspection precludes one-sidewall 
labeling of these categories. 

Despite this inaccessibility, however, the iden- 
tification code appears on one sidewall only, be- 
cause placing the ID slug in the upper half of a 
hot process mold is a difBcult and dangerous 
operation. In response to another labeling re- 
quest, the DOT symbol must not be placed on 
the tire before the effective date of the standard. 

Several manufacturers argued for greater de- 
sign freedom in the placement of treadwear in- 
dicators because the proposed locations could 
generate useless, arbitrary information when ap- 
plied to "lug" tread designs. In response, tread 
"groove", "width", and "depth'" have been de- 
fined so that the treadwear indicators are placed 
to indicate wear in that portion of the tread 
which contacts the ground. 

Several comments on the endurance require- 
ment requested lower test loads and speed to 
approximate actual driving conditions on flat 
surfaces. The XHTSA does not utilize the lab- 
oratory test wheel to simply approximate road 
conditions but rather to apply strictly controlled 
amounts of stress to moving tires over long 
periods in order to measure a minimum level of 
performance. Industry testing established these 
values and they have been independently verified 
in XHTSA's Safety Systems Laboratorj- as an 
accurate gauge of tire endurance. Another 
manufacturer expressed confusion about the ap- 
propriate endurance test standards for mining 
and logging tires. These tires are generally 
speed-restricted tires and should be tested in 
accordance with the values established in Table 
III for all other speed-restricted tires. 

In response to another comment, it should be 
noted that test accuracy also requires a stand- 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 3 



EffKtlvi: S«p»*fflb*r I, 1974 

ardized test wheel diameter, because the wheel's 
curvature directly affects a tire's ability to ab- 
sorb strain. 

Several manufacturers requested elimination 
of the pressure reading following the 47-hour 
run so that they could run the tire to destruction 
in accordance with industry test practices with- 
out stopping to make the measurement. This 
request can not be granted because the new pro- 
cedures for evaluating tire failure necessitate 
stopping after the run to inspect the tire, in 
addition to stopping to take a pressure reading. 

Comments raised the validity of the strength 
test when applied to tires incorporating recent 
innovations in tire design. It appears that re- 
cent changes in the construction of passenger 
car tires, especially the addition of belts under 
the tread, have tended to make the strength test 
specified in Standard 109 obsolete (38 F.R. 1055, 
January 8, 1973). However, the construction of 
non-passenger tires permits accurate measure- 
ment of tire strength without the "bottoming 
out" problem noted in the comments, if the 
proper plunger size and breaking energy value 
are used. A differential in breaking energy 
value between tubed and tubeless tires accom- 
modates the smaller dimensions of the newer 
tubeless configurations that replace tube tires 
of the same load range. The "light truck" cate- 
gory accommodates the different design and con- 
stniction materials which manufacturers use in 
these tires designated for this specialized service. 
The NHTSA does not agree that lower breaking 
energy values should apply to tires under 7 
inches in section width as suggested in one com- 
ment, because these tires are no smaller than 
typical passenger car tires subjected to similar 
testing and similar conditions on the highway. 
In response to another comment, the NHTSA 
has concluded that differences in the construc- 
tion of steel-belted tires are not sufficient to 
justify lower energy values in the plunger test 
similar to those extended to rayon tires. 

Objections to the high speed performance re- 
quirements questioned the testing of all light 
tires (load ranges A, B, C, and D) under the 
same high-speed conditions. The NHTSA has 



eliminated speed -restricted tires from the re- I 
quirements but will maintain high-speed require- 
ments for all motorcycle, trailer, and truck tires. 
While it is true that these tires are specially 
constructed for their purpose and often are 
mounted on vehicles marked with speed restric- 
tions, there is no assurance that these tires will 
be properly utilized. The diflSculty lies with 
drivers who ignore rental trailer speed limits, 
subject boat or mobile home trailer tires to higher 
than recommended speeds, attempt to improve 
the performance of their low speed motorcycles, 
or drive trucks equipped with light truck tires 
at high si>eed on the highway. This probability 
of abuse creates a safety problem which can be 
met by requiring these tires to withstand such 
high speed abuse. Load range D tires over 15 
inches in section width are presently subject to 
the high speed test but may be reclassified on 
the basis of future test experience. 

Comments to the docket objected to the pro- 
posed effective date and requested up to 18 
months leadtime following issuance of the stand- 
ard on the groimds that the large variety of 
tires to be certified requires substantial enlarge- 
ment of test facilities. This standard has been 4 
in various proposal stages for 4 years, however, 
which has provided the tire industry ample op- 
portunity to make plans for the acquisition and 
installation of test facilities and therefore lead- 
time of 9 months is considered adequate. 

In consideration of the foregoing, a new 
Standard 119, New pneumatic tires for vehicles 
other than passenger cars, is added to Part 571 
of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, to 
read as set forth below. 

Effective date : September 1, 1974. 

(Sees. 103, 112, 113, 114, 119, 201, Pub. L. 
89-563, 80 Stat. 718, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1402, 
1403, 1407, 1421; delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on November 5, 1973. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

38 F.R. 31299 
November 13, 1973 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 4 



MkHv*! Mordi I, 197$ 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 119 

New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other than Passenger Cors 
(Dock«t 71-18; NoNc* 5) 



This notice amends Standard 119, New pneu- 
matic tires for vehicles other than passenger cars, 
49 CFR 571.119, by changing the eflfective date 
from September 1, 1974, to March 1, 1976. 

A major concern of manufacturers comment- 
ing on Standard 119 as it was published in final 
form on November 13, 1973, (38 F.R. 31299), 
with a September 1, 1974, eflfective date, was the 
limited leadtime in which to modify tire molds 
and certify the conformity of tires. Correct use 
of the DOT symbol, lettering height, and clari- 
fication of treadwear indicator language required 
attention before the changeover process could 
begin. 

Manufacturers requested up to 11 months' ad- 
ditional leadtime in view of these difiSculties. 
Amendments have been proposed that would re- 
solve these specific problems. Because the range 
of non-passenger car tires is so great, however, 
the National Highway Traflic Safety Adminis- 
tration has determined that even with these 
changes an additional 6 months' leadtime is 
justified to accomplish full certification. 



Other matters raised by petitions for recon- 
sideration are presently under consideration and 
will be answered in accordance with the proce- 
dures of 49 CFR 553.35, Petitions foi' reconsid- 
eration. 

In consideration of the foregoing, Standard 
119 (49 CFR § 571.119) is amended by changing 
the eflfective date of September 1, 1974, to March 
1, 1975. 

Because this amendment creates no additional 
burden, and because changeover scheduling must 
begin inmiediately, it is foimd for good cause 
shown that notice and public procedure thereon 
are impracticable and unnecessary. 

(Sees. 103, 119, 201, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 
718, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407, 1421; delegation of 
authority at 49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on January 29, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 4087 
February 1, 1974 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 5-6 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 119 



New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other than Passenger Cars 
(Docket 71-18; Notice 6) 



This notice responds to petitions for reconsid- 
eration on Standard 119, New jnxeumatic tires 
for vehicles other than passenger cars, 49 CFR 
571.119, published November 13, 1973 (38 F.R. 
31299). In response to comments by twelve tire 
manufacturers and trade associations, the defini- 
tions, labeling, and performance provisions of 
the standard are amended in several respects. 

Justification for Issuance of Standard 119 
The Rubber Manufacturers Association 
(RMA), supported by most domestic tire manu- 
facturers, petitioned for withdrawal of Standard 
119 on the grounds that promulgation of the 
standard did not satisfy the criteria for the es- 
tablishment of Motor Vehicle Safety Standards 
set out in § 103 of the National TraflBc and Motor 
Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. Section 103(f) of 
the Act requires that the formulation of a stand- 
ard include consideration of its appropriateness 
for particular items of motor vehicle equipment, 
relevant safety data, and the extent to which it 
will contribute to carrying out the purposes of 
the Act. As formulated a standard must be 
practicable, meet the need for motor vehicle 
safety, and be stated in objective terms. 

In petitioning for withdrawal of Standard 119 
for failure to "meet the need for motor vehicle 
safety," the RMA and those tire manufacturers 
who support its position effectively assert that 
no tire safety hazard exists which can be met by 
Standard 119. The National Highway Traffic 
Safety Administration (NHTSA) does not agree. 
Congress recognized a tire safety problem. 
The Senate held hearings on and considered a 
bill devoted totally to tire safety (S1643). The 
House included a separate title in H.R. 13228 to 
emphasize tire safety as a particularly important 
area for the issuance of safety standards. 



In a number of bills which have been in- 
troduced in l)oth Houses as well as in a bill 
which has passed the Senate (S.2669) the 
necessity for standards for tires was consid- 
ered as an independent problem and without 
reference to its relationship to the total 
traffic safety problem. S.2669 is confined 
only to the improvement of tires for passen- 
ger cars and station wagons. The committee 
decided that although tii-es are a highly im- 
portant part of the total traffic safety prob- 
lem they are, nevertheless, an integral part 
of it and should be dealt with in the context 
of the problem and not in a piecemeal 
fashion. . . . 

However the committee did feel that it was 
necessary to emphasize this aspect of the 
safety problem and to establish certain spe- 
cific requirements which should be contained 
in the Secretary's standards on tires, (em- 
phasis supplied) H.R. Rep. No. 1776, 89th 
Cong., 2d Sess. 32 (1966). 

On the House floor, Representative Springer 
detailed the effect of the legislation on motor 
vehicle equipment. 

Obviously, the most important piece of 
equipment which comes to mind is the tire. 
The other body treated this subject in sepa- 
rate legislation, but it seems to me, and it 
did to our committee, that tire standards 
must be part and parcel of any legislation 
which seeks to impose standards of safety 
for the cars on the highway. Consequently, 
a portion of the bill was devoted specifically 
to this subject. It requires minimum stand- 
ards for all tires, and then sees to it that the 
buyer will have all the information he needs 
to make a decision as to the tire he needs. 



PART 571 ; S 119— PRE 7 



Elhcllv*: March 1, 1975 



112 Cong. Rec. 18,780 (daily ed. Aug. 17, 
1966) 

Congress showed particular interest in passen- 
ger car tires, but did not limit the legislation to 
them, as suggested by Firestone in its petition 
for reconsideration. As the House report notes. 
Title II represents a broadening of the tire 
safety issue from passenger cars and station 
wagons. The language of Title II refers to tires 
of "each motor vehicle" and to a uniform tire 
quality grading system "for motor vehicles.'' 
Section 204 is devoted to regrooved tires which 
are commonly utilized on non-passenger cars. 

The NHTSA has concluded that the tire safety 
problems recognized by Congress can best be met 
by Standard 119. The standard requires label- 
ing and tire-rim matching information to aid 
proper application of the tire, and minimum 
performance levels to ensure adequate designed- 
in safety for normal use and predictable abuse 
on the road. The standard is directed at misuse 
of tires as well as their correct use. 

It is true that Bureau of Motor Currier Safety 
statistics indicate that professional maintenunce. 
cost consciousness, and frequent state inspections 
result in a lower than normal number of tire 
failures on interstate haulers. These figures, 
however, are not representative of tire conditions 
throughout the multipurpose passenger vehicle 
(MPV), truck, bus, motorcycle, and trailer cate- 
gories. Congress mandated minimum tire safety 
standards although it was aware that tire failure 
statistics were difficult to isolate, realizing that 
tire design, while not a major cause of failures 
in well- maintained tires, could offer a margin of 
safety where tires are misused. Hearings on 
8.1634 Before the Senate Commerce Committee 
on Tire Safety, 89th Cong., 1st Sess., ser. 89-37 
at 41 (1965) ; Hearings on S.3005 Before Senate 
Commerce Committee on Traffic Safety, 89th 
Cong., 2nd Sess., eer. 89-49 at 158, 159 (1966). 
In its formulation of the standard, the NHTSA 
considered data which showed tliat worn and 
misapplied tires create a significant safety haz- 
ard. Standard 119 ensures that the informa- 
tion required by Congress to be on tires, along 
with additional tire-rim matching information 
and treadwear indicators, are available to the 
unknowledgeable individual who must select. 



maintain, and replace non-passenger tires pe- 
riodically. The RMA itself argued for the in- 
clusion of load-rating information in this stand- 
ard as an effective means to eliminate the 
dangers of proliferation and misapplication of 
tire sizes. In the area of tire design, the mini- 
mum performance levels in Standard 119 ensure 
a margin of safety for [persons who may mis- 
apply or abuse tires despite the label information 
and treadwear warnings. 

The NHTSA experience with performance 
standards for passenger car tires also supports 
Standard 119 rulemaking. Since the beginning 
of certification testing by the manufacturers and 
compliance testing by the NHTSA, the percent- 
age of test failures has dropped from approxi- 
mately 5.6% to less than 1%. At the same time 
88 recalls of 1,4.36,118 tires have removed from 
the road substantial numbers of tires which could 
not be shown in the exercise of due care to be 
able to meet the minimum i-equirements. Stand- 
ard 119 has similar performance tests, calculated 
to produce close surveillance of test failure per- 
centages and recalls when a faulty tire design is 
identified. The i)erformance test levels vary ac- 
cording to tire type to ensure that the standard 
is reasonable, practicable, and appropriate for 
the particular tire design in its intended service 
application. 

The NHTSA has found that Standard 119 will 
weed out faulty tire design and promote safety. 
The test values of Standard 119 were originally 
proposed by industry and checked by the NHTSA 
at its Safety Systems Laboratory. The RMA 
conducted a similar series of tests at that time 
and later endorsed the requirements as modified 
in minor respects : 

The laboratory tests and values in the pro- 
posed FMVSS 119 as amended by our com- 
ments would set standards of performance 
that would enable the industry to design 
tires that would ensure safe operation on the 
highways. Conmient #4 to Docket 1-5, 
Notice 7 (p 6). 

By reference to H <& H Tire Company v. 
United Statei Depitrtment of Tiwuportation, 
471 F2d 350 (7th Cir 1972), the RMA and Fire- 
stone raised the issue of Standard 119's prac- 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 8 



CffacHv*: March 1, 1975 



ticability. This requirement, at § 103(a) of the 
Act, was interpreted in HikH to mean that the 
NHTSA must determine the technological and 
economic consequences of the standard on the 
regulated industry. In that case the Court de- 
termined that the retread tire industry could be 
destroyed by the expense of major product rede- 
sign or the loss of business which could result 
from passing on these costs in higher prices to 
the typical retread consumer. The Court also 
pointed out that the retread consumer might use 
older worn tires longer than previously and 
thereby in effect increase the tire hazard problem 
in response to Standard 117. 

In contrast, the NHTSA has determined that 
compliance with Standard 119 does not require 
significant or impracticable technological change. 
Tests run at the Safety Systems Laboratory in- 
dicate that a sampling of production-run tires 
can meet the required performance levels, as they 
are now constructed. An analysis of benefits and 
costs demonstrates that the costs of additional 
testing are less than the estimated savings in 
property and lives. Finally, the consumer of new- 
tires is less likely than the retread consumer to 
shift his tire purchase habits and has less oppor- 
tunity to do so. The NHTSA has carefully de- 
termined the technological and economic impact 
of Standard 119 on the new tire industry and 
found it to be practicable. 

The NHTSA totally disagrees with the RMA 
and Firestone in their final argument that safety- 
related defect notification offers adequate protec- 
tion to consumers without the addition of a safety 
standard. Firestone inaccurately equates the ef- 
fect of a standard with that of a notification 
campaign, claiming that in either case a manu- 
facturer must recall tires containing defects or 
face civil penalties. Issuance of a standard im- 
poses significantly greater responsibility on a 
manufacturer to assure himself in the exercise 
of due care that his product is safe before it is 
sold and subsequent use reveals a safety-related 
defect. 

Technical Cotmderation of Standard 119 

The Application section (S3.) raised several 
questions about the standard's relationship to 
Standard 109-type tires, experimental tires, and 
low speed and off-road vehicle tires. The stand- 



ard applies to new tires designed for highway 
use on non-paesenger-car motor vehicles. The 
present language makes clear that tires which do 
not meet these criteria are not subject to the 
standard, including those tires subject to Stand- 
ard 109. The tire manufacturer himself must 
determine whether his tires, restricted or not to 
siJeeds under 35 mi/h, or used on slow-moving 
vehicles on or off the highway, were designed by 
him for highway use. As an example, Dunlop 
cited moto-cross tires which use the public high- 
way "during the course of competitions." With- 
out evidence to the contrary, however, the 
NHTSA assumes that these tires are used to get 
to and from the competition over the public 
highways. In answer to a related request for 
interpretation by Bridgestone, it is the designed 
and intended use of the tire (as realistically 
anticipated by the manufacturer) that matters, 
not a simple marking such as "Not For Highway 
Use" on the tire sidewall. In the case of "experi- 
mental" or "survey" tires the tires are designed 
for highway test purposes and are subject to the 
standard. 

The definition of light truck tire has been re- 
vised in response to comments from the RMA 
and the Japan Automobile Tire Manufacturers 
Association. They cited a number of light truck 
tires which may or may not share a common size 
designation or dimensions with passenger tires, 
but still require special test values because of 
their heavy-service construction. 

Standard 119 does not include the voluminous 
"tire tables" of tire size designation, maximum 
loads and inflation pressures, and dimensions re- 
quested by the domestic tire industry. An ex- 
planation of this approach accompanied issuance 
of the rule (38 F.R. 31299, November 13, 1973). 
While the RMA and Groodyear have restated 
their earlier position that product standardiza- 
tion can only be assured by Government publi- 
cation of industry association tables, they did 
not respond to the extensive justification made 
with the rule. The NHTSA concludes that its 
determination is sotmd. 

Nearly all tire manufacturers commented on 
Standard 119's labeling provisions and the 
amount of leadtime necessary to implement them. 
To resolve the most pressing problems, the 
NHTSA has already issued notices that postpone 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 9 



EffKHv*: March I, I97S 



the effective date of the standard 6 months and 
propose a lettering size and depth, use of the 
DOT symbol prior to the standard's effective 
date, and clarification of the treadwear indicator 
requirement. (39 F.R. 4087, February 1, 1974, 
39 F.R. 3967, January 31, 1974). All other pe- 
titions which concern the labeling provisions are 
treated in this response. 

The RMA and the European Tyre and Rim 
Technical Organization (ETRTO) requested 
changes in paragraph S6.5(d) ("Tire marking"), 
several of which are adopted in this amendment. 
The word "corresponding" is inserted before 
"inflation pressure" to acconunodate tires whose 
maximum load rating is not at maximum infla- 
tion. Punctuation is removed from the legend 
that appears on the tire to simplify stamping. 
The example is revised to make clear that "TIRE 
RATED FOR SINGLE AND DUAL LOAD" 
and "TIRE RATED ONLY FOR SINGLE 
LOAD" do not appear on the tire eidewall. 
ETRTO suggested that a title appear on the tire 
to qualify the ini'L^rmation provided, but the 
NHTSA ha3 concluded that the information 
alone is more helpful to the unknowledgeable 
user, and that a knowledgeable user would refer 
to the tire tables for exact information before 
changing tire inflation pressure. 

Paragraph S6.5(e) on speed restricted tires 
has been clarified to limit the requirement to 
tires restricted to 65 mi/h or less. S6.5(f) re- 
mains imchanged, because the National Traffic 
and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 requires 
that the actual number of plies and ply compo- 
sition appear on the tire sidewall. The words 
"tube type" appear on tires under S6.5(g) be- 
cause many consumers are unaware of the sig- 
nificant distinctions between tube type and 
tubeless tires. Dimlop's request that treadwear 
indicators be required on tires that are regrooved 
is beyond the authority under which Standard 
119, applying only to new tires, was issued. 

Paragraph S6.5(j) calls for a single letter to 
appear on the tire to indicate categories of 
strength within the size designation, for user 
information and test purposes. As the ETRTO 
pointed out, a requirement for any additional 
wording such as "load range" could confuse in- 
ternational standardization efforts. Manufactur- 



ers are, of course, entitled to add labeling 
information as long as the required information 
appears in the required format on the tire. 

The maximum load rating provision in S6.6 
requires tires of a particular size to have a maxi- 
mum load rating at least as great as the lowest 
rating published for that size. In this way the 
publications do not mislead a consumer who as- 
sumes that a particular tire size must have only 
the load ratings listed. The RMA advocated 
that more particular load rating information be 
supplied to aid in actual tire selection. Refer- 
ence to any factors other than tire size, however, 
would detract from the desired concept that, for 
one tire size, there is one lowest maximum load 
rating, and that load rating is published. 

Two substantial requests were raised with re- 
gard to the endurance requirement. Uniroyal 
petitioned for a reduction in the duration of the 
three test phases to 4 hours each. The NHTSA 
is considering that submission but must deny ac- 
tion on it at this time because an independent 
evaluation of the procedures has not yet been 
conducted, and because there has not been notice 
or opportimity to comment on the proposal by 
all interested persons. 

The RMA petitioned for 34-hour endurance 
testing of all tires subject to the high speed test 
(S6.3) on the grounds that the 47- hour speed/ 
endurance test would be redundant. The NHTSA 
agrees and has revised Table III accordingly. 

The ETRTO proposed new test values for 
some motorcycle tires, but the request wm un- 
clear as to the meaning of the 62 mi/h criterion 
and the unsupported tequest cannot be granted. 
If, in the future, the ETRTO petitions for rule- 
making to revise the table, an explanation of the 
criterion and a justification for the test values 
would permit an informed decision. 

Comments to the strength test questioned 
plunger size and energy values, the computation 
procedures, and the appropriateness of the test 
to mobile home, special trailer, wide base, and 
radial tires. 

The RMA argued that the limited service of 
most mobile home and special trailer tires could 
not justify the increased cost necessary to up- 
grade the strength of the tires to meet the re- 
quirement. The NHTSA has consistently treated (I 



PART 571 ; S 119— PRE 10 



EffKHv*: March 1, 197S 



mobile homes and other trailers as full-fledged 
motor vehicles and applied applicable standards 
rigorously to reduce the number of crashes in 
which mobile homes are involved, as indicated 
by BMCS statistics. The RMA request is denied 
to ensure that equally-rated tires on towed and 
towing vehicles will, in fact, meet equal minimum 
strength requirements. 

The RMA and ETRTO generally advocated 
larger plimgers or reduced energy values for 
tires and the ETRTO petitioned for the exclu- 
sion of radial tires from the strength test. The 
NHTSA has determined that the established 
values Emd plimger sizes, drawn from industry 
experience, adequately measure tire strength. 
Any future petitions for rulemaking to change 
these values should be accompanied by detailed 
supporting data, as was submitted by Uniroyal 
in its petition for reconsideration. 

Comments again requested that a plmiger 
which contacts the rim be considered to have 
established an energy value which meets the 
strength requirement. The NHTSA reiterates 
its position that the standard's present energy 
values measure the strength of a well -constructed 
non-passenger car tire before the tire breaks or 
the plunger contacts the rim. Specific test values 
may be revised based on future test experience, 
but revision of the calculation procedures used 
for all tires is not justified. The request for 
three plunger applications in the case of 12- in. 
or smaller diameter tires has been granted. 

Michelin and the ETRTO have inquired as to 
the NHTSA's position with regard to tubeless 
tires above load range J. Such tires, when 
marketed in the United States, are subject to this 
standard, and the NHTSA would like the benefit 
of detailed description of, and test experience 
with, these tires before it establishes test require- 
ments. It is requested that support for ETRTO 
or Michelin values be submitted to the NHTSA 
Tire Division. 

The high speed performance requirement was 
adopted to test different tire characteristics from 
those tested under the endurance performance 
requirement. The test is run only on non-flpeed- 
reetricted tires in the lighter load ranges because, 



for tires of heavier construction, the endurance 
test alone develops temperatures which evaluate 
all the characteristics satisfactorily. The RMA 
and several manufacturers have pointed out that 
the endurance test can serve this purpose for 
large tires even in the lighter ranges, and the 
NHTSA, therefore, restricts the high speed re- 
quirements to motorcycle tires and to non-speed- 
restricted tires of 14.5-in nominal rim diameter 
or less marked Load Range A, B, C, or D. Light 
truck tires and other tires which are 14.d-in and 
smaller remain subject to the high speed require- 
ments because the NHTSA has determined that 
the high si^eed test measures different values than 
the endurance test in these smaller sizes. 

The definition of tire failure is closely related 
to the endurance and high speed performance 
tests. The RALA and several tire manufacturers 
requested re-definitions of several terms and re- 
vision of the tire cooling procedures related to 
tire failure. The NHTSA has established Docket 
71-10, New pneumatic tires, revised performance 
1-equirements, to treat the re-definition of tire 
failure, and will respond to these issues in a 
notice to that docket. 

Interested persons should remember that, in 
addition to the amendments set forth below, the 
NHTSA has already amended the effective date 
of the Standard to March 1, 1975, and has pro- 
posed amendments to the lettering, DOT certifi- 
cation, and treadwear provisions which will be 
acted on when comments have been considered. 

In consideration of the foregoing, amendments 
are made to Parts 571 and 574 of Title 49, Code 
of Federal Regulations. . . . 

Elective date : March 1, 1975. 

(Sees. 103, 112, 113, 114, 119, 201, Pub. L. 89- 
563, 80 Stat. 718, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1402, 1403, 
1407, 1421; delegation of authority at 49 CFR 
1.61.) 

Issued on February 7, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 5190 
Fsbntaryll, 1974 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 11-12 



MkHv*: March 1, 1975 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 119 
New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 

(Docket No. 71-18; NoNco 7) 



This notice amends Standard No. 119, New 
pnettmatic tires for vehicles other than passenger 
cars, 49 CFR 571.119, to specify lettering sizes 
and modified treadwear indicator requirements 
for tires. In addition, it amends Part 574, Tire 
Identification, 49 CFR 574, to permit the labeling 
of certain tires with the symbol DOT prior to 
the effective date of the standard. This notice 
also responds to petitions for reconsideration of 
Standard 119's effective date by maintaining the 
present date of March 1, 1975. 

To avoid a costly production shutdown on the 
effective date to engrave tire molds with the 
DOT compliance symbol required by the stand- 
ard, the National Highway Traffic Safety Ad- 
ministration (NHTSA) proposed a modification 
of the Part 574 prohibition on the symbol's use 
prior to the effective date (39 F.R 3967, Jan- 
uary 31, 1974). The Rubber Manufacturers 
Association and five tire manufacturers agreed 
that the DOT should be engraved on tire molds 
prior to the effective date, but objected to the 
expense of covering the DOT with a label stating 
that "no Federal motor vehicle safety standard 
applies to this tire," when the DOT appears on 
tires which (presumably) satisfy Standard 119 
requirements. Firestone pointed out that the 
large label size could obscure other label infor- 
mation. Goodrich noted that, as proposed, the 
DOT could be molded on tires which met no 
standard and could mislead a user if the label 
fell off. 

The NHTSA will not permit the apijearance 
of the DOT compliance symbol on any item of 
motor vehicle equipment to which no standard 
is applicable. The terms "applicability" and 
"applies" have only one meaning for Federal 
motor vehicle safety standards: that the vehicle 



or equipment concerned is subject to a safety 
standard. To permit use of the DOT symbol on 
vehicles or items of motor vehicle equipment to 
which no standard applies would confuse the 
meaning of the symbol and the concept of com- 
pliance. 

In response to Firestone and Goodrich, the 
NHTSA has modified the lettering size on the 
label and limited use of the DOT symbol to tires 
for which a standard has been issued. With the 
small lettering size, the rubber labels used on 
retread tires can be applied over the DOT symbol 
in fulfillment of the requirement. Another 
method which manufacturers did not mention 
but which would be permissible is the removal 
of the DOT at the same time imperfections are 
buffed off the tire. 

All comments on the proposal objected to the 
specific location requirements for treadwear in- 
dicators based on the concept of even tread wear 
across the tread width. Goodyear demonstrated 
in a meeting with the NHTSA Tire Division on 
February 13, 1974, and detailed in its submission 
to the Docket, the difficulty in equating ideal tire 
wear with actual road experience. They recom- 
mended the simpler concept that a tire has worn 
out when any major tread groove has only %2 in 
tread remaining. The NHTSA has concluded 
that treadwear indicators must be placed at the 
discretion of the manufacturer to give a person 
inspecting the tire visual indication of whether 
the tire has worn to a certain tread depth. Ac- 
cordingly, the lateral location requirements for 
treadwear indicators have been deleted from the 
standard. 

There was no discussion of the lettering size 
and depth proposal, and these proposals .are 
adopted as proposed. 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 13 



MkHv*: Mordi 1, 1975 



The comments requested reconsideration of the 
standard's March 1, 1975, effective date (pub- 
lished February 1, 1974, 39 F.R. 4087), asserting 
the need for 18 months of lead time following 
publication of this notice to engrave tire molds 
as required by the standard. The NHTSA has 
found that 11 months is irufficient leadtime to 
accomplish these changes, and accordingly these 
petitions are denied. 

To correct an inadvertent omission in the 
amendment of Standard No. 119 in response to 
petitions for reconsideration (39 F.R. 5190, Feb- 
ruary 11, 1974), superscripts are added to Table 
III entries for "All other, A, B, C, D range 
tires". 

In consideration of the foregoing. Parts 671 
and 574 of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, 
are amended. . . . 



Elective date: Standard No. 119 amendments: 
March 1, 1975. Part 574 amendment: April 3, 
1974. Because the Part 574 amendment creates 
no additional burden, and because modification 
of tire molds must begin immediately, it is found 
for good cause shown that an effective date less 
than 180 days after issuance is in the public 
interest. 

(Sees. 103, 112, 119, 201, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 
Stat. 718; 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1407, 1421; dele- 
gation of authority at 49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on March 28, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 12104 
April 3, 1974 



PART 671; S 119— PRE 14 



UtHn: March I, 1975 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 119 

New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 
(Docket No. 74-25; Notico 2) 



This notice amends the definition of "test rim" 
in 49 CFR 571.109 (Motor Vehicle Safety Stand- 
ard No. 109) and modifies related provisions of 
that section and § 571.110 (Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 110). A conforming amendment 
is made to similar provisions in § 571.119 (Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 119). The notice 
of proposed rulemaking on which this amend- 
ment is based was published on July 10, 1974 
(39 F.R. 25329). 

The definition of "test rim" has previous to 
this amendment referenced the 1967 and earlier 
editions of publications of x-urious foreign and 
domestic tire and rim associations as the source 
for determining rim specifications and appro- 
priate tire/rim matching information for testing 
tires to the requirements of Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 109, and for equipping i)assenger 
cars pursuant to Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 
No. 110. The Rubber Manufacturers' Associa- 
tion i^etitioned that this reference be changed 
because the publications have become outdated 
in terms of the rim information they provide. 
This amendment, which adopts the proposed rule 
of July 10, 1974, in essentially the form pro- 
posed, delete-s the references to the 1967 and 
earlier publications and substitutes for them the 
publications of the various associations current 
at the time of tire manufacture. 

Under the amendment, a "test rim" will be any 
rim listed for use with a tire size designation in 
any of the current publications of the various 
foreign and domestic tire and rim associations. 
The listing will apply to all tires that fit the 
description (by tire size designation, use cate- 
gory, etc.) unless the publication itself or a sepa- 
rately published manufacturer's document states 
otherwise. A manufacturer wishing to except 



any tire manufactured by him froni any listing 
would be expected to request the association to 
publish the exception in its publication. If it 
does not, the manufacturer must himself publish 
the exception in his own listing, whicli he musst. 
distribute to his dealers, this agency, and to any 
member of the public on request. The language 
of the proposal is clarified, and a conforming 
amendment made to Standard No. 119 to show 
that an exception must be published in each 
association publication listing the tire and rim 
combination. The amendment further specifies 
that a "listing" of a rim must contain dimen- 
sional specifications, including diagrams, for tlie 
rim. This is necessary to provide for uniformity 
of rim dimensions and reflects the present prac- 
tice of association publications of publishing 
such dimensional specifications. However, di- 
mensional specifications or a diagram of a rim 
need not be included in manufacturers' separate 
listings if the specifications and diagram for the 
rim appear in each association publication where 
it is listed. 

By referencing the current publications, the' 
amendment ends the need for Appendix "A" of 
Standard No. 110, which lists tire/rim combina- 
tions approved for, use subsequent to the 1967 and 
earlier associations publications. The associa- 
tions and various manufacturers should ascertain 
that all tire/rim combinations presently listed in 
that Appendix are incorporated into a* least one 
of their respective publications before the effec- 
tive date of this amendment. Moreover, the 
addition of new tire/rim combinations subsequent 
to the effective date becomes the sole responsi- 
bility of the industry. Appendix "A" of Stand- 
ard No. 109, listing tire size designations, is not 
affected by this amendment. 



t 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 15 



MkHm: March 1, I97S 



An effect of the amended definition of test rim 
is to clarify this agency's jxisition tliat each tire 
must be able to iwiss each performance require- 
ment (except that for physical dimensions) of 
Standard No. 109 with any rim with which it is 
listed, regardless of rim width, unless that tire 
is specifically excepted from each listing where 
it appears. The requirements for physical di- 
mensions must be met only on a test rim of the 
width si)ecified for the tire size designation in 
Standard No. 109. A tire failing the require- 
ments on any test rim would be considered as 
having failed the requirements on all test rims. 
This continues existing NHTSA enforcement 
policy. 

One of the two comments received regarding 
the proposal objected to this aspect of the amend- 
ment, arguing that some manufivoturers have 
traditionally certified conformity on the basis of 
test results using only the test rims of the speci- 
fied test rim width and that no safety problems 
had been encountered. The NHTSA believes, 
however, that, the interest of safety demands that 
manufacturers ensure that tires certified as con- 
forming to Standard No. 109 will conform to the 
standard's requirements on any rim which the 
manufacturer lists for use with the tire and with 
which the tire may consequently be used in serv- 
ice. This position has been reflected in the guide- 
lines for the additions of new tire/rim combina- 
tions to the Appendix of Standard No. 110, 



which have required that the manufacturer dem- 
onstrate confomiity to .Standard No. 109 on each 
newly requested rim. If a manufacturer doubts 
the ability of his tires to conform to the standard 
on certain recommended rims, he has the option 
of excepting his tires from being used with those 
rims. No other objections to the proposed rule 
were received. 

In light of the above, amendments are made 
to 49 CFR §§571.109, 571.110, and 571.119 .... 

t'ifective date: August 5, 1975 for Standards 
No. 109 and 110; March 1, 1975, for Standard 
No. 119. The amendment to Standard No. 119 
is of a clarifying nature, and should be made 
effective with the existing effective date of that 
sta.ndard. The amendment does not require sub- 
stantial leadtime for conformity, and it is found 
for good cause sliown that an effective date less 
than 180 days from publication is in the public 
interest. 

(Sees. 103, 119, 201. 202, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 
Stat. 718; 15 U.S.C. §§1392, 1407, 1421, 1422; 
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.51.) 



Issued on Jfinuary 31, 1975. 



James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

40 F.R. 5529 
February 6, 1975 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 16 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 119 



New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 
(Docket No. 71-18, Notice 10) 



This notice establishes a uniform tire testing 
temperature for the test requirements of the 
Uniform Tire Quality Grading regulation and 
the Federal motor vehicle safety standard for 
non-passenger-car tires. This amendment simpli- 
fies existing requirements by permitting various 
tire tests to be conducted at the same temperature. 

Ejfective date: July 17, 1978. 

For further information co^itact : 

Arturo Casanova III, Crash Avoidance Divi- 
sion, Office of Vehicle Safety Standards, 
National Highwaj^ Traffic Safety Adminis- 
tration, 400 Seventh Street, S.W., Washing- 
ton, D.C. 20590 (202-426-1715). 

Supplementary information-: The National 
Highway Traffic Safetj' Administration 
(NHTSA) proposed on March 3, 1977, to amend 
the ambient temperature conditions for tire test- 
ing contained in Standard No. 119, New Pneu- 
matic Tires for Vehicles Other Than Passenger 
Cars (49 CFR 571.119), and in Part 575, Vniform, 
Tire Quality Grading (49 CFR 575.104) 
(UTQG). The purpose of this proposed amend- 
ment was to harmonize existing tire testing tem- 
peratures as requested by the Goodyear Tire and 
Rubber Company. The ambient temperatures 
•were previously specified as follows : 

Standard No. 109: "100±5° F." 
Standard No. 119: "any temperature ... up to 
100° F." 
UTQG: "at 105° F." 

In the notice of proposed rulemaking, the 
agency proposed to amend Standard No. 119 and 
UTQG to reflect the tire temperature utilized in 
Standard No. 109 (100d=5° F.). As an alterna- 
tive method of expressing the test temperature. 



the NHTSA proposed to amend the standards to 
specifj' "any temperature up to 95° F. 

Five comments were received in response to 
that proposal. All comments favored the pro- 
posed amendment that would have instituted a 
100±5° F. temperature. The Vehicle Equipment 
Safety Conunission did not take a position on 
this proposal. 

After consideration of the issues involved in 
the proposal and review of the comments, the 
agency has detennined that the test temperature 
should be expressed as "any tempei-ature up to 
95° F." Accordingly, Standard No. 119 and 
UTQG are amended to specify temperature test- 
ing at "any temperature up to 95° F." It is the 
NHTSA's opinion that the 95° F. test tempera- 
ture is in effect the same test temperature as 
would be achieved by using the 5-degree tolerance 
(100±5). 

The NHTSA has often stated in interpretations 
on similar issues that the use of tolerances in 
safety standards reflects a misunderstanding of 
the legal nature of the safety standards. Stand- 
ards are not instructions, but performance levels 
that vehicles or equipment are required by law to 
be capable of meeting. Any tolerance in this 
context would be meaningless and misleading, 
since it would merely have the effect of stating a 
performance level that the equipment must meet 
when tested by the government, but in a confus- 
ing manner. 

Recognizing that no measurement is perfectly 
precise, a manufacturer's tests should be designed 
to show, using tire testing temperature as an 
example, that his tires will comply with the re- 
quirements at exactly 95° F. This may be done 
in at least two ways: (1) by using a test method 
that corresponds so closely to the required tem- 



PART 571; S 119— PRE 17 



perature that no significant differences could 
occur as a result of differences between the actual 
temperature and the specified one, or (2) by 
determining which side of the specified tempera- 
ture is adverse to the product tested, and being 
sure that the actual temperature of the test dif- 
fers from the specified one on the adverse side. 

The amendment of Standard No. 119 and 
UTQG to reflect the 95° F. temperature creates a 
different temperature phraseology for those 
standards than exists in Standard No. 109 which 
still has the 100±5° F. temperature.- As stated 
earlier, the NHTSA considers the Standard No. 
109 temperature tolerance to mean in actuality 
"any temperature up to 95° F." However, since 
modification of that standard was not proposed 
in the earlier notice, the agency does not amend 
it in this final rule. However, the agency intends 
to issue an interpretive amendment that will 
amend Standard No. 109 to adopt the alternative 
expression for tire temperature testing (any 
temperature up to 95° F.) unless objections are 
received. 

In accordance with Departmental policy en- 
couraging analysis of the impact of regulatory 
actions upon the public and private sectors, the 
agency has determined that this modification will 
result in no appreciable safety gains or losses. 



These amendments may result in slightly lower 
costs for tire temperature testing since all tem- 
peratures will be uniform. 

Since these amendments relieve restrictions and 
impose no additional burdens, it is found for 
good cause shown that an immediate effective 
date is in the public interest. 

In consideration of the foregoing, the following 
amendments are made in Parts 571 and 575 of 
Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations. . . . 

The program official and lawyer principally 
responsible for the development of this rulMnak- 
ing document are Arturo Casanova and Roger 
Tilton, respectively. 

(Sees. 103, 112, 119, 201, 203, Pub. L. 89-563, 
80 Stat. 718 (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1421, 1423) ; 
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50.) 

Issued on July 12, 1978. 



Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 



43 F.R. 30541-30542 
July 27, 1976 



PART 571; S 119— PEE 18 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 119 
New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 



51. Scope. This standard establishes per- 
formance and mariting requirements for tires 
for use on multipurpose passenger vehicles, 
trucks, buses, trailers, and motorcycles. 

52. Purpose. The purpose of this standard is 
to provide safe operational performance levels 
for tires used on motor vehicles other than pas- 
senger cars, and to place sufficient information 
on the tires to permit their proper selection and 
use. 

53. Application. This standard applies to 
new pneumatic tires designed for highway use 
on multipurpose passenger vehicles, trucks, buses, 
trailers and motorcycles manufactured after 
1948. 

54. Definitions. All terms defined in the Act 
and the rules and standards issued under its 
authority are used as defined therein. 

"Light truck tire" means a tire designated by 
its manufacturer as primarily intended for use 
on lightweight trucks or multipurpose passenger 
vehicles. 

"Model rim assembly" means a test device that 
(a) includes a rim which conforms to the pub- 
lished dimensions of a commercially available 
rim, (b) includes an air valve assembly when 
used for testing tubeless tires or an innertube 
and flap (as required) when used for testing 
tube-type tires, and (c) undergoes no permanent 
rim deformation and allows no loss of air 
through the portion that it comprises of the 
tire-rim pressure chamber when a tire is properly 
mounted on the assembly and subjected to the 
requirements of this standard. 

55. Tire and rim matching information. 

S5.1 Each manufacturer of tires shall ensure 
that a listing of the rims that may be used with 
each tire that he produces is provided to the 
public. For purposes of this section, each rim 



listing shall include dimensional specifications 
and a diagram of the rim. However, a listing 
compiled in accordance with paragraph (a) of 
this section need not include dimensional speci- 
fications or a diagram of a rim if the rim's di- 
mensional specifications and diagram are con- 
tained in each listing published in accordance 
with paragraph (b). The listing shall be in one 
of the following forms: 

(a) Listed by manufacturer name or brand 
name in a document furnished to dealers of the 
manufacturer's tires, to any person upon request, 
and in duplicate to: Tire Division, National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 400 
Seventh Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20590; 
or 

(b) Contained in publications, current at the 
date of the manufacture of tire or any later date, 
of at least one of the following organizations: 

The Tire and Rim Association. 

The European Tyre and Rim Technical 
Organisation. 

Japanese Industrial Standards. 

Deutsche Industrie Norm. 

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and 
Traders, Ltd. 

British Standards Institution. 

Scandinavian Tire and Rim Organisation. 

S5.2 Information contained in a publication 
specified in S5.1(b) which lists general cate- 
gories of tires and rims by size designation, type 
of construction, and/or intended use, shall be 
considered to be manufacturer's information 
pursuant to S5.1 for the listed tires, unless the 
publication itself or specific information pro- 
vided according to S5.1(a) indicates otherwise. 

S6. Requirements Each tire shall be capable 
of meeting any of the applicable requirements 
set forth below, when mounted on a model rim 



PART 571; S 119-1 



assembly corresponding to any rim designated 
by the tire manufacturer for use with the tire in 
accordance with S5. However, a particular tire 
need not meet further requirements after having 
been subjected to and met the endurance test 
(S6.1), strength test (S6.2), or high speed per- 
formance test (S6.3). 

56.1 Endurance. 

56.1.1 Prior to testing in accordance with the 
procedures of S7.2, a tire shall exhibit no visual 
evidence of tread, sidewall, ply, cord, innerliner, 
or bead separation, chunking, broken cords, 
cracking, or open splices. 

56.1.2 When tested in accordance with the 
procedures of S7.2: 

(a) There shall be no visual evidence of tread, 
sidewall, ply, cord, innerliner, or bead separa- 
tion, chunking, broken cords, cracking, or open 
splices. 

(b) The tire pressure at the end of the test 
shall be not less than the initicil pressure speci- 
fied in S7.2(a). 

56.2 Strength. When tested in accordance 
with the procedures of S7.3 a tire's average 
breaking energy value shall be not less than the 
value specified in Table II for that tire's size 
and load range. 



56.3 High speed performance. When tested 
in accordance with the procedures of S7.4, a tire 
shall meet the requirements set forth in S6.1.1 
and S6. 1.2(a) and (b). However, this require- 
ment applies only to motorcycle tires and to non- 
speed-restricted tires of 14.5-in nominal rim 
diameter or less marked load range A, B, C, or 
D. 

56.4 Treadwear indicators. Except as speci- 
fied below, each tire shall have at least six tread- 
wear indicators spaced approximately equally 
around the circumference of the tire that enable 
a person inspecting the tire to determine visually 

Table I— Strength Test Plunger Diameter 
Tire type: Plunger Diameter 



Light truck 

Motorcycle 

Tires for 12-inch or smaller rims, 
except motorcycle 



(inches) 
_ % 

_ «6 



Tires other than the above types: 

Tubeless: 
17.5-inch or smaller rims 

Larger than 17.5-inch rims: 

Load range F or less 

Load range over F 

Tube type: 

Load range F or less 

Load range over F 



IV4 
1% 



IV. 



Table II— Minimum Static Breaking Energy (Inch-Pounds) 



Plunger 
diameter 



%i Inch 



IV2 Inch 



Tire 
characteristic 



Motorcycle 



All 12-inch 
or smaller 
rim size 



-Light truck 
-17.5 inch or 
smaller Rim 
Tubeless 



Tube 
type 



Tubeless 



Tube 
type 





Load range 
















A 




150 


600 


2000 














B 




300 


1200 


2600 














C 




400 


1800 


3200 


6800 


5100 








D 







2400 


4550 


7900 


6500 








E 







3000 


5100 


12500 


8600 








F 







3600 


5700 


15800 


12500 








G 










6300 








20200 


1500 


H 









6800 







23000 


18500 


J 

















25000 


19500 


L 
M 

N 




— 














27000 
28500 
30000 


























For rayon cord tires, applicable energy values are 60 percent of those in table. 



PART 571; S 119-2 



Table Ill-Endurance Test Schedule 



Description 



Load range 



Test wheel 
speed 
(rpm) 



Test load: Percent of 
maximuni load rating 



I II III 

7 hrs. 16 hrs. 24 hrs. 



Total test 
revolutions 
(thousands) 



Speed-Restricted service 

55 m.p.h. 

50 m.p.h 



36 m.p.h. _ 
Motorcycle . 
All others _ 




H, J, L, N 



66 

75 

66 
66 
'100 
'75 
70 
66 
66 
66 



84 
97 

84 
84 
n08 
«97 
88 
84 
84 
84 



101 

114 

101 
101 
117 
114 
106 
101 
101 
101 



352.5 
423.0 

282.0 
211.5 
510.0 
510.0 
564.0 
564.0 
493.5 
423.0 



' 4 hours for tire sizes subject to high speed requirements (S6.3) 
• 6 hours for tire sizes subject to high speed requirements (S6.3) 

whether the tire has worn to a tread depth of 
one-sixteenth of an inch. Tires with 12-inch or 
smaller rim diameter shall have at least three 
such treadwear indicators. Motorcycle tires 
shall have at least three such indicators which 
permit visual determination that the tire has 
worn to a tread depth of one-thirty-second of an 
inch. 

S6.5 Tire marking. Except as specified below, 
each tire shall be marked on each sidewall with 
the information specified in paragraphs (a) 
through (j) of this section. The markings shall 
be placed between the maximum section width 
(exclusive of sidewall decoration or curb ribs) 
and the bead on at least one sidewall. The mark- 
ing shall be in letters and numerals not less than 
0.078 inches high and raised above or sunk below 
the tire surface not less than 0.015 inches, except 
that the marking depth shall be not less than 
0.010 inches in the case of motorcycle tires. The 
tire identification and the DOT symbol labeling 
shall comply with Part 574 of this chapter. 
Markings may appear on only one sidewall and 
the entire sidewall axea, may be used in the case 
of motorcycle tires and recreational, boat bag- 
gage, and special trailer tires. 

(a) The symbol DOT, which shall constitute 
a certification that the tire conforms to ap- 



plicable Federal motor vehicle safety standards. 
This symbol may be marked on onJy one side- 
wall. 

(b) The tire identification number required 
by Part 574 of this chapter. This number may 
be marked on only one sidewall. 

(c) The tire size designation as listed in the 
documents and publications designated in S5.1. 

(d) The maximum load rating and corre- 
sponding inflation pressure of the tire, shown as 
follows: 

(mark on tires rated for single and dual load) 

Max load single lbs at psi cold 

Max load dual lbs at psi cold 

(Mark on tires rated only for single load) 

Max load lbs at psi cold 

(e) The speed restriction of the tire, if 55 
mi/h or less, shown as follows: 

Max speed mph 

(f) The actual number of plies and the com- 
position of the ply cord material in the sidewall, 
and, if different, in the tread area. 

(g) The words "tubeless" or "tube type" as 
applicable. 

(h) The word "regroovable" if the tire is de- 
signed for regrooving. 
(i) The word "radial" if a radial tire, 
(j) The letter designating the tire load range. 



PART 571; S 119-3 



S6.6 Maximum load rating. If the maximum 
load rating for a particular tire size is shown in 
one or more of the publications described in 
S5.1(b), each tire of that size designation shall 
have a maximum load rating that is not less 
than the published maximum load rating, or if 
there are differing published ratings for the 
same tire size designation, not less than the low- 
est published maximum load rating for the size 
designation. 

S7. Test procedures. 

57.1 General conditions. 

57.1.1 The tests are performed using an ap- 
propriate new tube, tube valve and flap assembly 
(as required) that allows no loss of air for test- 
ing of tube-type tires under S7.2, S7.3, and S7.4, 
and tubeless tires under S7.3. 

57.1.2 The tire must be capable of meeting 
the requirements of S7.2 and S7.4 when condi- 
tioned at any ambient temperature up to 100° F. 
for 3 hours before the test is conducted, and 
with an ambient temperature maintained at any 
level up to 100° F. during all phases of testing. 
The dre must be capable of meeting the require- 
ments of S7.3 when conditioned at any ambient 
temperature up to 70° F. for 3 hours before the 
test is conducted. 

57.2 Endurance, (a) Mount the tire on a 
model rim assembly and inflate it to the inflation 
pressure corresponding to the maximum load 
rating marked on the tire. Use single maximum 
load value when the tire is marked with both 
single and dual maximum load. 

(b) After conditioning the tire-rim assembly 
in accordance with S7.1.2, adjust the tire pres- 
sure to that specified in (a) immediately before 
mounting the tire rim assembly. 

(c) Mount the tire-rim assembly on an axle 
and press it against a flat-faced steel test wheel 
that is 67.23 inches in diameter and at least as 
wide as the tread of the tire. 

(d) Apply the test load and rotate the test 
wheel as indicated in Table III for the type of 
tire tested conducting each successive phase of 
the test without interruption. 



(e) Immediately after running the tire the 
required time, measure the tire inflation pressure. 
Remove the tire from the model rim assembly, 
and inspect the tire. 

S7.3 Strength, (a) Mount the tire on a model 
rim assembly and inflate it to the pressure cor- 
responding to the maximum load, or maximum 
dual load where there is both a single and dual 
load marked on the tire. If the tire is tubeless, 
a tube may be inserted to prevent loss of air 
during the test in the event of puncture. 

(b) After conditioning the tire-rim assembly 
in accordance with S7.1.2, adjust the tire pres- 
sure to that specified in (a). 

(c) Force a cylindrical steel plunger, with a 
hemispherical end and of the diameter specified 
in Table I for the tire size, perpendicularly into 
a raised tread element as near as possible to the 
centerline of the tread, at a rate of 2 inches per 
minute, until the tire breaks or the plunger is 
stopped by the rim. 

(d) Record the force and the distance of 
penetration just before the tire breaks, or if it 
fails to break, just before the plunger is stopped 
by the rim. 

(e) Repeat the plunger application at 72° 
intervals around the circumference of the tire, 
until five measurements are made. However, in 
the case of tires of 12-in rim diameter or less, 
repeat the plunger application at 120° intervals 
around the circumference of the tire, until three 
measurements are made. 

(f) Compute the breaking energy for each 
test point by the following formula: 



W = 



FP 



where 
W = Breaking energy 
F = Force in pounds, and 
P = Penetration in inches. 

(g) Determine the average breaking energy 
value for the tire by computing the average of 
the values obtained in accordance with (f ). 



PART 571; S 119-4 



S7.4 High speed performance. 

(a) Perform steps (a) through (c) of S7.2. 

(b) Apply a force of 88 percent of the maxi- 
mum load rating marked on the tire (use single 
maximum load value when the tire is marked 
with both single and dual maximum loads), and 
rotate the test wheel at 250 rpm for 2 hours. 

(c) Remove the load, allow the tire to cool to 
100° F., and then adjust the pressure to that 
marked on the tire for single tire use. 



(d) Reapply the same load, and without in- 
terruption or readjustment of inflation pressure, 
rotate the test wheel at 375 rpm for 30 minutes, 
then at 400 rpm for 30 minutes, and then at 
425 rpm for 30 minutes. 

(e) Immediately after running the tire the 
required time, measure the tire inflation pressure. 
Remove the tire from the model rim assembly, 
and inspect the tire. 

38 F.R. 31299 
November 13, 1973 



PART 571; S 119-5 



Effective: August ), 1976 

September I, 1976 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 120 

Tire Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 

(Docket No. 71-19; Notice 3) 



This notice establishes a new Federal Motor 
ehicle Safety Standard No. 120, Tire selection 
ind rims far motor vehicles other than passenger 
cars, 49 CFR 571.120, and amends 49 CFR Part 
567, Certifcatian. The new standard specifies 
tire and rim selection requirements for multi- 
purpose passenger vehicles (MPV's), trucks, 
buses, trailers, and motorcycles, and marking re- 
quirements for rims for use on these vehicles. It 
also adds tire and rim matching information to 
the items required to apf)ear on such vehicles' 
certification labels. The amendment to Part 567 
makes that regulation consistent with the new 
standard. The notice is based on proposals 
which were published August 3, 1971 (36 F.R. 
14273) and June 3, 1974 (39 F.R. 19505). 

The standard requires new vehicles (other than 
passenger cars, which are the subject of Standard 
No. 110) to be equipped with tires that comply 
with either Standard No. 109, New Pneumatic 
Tires — Passenger Cars, or Standard No. 119, 
Ne%c Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other Than 
Passenger Cars. The tires must be fitted to rims 
which have been designated by the tire manu- 
facturer, in accordance with S4.4 of Standard 
No. 109 or S5.1 of Standard No. 119, as suitable 
for use with those tires. The designations are 
made by listing the tire-rim matching informa- 
tion in one of seven industry-maintained publi- 
cations or by furnishing this information to 
dealers of the manufacturer's tires, to any person 
upon request, and to the NHTSA. 

Each axle must be equipped with tires the 
sum of whose load ratings is not less than that 
axle system's Gross Axle Weight Rating 
(GA"\VR). In certain situations, discussed be- 
low, a vehicle may be equipped with used tires 
of adequate load rating that were originally 



manufactured to comply with Standard No. 119. 
Adequacy is detennined as follows: the sum of 
the maximum load ratings of the tires must be 
e(iual to or greater than the GAWR which is 
specified on the Part 567 certification label, with 
an exception discussed below. If the certification 
label lists more than one GAWR-tire combina- 
tion for the axle, the sum of the tires' maximum 
load ratings must meet or exceed the GAWR 
that corresponds to the tires' size designation. 
If more than one combination is listed, but the 
size designation of the actual tires on the ve- 
hicle is not among those listed, then the sum of 
the load ratings must simply meet or exceed the 
lowest GAWR which does appear. 

Rims must be marked with five items of infor- 
mation : the size designation (and, in the case of 
multipiece rims, the type designation), an indi- 
cation of the source of the rim's nominal dimen- 
sions, and the DOT symbol must appear on the 
weather side, while identification of the manu- 
facturer and date of manufacture may appear 
at any place on the rim's surface. The standard 
does not explicitly require that a rim conform 
to its published dimensions. If a rim's deviation 
from these nominal dimensions is so great that 
a safety hazard is presented, however, the defect 
notification and remedy provisions of the Na- 
tional Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 
1966, as amended, provide authority to deal with 
the hazard. 

To reduce the possibility of confusion and to 
minimize the number of characters stamped on 
the rim, the standard establishes a set of code 
letters to indicate the source of the rim's nominal 
dimensions. "T", "E", "J", "D", "M", "B", and 
"S" indicate the industry publications listed in 
Standards Nos. 109 and 119, while "N" indicates 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 1 



EIFccHv*: Auguil 1, 1976 

S«ptamb«r 1, 1976 



an independent listing with tire dealers and the 
NHTSA. The proposed requirement that the 
marking indicate the date of the publication has 
not been adopted because it does not appear 
necessary. The standard does not require manu- 
facturers to be identified with a code number 
assigned by the NHTSA, because no action has 
been taken on the proposal published in the 
Federal Register on June 7, 1973 (38 F.R. 
14968). The rim manufacturer is free to use his 
name, trademark, or a symbol of his choice. 
Because a rim's maximum load rating may be 
limited by its disc, this standard does not require 
that the maximum load rating be marked. The 
rim's maximum inflation pressure, while not af- 
fected by the choice of disc, is potentially mis- 
leading without additional marking of the disc. 
These rim markings are being considered in con- 
junction with further NHTSA rulemaking ac- 
tivity concerning wheels. 

Several commenters objected to the proposed 
requirement of a tire-rim information label, 
separate from and adjacent to the certification 
label required by Part 567. Upon consideration 
of these comments, the NHTSA agrees that a 
separate placard is unnecessary. GVWR and 
GAWR are already required to appear on the 
certification label. If the required manufacturer 
exercises his option of listing more than one 
GVWR-GAWR combination, he is already re- 
quired to indicate the proper tire size designa- 
tions after each weight rating. Standard No. 
120 further requires, for vehicles other than pas- 
senger cars, the following information to appear 
after each weight rating and tire size designation 
listed on the certification label : rim size desig- 
nation, cold inflation pressure for the tires, and 
speed restriction (if any) for the tires. This 
information is now required to appear even when 
only one GVWR-GAWR combination is listed. 
The Part 567 label is thus expanded to include 
the information that would have appeared on 
the separate label described in S5.4 of the pro- 
posed Standard No. 120. 

Many commenters pointed to the large number 
of possible axle-tire-rim combinations and sug- 
gested that the information label would be too 
large and confusing. Some discussed the vehicle 



manufacturer's difficulty in ensuring that the re- 
quired information app)ear, given the common 
practice of changing tires and rims after a new 
vehicle has been shipped to a dealer. These 
commenters appear to have misunderstood the 
various proposed and existing requirements. 
Part 567 does not, in its prior form or as 
amended today, require a listing for more than 
one GVWR-GAWR-tire combination. Further, 
while S5.1.2 of Standard No. 120 requires the 
tires with which a new vehicle is equipped to be 
of adequate load rating for the GAWR, and 
while S5.3 requires an indication of tires ade- 
quate for the GAWR, there is no requirement 
that the actual tires be listed on the certification 
label. The tire information on that label is in- 
tended as a guide which tells the user what re- 
placement tires, rts a Tninimum, are appropriate 
for the listed GAWR and what rims are appro- 
priate for those tires. 

Guerdon Industries, Inc., objected to the re- 
quirement that vehicles be restricted to the load 
limits molded on tire sidewalls. The pointed 
to the mobile home industry's practice of load- 
ing tires to 150 percent of their load ratings, and 
argued that this practice should be permitted to 
continue. Examination of data compiled by the 
Bureau of Motor Carrier Safety, however, shows 
that from 1969 to 1972 (the most recent years 
for which figures are available), tires accounted 
for 18.0 percent of reported mobile home acci- 
dents. The NHTSA therefore rejects the propo- 
sition that such overloading does not present a 
safety hazard. There is no exception to the 
requirement that all vehicles be equipped with 
tires of adequate load rating. 

Some commenters re<iuested that tire overload- 
ing be permitted under restricted speed condi- 
tions. These commenters appear to have 
misunderstood the scope of the standard. Ve- 
hicles-in-use are regulated by the States and by 
the Bureau of Motor Carrier Safety. Standard 
No. 120 does not prohibit the overloading of 
tires in speed-restricted service, or otherwise 
regulate the use of tires or vehicles. The GVWTR 
and GAWR information on the certification 
label is based on unrestricted service. ( 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 2 



Effective: August 1, 1976 

September 1, 1976 



Tlie formula described above for tire selection 
is subject, to an exception for MPV's, trucks, 
buses, and trailei-s which are equipped with pas- 
senger car tires. The combined maximum load 
rating of the passenger car tires on an axle must 
be equal to or greater than 110 percent of the 
axle's GAWR. Some comments supported this 
exception as it was proposed. Others suggested 
that passenger car tires be permitted on such 
veliicles without the 110% factor, while the RMA 
and others argued that passenger car tires should 
not be pemiitted on trailei-s at all. The NHTSA 
reje^-ts the argument that the 110% correction 
factor is unnecessary. Because non-passenger- 
car service on the average puts greater stresses 
on a tire (for example, trucks and ti-ailers are 
driven at or near their maximum rated loads 
more often than passenger cars), a given load 
rating for a Standard No. 109 tires does not have 
the same meaning as the identical load rating 
for a Standard No. 119 tire. Conversely, the 
NHTSA has found no evidence that passenger 
car tires are inadequate for trailer service when 
the load correction factor is applied. The 110 
percent factor is therefore adopted as proposed. 

As proposed, the standard included an excep- 
tion to the requirement that new vehicles be 
equipped with new tires conforming to Standard 
No. 109 or 119. Used tires were to be permitted 
on a truck, bus, or trailer (other than a mobile 
structure trailer) under the following conditions : 
the tires were originally manufactured to com- 
ply with Standard No. 119; they were of ade- 
quate load rating; they were owned or leased by 
the purchaser; and they were installed on the 
new vehicle at its place of manufacture at the 
purchaser's request. Comments on this exception 
were generally favorable, although one mobile 
home manufacturer objected to the exclusion of 
mobile structure trailers. The exception was in- 
tended to accommodate commercial delivery 
practices in the truck, bus, and trailer industry. 
While fleets which lease tires on a mileage- 
contract basis or which install their own used 
tires on new vehicles are in a good position to 
know the condition of these tires, the mobile 
home purchaser has no knowledge of the history 
of used tires installed on his vehicle. The pro- 
posed exception to the new tire requirement is 
therefore not extended to include all mobile 



structure trailers. It is, however, extended to 
include those delivered to the purchaser by a 
motor carrier, because a motor carrier (who is 
subject to Bureau of Motor Carrier Safety regu- 
lations) can be expected to l>e more familiar with 
tire safety needs than a typical purchaser. To 
clarify the proposed language, " originally manu- 
factured to comply with Standard No. 119," the 
words "as evidenced by the DOT symbol" have 
been added to the text of the standard. 

Several commenters pointed out that certain 
vehicles are designed for non-uniform side to 
side loading, and suggested that the proposed 
method of determining the necessary tire load 
rating from the GAWR (dividing GAWR by 
the number of wheel positions on the axle) is 
inadequate for such vehicles. These commenters 
argued that tire load rating should be based on 
the maximum wheel load, rather than on the 
GAWR. The standard issued today does not 
specify the maximum load rating to be exceeded 
by each tire on any given axle. Instead, it re- 
quires the sum of those load ratings to meet or 
exceed the GAWR. The manufacturer of an 
asymmetrically designed vehicle can therefore 
equip an axle with tires of differing load ratings. 
The NHTSA agrees that each tire should be 
capable of carrying its maximum expected wheel 
load. At this time, however, the NHTSA con- 
siders its defect authority, combined with the 
new standard, adequate to ensure that vehicles 
are equipped with such tires. 

Definitions have been added to clarify the 
meaning of "rim base,'' "rim size designation," 
"rim type designation," "rim diameter," "rim 
width," and "weather side." Definitions sug- 
gested for other tenris have not been included in 
the standard because the meanings have been 
found to be widely understood or self evident. 

Many comments pointed out problems with a 
single effective date. For example, for marked 
rims to be available to vehicle manufacturers in 
time, and interval is necessary between the effec- 
tive dates for the rim marking requirement and 
the requirement that vehicles be equipped with 
rims that comply with the standard. Similarly, 
to require all used tires, otherwise permitted by 
S5.1.3 to have originally been manufactured to 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 3 



Eff*rt1v«: August 1, 1976 

Scptambtr 1, 1976 

comply with Standard No. 119 would, without a remaining requirements except as otherwise pro- 
delay in the eflEective date, cause the waste of pre- vided in the standard. 

Standard No. 119 tires of adequate load-carrying ^y^^g ^q^^ 1^2, 114, 119, 201, 202, Pub. L. 

capacity. Accordingly, a steggered system of 89_5g3^ gg 3^^^ ^^g (^5 ^.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1403, 

effective dates is established as set out below. ^407^ ^421, 1422) ; delegation of authority at 49 

In consideration of the foregoing, Chapter V CFR 1.50.) 

of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, is j^g^^ ^^^ January 19, 1976. 
amended. . . . 

Effective dates: For the amendment to Part . _. . . ' 

567: September 1, 1976. For Standard No. 120: Admimstrator 

August 1, 1976, for the rim marking require- 41 F.R. 3478 

ments (S5.2), and September 1, 1976, for the January 23, 1976 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 4 



Effectlv.: May 6, 1977 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 120 
Tire SelecHon and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 

(Docket No. 71-19; Notice 4) 



This notice delays the effective dates of certain 
.•equirements of Standard No. 120, Tire Selec- 
tion and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than 
Passenger Cars, and of the conforming amend- 
ment to 49 CFR Part 567, Certification, that was 
issued along with the standard. Its purpose is 
to permit manufacturers to avoid the burden of 
preparation for compliance with requirements 
that the NHTSA has determined should be 
amended. There is no delay, however, in the 
standard's basic tire and rim selection i^uire- 
ments, which become effective September 1, 1976. 

Standard No. 120 (49 CFR §571.120) was 
issued on January 19, 1976 (41 FR 3478; Jan- 
uary 23, 1976; Notice 3). It specifies require- 
ments for tire and rim selection, rim marking, 
and the provision of tire and rim information 
on vehicle certification labels. Part 567, the 
certification regulation, was amended in the same 
Federal Register notice, to accommodate the 
additional labeling. 

Manufacturers are expected to begin prepara- 
tions for compliance with a standard at the time 
a final rulemaking notice is issued. Lead times 
are established in accordance with this expecta- 
tion, despite the possibility of future amend- 
ments. Fifteen petitions for reconsideration of 
Standard No. 120 have been received. From the 
petitions and other information available to this 
agency, the NHTSA has determined that certain 
provisions of the standard should be amended. 
However, the agency finds it impracticable to 
respond to the petitions by May 24, 1976, the 
date by which a response would be expected 
under its policy regarding such responses (49 
CFR Part 553, Appendix). The agency plans 
to respond to the petitions not later than July 1, 
1976. Without a delay of certain effective dates, 
manufacturers would be forced to make prepara- 



tion for compliance with requirements that will, 
in all likelihood, be changed. 

Accordingly, this notice changes from Sep- 
tember 1, 1976, to September 1, 1977, the effective 
date of the requirement, found in S5.3, that cer- 
tain information appear on a vehicle's certifica- 
tion label. The effective date of the conforming 
amendment to Part 567, Certif cation, is similarly 
changed to September 1, 1977. The effective 
date of S5.2, Rim Marking, is changed from 
August 1, 1976, to August 1, 1977. The date by 
which vehicles must be equipped with rims that 
are marked in accordance with the standard, 
which is presently specified in S5.1.1 as March 
1, 1977, is changed to September 1, 1979. The 
NHTSA is considering the possibility of elimi- 
nating this requirement entirely, to simplify the 
phase-in of properly marked rims as they become 
available. 

Manufacturers should note that, apart, from 
the changed effective date for the requirement 
in S5.1.1 that vehicles be equipped with properly 
marked rims, there is no delay in the September 
1, 1976, effective date of the standard's basic re- 
quirement, S5.1 {Tire amd Rim Selection). 

The symbol "DOT" is required by S5.2(c) to 
appear on every non-passenger-car rim manu- 
factured on or after the effective date of the rim 
marking requirements, as a certification by the 
manufacturer of the rim that it complies with 
all applicable Federal motor vehicle safety stand- 
ards. Several manufacturers have requested 
permission to begin stamping the symbol on rims 
that otherwise comply with the standard, before 
that effective date. In the past, the NHTSA 
has in similar situations taken the pKjsition that 
such use of the DOT symbol to indicate "antici- 
patory compliance" would necessarily be a false 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 5 



Effecrive: Moy 6, 1977 



or misleading certification, because no standard 
would in fact be in effect at the time of its use. 

The agency has determined that a limited 
relaxation of this principle will not advei-sely 
affect its enforcement authority, yet will both 
foster early compliance with im[)ending require- 
ments and ease manufacturer's difficulties in 
transition to new production procedures. Ac- 
cordingly, the NHTSA will not consider the use 
of the symbol "DOT" on an item of motor ve- 
hicle equipment that is not subject to any appli- 
cable and effective standard to be "false or 
misleading" if the following conditions are met: 
(i) there has, as of the date of manufacture of 
the item of equipment, been issued as a final rule 
a Federal motor vehicle safety standard to which 
the item of equipment would, but for that date's 
being earlier than the standard's effective date, 
be subject; and (ii) the item of equipment meets 
all requirements set out in the standard as most 
recently published before the date of manufac- 
ture of the equipment. The NHTSA will con- 
tinue to consider other, unauthorized uses of the 
symbol to be "false or misleading in a material 
respect" witliin the meaning of Section 108(a)- 
(1) (C) of the National Traffic and Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Act of 1966, as amended (15 U.S.C. 
1398(a)(1)(C)). 



This interpretation will pennit the requested 
stamping that is discussed above. It will not 
pennit the restamping, requested by several man- 
ufacturers, of previously manufactured rims 
that are in stock. These latter requests, how- 
ever, are no longer of practical significance 
because of the other actions taken in this notice. 

In consideration of the foregoing, the effective 
date of the amendment to 49 CFR Part 567, 
Certif cation, that was published on January 23, 
1976 (49 FR 3478) is changed from September 
1, 1976, to September 1, 1977, and changes are 
made to 49 CFR §571.120 (Standard No. 120, 
Tire Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles 
Other Than Passenger Cars) .... 

Effective date: These changes in the text of 
the Code of Federal Regulations should be made 
immediately. 

(Sec. 103, 112, 114, 119, 201, 202, Pub. L. 89- 
563, 80 Stat. 718 (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1403, 
1407, 1421, 1422) ; delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.50.) 

Issued on April 29, 1976. 

Robert L. Carter 
Acting Administrator 

41 F.R. 18659 
May 6, 1976 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 6 



EfFKllvt: Auguit 27, 1976 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 120 

Tire Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 

(Docket No. 71-19; Notice 5) 



This notice amends Standard No. 120, Tire 
Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other 
Than Passenger Cars (49 CFR 571.120). to per- 
mit until Februarj- 28, 1977, the equipping of 
new non-passenger-car vehicles with tires that do 
not meet certain tire labeling requirements but 
that otherwise meet all requirements of Standard 
No. 119 (New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles 
Other Than Passenger Cars). 

Standard No. 120 was issued on January 19. 
1976 (41 FR 3478; January 23, 1976; Docket No. 
71-19. Notice 3). It specifies tire and rim selec- 
tion requirements for multipurpose passenger ve- 
hicles, trucks, buses, trailers, and motorcycles, 
and marking requirements for rims for use on 
these vehicles. It also adds tire and rim match- 
ing information to the items required to appear 
on such vehicles' certification labels. A staggered 
sequence of effective dates was set out in Notice 
3, beginning with September 1. 1976. 

In Notice 4 (41 FR 18659; May 6. 1976), the 
NHTSA delayed several of these effective dates, 
to permit manufacturers to defer preparation 
for compliance with the corresponding rexjuire- 
ments pending action on petitions for recon- 
sideration of Notice 3. The NHTSA expects to 
respond to these petitions in the near future. 
Notice 4 did not, however, change the basic 
September 1, 1976, effective date of the tire and 
rim selection requirements of S5.1. Beginning 
on that date, S5.1.1 of Standard No. 120 would 
require, with an exception that is not relevant 
here, new non-passenger-car vehicles to be 
equipped with tires that meet either Standard 
No. 109 (which is applicable to passenger car 
tires) or .Standard No. 119 (which is applicable 
to all other tires). The practical effect is to re- 
quire most such vehicles to be equipped with 



Standard 119 tires, because Standard 109 tires 
are appropriate for use only on certain non- 
passenger-car vehicles. 

Standard No. 119 became effective on March 
1, 1975, with an option to delay implementation 
of its labeling requirements until March 3, 1975 
(see 40 FR 8188; February 26, 1975). 

The NHTSA has received petitions for rule- 
making from International Harvester (IH) and 
Ford Motor Company. International Harvester 
indicated that, in anticipation of the recent strike 
against the nation's four largest tire manufac- 
turers, it had accumulated an excess inventory 
of "pre-Standard 119 tires." IH stated that 
these tires meet the performance requirements 
of Standard No. 119 but not the labeling re- 
quirements. It petitioned for a six-month delay 
of the September 1, 1976, effective date of Stand- 
ard No. 120's tire selection requirements, to per- 
mit the orderly depletion of this inventory. 

Ford's petition focused on the difficulty, due 
to the strike, in obtaining in the near future 
sufficient quantities of tires that comply fully 
with Standard No. 119. Ford indicated that 
there are similar pre-Standard 119 tires avail- 
able to it. It petitioned for an amendment to 
Standard No. 120 to permit the use of such in- 
sufficiently labeled tires. 

The NHTSA believes that the approach sug- 
gested by Ford, because it will provide the 
necessary relief while preserving the required 
level of performance, is preferable to a simple 
delay of the September 1, 1976, effective date. 
Safety of performance of such tires or of vehicles 
equipped with them is thus not a major issue. 
The NHTSA has determined that, while grant- 
ing the relief requested by these petitions may 
temporarily make enforcement by this agency 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 7 



August 27, 1976 



more difficult and may postpone the availability 
of certain tire labeling infonnation to users of 
new vehicles subject to Standard No. 120, the 
avoidance of a serious disruption in the truck 
manufacturing process in this situation is appro- 
priate and in the public interest. Accordingly, 
this notice adds a new section to Standard No. 
120 that permits, for six months, the use of tires 
that are not properly labeled but otherwise meet 
all requirements of Standard No. 119. 

In accordance with recently enunciated De- 
imrtment of Transportation policy encouraging 
adequate analysis of the consequences of regu- 
latory action (41 FR 16200; April 16, 1976), 
the agency herewith summarizes its evaluation 
of the economic and other consequences of this 
action on the public and private sectors, includ- 
ing possible loss of safety benefits. This action 
imposes no new economic or environmental costs. 
It creates the benefit of avoidance of serious 
economic disruption. In light of this benefit 
and the fact that the required level of tire per- 
formance is preserved, any loss in safety benefits 
would be insignificant in this case. 



Because of the imminent effective date of a 
requirement which would otherwise lead to 
serious economic disruption, the NHTSA for 
good cause finds that notice and public procedure 
on this amendment are impracticable and con- 
trary to the public interest. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
571.120 (Standard No. 120, Tire Selection and 
Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger 
Cars) is amended by the addition of a new 
section. . . . 

Effective date: August 27, 1976. Because this 
amendment relieves a restriction, it is found, for 
good cause shown, that an immediate effective 
date is in the public interest. 

(Sees. 103, 112, 114, 119, 201, 202, Pub. L. 89- 
563, 80 Stat. 718 (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1403, 
1407, 1421, 1422) ; delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.50.) 

Issued on August 27, 1976. 

Robert L. Carter 
Acting Administrator 
41 F.R. 37115 
September 2, 1976 



PART 671; S 120— PRE 8 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 120 



Tire Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 
(Docket No. 71-19; Notice 6; Docket No. 75-32; Notice 2) 



This notice responds to petitions for recon- 
sideration of the newly established Standard No. 
120, Tire Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles 
Other Than Passenger Cars, by amendments to 
the standard in the areas of tire and rim selec- 
tion, rim makinjr, and tire label information. 
A minor amendment of Part 567, "Certifica- 
tion," is also made. In addition, the decision 
that the agency no lonojer reo^dates mobile struc- 
ture trailers (mobile liomes) is also set forth, 
alono- with appropriate conforming amendments 
of Standard No. 120, Standard No. 108, Lamps, 
Reflective Devices, and Associated Equipmsnt, 
and § 571.3, Defnitians, of Part 571. 

Standard No. 120 (49 CFR 571.120) estab- 
lishes tliat multipurpose passenger vehicles 
(MPVs), trucks, buses, motorcj-cles, and trailers 
shall be equipped with tires and rims that are 
adequate to support tlie fully loaded vehicle un- 
der contemplated operating conditions. The 
legislative history of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act (the Act) (15 U.S.C. 
1381, et seq.) and §202 of that Act establish 
Congress" concern that motor vehicles could be 
equipped with inadequate tires and that regula- 
tion would be necessary to protect against this 
problem : 

Sec. 202. In standards established under 
title I of this Act the Secretary shall re- 
quire that each motor vehicle be equipped 
bj- the manufacturer or by the purchaser 
thereof at the time of the first purchase 
thereof in good faith for purposes other 
than resale with tires which meet the maxi- 
mum pennissible load standards when such 
vehicle is fully loaded with the maximum 
numl)er of passengers it is designed to carry 
and a reasonable amount of luggage. 



Standard No. 120 was promulgated January 
lit, 1976 (41 FR 3478, January 26, 1976), and 17 
petitions for reconsidei'ation of particular provi- 
sions were filed by vehicle, tire, and rim manu- 
facturers, and by trade associations representing 
tliese manufacturers. In view of the length of 
time that has been taken to respond to these 
{jetitions for reconsideration, the effective dates 
for implementation of several of the standard's 
provisions were delayed (41 FR 18659, May 6, 
1976) (41 FR 36657, August 31, 1976). The 
standard's basic provision for tire and rim selec- 
tion (S5.1) was not delayed and became eflFective 
September 1, 1976. 

Tire and rim, selection. The primary effect of 
Standard No. 120 is fulfillment of § 202 of the 
Act by specification of tlie minimum load-carry- 
ing cliaracteristics of tires on motor vehicles not 
already subject to the passenger car tire and rim 
selection requirements of Standard No. 110, Tire 
Selection and Rims, of Part 571. The rim selec- 
tion requirements of tlie standard are limited 
(use of a rim designated as suitable by the tire 
manufacturer for use with its product ; use of 
"DOT" labeled rims on and after September 1, 
1979) in anticipation of more comprehensive 
regulation of rims as part of an upcoming wheel 
standard. 

Tire selection consist of two elements: With 
one exception, each vehicle must be equippetl 
with tires that comply with Standard No. 119, 
New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other Than 
Passenger Cars (or Standard No. 109, New 
Pneumatic Tires), and the load rating of the 
tires on each axle of the vehicle must together 
at least equal the gross axle weight rating 
(GAAYR) for that axle. The term GAWR is 
defined in § 571.3 of Part 571 as ". . . the value 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 9 



EfFectlve: February 7, 1977 



specified by the vehicle manufacturer as the load- 
carrj-ing capacity of a single axle system, as 
measured at the tire-ground interfaces." The 
GAWR concept formalizes the decision each 
manufacturer makes about the load-bearing abil- 
ity of. the tires, rims, axle, brakes, and suspen- 
sion components (at a minimum) chosen to 
support and control the loaded vehicle. 

The Truck Equipment Body Distributors 
Association (TEBDA) questioned the require- 
ment that, with one exception, each vehicle sub- 
ject to Standard No. 120 be equipped with tires 
that conform to Standard No. 119 (or Standard 
No. 109). TEBDA's March 17, 1976, letter 
concerned certification of trucks equipped for 
agricultural service with Goodyear "Terra- 
Tires." The "Terra-Tire" is one example of 
tires that are placed on specialized motor ve- 
hicles which operate both on and off the high- 
waj'. The tires are specially designed and are 
unable to be certified to either of the tire per- 
formance standards. 

Section S5.1.1 specifies that "each vehicle 
equipped with pneumatic tires for highway serv- 
ice shall be equipped with tires that meet the 
requirement of [the tire] standard [s]. . . ." 
This language is intended to exclude from the 
requirement for Standard 119 (or 109) tires of 
those vehicles which the manufacturer (or person 
later in the chain of distribution) decides to 
equip with tires other than "tires for highway 
service." The decision is left with the manu- 
facturer at this time in Wew of the absence of 
data that demonstrates problems in the use of 
these tires that would justify their elimination. 
Any pattern of accident occurrence that points 
to unsafe utilization of non-highway sen'ice tires 
would presumably constitute a safetj'-related de- 
fect and could lead to revision of Standard No. 
120 to regulate them. At this time, the answer 
to TEBDA is that the tire selection require- 
ments of S5.1.1 (and S5.1.2 as a logical extension 
of So. 1.1) would not apply to a vehicle equipped 
with non-highway sen-ice tires. It is emphasized 
that this exclusion from Standard No. 120 bears 
no direct relationship to the determination of 
whether a particular vehicle qualifies as a "motor 
vehicle" as that term is defined in §102(3) of 
the Act. 



The second requirement for tire selection 
(S5.1.2) is that "[t]he sum of the maximum 
load ratings of the tires fitted to an axle shall 
be not less than the gross axle weight rating 
(GAWR) of the axle system. . . ." Comparable 
further specification exists when multiple ratings 
appear on the certification label, or the tires 
used on the vehicle are not listed on the certifica- 
tion label. 

Because no petition directly raised objections 
to the requirements of S5.1.2, the agency first 
addresses issues raised in a separate and out- 
standing NHTSA projx)sal dealing with tire 
choice and its relationship to GAAVR. The ac- 
tion (Definition of "Gross Axle Weight Rating," 
40 FR 58152, December 15, 1975) proposed that 
the GAWR determination be based on, among 
other things, the vehicle's maximum attainable 
speed or the maximum load rating of the tire 
established by the tire manufacturer at 60 mph, 
whichever is lower. The proposed modification 
■was intended to reflect the industry practice of 
assigning (in most cases) and labeling (in ac- 
cordance with Standards 119 and 109) a tire's 
basic load-carrying capabilities in recognition 
of the unrestricted highway speeds to which it 
is normally exposed. This formalization of 
GAWR determination was intended to prevent 
manufacturers from assigning higher capabilities 
to tires than their 60-mph ratings, based on 
arbitrarily low speeds. 

Most comments supported the GAWR pro- 
posal, although several truck manufacturers 
asked that the term "maximum attainable speed" 
be specifically defined as it is elsewhere in 
NHTSA regulations. Ford Motor Company op- 
posed the proposed change in the definition of 
GA"\\'R as an arbitrary selection of only one of 
the many criteria that enter into the determina- 
tion of GAWR. The company suggested that 
other means exist to prevent assignment of ar- 
bitrary GAWR's based on tire ratings other than 
those established at 60 mph and so labeled on 
the tire sidewall. 

The NHTSA agrees with Ford and notes that 
the "other means" to regulate this practice exist 
in the tire selection requirements of S5.1.2 of 
Standard No. 120. At the time of the GAWR 
proposal, Standard No. 120 had not been made 
final. Since its implementation on September 1, 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 10 



Effective: Februory 7, 1977 



1976, a manufacturer is free to determine GA"\^^R 
as in the past, but the maximum load ratings 
(marked on the tire sidewall) of tires on the 
vehicle must be at least equal the GAWR listed. 
For this reason, the NHTSA's proposal for 
amendment of the GAWR definition is con- 
sidered unnecessary and is therefore withdrawn. 
Further notice and opportunity for comment will 
precede any further action on the proposal set 
forth in that notice. 

Several issues were raised in regard to the 
GA"\\Tl proposal that should be' addressed for 
purposes of clarification. The Heavy & Spe- 
cialized Carriers Conference of the American 
Trucking Associations (HSCC) cautioned the 
NHTSA against requiring an "unrestricted speed 
GAWR" on the Part 567 certification label in 
view of two State laws (or regulations) that no 
vehicle can operate on the state highways at 
gross vehicle weights greater than those listed 
on the vehicle in accordance with Federal regu- 
lations. It is common practice to load some 
"heavy hauler" vehicles to a gross vehicle weight 
that exceeds the unrestricted speed ratings of 
the vehicle tires, because the vehicle's tires are 
capable of carrying greater weight at reduced 
speeds. 

As issued. Standard No. 120 required that the 
maximum load ratings of the tires at least equal 
the GA"V\Tl. This effectively limits the G\^\Tl 
to the sum of these GAWR's (except in the case 
of semi-trailers). In the agency's view, how- 
ever, the problem cited by HSCC can be avoided 
by listing additional GAWR's (calculated for 
reduced speed operation) at the end of the cer- 
tification plate following the required data on 
the label. This practice has been followed by 
members of the Truck Trailer Manufacturers 
Association (TTALA.) and was confirmed as per- 
missible by the NHTSA in a March 5, 1975, 
letter to the TTMA. In order to aid resolution 
of issues that may arise between States that wish 
to refer to the certification label and operators 
that wish to continue the additional rating sys- 
tem, the agency hereby makes an interpretive 
amendment to Part 567 to specify where addi- 
tional ratings may appear. 

Based on this understanding of the relation- 
ship between choice of tires under S5.1.2 of 
Standard No. 120 and the determination of 



GAWR under §567.4 of Part 567, a modifica- 
tion of the requirements of Standard No. 120 
is justified. In the case of a vehicle that is in- 
capable of the 60-mph speed used by tire manu- 
facturers to establish the maximum load rating 
that is stamped on the tire sidewall (typically a 
powered vehicle and not a trailer), it would not 
be reasonable to require the GAWR's to be 
strictly limited to the sum of the maximum load 
ratings of the tires on the vehicle. This is be- 
cause the vehicle will never achieve the speeds 
for which maximum load ratings were estab- 
lished. In many cases, provision is made to rate 
tires for a greater load at the lower (but maxi- 
mum) speed of which a vehicle is capable. In 
recognition of this extremely limited specialized 
situation, the agency amends S5.1.2 to permit 
installation of tires with reduced speed capa- 
bilities in the case of vehicles whose maximum 
attainable speed is not greater than 50 mph. 
This amendment is considered to be a teclinical 
adjustment of language to fully implement the 
intent of the final rule as it was established. 
A separate amendment of § 571.3 is made to 
establish the basis for determination of a ve- 
hicle's maximum attainable speeds. 

Volkswagen raised a separate issue concerning 
the requirement that the sum of maximum load 
ratings at least equal the GAWR of the axle 
system. This provision, in the case of an MPV, 
truck, bus, or trailer that is equipped with pas- 
senger car tires, requires that the maximum load 
ratings on the tires be reduced by approximately 
10 percent before calculating the sum. The pur- 
pose of this 10-percent reduction in tire rating 
is to account for the generally harsher treatment 
(impulse and surge loading in the case of MPVs 
off-road) to which the tires of a vehicle other 
than a passenger car are exposed that is not ac- 
counted for in passenger car tire ratings. Volks- 
wagen requested data showing that MPVs 
actually experience more abusive treatment in 
use. 

The MPV category is based in part on the ex- 
istence of characteristics that make these vehicles 
less amenable to passenger car standards. If 
Volkswagen has data indicating that the two 
categories actually experience identical usage, 
the NHTSA would prefer to adjust the defini- 



PAET 571; S 120— PRE 11 



Effective: February 7, 1977 



tion to ensure that these vehicles are subject to 
all passenger car standards. Until that time, 
the existing rationale for excusing these vehicles 
from some passenger car standards dictates the 
use of higher strength tires. 

As earlier noted, the rim selection require- 
ments of Standard No. 120 are not substantial, 
consisting of a requirement that the rims be 
listed by the tire manufacturer as suitable for 
use with its tires, and a requirement that, on 
and after September 1, 1979, the rims used on a 
vehicle be labeled as specified in S5.2 of the 
standard. The September 1, 1979, date for use 
of labeled rims replaced a March 1, 1977, date 
that proved impractical in view of large inven- 
tories of unlabeled rims that exist and will exist 
long after rim labeling is begun. In establishing 
the. later eifective date, the agency noted that it 
was considering the possibility of eliminating 
this requirement entirely, to simplifj' the phase-in 
of properly marked rims as they become avail- 
able. Experience with phase-in of newly regu- 
lated equipment in other areas such as tires and 
brake hoses has demonstrated that the require- 
ment for labeled equipment on and after a par- 
ticular date can create substantial inventory and 
potential economic waste problems. In view of 
experience that the delay of labeling require- 
ments has not substantially impeded certification 
verification and defect actions, the NHTSA has 
decided to withdraw the requirement (that ap- 
pears as the last sentence of S5.1.1). It is noted 
that withdrawal of this requirement does not 
affect the requirement of S5.1.2 that rims be 
listed as suitable by the tire manufacturer for 
use with the tires with which the vehicle is 
equipped, or the requirement of S5.2 that rims 
be labeled with specified information. 

Mobile structure trailers. With regard to the 
applicability of this standard and other stand- 
ards as a general matter, the NHTSA takes 
this opportunity to publish in the Federal Reg- 
ister its conclusion that enactment of the Na- 
tional Mobile Home Construction and Safety 
Standards Act of 1974 (42 U.S.C. 5401 et seq.) 
(the Mobile Home Act) impliedly repealed this 
agency's authority to regulate mobile homes. 



This conclusion was announced in a May 5, 1976, 
letter to the Department of Housing and Urban 
Development that stated in relevant part: 

The National Mobile Home Construction 
and Safety Standards Act of 1974 (42 
U.S.C. 5401 et seq.) (the "Mobile Home 
Act") established within the Department of 
Housing and Urban Development a compre- 
hensive program for the regulation of mo- 
bile homes. We have concluded that one 
result of that statute's enactment was the 
implied repeal of the NHTSA's authority 
with respect to mobile homes. Accordingly, 
we consider that the enactment has the effect 
of amending the Vehicle Safety Act's defi- 
nition of "motor vehicle" to exclude "mobile 
homes'' as the latter term is defined in the 
Mobile Home Act. 

The effect of this conclusion is that tire and 
rim selection for mobile homes (known as "mo- 
bile structure trailers" by the NHTSA) is no 
longer subject to Standard No. 120 or other 
regidations issued under authority of the Act. 
For this reason, references to "mobile structure 
trailer" in Standard No. 120, Standard No. 108, 
Lamps, Rejiective Devices, arid Associated Equip- 
ment, and the general definitions section of Part 
571 (§ 571.3) are deleted. 

On the same subject, a May 25, 1976 (and 
supplementing July 7, 1976), letter from Fire- 
stone to the NHTSA asked whether tires manu- 
factured exclusively for mobile homes and tires 
that are used on mobile homes (although manu- 
factured for other uses) are subject to regula- 
tion under the Act. Similar questions were 
raised as to the status of rims, some of which 
are designed exclusively for use on mobile homes 
and some of which are used on mobile homes 
and other vehicles. 

As for tires, Standard No. 109 applies to "tires 
for use on passenger cars" and Standard No. 119 
applies to "tires designed for highway use on 
[specified motor vehicles]." By these terms, 
neither standard applies to tires designed ex- 
clusively for use on mobile homes. In the case 
of tires actually used on mobile homes but de- 
signed for use also on vehicles subject to the 
Act, the agency considers such tires to be subject 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 12 



Effeellve: February 7, 1977 



to the standards' i-equirenients because they con- 
stitute motor vehicle equipment as that tenii is 
defined in §102(4) of the Act. 

As for rims. Standard No. 110 contains spec- 
ifications only for rims that equip passenger cai^s 
and therefore contains no requirements that 
would directly require performance of a rim that 
was installed on a mobile home. Standard No. 
120 applies to rims "for use on" MPV's, trucks, 
buses, motorcycles, and trailers (other than mo- 
bile structure trailers) and therefore would not 
apply to rims designed exclusively for use on 
mobile homes. In the case of rims designed for 
use on any of the motor vehcile types listed, the 
NHTSA would consider Standard No. 120's re- 
quirements applicable, and labeling in accordance 
with S5.2 would be required. 

Rim marking. The second requirement of 
Standard No. 120 is an equipment requirement 
specifj-ing five items of information (six in the 
case of multipiece wheels) that must appear on 
any rim for use on MPV's, trucks, buses, trailers, 
or motorcycles. The requirements for location 
of the information varies according to the type 
of information and whether the rim is part of 
a single or multipiece wheel. In answer to a 
question raised by Kelsey-Haj'es and Motor 
Wheel, it is confirmed that these marking re- 
quirements have no bearing on the u.se of the rim 
on passenger cars, except as future labeling re- 
quirements in Standard No. 110 might prohibit 
one or more of the items required by S5.2. This 
eventuality is considered to be extremely un- 
likely. 

Based on a comprehensive review of the peti- 
tions for reconsideration, the agency has decided 
that some requested modifications in labeling re- 
quirements are justified. The Japanese Auto- 
mobile Manufacturers Association and Suzuki 
asked that required labeling be permitted to be 
embossed as well as impressed on the rim. Volks- 
wagen (and representatives from Motor Wheel 
and Goodyear in a February 4, 1976, meeting 
with the NHTSA) asked that rim labeling be 
permitted on the disc portion of a single-piece 
wheel. The agency considers these suggestions 
to constitute justifiable options that would not 
diminish the level of motor vehicle safety repre- 
sented by the standard, and the standard is ac- 
cordingly amended. 



Motor Wheel requested amendment of the 
standard to state that labeling of multipiece 
rims is permitted in the bolt hold area. The 
agency does not consider the addition of ad- 
\asor}' information to be a desirable drafting 
practice because the mention of lx)lt hole loca- 
tions would imply that some restriction on loca- 
tion exists when in fact it does not. In answer 
to another question from Motor Wheel, more 
than one "rim type designation" on rim com- 
ponents of a multipiece wheel is permitted by 
the standard. 

Motor Wheel and Goodyear also asked if num- 
bers that contain decimals or "trailing zeroes" 
e.g., 7.50) could be shortened by deleting the 
decimal and "trailing zero." The agency believes 
that abbreviation by dropping the zero will not 
be confusing and amends the standard to include 
an example of such abbreviation. Confusion 
would result from dropping the decimal. 

In response to a request by Motor Wheel and 
Budd Company for a specific provision in S5.1.2 
that the marking requirements only apply to 
newl}- manufactured wheels, the agency notes the 
general applicability statement in § 571.7, gov- 
erning the applicability of all standards found 
in Part. 571, states that ". . . each standard set 
forth in subpart B of this part applies according 
to its terms to all motor vehicles or items of 
motor vehicle equipment the manufacture of 
which is completed on or after the etfective date 
of the standard." Thus, the standard only ap- 
plies to rims manufactured on or after the effec- 
tive date of S5.2. 

Manufacturers asked for several revisions of 
the marking requirements which the agency has 
considered and concludes are unjustified. This 
discussion treats the requests in the order that 
the markings in question appear in S5.2. 

With regard to the requirement for marking 
with a designation that indicates the source of 
the rim's published dimensions (S5.2(a)), Daido 
Corporation asked whether the Japanese In- 
dustrial Standards' symbol (a stylized combina- 
tion of the letters J, I, and S) or the letters 
"JIS" would meet the requirements of S5.2(a) (3) 
for use of letter "J." The agency interprets its 
labeling requirements as strictly as any other 
portion of its requirements and concludes that 



PART 571 ; S 120— PRE 13 



Effective: February 7, 1977 



neither "JIS'' nor the JIS symbol would con- 
form to the requirement of S5.2(a)(3). In re- 
sponse to a similar request by Volkswagen to 
permit "DIN" in place of "D," the agency has 
considered the idea of permitting the manu- 
facturer the option of a choice of designations, 
and concludes they are imdesirable in the in- 
terests of maintaining uniformity and compre- 
hension. 

Grove Manufacturing suggested that tlie single 
letter designations of "D" and "E" could be 
mistalten for tlie load ranges that appear on 
tires and on the certification label. The agency 
concludes that the designations on the rim are 
sufficiently separated to preclude confusion and 
therefore the recommendation by Grove is not 
undertaken. 

The "rim size designation" required by S5.2(b) 
is defined in S4 to mean the rim diameter and 
width. Daido and Volkswagen asked that a 
width designation followed by a diameter desig- 
nation be considered as satisfying the recjuirement 
for designation of diameter and width. The 
agency specified the existing order to distinguish 
rim designations from tire designations. This 
order of infonuation is being consideretl as the 
uniform practice to be adopted by the Inter- 
national Standards Organization. For reasons 
of uniformity, the requests are denied. 

Volkswagen asked that the "DIN" symbol be 
permitted to signify compliance of the rim with 
Standard No. 120 in place of the "DOT" symbol 
required by S5.2(c) for this purpose. The 
agency does not find that the requirement of 
§ 114 of the Act for certification is satisfied by 
use of a designation that has a wholly different 
meaning. Volkswagen's request is therefore 
denied. 

Gertif cation label. The third requirement of 
Standard No. 120 is that information about suit- 
able tires and rims for use on the vehicles, along 
with appropriate inflation pressure and speed 
restriction information, be placed on a label on 
the vehicle (S5.3). As amended April 29, 1976 
(41 FR 18659, May 6, 1976), the standard re- 
quires that the information appear on the cer- 
tification labels of vehicles manufactured on or 
after September 1, 1977. 



Some manufacturers and the Truck Trailer 
Manufacturers Association (TTMA) objected to 
the provision of this information on grounds 
that valid information already appears on the 
tires and rims that equip the vehicle, and that 
the information could mislead a person to think 
that only the listed tires and rims could be used 
on the vehicle. With regard to the first objec- 
tion, the NHTSA disagrees and notes that an 
improper choice of tires or rims (as could occur 
by replacing original equipment with "custom" 
rims or the equivalent in tires) could perma- 
nently mislead vehicle owners as to the suitable 
selection of tires and rims. As for the possi- 
bility of misleading, the agency believes that a 
heading over the tire- rim listings (specifically, 
"SUITABLE TIRE-RIM CHOICE") can be 
added to the requirements for optional use by a 
manufacturer who believes the infonuation 
would be otherwise misleading. With regard 
to General Motors' not* that an owner should 
be guided by all available information on tire 
choice (e.g., information in the owner's manual), 
the agency notes its longstanding position that 
manufacturei-s may add statements referring the 
reader to other publications for additional in- I 
formation. 

It is apparent from the examples cited by 
manufacturers that the decision to place all re- 
quired data on the certification label could prove 
cumbersome in some cases, particularly those in- 
volving a heavy truck with several available axle 
combinations. In view of these problems, the 
agency has decided to remove the restriction on 
location and pennit the information to appear 
on the certification label or on a separate label 
that conforms to the requirements for certifica- 
tion labels. The NHTSA notes that this option 
to provide information on a separate label i-e- 
sponds to concern of the Truck Body and 
Equipment Association (TBEA) for the respon- 
sibilities of its final-stage manufacturing mem- 
l>ership. The agency does not believe the tire 
and rim information would be as useful in a 
location entirely separate from the certification 
label, and it therefore declines to adopt General 
Motors' suggestion to use the Vehcile Identifica- 
tion label. 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 14 



t4 



Effective: February 7, 1977 



Motorcycle manufacturers and General Motors 
pointed out that the requirements for listing tire 
and rim information after G\^VR in the case 
of vehicles such as motorcycles, that only utilize 
one G^~\^^l listing, is redundant and therefore 
wasteful of space. Other manufacturers sug- 
gested that tlie tire-rim information was redun- 
dant in the case of multiple GVAATR listings, 
although this is not the case because of the 
need to associate the appropriate G\T\^R with 
GA"V\"R's that may exceed the G\^VR. In any 
event, these comments suggest that G^'^^Ti and 
GAWR could be better linked by re\'ision of the 
example format to reduce the amount of infor- 
mation that must be listed. The solution is to 
permit listing of the G^'^yR alone, followed 
immediately by corresponding GA"\AT{'s and ap- 
propriate tire-rim information. The clearer for- 
mat would be used for single and multiple 
listings. This re\'ision is described in tlie new 
example that accompanies the rule changes at 
the end of this notice. In conformity with this 
simplification, the rule is also amended to delete 
the requirements for GVWK tire-rim-inflation 
listings. Depending on manufacturers' reactions 
to the simplified format, a similar change could 
be undertaken for the passenger car example 
found in Part 567 (§ 567.4(h) (1) ). 

With regard to the items of information that 
must be listed in accordance with S5.3, General 
Motors and the TTMA argued that "tires . . . 
appropriate as a minimum for the GAWR" 
[emphasis added] could be construed to require 
tires with load ratings less than those that the 
manufacturer would choose to recommend. To 
eliminate any ambiguity, the agency replaces 
"at a minimum" with "as specified by S5.1.2." 

Suzuki asked whether "cold inflation pressure" 
means the maximum inflation pressure specified 
by the tire manufacturer. The TTMA also 
asked for clarification on this point. The answer 
is that the requirement does not call for maxi- 
mum pres,sure. but the pressure specified by the 
tire manufacturer as sufficient to carrj* the load 
specified by the vehicle manufacturer as the tire's 
share of the assigned GAWR. 

Michelin Tire Corporation noted tliat listing 
inflation pressure could be misleading in the case 
of tire designations that call for different in- 
flation pressures depending on the tire construc- 



tion. It is the agency's view that any possibility 
of confusion can easily be avoided by an indica- 
tion that the tire designation represents a radial 
tire, so that a person substituting a non-radial 
tire size with the same designation is aware that 
the two tires are not identical. 

The TBEA requested clarification of the term 
"maximum speed" as it appeared in the example 
that accompanied the final rule. The TBEA 
appeared to misunderstand the example as a ref- 
erence to the speed capabilities of the vehicle 
instead of the speed restriction of the tires. The 
agency has in mind only the rare tire types con- 
structed for transit buses and mining and log- 
ging operations and so designated. Goodyear 
and the TTMA appeared to have the same mis- 
taken impression of the requirement. 

Speed-restricted vehicles have now been ad- 
dressed under S5.1.2. In view of the confusion 
that arose over the requirement, and the agency's 
assumption that the users of these tires are 
knowledgeable in the use of the tires, it has been 
decided to drop the requirement of S5.3(d) al- 
together. 

The TTMA raised several other questions with 
regard to the information that appears along 
with the GAWR. In answer to these questions, 
the effective dates of the standard are such that 
the manufacturer will be required to list the 
information specified by S5.3 on and after Sep- 
tember 1, 1977. Also, it is not permissible to 
"bracket" the GTWR and GA"VATl values for 
a particular vehicle by specify-ing the minimum 
and maximum values that any tire-rim choice 
could provide. Section 567.4 of Part 567 re- 
quires that the G"\"^VR and GAWR's repre- 
senting the manufacturer determination of the 
particular vehicle's characteristics must be listed. 

The standard does not require the information 
specified in S5.3 to be listed alongside the addi- 
tional G\nVR's and GA'V\Tl's that a manufac- 
turer might list at the end of its certification 
label as reduced speed ratings. Lastly, the 
agency does not agree that the GAWR ratings 
for a semi-trailer are not related to the trailer's 
G^^VR. \^niile the trailer's axles do not supp)ort 
the entire weight of the vehicle, it is still the 
case that the various G^' VN'R's that could be as- 
signed to a semi-trailer are affected by the 



PART 571: S 120— PRE 15 



Effective; February 7, 1977 



GA'WE values thai can be assigned, and that 
the G^'A^'R probably differs depending on the 
GATSTl value assigned. In this sense the 
GA^ATl's assigned to a semitrailer's axles do 
"correspond" to its G\ W K. 

In accordance with Department of Transpor- 
tation policy encouraging adequate analysis of 
the consequences of regulatory action (41 FR 
16200. April 16. 1976). the agency herewith sum- 
marizes its evaluation of the economic and other 
consequences of this action on the public and 
private sectors, including possible loss of safety 
benefits. The new options, simplification, and 
reduction of marking and labeling requirements 
should make compliance with the standard less 
costly, while the changes are not expected to 
significantly reduce the level of motor vehicle 
safety. The exception for speed -restricted ve- 
hicles provided in S5.1.2 represents a correction 
of the requirements to reflect the agency's in- 
tent not to prevent the assignment of greater 
load-carrying capabilities to vehicles at lower 
speeds. Permitting this practice to continue will 
result in the avoidance of new costs in the 
economy. 

In consideration of the postponement of effec- 
tive dates already granted for rim marking and 



the tire information labeling, the agency con- 
cludes that the present effective date schedule 
permits adequate time for compliance. 

In view of the three notices that have modi- 
fied the test of Standard Xo. 120. the entire 
standard (incorporating the amendments made 
by this notice) is published for the convenience 
of persons affected. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Chapter V 
of Title 49. Code of Federal Regulations, is 
amended. . . . 

Effective date: Changes to the text of the Fed- 
eral Register may be made immediately. The 
provisions of Standard Xo. 120 are in effect at 
this time, except as otherwise provided in the 
standard. 

(Sec. 103, 119. Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat, 718 
(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407) ; delegation of authority 
at49CFR1.50.) 



Issued on January 28, 1977. 



John AV. Snow 
Administrator 

42 F.R. 7140 
February 7, 1977 



PART 571; S 120— PRE 16 



i 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 120 

Tire Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 
(Docket No. 80-16; Notice 2) 



ACTION: Final rules. 

SUMMARY: This rule makes several minor inter- 
pretive ''.nd editorial changes to Federal Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 120, Tire Selection 
and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger 
Cars. With respect to the tire and rim selection in- 
formation required to appear on a placard in new 
vehicles, the rule requires that the lettering be of 
specified dimensions and that the information be 
written in the English language. The rule also in- 
corporates the substance of an existing interpreta- 
tion of this standard permitting the purchaser of a 
new vehicle to request the vehicle manufacturer to 
install the purchaser's retread tires on the vehicle; 
changes one of the rim labeling examples listed in 
the standard; and corrects the names of two tire 
standardization organizations listed in the standard. 

EFFECTIVE DATE: December 1, 1984. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Federal Motor 
Vehicle Safetj- Standard No. 120, Tire Selection 
and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger 
Cars (49 CFR S 571J20), specifies tire and rim 
selection requirements and rim marking require- 
ments for motor vehicles such as trucks, buses, and 
motorcycles. (Throughout the balance of this 
preamble, the term "motor vehicles" is used to 
refer to all types of motor vehicles other than 
passenger cars.) 

Standard 120 was initially published at 41 FR 
3478, Januarj- 23, 1976. In the course of reviewing 
this standard, NHTSA noted that some portions of 
the standards contained minor errors and other 
portions needed clarification. To correct these 
shortcomings, NHTSA published a Notice of 
Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) at 45 FR 71834, 
October 30, 1980. 



The NPRM proposed changes in the following 
four areas of the standard: 

(1) Requiring the tire and rim selection infor- 
mation which must appear on a placard in the vehi- 
cle to be in the English language and of specified 
dimensions; 

(2) Narrowing the provision permitting the 
purchaser of a new vehicle to have the manufac- 
turer install the purchaser's used tires on the new 
vehicle, and incorporating the results of an ex- 
isting interpretation to permit the use of retreaded 
tires in the same circumstances as used tires; 

(3) Changing one of the rim labeling examples 
listed in the standard; and 

(4) Correcting the names of two tire standard- 
ization organization listed in the standard. 

NHTSA received 13 comments on the NPRM. 
One comment addressed the first proposed change, 
stating that there were no objections to the pro- 
posed change, if it would permit the use of multi- 
lingual labels on vehicles with one of the labels in 
English and of the specified dimensions. NHTSA 
generaDy permits the use of multilingual labels, as 
long as one part of the label clearly shows the re- 
quired information in the proper format and in the 
English language. No change is contemplated in 
this policy. No other comments were received on 
this proposed change to the standard, and it is 
adopted as proposed. 

All of the other 12 comments received by the 
agency opposed the portion of the second proposed 
change which would limit the use of used and 
retreaded tires on new vehicles to mileage contract 
purchasers. (A mileage contract purchaser is a pur- 
chaser whose vehicles are equipped with tires pur- 
chased or leased from a tire supplier on a cost per 
mile basis). In the NPRM, the agency stated that 
this limitation had been implicit in the final rule 



PART 571; S 120-PRE 17 



establishing Standard 120 and that, absent this 
limitation, "the purchaser could send the vehicle 
manufacturer palpably unsafe tires (e.g., bald tires 
or poorly repaired cut tires) and request that these 
tires be mounted on the new vehicle." 

The commenters argued that, regardless of the 
original intent of the agency when the standard was 
issued in 1976, the practice since that time has been 
for almost all vehicle fleets to send tires from their 
tire banks (tire banks are composed of tires with 
usable tread left on them which have been taken off 
vehicles no longer in service) to the vehicle manufac- 
turer for installation on any new vehicles they buy. 
It was asserted that the proposed language amend- 
ing Standard 120 would prohibit this practice and 
increase costs for these vehicle fleets, without any 
data suggesting that there is a safety problem 
associated with this practice. Most of the com- 
menters stated that the proposed prohibition was 
unnecessary since it would not make any sense for a 
vehicle purchaser to spend $65,000 to $75,000 on a 
new vehicle, and then install unsafe tires on that 
vehicle. Further, one commenter noted that the 
agency's proposal would not prevent a purchaser 
who wanted to install unsafe tires on a vehicle from 
doing so. This commenter correctly noted that 
Standard 120 does not require that new vehicles be 
equipped with tires. Hence, according to this com- 
menter, a purchaser would simply order a new vehi- 
cle delivered without any tires, and then install the 
unsafet tires on the truck after it was delivered. 

NHTSA is persuaded by these comments, and is 
not adopting the proposed limitation. This rule does 
amend the standard to permit the installation of 
retreaded tires on new vehicles, as proposed in the 
NPRM. All commenters who addressed this change 
supported it. Further, the practice of using retread 
tires on new vehicles has been permitted since the 
agency's issuance in 1978 of an interpretation of 
Standard 120. 

One change has been made to the language pro- 
posed in the NPRM to permit retreaded tires to be 
mounted on new vehicles. The NPRM would have 
required that retreaded tires to be mounted on new 
vehicles have a DOT symbol on the tire, to show that 
the originl casing was manufactured in compliance 
with Standard 119. That standard sets forth per- 
formance and labeling requirements for new vehicle 
tires. However, such a requirement would directly 
contradict another NHTSA requirement in 49 CFR 
Part 574, Tire Identification and Recordkeeping. 
Section 574.5 states, "The DOT symbol shall not ap- 
pear on tires to which no Federal Motor Vehicle 
Safety Standard is applicable..." No Federal motor 
vehicle safety standard is applicable to retreaded 
vehicle tires. Hence, adopting the proposed require- 
ment would either necessitate amending section 
574.5 or force retreaders to violate one of these two 



requirements dealing with the presence of a DOT 
symbol on these tires. 

The agency has decided not to require that 
retreaded tire mounted on new vehicles bear the 
DOT symbol placed on the tires by their original 
manufactures. Further, the agency is publishing in 
today's Federal Register a proposal to amend sec- 
tion 574.5 to permit retreaders of tires for use on 
motor vehicles other than passenger cars either to 
leave the DOT symbol on the tires or to remove the 
symbol. The agency has tentatively concluded that 
continuing to require the removal of the symbol 
does not serve any safety purpose. As the proposal 
notes, the value of the DOT symbol on a retreaded 
tire in assessing the probable performance of the 
tire is believed by the agency to be very significant. 
Intervening factors such as latent problems with the 
carcass of the original tire, inadvertent damage to 
the carcass during the retreading process, the 
amount of old tread are of far greater significance 
in determining the performance of the retreaded 
tire than the condition of the carcass when the tire 
was new. 

No comments were received on the agency's third 
and fourth proposed changes, which are minor 
editorial corrections. These are adopted herein as 
proposed. 

NHTSA has analyzed the impacts of this action 
and determined that they are not "major" within 
meaning of Executive Order 12291 or "significant" 
within the meaning of the Department of Transpor- 
tation regulatory policies and procedures. The prin- 
cipal impacts of this rule are to clarify some portions 
of the standard, and to explicitly authorize existing 
industry practices, which have been permitted by an 
interpretation of the standard. There will be no ad- 
ditional paperwork or costs imposed on vehicle 
manufacturers, tire manufacturers, or the public as 
a result of this rule. There will be no cost savings 
either, since the rule merely authorizes existing 
practices. Accordingly, a full regulatory evaluation 
has not been prepared. 

The Regulatory Flexibility Act is not applicable to 
this rule, because that Act applies only to rulemak- 
ing proceedings in which the NPRM was issued on 
or after January 1, 1981. The NPRM in this action 
was issued in October 1980. If that Act were ap- 
plicable, NHTSA would certify that this rule will not 
"have a significant economic impact on a substan- 
tial number of small entities" and state that a 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis was therefore not 
required. This rule will simply clarify existing re- 
quirements without any economic impacts on small 
entities. 

Issued on May 11. 

49 F.R. 20822 
May 17, 1984 



PART 571; S 120-PRE 18 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 120 



Tire Selection and Rims for Motor Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars 



51. Scope. This standard specifies tire and 
rim selection requirements and rim marking re- 
quirements. 

52. Purpose. The purpose of this standard is 
to provide safe operational performance by en- 
suring that vehicles to which it applies are 
equipped with tires of adequate size and load 
rating and with rims of appropriate size and 
type designation. 

53. Application. This standard applies to 
multipurpose passenger vehicles, trucks, buses, 
trailers, and motorcycles, and to rims for use on 
those vehicles. 

84. Definitions. All terms defined in the Act 
and the rules and standards issued under its 
authority are used as defined therein. 

"Rim base" means the portion of a rim re- 
maining after removal of all split or continuous 
rim flanges, side rings, and locking rings that 
can be detached from the rim. 

"Rim size designation" means rim diameter 
and width. 

"Rim diameter" means nominal diameter of 
the bead seat. 

"Rim width" means nominal distance between 
rim flanges. 

"Rim type designation" means the industry or 
manufacturer's designation for a rim by style or 
code. 

"Weather side" means the surface area of the 
rim not covered by the inflated tire. 

S5. Requirements. 

S5.1 Tire and rim selection. 

S5.1.1 Except as specified in S5.1.3, each ve- 
hicle equipped with pneumatic tires for highway 
service shall be equipped with tires that meet the 



requirements of Standard No. 109 (§ 571.109) or 
Standard No. 119 (§571.119), and with rims 
that are listed by the manufacturer of the tires 
as suitable for use with those tires, in accordance 
with S4.4 of Standard No. 109 or S5.1 of Stand- 
ard No. 119, as applicable. 

55.1.2 Except in the case of a vehicle which 
has a speed attainable in 2 miles of 50 mph or 
less, the sum of the maximum load ratings of 
the tires fitted to an axle shall be not less than 
the gross axle weight rating (GAWR) of the 
axle system as specified on the vehicle's certifica- 
tion label required by 49 CFR Part 567. If the 
certification label shows more than on GAWR 
for the axle system, the sum shall be not less 
than the GAWR corresponding to the size desig- 
nation of the tires fitted to the axle. If the size 
designation of the tires fitted to the axle does 
not appear on the certification label, the sum 
shall be not less than the lowest GAWR appear- 
ing on the label. When a tire listed in Appendix 
A of Standard No. 109 is installed on a multi- 
purpose passenger vehicle, truck, bus, or trailer, 
the tire's load rating shall be reduced by divid- 
ing by 1.10 before calculating the sum. 

55.1.3 [In place of tires that meet the re- 
quirements of Standard No. 119, a truck, bus, or 
trailer may at the request of a purchaser be 
equipped at the place of manufacture of the vehicle 
with retreaded or used tires owned or leased by the 
purchaser, if the sum of the maximum load ratings 
meets the requirements of S5.1.2. Used tires 
employed under this provision must have been 
originally manufactured to comply with Standard 
No. 119, as evidenced by the DOT symbol. (49 F.R. 
20822-May 17, 1984. Effective: December 1, 
1984)1 



(Rev. 5/17/S4) 



PART 571; S 120-1 



S5.2 Rim marking. On and after August 1, 
1977, each rim or, at the option of the manufac- 
turer in the case of a singlepiece wheel, wheel 
disc shall be marked with the information listed 
in paragraphs (a) through (e), in lettering not 
less than one-eighth inch high, impressed to a 
depth or, at the option of the manufacturer, 
embossed to a height of not less than 0.005 
inch. The information listed in paragraphs (a) 
through (c) shall appear on the weather side. 
In the case of rims of multipiece construction, 
the information listed in paragraphs (a) through 
(e) shall appear on the rim base and the in- 
formation listed in paragraphs (b) and (d) shall 
also appear on each part of the rim. 

(a) A designation which indicates the source 
of the rim's published nominal dimensions, as 
follows: 

(1) "T" indicates The Tire and Rim Asso- 
ciation. 

(2) "E" indicates The European Tyre and 
Rim Technical Organisation. 

(3) |"J" indicates Japan Automobile Tire 
Manufacturers Association. J 

(4) "D" indicates Deutsche Industrie Norm. 

(5) "M" indicates The Society of Motor 
Manufacturers & Traders, Ltd. 

(6) "B" indicates British Standards Insti- 
tution. 

(7) "S" indicates Scandinavian Tire and 
Rim Organization. 

(8) "N" indicates an independent listing 
pursuant to S4.4.1(a) of Standard No. 109 or 
S5.1(a) of Standard No. 119. 

(b) The rim size designation, and, in case of 
multipiece rims, the rim type designation. For 
example: 20 x 5.50, or 20 x 5.5. 

(c) The symbol DOT, constituting a certifi- 
cation by the manufacturer of the rim that the 
rim complies with all applicable motor vehicle 
safety standards. 

(d) A designation that identifies the manu- 
facturer of the rim by name, trademark, or 
symbol. 



(e) The month, day, and year, or the month and 
year, of manufacture, expressed in numerals. For 
example, 

"September 4, 1976" may be expressed as: 
904 ^^ 76 
76 904 

"September 1976" may be expressed as: 

76 ""^ 9 



90476, 



976, 



S5.3 Label Information. (For vehicles manufac- 
tured on and after September 1, 1977) The informa- 
tion specified in S5.3.1 through S5.3.3 shall, in the 
format set forth following this section, appear 
either— 

(a) After each GAWR listed on the certification 
label required by § 567.4 or § 567.5 of this chapter, 
or at the option of the manufacturer, 

(b) On a tire information label affixed to the 
vehicle in the manner, location, and form described 
in § 567.4(b) through (f ) of Part 567 of this chapter, 
as appropriate for each GVWR-GAWR combina- 
tion listed on the certification label. 

55.3.1 {Vehicles manufactured before December 
1, 1984. Each vehicle manufactured before 
December 1, 1984, shall show the information 
specified in S5.3.3 through S5.3.5 in the format set 
forth following this section. The information shall 
appear either— 

(a) After each GAWR listed on the certification 
label required by § 567.4 or § 567.5 of this chapter; 
or, at the option of the manufacturer, 

(b) On a tire information label affixed to the 
vehicle in the manner, location, and form described 
in § 567.4(b) through (f) of this chapter, as ap- 
propriate for each GVWR-GAWR combination 
listed on the certification label. 

55.3.2 [Vehicles manufactured on and after 
December 1, 1984. Each vehicle manufactured on 
and after December 1, 1984 shall show the infor- 
mation specified in S5.3.3 through S5.3.5 in the 
English language, lettered in block capitals and 
numerals not less than three thirty-seconds of an 
inch high and in the format set forth following this 
section. This information shall appear either— 

(a) After each GAWR listed on the certification 
label required by § 567.4 or § 567.5 of this chapter; 
or, at the option of the manufacturer. 



PART 571; S 120-2 



(b) On a tire information label affixed to the 
vehicle in the manner, location, and form described 
in S 567.4(b) through (f) of this chapter, as ap- 
propriate for each GVWR-GAWR combination 
listed on the certification label. 

S5.3.3 IThe size designation of tires (not 
necessarily those on the vehicle) appropriate (as 
specified in S5.1.2) for the GAWR. 

IS5.3.4 The size designation and, if applicable, 
the type designation of rims (not necessarily those 
on the vehicle) appropriate for those tires. 

[S5.3.5 Cold inflation pressure for those tires. 
(49 F.R. 20822-May 17, 1984. Effective: 
December 1, 1984)| 



S6. Vehicles manufactured from September 1, 
1976, to February 28, 1977. Notwithstanding any 
other provision of this standard, a vehicle to which 
this standard applies that is manufactured during 
the period from September 1, 1976, to February 
28, 1977, shall meet each requirement of this 
standard, with the following exception: In place of 
tires that meet Standard No. 119 (S 571.119), the 
vehicle may be equipped with tires that meet every 
requirement of that standard other than the tire 
marking requirements of S6.5 of that standard. 



41 F.R. 3478 
January 23, 1976 



(Rav. SM7/M) 



PART 571; S 120-3-4 



HwcNwt Jmmps^ If ■▼*• 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHIQE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Syst*m»— Trucks, Busm and TraiUrs 

(Dodcst Not. 70-16, 70-17; NoHcc No. 2) 



Tlie purpose of this notice is to amend f 67li21 
of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, by 
adding Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 121, 
Air Brake Systems — Trucks, Buses and Trailers. 
Notices of proposed rul«naking on this subject 
were published on June 25, 1970 (35 F.R. 10368) 
and June 26, 1970 (35 F.R. 10456). The com- 
ments received in response to the notices and 
information obtained at a technical conference 
held on October 20, 1970 (35 F.R. 14736, Septem- 
ber 22, 1970) have been considered in the devel- 
opment of the final rule. The trailer require- 
ments are joined with the truck and bus 
requirements in a single air brake systems 
standard. 

The st&ndard as adopted specifies requir^nents 
for the safe performance of air brake systems 
under normal and emergency conditions. It 
should be noted that the term "air brake system" 
as defined in the standard applies to the brake 
configuration commonly referred to as "air over 
hydraulic," in which failure of either medium 
can result in complete loss of braking ability. 

The standard establishes a set of requirements 
to govern the braking behavior of a vdiicle dur- 
ing application of the service brakes. Principal 
among these are stopping performance require- 
ments that include a minimum stopping distance 
requirement for trucks and buses and lateral 
stability and wiieel lockup requirements for all 
vehicles. To more accurately reflect the friction 
characteristics of a surface with a skid number 
of 75, the stopping distances for trucks and buses 
on a dry surface have been increased over those 
proposed in the notice. The required distance 
from 60 m.p.h. is now 245 feet rather than 216 
feet and the distance from 20 m.p.h. is 33 feet 
rather than 29 feet. The stopping distance on a 
wet surface at 20 m.pii., 54 feet, has been re- 



tained. Several comments indicated that there 
are no test facilities on which the 60 m.pii. stop 
on a wet surface can be safely conducted. As a 
measure of brake efficiency, moreover, the 20 
m.pJi. stop on a wet surface satisfactorily indi- 
cates the vehicle's behavior at higher speeds, and 
the standard therefore specifies only the 20 
m.p.h. stopping distance test. 

The requirmaent that the vehicle stay within 
a 12-foot-wide lane has been adopted as pro- 
posed. The proposed requirement that no wbeel 
lock except momentarily has been modified to 
permit lockup to occur on the leading nonsteer- 
able axle on vehicles having more than two non- 
steerable axles. A review of available informa- 
tion indicates that satisfactory control of the 
vehicle can be maintained if lockup is avoided 
on two nonsteerable axles. The rule also permits 
lockup at speeds under 10 m.p.h. Such low speed 
lockup is not considered hazardous and allows 
greater flexibility in brake system designs. 

Some comments stated that the requirement 
for a controlled stop without lockup favored one 
variety of stability-controlling device — the anti- 
lock device — over otiier systems such as load 
proportioning devices. Several comments seemed 
to assimie that the proposal required antilock 
devices. The requirement that the vehicle stop 
without locking its wheels reflects the Adminis- 
tration's judgment that a vehicle with locked 
wheels, whatever its equipment, is unstable and 
imoontroUable in an emergency situation. The 
Administration recognizes the likelihood that 
manufacturers of some types of vehicles may 
have to incorporate proportioning or antilock 
devices into their systems in order to meet the 
stopping distance requirement. However, the 
manner in which lockup is prevented is not 
specified in the standard, and if a proportioning 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 1 



Effsctiv*: January I, 1973 



device or any other device can produce the de- 
sired result, it may be incorporated into the 
vehicle's braking system. 

Although an antilock device is not required, 
if it is used on a vehicle it musft conform to sev- 
eral requirements. A warning signal must be 
provided to warn of total system failure, a failed 
dence must not interfere with the operation of 
the service brake, and electrical elements in the 
system must be powered through the vehicle's 
stop lamp circuit. Of these requirements, the 
first was the subject of comments that indicated 
some uncertainty as to the nature of a total sys- 
tem failure. The reason for the requirement is 
that a driver ought to be warned in the event 
that a system on which he has come to rely has 
stopped working altogether. Monitoring of each 
device separately would be diflScult and costly, 
while monitoring of the shared elements of the 
system, such as the electrical circu!',ry, would be 
relatively simple. Although electrical problems 
would be the most likely cause of total failure, 
other comix)nents may also produce such failure 
and the language of the requirement has not 
been limited to a specific type of failure. A 
requirement that electrical power for antiskid 
devices on trailers must be provided through the 
stop lamp circuit has been added to insure the 
functioning of antilock systems in vehicle com- 
binations in which the towed vehicle has an anti- 
lock system. 

The requirements for actuation and release 
times, for brake retardation force, and for brake 
power have been modified somewhat in the light 
of information provided by the comments. The 
notice proposed timing curves for brake actuation 
and release, but subsequent review has indicated 
that adhesion to a timing curve is less significant 
than the basic ability to apply and release the 
brakes quickly. The curves have therefore been 
omitted in favor of a single application time of 
0.25 second and a single release time of 0.50 
second. These values are somewhat less stringent 
than those proposed in the notice, and reflect 
the judgment that a system that can meet the 
stopping distance requirements without lockup 
has less need for the rapid times originally pro- 
posed. Vehicles intended to tow other vehicles 
equipped with air brakes must still meet the 
actuation and release times with a 50-cubic-inch 



test reservoir attached to the service line outlet, 
but the requirements for pressurization of the 
test reservoir itself have been deleted. 

The brake retardation force requirement was 
the subject of numerous comments, some to the 
effect that the retardation force was too high to 
permit safe operation of vehicle combinations in 
which new and old vehicles are mixed, and others 
to the effect that the forces were too high to be 
achieved with reliability by available friction 
materials. The Administration has determined 
that compatibility problems are substantially 
lessened if the vehicle has the ability to Stop 
without lockup and that the retention of a rela- 
tively high retardation force requirement will 
not lead to significant compatibility problems. 
It has been determined, however, that the stop- 
ping distance requirements can be met by brakes 
having a somewhat lower retardation force ca- 
pacity than proposed, and a lower force require- 
ment is therefore adopted. 

Comments regarding the proposed brake power 
requirements stated that the fade characteristics 
required of the linings might exceed the limits 
of existing technology and might not be com- 
patible with the retardation force requirements. 
In the light of these comments and other infor- 
mation it has been determined that the brake 
power requirements should be reduced. Accord- 
ingly the standard as adopted requires 10 de- 
celerations at a rate of 9 feet per second per 
second at intervals of 72 seconds with the air 
pressure at 90 p.s.i. or less, and a final decelera- 
tion at 14 f.p.s.p.s. from 20 m.p.h. with a service 
line air pressure of 108 p.s.i. or less. In the 
light of the diminished power requirements, the 
recovery requirements have been retained with a 
minor adjustment from 45 p.s.i. to 40 p.s.i. in the 
minimum air pressure required. 

A series of alterations have been made in the 
equipment requirements in response to comments 
and as a result of reevaluation by the Adminis- 
tration. First among these is the alteration of 
the stop lamp switch requirement to permit use 
of a pneumatic switch. The requirements for 
compressor capacity have been modified to re- 
quire it to increase air pressure in the reservoirs 
from 85 p.s.i. to 100 p.s.i. in not more than 25 
seconds, in place of the proposed requirement of 
0-85 p.s.i. in 2 minutes. The malndatory require- 



I 



PART 571 ; S 121— PRE 2 



EffKHv*: January 1, 1973 



ment for a supply reservoir has been removed, 
and the overall reservoir capacity for trucks and 
buses has been reduced to 12 times the combined 
brake chamber capacity. The drain valve re- 
quirement has been simplified, the tolerance on 
the air pressure gauge has been broadened to 
±7 percent of the compressor cut-out pressure, 
and the low air pressure warning requirement 
has been modified to permit visible, nonaudible 
signals within the driver's forward field of view. 

The notice proposed that each truck and bus 
have a split service brake system. It has been 
determined that the additional cost and greater 
complexity of a split system on vehicles equipped 
vrith air brakes are not accompanied by safety 
benefits great enough to justify requiring a split 
system. Accordingly, the requirement has been 
deleted. The remaining system with emergency 
capabilities is the parking brake system, and it 
has been determined that a parking brake system 
complying with the applicable requirements of 
the standard will provide a safe means of stop- 
ping the vehicle in the event of service brake 
failure. 

Two aspects of the parking brake system were 
the subject of considerable comment. A number 
of comments stated that no maximum static re- 
tardation force should be specified, and several 
comments stated that the parking brakes should 
not apply automatically. The standard as 
adopted retains both the maximum retardation 
and the automatic application requirements. 
Each has a role in the safe operation of the 
parking brake system. If no maximum retarda- 
tion force were specified, there would be consid- 
erable risk of lockup during emergency braking. 
The requirement as adopted, however, raises the 
upper limit on the quotient 

static retardation force 
GAWR 

from 0.33 to 0.40. 

Comments stated that automatic application 
of the brakes while the vehicle is in motion could 
induce hazardous instability, due t» wheel lockup 
or to the unexpected nature of the braking. It 
has been determined that adequate safeguards 
exist in the standard to avoid such problems. 
The required low pressure warning signal must 
operate at a pressure well above the aut<«natic 



application pressure so that the driver will have 
sufficient warning of incipient brake application. 
In addition, the limit on retardation force will 
act to prevent lockup under all but the most 
severe conditions. With respect to trailers, the 
automatic functioning of the parking brake sys- 
tem is further insured by the deletion of the 
prof>osed requirement for a check valve or similar 
device to protect the trailer's air pressure. 

The parking brake controls have been consid- 
erably simplified by uniting in one control the 
manual on-off operation and the release-after- 
automatic-application function. 

Many comments revealed a misunderstanding 
about the Administration's purpose in specifying 
test conditions. It should be understood that the 
standards are not instructions for, or descrip- 
tions of, manufacturer tests. For example, the 
condition that states that "(t)he wind velocity is 
zero," simply means that the vehicle must meet 
the applicable tests if (among other things) the 
air is still, that is, if the wind neither helps nor 
hinders the vehicle's performance. One way in 
which the manufacturer could check his vehicle's 
conformity with reference to the zero wind con- 
dition is to run the braking test with a resultant 
tailwind. With reference to another condition, 
such as the surface with a skid number of 75, the 
test could be run on a surface having a skid 
number lower than 75. Manufacturers are re- 
quired to exercise due care to insure that their 
vehicles will meet the standard if tested by the 
Administration under the specified conditions, 
but they are at their own discretion in devising 
an appropriate testing program for that purpose. 
A few changes have been made in the test 
conditions. The notice had proposed, in addition 
to the zero wind condition, that the vehicle stay 
in the roadway with a wind of 30 m.p.h. frwn 
any direction. On review, the 30-m.p.h. speed 
has been determined to be excessive and to un- 
duly increase the problems of testing. In addi- 
tion, most stability problems are controlled by 
preventing wheel lockup, as required by the 
standard, and the crosswind condition has there- 
fore been deleted. In place of the "lightly 
loaded vehicle weight," a weight condition based 
on the vehicle's unloaded weight is used. 

Effective date. Because of the development 
work and preparation for production tiiat this 



PAUT 571; S 121— PRE 3 



MkMv*: January 1, 1973 

standard will require, it is found that an effective the National Highway Traffic Safety Adminis- 
date later than 1 year from the date of issuance trator, 49 CFR 1.51. 
is in the public interest. Accordingly, the stand- 
ard is effective January 1, 1973. Issued on February 19, 1971. 

In consideration of the above, § 571.21 of Title 

49 of the Code of Federal Regulations is amended Douglas W. Toms, 

by adding Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No, Acting Administrator, National 

121 as set forth below. This standard is issued Highway Traffic Safety Ad- 

under the authority of sections 103 and 119 of ministration 
the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety 

Act, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407, and the delegation of 36 F.R. 3817 

authority by the Secretary of Transportation to February 27, 1971 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 4 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brak* Syst«m»— Trucks, Bus«t, and TraiUn 

(Dockets No. 70-16 and 70-17; NoHc* 3) 



The purpose of this notice is to respond to 
petitions requesting reconsideration of Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 121, Air Brake 
Systems, § 571.121 of Title 49, Code of Federal 
Regulations. After issuance of the standard on 
February 19, 1971 (36 F.R. 3817, February 27, 
1971), petitions for reconsideration were filed 
pursuant to 49 CFR 535.35 by a number of ve- 
hicle and equipment manufacturers. This notice 
grants some of the requests by amending the 
standard, and denies other requests. 

1. Service brake system. The service brake 
system requirements have been reorganized for 
reasons of clarity and have been amended with 
respect to the order of testing and the number of 
tests to be conducted- The dynamometer tests 
have been separated from the road tests and 
placed in section S5.4. The road test section has 
been amended to specify the order in which the 
stopping tests are to be run. The section is 
further amended to provide that a truck or bus 
will be stopped six times for each combination of 
loading, speed and road conditions and that it 
will be considered to meet the requirement if one 
stop is made in the required distance with the 
required stability and freedom from wheel lock- 
up. This amendment has been adopted to ease 
the problems arising from a test driver's un- 
familiarity with a vehicle's behavior. To ac- 
comodate antilock systems that permit some 
wheels to lock for longer periods than others, the 
reference to "momentary" lockup in S5.3.1 and 
S5.3.2 has been amended to refer to "controlled" 
lockup. 

S5.3.2, Stopping Capability, Trailers, has been 
amended in minor respects, to make it clear that 
the 90 p3.i. pressure level is system-wide and not 
confined to the brake control lines, and to provide 
that the trailer is to stop the combination of 



vehicles without benefit of the towing vehicle's 
brakes. 

The brake power requirements of S5.4.2 and 
the dynamometer test conditions of S6.2 are each 
amended to refer to the drum "or disc" to avoid 
the possibility that the sections would be miscon- 
strued as requiring drum brakes. The brake re- 
covery requirements of S5.4.3 are amended by 
lowering ttie minimum air pressure requirement 
to 20 p.s.i. from 40 p.s.i. This amendment is 
based on a reassessment of the problems asso- 
ciated with over-recovery that has led the 
NHTSA to conclude that 20 pAi. is a reasonable 
level. 

The requirements concerning antilock system 
failure and the provision of power for antilock 
systems on trailers have been separated from the 
other service brake requirements and placed in 
S5.5. 

2. Service brake retardation force. The stand- 
ard as adopted in February 1971 required the 
brakes on each axle to produce specified retarda- 
tion forces at each of several brake chamber air 
pressures. As indicated in the issuance of the 
standard, the primary goal of the retardation 
force requirement was to insure brake compat- 
ibility between vehicles used in combination. On 
review of petitions requesting exemption of ve- 
hicles that do not tow other vehicles from the 
retardation force requirements, the NHTSA has 
determined that for these vehicles the require- 
ments are not necessary. Accordingly, S5.4.1 is 
amended to apply only to vehicles that are in- 
tended to tow or to be towed by another vehicle 
equipped with air brakes. 

In response to petitions objecting to axle by 
axle force calculations, the retardation force re- 
quirements are further amended to provide that 
the retardation force for all axles shall be added 



PART 671 ; S 121— PRE 6 



MkHv«: $«pl«nb«r I. I«74 



together and divided by the sum of gross axle 
ratings to arrive at the values shown in Table 
III. The effect of the amendment is to allow 
greater flexibility in the allocation of braking 
force between axles. 

The overall braking force required of the ve- 
hicle's brakes, however, remains the same as 
before. The NHTSA has considered and re- 
jected the requests for diflferent retardation 
values and for substitution of SAE J992a for 
the dynamometer tests of S5.4.1. The present 
retardation force requirements in Table III are 
considered to be a reasonable accommodation be- 
tween the need for compatibility with existing 
vehicles and the need to establish a uniform 
pattern of brake response over the range of 
operating pressures. The dynamometer pro- 
cedures of S5.4.1.1, which permit measurement 
of brake forces on an individual vehicle, are 
more suited to the regulatory purpose of this 
standard than are the procedures of SAE 
.]992a, which provides for road testing of ve- 
hicles in combination. The agency recognizes 
that the availability of dynamometers of suf- 
ficient capacity is a concern to many petitioners, 
but available evidence indicates that dynamom- 
eter access will not be a major long-term 
problem. The petitions to delete dynamometer 
testing are therefore denied. 

3. Parking brake system. The parking brake 
system required by S5.4 of the standard had 
several features that were widely objected to by 
the petitioners. In particular, petitioners ob- 
jected to the requirement for automatic applica- 
tion of the parking brakes in the event of pres- 
sure loss. Although the standard specified a 
maximum retardation force level of 0.40 to re- 
duce the possibility of lockup during automatic 
application, many petitioners stated that auto- 
matic application of the brakes would surprise 
the driver and adversely affect his handling of 
the vehicle. 

The NHTSA remains convinced that auto- 
matic application of the parking brake is a 
satisfactory means of providing braking in the 
event of service brake failure. The low pressure 
warning signal required by S5.1.5 is considered 
adequate to warn a driver of impending applica- 
tion of the parking brake to avoid most of the 
effects of surprise. However, review of the peti- 



tions has persuaded the agency that automatic 
application of the parking brake need not be 
mandatory. Accordingly, the standard is 
amended to provide for an alternative parking 
brake system that is manually, and not auto- 
matically, applied. 

To accommodate the new alternative, the 
parking brake requirements have been reorga- 
nized into two main sections: S5.6, which 
specifics requirements for parking brakes gen- 
erally, and S5.7, which sets out the emergency 
braking capabilities for automatic systems 
(S5.7.1) and manual systems (S5.7.2) on trucks 
and buses. A third section (S5.8) deals with 
the emergency braking of trailers. 

The general requirements of S5.6 are derived 
from S5.4 of the original standard, with some 
additions and amendments. The braking force 
generated by the parking brakes is measured, at 
the manufacturer's option, either by a static 
draw bar test, which must produce a force level 
of 0.28, or by a holding test on a 20% grade. 
The tests are to be conducted in both forward 
and rearward directions. As provided in the 
original standard, the parking brakes must be 
applied by an energy source that is independent 
of the air pressure in the service brake system. 

Additional changes have been made in 85.6 
with respect to the requirements for the parking 
brake control. The standard as published in 
February 1971 specified the shape and color of 
the parking brake control, as well as its location, 
and provided that manual operation and release 
after automatic application should be accom- 
plished by movement of a single control. After 
review of the petitions, it has been decided to 
allow greater flexibility in the design tmd op- 
eration of the control. Efforts are now imder- 
way within the industry to standardize controls, 
and it may be that a consensus will be reached 
upon which a more standardized control can be 
based. In the meantime, the standard's specifica- 
tions have been reduced to requiring the control 
tc be separate from the service brake control, 
operable from the normal driving position, and 
identifiable as to its method of operation. The 
shape, color, and number of controls, and the 
method of operation, are left to the judgment of 
the manufacturer. 



PART 571 ; S 121— PRE 6 



EffKtiv*: $«plMib«r 1, 1*74 



The major difference between the emergency 
braking performance required of a vehicle with 
a manual system and the performance required 
of a vehicle with an automatic system is that a 
vehicle with a manual parking brake is required 
by S5.7.2.3 to meet a stopping distance test with 
an air pressure failure in the service brake sys- 
tem. Although a manufacturer may elect to use 
the parking brakes to provide this emergency 
stopping capacity, he may use other components 
to supplement the parking brakes or he may use 
a system entirely independent of the parking 
brakes. 

A vehicle with an automatic parking brake 
may, at the manufacturer's option, either meet 
the stopping distance test of S5.7.2.3, or have a 
maximum static retardation force not greater 
than 0.40, measured in accordance with S5.6.1. 
Several petitioners requested deletion of the 
maximum retardation force levels for automatic 
brakes. Although the agency remains concerned 
about the effects on a vehicle's stability of auto- 
matic brake application, it has determined that 
a vehicle capabable of meeting sp>Jcified stopping 
distance requirements when die brakes are auto- 
matically applied should not be held to the maxi- 
mum force level requirement 

With respect to both automatic and manual 
brakes, provision is made for control of the 
parking brakes of the towed vehicle. It was 
noted by some petitioners that automatic applica- 
tion of a towing vehicle's brakes, without simul- 
taneous application of a towed vehicle's brakes, 
could lead to unstable braking and possibly to 
jackknifing. To lessen the risk of such in- 
stability, the automatic brake requirements are 
amended to require the venting of the towed 
vehicle's supply line so that its brakes will apply 
upon application of the towing vehicle's brakes. 

4. Other provisions amended. In S4 the 
definition of "antilock system" has been amended 
to refer to "rotational wheel slip" to distinguish 
the phenomenon controlled by the antilock sys- 
tems from other types of wheel slip. The defini- 
tions of "gross axle weight rating," "gross ve- 
hicle weight rating," and "unloaded vehicle 
wei^t" have been omitted, since they have been 
incorporated in the general definitions section of 
Part 671, 49 CFE 671.8(b). 



The equipment requirements have been 
amended in a number of minor respects. S5.1.1 
has been amended to include supply reservoir 
capacities. The reservoir captusity required has 
not been changed, but the requirement is clari- 
fied by striking the words "greater than" in 
S5.1.2.1 and in S5.2.1.1. The requirement for a 
towing vehicle protection valve (S5.1.3) has been 
amended by the use of the broader term "system" 
in place of "valve." 

The pressure gauge requirement (S5.1.4) has 
been amended to require a gauge in each service 
brake system, rather than to require a gauge di- 
rectly on the service reservoir. The warning 
signal requirement (S5.1.6) is amended in re- 
sponse to petitions to provide that warning 
must be by means other than the pressure gauge 
indicator. The antilock warning signal require- 
ment (S5.1.6), has been amended to limit the 
warning to the event of electrical failure, pend- 
ing investigation of other types of failure for 
which a warning may be practicable. 

5. Petitions denied. Several requests for 
amendment of the equipment requirements have 
been denied. A request that the sernce reservoirs 
be connected in series has been rejected as un- 
necessary and design restrictive. Requests for 
reduction in minimum reservoir capacity are also 
denied. The present requirement of 12 times the 
combined vohune of service brake chambers has 
been applied by the SAE to intracity buses and 
school buses for some time and is considered a 
reasonable requirement for other vehicles, par- 
ticularly in the light of additional demands made 
on air capacity by antilock systems. 

Several petitions requested amendment of the 
vehicle weights specified in S5.3 for the service 
brake tests. Requests were made for additional 
weight on the vehicle in its unloaded condition 
to allow for the weight of the completed body 
and for safety equipment such as roll bars used 
during testing. Since the vehicles tested by the 
NHTSA will be completed vehicles, however, it 
is not appropriate to specify an additional 
weight. If an incomplete vehicle manufacturer 
wishes to ascertain the performance of this ve- 
hicle in one or more of its completed variations, 
he may do so by placing weights on the incom- 
plete vehicle, by actually mounting a body on 



PAKT 671; S 121— PEE 7 



r 1, IfM 



it, or by any other means that are rea^nably 
calculated to evahiate the braking performance 
of the completed vehicle. With respect to safety 
equipment, the NHTSA regards the problem of 
weight associated with safety devices as easily 
surmountable. Each of the petitons requesting 
changes in the weights specified in S5.3 is ac- 
cordingly denied. 

A number of petitions requested increases in 
the stopping distance required by S5.3.1. The 
distances specified are considered reasonable and 
well within the state of the art. Greater dis- 
tances would increase the disparity between 
trucks and cars and be contrary to the interests 
of safety. The petitions are denied. Similarly, 
the petitions for an increase in the skid number 
of the dry surface from 75 to 80 are denied. The 
75 number is representative of road surfaces, 
and has been a part of the consumer information 
requirements long enough that the availability 
of skid pads should not be a probelm. Similarly, 
the requests that 30 skid number tests be run on 
dry pavement or that they be abandoned are 
denied. Braking in wet weather is an evident 
problem with vehicles of all types, and the 
MHTSA regards the wet-track test as an essential 
part of the standard. 

The stopping capability requirement for 
trailers (S5.3.2) was the subject of petitons re- 
questing deletion of the 90-p.s.i. pressure level 
requirement and objecting to the uncertainty in- 
volved in determining whether the tractor or the 
trailer is responsible if the trailer leaves the 
12-foot-wide lane. The NHTSA regards a uni- 
form service line pressure specification as an 
appropriate means of insuring uniformity in 
trailer response, even though some tractors may 
be designed to modulate air pressure in the lines. 
Since only the trailer is to be braked, the cause 
of deviation from the lane will be the trailer's 
brakes, not the tractor's. The petitions are 
denied. 

The actuation and release requirements of 
S5.3.3 and S5.3.4 were subject to a variety of ob- 
jections. One petitioner requested deletion of 
both requirements, while others requested elimi- 
nation of the 50-cubic-inch test reservoir for 
trailers that tow other trailers. On review, the 
NHTSA has decided to deny the petitions. 
Although the stopping distance test of S5.8.1 



necessarily limits the actuation time that a manu- 
facturer can allow, the additional constraint 
placed on timing by S5.3.3 has the important 
effect of producing full braking at a very early 
point during the braking maneuver where the 
speed is greatest and the effects of a reduction in 
speed most significant from the standpoint of the 
forces involved in a crash. The brake release 
time has an important bearing on the maneuver- 
ability and directional stability of vehicles in 
emergency situations. It can sometimes be as 
important for the brakes to come off quickly and 
evenly as for them to be applied quickly. 

The 50-cubic-inch test reservoir has been em- 
ployed for some time in the SAE brake testing. 
It has therefore been retained. Other sugges- 
tions in the petitions for service reservoir timing 
and for additional test component specifications 
are not adopted at this time but may be appro- 
priate subjects for future amendment. 

With respect to the loading conditions speci- 
fied in S6.1.1, a number of petitioners stated that 
the front-rear brake balance needed to achieve 
conforming performance on a truck-tractor 
loaded to GVWR in its bob-tail configuration 
would not be the best balance for that tractor 
when towing a trailer. This appears to be a 
valid objection, but the most obvious alterna- 
tive — testing with a trailer in tow — involves 
complexities that have not been fully discussed 
in the petitions. A notice is therefore being 
prepared to propose that a truck tractor be tested 
with a trailer during the stopping distance tests. 

Effective date: September 1, 1974. Review of 
the numerous petitions for extension of the effec- 
tive date from January 1, 1973, has led to the 
conclusion that an effective date of September 1, 
1974, would permit a longer period of fleet test- 
ing to evaluate the durability of the new systems 
and that the resulting production systems are 
likely to be substantially improved by the addi- 
tional time allowed. An effective date later than 
one year from the date of issuance is therefore 
found, for good cause shown, to be in the public 
interest. 

In consideration of the above, Motor Vehicle 
Safety Standard No. 121, Air Brake Systems, in 
8 571.21 of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, 
is tunended to read as set forth below. This 
amendment is issued under the authority of sec- 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 8 



MncNwt S4plMMb#f 1( 1974 



tions 103 and 119 of the Nations! Traffic and lamied on February 16, 1972. 

Motor Vehicle Safety Act, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407, Douglas W. Toms 

and the delegation of authority by the Secretary Administrator 

of Transportation to the National Highway 37 F.|t. 3905 

Traffic Safety Administrator, 49 CFR 1.61. February 24, 1972 



PART 671; S 181— PRE ^10 



ElhcHv*: SaplMnbar I, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems— Trucks, Buses and Trailers 
(Docket No. 70-17; Notice No. 4) 



The purpose of this notice is to respond to 
petitions filed pursuant to 49 CFR § 553.35, seek- 
ing reconsideration of the amendments to Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 121, Air Brake 
Systems, published February 24, 1972 (37 F.R. 
3905). The petitions are granted in part and 
denied in part 

I. Amendments 

S5.1.6 International Harvester stated that the 
operation of the antilock warning system should 
be the same as that of the low pressure warning 
signal under S5.1.5. S5.1.6 presently requires 
an audible warning of at least 10 seconds dura- 
tion regardless of whether the visible signal re- 
quired by the section is within the driver's 
forward field of view. The change requested by 
International Harvester would require an audible 
warning only if the visual warning is out of the 
driver's forward field of view. On reconsidera- 
tion, the NHTSA has concluded that the system 
requested by International Harvester will give 
the driver adequate warning of antilock system 
failure. S5.1.& is therefore being amended to 
parallel S5.1.5. 

S5.1.5 and S5.1.6 In a letter designated as a 
request for clarification or interpretation. General 
Motors suggested that because diesel systems do 
not have an "on" position, they might be consid- 
ered exempt from the requirement that the anti- 
lock warning signal must operate when the igni- 
tion is in the "on" position. Although the 
NHTSA does not consider it likely that the re- 
quirement will be understood as exempting 
dieseld, the agency has concluded that amending 
the standard to refer to-.th©M"nm" position as 
suggested by 6M would avoiiirany possibility of 
misinterpretation. S5.L5 aad S5.1.6 are amended 
accordingly. 



55.2.1.1 Midland-Ross requested that a pres- 
sure should be specified at which the protected 
reservoir should be capable of releasing the park- 
ing brakes. On reconsideration, it seems appro- 
priate to specify a pressure that corresponds to 
the lower end of the range of pressures main- 
tained by current compressors. The section is 
therefore amended to specify a pressure of 90 
p.s.i. The related question of when the brake is 
considered to be released, also raised by Midland- 
Ross, does not require amendment. The NHTSA 
considers a brake to be released at the point 
where it no longer exerts any torque. 

55.2.1.2 In response to a question in the 
Midland-Ross petition and a related request for 
interpretation by Wagner Electric Corporation, 
this section is amended by adding the word 
"service" before "reservoir", so that the section, 
as sunended, requires the total service reservoir 
volume to be at least eight times the combing 
voltmie of all service brake chambers at maximum 
travel of the pistons or diaphragms^ The amend- 
ment reflects the basic intent of S5.2.1.2, which 
is to have a specified volume of air available to 
the service brakes. 

S5.4 Several petitioners stated that S5.4 ap- 
peared to exempt some vehicles from the dy- 
namometer requirements. This impression is 
erroneous, in that all vehicles are required to 
conform to S5.4. The source of the confusion 
appears to be the sentence in S5.4 which states 
that "[a] brake assembly that has undergone a 
road test pursuant -to S5.3 need not. conform to 
the requirements of this section". The intent of 
the standard is to conduct the dynamometer tests 
on new brake assemblies, and the quoted sentence 
was intended to mak» it clear thatia,8ingle brake 
assembly would not have to pass the road test 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 11 



ukI the dviuurKxneter test in succeesioiL Hie 
aentenoe is being amended to cl^fy its me&ning. 
S5.7.1.4 This section is amended in response 
to ft request by Wagner Electric, to require 
TTiannn] applic&tion whenever the system pressure 
prevents &atom&tic application. 

XL Provuiont not amended 

With respect to the remjdning petitions, no 
ch&nges are being made in the st&nd&rd. In 
some cases this is bec&use the petitioner h&s mis- 
interpreted the applicable provisions to his dis- 
advantage and needs no amendment to obt&in the 
relief he -w&nts. In other CAses, the agency h^s 
ocHicluded that the requested amendments do not 
serve the need for motor vehicle safety. In one 
or two c&ses, the ch&nge requested may prove 
desir&ble but cannot be fully evaluated without 
further infOTmation. The following discussion 
deals with the petitioned requirements in numeri- 
cal order. 

SS. Clark Equipment Company requested the 
addition of trailer otmverter dollies to the list of 
affected vehicles. The addititm is not necessary, 
in that a converter doUy is a 'trailer" within the 
mpmning of that term in 48 CFE 57lJ(b). 

S5.1 Claii: Equipment Company requested an 
amendment to exclude vacuum brake systems 
from the equipment requirements of S5.1. De- 
spite the reference to a vacuum assist in S4, the 
standard does not apply to vacuum brakes and 
therefore does not require vacuum systems to 
have the equipment described in S5.1. 

St.l22 It was suggested by Midland-Boss 
that the requirement that the reservoir must be 
capable of '^thstanding" the specified pressure 
was not sufficiently precise. It may be that ex- 
perience will show a need for quantificaticKi of 
this requirement, but the agency does not caa.- 
aider it to be necessary at this time. A reservoir 
will be considered to withstand the test pressure 
if it shows no pressure loos during the test 
interval 

S5.1.8 It was suggested by Midland-Boss that 
the requirements for the towing vehicle protec- 
tion system should be amended to indicate the 
degree of protecti<Ki required and the operating 
modes protected. The agency's response is much 
the same as its response on S5.1.2.2: the sugges- 
tion may prove to have merit, if systems appear 



which cause problems in service. At this point, 
however, the agency will retain the broad re- 
quirement that a towing vehicle must have a 
system to protect it from the loss of air pressure 
in the towed vehicle, without regard to the sys- 
tem's design or method of operation. 

55.1.5 Midland-Boss requested an increased 
pressure level at which the low pressure warning 
signal actuates, so that it would be above the 
protection valve trip pressure used in new trail- 
ers. The requested change is not necessary, in 
that the standard does not now prevent the 
manufacturer from setting the gi gni^l actuation 
level at a pressure above 60 p.sa. If Midland- 
Boss wishes to set its level at 80 p.si., it may 
do so. 

55.1.6 Clai^ Equipment Company requested 
that the antilock warning «i gna1 requirements be 
expanded to apply to the failure of a towed 
v^cle's antilock system. The NHTSA is re- 
ceptive to further discussion of this issue. How- 
ever, it has decided not to adopt the request at 
this time. Trailers are not required to have 
provision for antilock warning systems, and r»- 
quiring towing vehicles to accommodate systems 
that are not likely to exist would be unjustified. 

S5.3.1 Two petitioners requested amendments 
of the stopping distance requirements. The 
Carlisle Corporation requested a longer stopping 
distance, and Midland-Boss requested that the 
reference to "controlled lockup" be amended to 
specify a system that would provide for resump- 
tion of wheel rotation at some point before the 
speed falls to 10 m.pJi. Both requests are denied. 
The distances specified are considered to be ap- 
propriate and within the cturent state of the art 
The requested change with respect to wheel 
lockup would permit systems in which all wheels 
could be completely locked for substantial periods, 
a situation that SbA.1 was dwrignfid to avoid. 

S5.8.S Midland-Boss requested that Figure 1, 
referenced by this section, should be amended by 
specifying a pressure of 100 p.si. in both reser- 
voirs, by omitting the tractor protecticm valve 
frcKn the test rig, and by employing a servioe 
brake control valve rather than a brake pedal. 
Because S5.S.3 specifies a pressure of 100 p^L, 
it should be clear that each reservoir would be at 
that pressure, and no amendment is neoenaiy. 



PABT 671; S 121— PBE 12 



A protection valve is used because such valves 
are in widespread use, even though they are not 
required by the standard. The service brake 
pedal specified in Figure 1 is a service brake foot 
control valve. No change of label appears 
necessary. 

55.4.1 International Harvester requested the 
deletion of this section as unnecessary. As stated 
before, the purpose of the section is to promote 
compatibility between the brakes of vehicles used 
in combination. The agency is of the opinion 
that it serves the stated function and has there- 
fore retained it. 

55.4.2 Wagner Electric and the Carlisle Cor- 
poration each objected to certain aspects of tkis 
section. Wagner Electric requested the reinstate- 
ment of the phrase "at least" before the decelera- 
tion of 9 f.p.s.p.s., and requested the use of the 
phrase "a minimum" in S5.4-.2.1, on the grounds 
fiat it is impossible to achieve a deceleration rate 
of exactly 9 f.p.s.p.s. In response, it should be 
pointed out that it is not necessary for a manu- 
facturer to conduct his tests at exactly the speci- 
fied rate, but only to test in such a manner as to 
assure himself that if the brakes were to be tested 
at that rate they would meet the requirements. 
It is to his advantage to test under less favorable 
conditions than those specified in the standard. 
The insertion of the language requested by Wag- 
ner would, if anything, make the test more severe 
for the manufacturers, in that the government 
oould run tests with average decelerations in ex- 
cess of 9 f.p.s.p.s. making the "worst case" situa- 
tion much more difficult to ascertain. 

The Carlisle Corporation objected to proce- 
dural disparities between the retardation force 
tests of S5.4.1 and the brake power tests of 
S5.4.2. The basic procedural difference between 
the sections is that the measurement period under 
35.4.1 begins when the specified air pressure is 
reached whereas the period under S5.4.2 begins 
with the onset of deceleration. Although it may 
be thac different instrumentation will be required 
in the two tests, they are not for that reason 
inconsistent or incompatible. The NHTSA con- 
siders each procedure to be appropriate for the 
aspect of performance that it measures. 

55.4.3 The Carlisle Corporation requested a 
further reduction in the lower limit of the re- 



covery force, from the current level of 20 p.s.i. 
to 10 p.s.i. The NHTSA considers a brake sys- 
tem that produces a deceleration of 12 f.p.s.pA 
with a pressure of only 10 p.s.i. to be too sensi- 
tive and therefore denies the petition. 

S5.5.2 Clark Equipment Company objected to 
the use of the stop lamp circuit to power the 
antilock system. The basis for the requirement 
is the need for compatibility between trucks and 
traUers made by different manufacturers. The 
stop lamp cireuit is the most suitable electrical 
connection between trucks and trailers because 
it is always energized when the brakes are ap- 
plied. It was therefore chosen as the source of 
power. The agency is of the opinion that the 
stop lamp circuit has adequate power for single 
trailer applications. For multiple trailers, it may 
be necessary to employ complementary systems 
as permitted by S5.5.2. The petition is therefore 
denied. 

55.6.1 In response to a request for interpreta- 
tion by International Harvester, th.6 intent of 
this section is to require parking brakes on each 
axle other than steerable front axles. 

55.6.2 Midland-Ross suggested the amendment 
of this section to sp)ecify that a sliding bogie on 
a semitrailer shall be placed in its most favorable 
position. As presently worded, the section is 
silent with respect to bogies so that the NHTSA 
will be obliged to test in a manner that favors 
the manufacturer. However, if there are indica- 
tions that the position of the bogie makes a 
substantial difference in the braking performance 
of the vehicle, the agency will consider rule- 
making to specify that the trailer must meet the 
requirements with the bogie in any position. 

S5.7.1.1 Wagner Electric requested an amend- 
ment to provide for brake application when the 
pressure in "smy" service reservoir is less than 
the automatic application pressure leveL The 
section now requires application when "all" serv- 
ice reservoirs are below that level. The NHTSA 
does not consider the requested amendment neces- 
sary to permit the type of system that Wagner 
envisions. It is permissible under the present 
wording for a manufacturer to have a system 
that applies the brakes upon a low pressure sig- 
nal from a single reservoir. To require operation 
in such a case, as Wagner requests, would elimi- 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 13 



EffMHv*: SaptemlMr 1, 1974 

nate systems that are capable of fully applying 
the service brakes despite low pressure in one 
reservoir. 

S5.7.2.2 The Clark Equipment Company re- 
quested deletion of "brake fluid housing" from 
the list of items whose failure must not affect the 
parking brake system. The purpose of the sec- 
tion is to make it clear that the sharing of com- 
ponents by the service and emergency braking 
systems should not be construed as permitting 
malfunction of the parking brake system despite 
the provisions of S5.6.3. The petition is denied. 

S5.8 The Clark Equipment Company requested 
the deletion of the phrase "or S5.6.2" from this 
section, on the groimds that it converts the re- 
quirement into a parking brake requirement that 
may be weaker than the emergency braking per- 
formance currently required under the regula- 
tions of the Bureau of Motor Carrier Safety. 
However, despite the use of .20 rather than the 
value of .28 specified in S5.6.1, the trailer imder 
S5.6.2 is loaded to its GVWR and the supporting 
dolly is unbraked so that the braking perform- 
ance required by the two sections is nearly iden- 
tical. The NHTSA has therefore decided to 
retain the option of S5.6.2 under S5.8. 

S6.1.1 Midland-Ross requested that the loading 
of a trailer be based on the sum of its GAWR's 
rather than on its GVWR. A GVWR designa- 
tion for trailers is required by Part 567, and the 
agency considers it appropriate to specify GVWR 
as the test condition under this section. 

S6.1.7 International Harvester again ques- 
tioned the appropriateness of using a skid number 
of 75 for road tests. This issue has been raised 



a number of times in the course of the various 
braking standard rulemakings. Although the 
NHTSA is not prepared at this time to state 
that a number higher than 75 ought to be se- 
lected, the agency intends to collect additional 
data concerning road surfaces with a view to 
possible future changes. 

S6.1.9 Midland-Ross stated that parking brake 
tests for semitrailers should be conducted with 
the trailer front end supported by the trailer 
landing gear. The use of the parking brakes as 
part of the emergency braking system and the 
unknown effect of the friction in the landing 
gear system weigh against the adoption of this 
requirement. The petition is denied. 

S6.2.1 The Carlisle Corporation requested 
that a 5% tolerance be specified in the dyna- 
mometer loading. The request is denied, for the 
reasons given in the preceding discussion of 
Wagner Electric's petition on S5.4.2. 

In consideration of the foregoing, Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Standard No. 121, 49 CFR § 571.121 
is amended .... 

E-ffectwe date : September 1, 1974. 

This rule is issued under the authority of sec- 
tions 103 and 119 of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407, 
and the delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.51. 



Issued on June 21, 1972. 



Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 12495 
Jun* 24, 1972 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 14 



HNcHv*: S»pHiiib«r I, 1*74 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 

(Docket No. 73-13; Notico 3) 



This notice amends Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 121, Air brake systems, by modify- 
ing the emergency stopping distance require- 
ments for truck-tractors, the parking brake re- 
quirements for trailer converter dollies, and the 
recovery requirements for antilock equipped 
brakes, and by establishing a new test condition 
for loaded truck-tractors, special test conditions 
for certain drive and axle configurations, and a 
new burnish condition for road tests. 

The sunendments adopted by this notice repre- 
sent a partial adoption of the changes proposed 
in Docket No. 73-13, Notice 1 (38 F.R. 14963; 
June 7, 1973). The comments to the proposal 
were divided as to the merits of most of the 
changes proposed. Running throughout the 
comments, however, was an overriding concern 
with lead time. Although a manufacturer might 
favor a change, such as the proposed change in 
the burnish condition, he may find himself un- 
able to adjust to it within the time remaining 
before the standard becomes effective on Septem- 
ber 1, 1974. The NHTSA, for its part, does not 
consider the proposed changes significant enough 
to warrant postponing the effective date of the 
standard. The agency has therefore adopted two 
provisions for which lead time appears to be a 
problem — the new burnish condition and the new 
truck-tractor test condition — as options for the 
period between September 1, 1974, and Septem- 
ber 1, 1976. Of the remaining changes proposed 
in Docket 73-13, some are adopted effective 
September 1, 1974, others are not being adopted 
and will not be further considered for adoption, 
and others remain as candidates for adoption. 
If the latter are adopted, they will become effec- 
tive at some date beyond September 1, 1974. 
The treatment accorded each of the prof>osed 
changes is set out in order below. 



S4. Definitions were proposed for "isolated 
reservoir" and "service reservoir". Insofar as 
the principal use of these definitions was to be 
in proposed amendments which are not being 
adopted at this time, there is little purpose in 
adding, them to S4 at this time. They are there- 
fore not adopted. 

S5. 1.2.5 This new section was to have been 
added to prevent the diversion of air from the 
service reservoirs into other reservoirs when the 
service reservoir pressure is below 60 psi. In 
addition to questions of lead time, several com- 
ments stated that the equipment served by 
auxiliary reservoirs, such as windshield wipers, 
often plays a role in safety as significant as that 
of the brake system. In consideration of these 
factors, the section is not being adopted at this 
time, and if subsequently adopted will take into 
account both lead time and the effects on other 
safety systems. 

S5.1.3 The amendment proposed to the towing 
vehicle protection system requirements was to 
have accompanied the amended emergency brak- 
ing requirements of S5.7, and would have desig- 
nated the protection system as the system 
enabling the vehicle to meet the emergency stop- 
ping requirements of S5.7.2.2 and S5.7.2.3. The 
agency has decided to defer action on the amend- 
ments to S5.7, as discussed below, and accord- 
ingly takes no final action on S5.1.3 at this time. 

S5.1.6 An amendment was proposed to the 
antilock failure signal requirements in response 
to a petition by Berg Manufacturing Company. 
Berg has subsequently withdrawn its petition, 
and in the absence of compelling reasons to adopt 
the proposed change, the NHTSA has decided 
not to amend S5.1.6. 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 16 



Eff«c«lv*: S*pt*mb*r 1, 1974 



S5.2.1.1 The requirement for the reservoir 
used to release the parking brakes was to be 
amended to specify two brake releases, rather 
than one, and to specify the initial pressure from 
which these releases were to be accomplished. 
The agency continues to regard these changes 
favorably, but has decided to defer final action 
until the issuance of amendments concerning the 
parking and emergency systems, as discussed 
under sections S5.6 and S5.7. 

S5.3.1 and S5.3.2. Rather than amend the 
general language of these sections concerning the 
circumstances under which lockup is permitted 
during a stop, the agency has decided to leave 
the sections essentially unaltered. In response 
to requests to clarify the treatment accorded 
liftable axles, the section is amended to permit, 
in eflfect, liftable axles without antilock on ve- 
hicles with more than two nonsteerable axles. 
Liftable axles on vehicles with two nonsteerable 
axles would cbntinue to be subject to the no- 
lockup requirement except for controlled lockup 
allowed by an antilock system. 

The principal change proposed for S5.3.1 and 
S5.3.2 had been a change in the description of 
permissible lockup from "controlled lockup al- 
lowed by an antilock system" to "lockup of 
wheels controlled by an antilock system that does 
not permit more than half the wheels on any 
controlled axle to lock more than momentarily." 
The intent of the proposed revision was to fore- 
stall systems whose "control" over the lockup of 
wheels, although nominally within the meaning 
of the language, might be so marginal as to per- 
mit more than half the wheels on a tandem axle 
to lock throughout the duration of a stop. The 
proposed amendment, however, was read by some 
manufacturers as expressly permitting systems 
in which half the wheels on each axle would not 
be sensed or monitored by the antilock controller 
or cycled by the antilock system. Such was not 
the intent of the proposal. It appears, on fur- 
ther review, that such systems are not currently 
in prospect. The agency has concluded that the 
better course is not to amend the "controlled 
lockup" language at this time, but to observe 
developments in the industry, with a view toward 
amending the requirements if subsequent events 
indicate a safety need. 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 16 



S5.3.4 The notice had proposed increasing the | 
release time for trailers from 0.50 second to 0.60 
second. In the face of several objections to the 
proposal on the grounds that it ran counter to 
the need for coordination of braking between 
vehicles in combination, and on the basis of in- 
formation indicating that the timing problem is 
solvable for trailers, the proposal is being with- 
drawn. 

S5.4.1 The notice had proposed deleting the 
retardation force requirement, leaving it ap- 
plicable only to towed vehicles. The change had 
been proposed as a result of the proposed amend- 
ment to the tractor test conditions whereby the 
tractor would be tested with a trailer. In the 
light of the comments, and of the continuance 
of the. current tractor test conditions as an op- 
tion, the NHTSA has decided not to adopt the 
proposed change. 

S5.4.3 The notice proposed to delete the mini- 
mum recovery pressure requirement for brakes 
equipped with antilock systems, leaving the 20 
psi minimum force level for other brakes. Upon 
further consideration, the agency has concluded 
that a minimum recovery force requirement ^ 
should be retained for antilock equipped brakes, \ 
but at a level below 20 psi. The agency has 
determined that 12 psi is a minimum level that 
permits a greater variety of brake linings while 
retaining a residual protection against over- 
sensitive brakes in the event of antilock failure. 
Accordingly, the agency adopts 12 psi as the 
minimum recovery force for antilocked brakes. 

S5.6 The parking brake requirements of S5.6 
had been one of the principal areas affected by 
the proposal. In addition to changes in the 
parking brake application requirements and de- 
letion of the optional static pull test for parking 
brake holding ability, the notice had proposed 
new requirements for parking brake stopping 
capability. This latter proposal received almost 
unanimous criticism. Although the agency has 
not concluded that the proposal is without merit, 
the issues raised by the comments and the evident 
lead time problems associated with the proposal 
have led the agency to conclude that no further 
action should be taken without additional notice 
and opportunity for comment and that the ef- 
fective date for any such requirement should lie 
beyond September 1, 1974. 



niMtlv*! S«pt«mb«r 1, 1*74 



Of the remaining changes to S5.6 proposed by 
the notice, only the exemption of converter 
dollies from the parking brake requirements is 
being adopted at this time. The proposed dele- 
tion of the optional static pull test of S5.6.2 has 
not been carried out, and the options of S5.6.1 
and S5.6.2 will be retained. The proposed park- 
ing brake application requirements of S5.6.6 and 
S6.6.7, which had reflected amendments proposed 
to the emergency braking requirements of S5.7 
are not being adopted at this time, pending fur- 
ther rulemaking on S5.7. 

$5.7 The notice had proposed substantial re- 
visions to the emergency braking requirements 
of S5.7, principally in response to a petition by 
ATA and to an earlier petition by Ford. The 
majority of the changes proposed in response to 
the ATA petition continue to be viewed favor- 
ably by the NHTSA. However, review of the 
conmienta suggests both that further refinements 
are necessary and that the proposed changes will 
require additional time for implementation. The 
agency is therefore deferring final rulemaking 
action on the aspects of S5.7 addressed by the 
ATA to a later date and will issue such changes 
as it may decide upon with an effective date 
beyond September 1, 1974. 

Amendlnents to the emergency stopping dis- 
tance requirements, presently contained in 
S5.7.2.3 of the standard, were proposed by two 
successive notices. In Docket 73-4, Notice 1 (38 
F.R. 6831), the agency proposed a favorable re- 
sponse to a petition by Ford concerning the 
emergency stopping distances for short-wheelbase 
two-axle truck-tractors in the unloaded condi- 
tion. When tested in this weight condition, 
truck-tractors are driven without a trailer — a 
condition in which they are seldom operated over 
the road. The effect of the proposed amendment 
would have been to permit a limited number of 
truck-tractors equipped with modulated emer- 
gency braking systems to stop in a somewhat 
longer distance than that permitted other ve- 
hicles with modulated emergency braking. 

Comments to Docket 73-4 indicated that there 
were other vehicles whose braking systems were 
complicated by the shorter emergency stopping 
distance. In response to these comments, the 
agency proposed in Docket No. 73-13, Notice 1, 
to apply the longer stopping distances to other 



vehicles in the unloaded condition provided they 
were capable of stopping within the shorter dis- 
tance with the assistance of the parking brakes. 
The comments to Docket No. 73-13 objected to 
the use of the parking brake in this fashion, and 
some asserted that if the longer distance were 
appropriate for some vehicles it should be ap- 
propriate for all. Upon review of the comments, 
the agency has decided against a general length- 
ening of emergency stopping distances. Upon 
weighing the rarity of truck-tractor operation 
without a trailer against the potential costs of 
modifying truck-tractors to meet the shorter 
stopping distance in that configuration, however, 
the agency has concluded that the longer stop- 
ping distances specified in Column 4 of Table II 
should be applicable to truck-tractors, regardless 
of weight distribution or number of axles, but 
that other vehicles should continue to meet the 
emergency stopping distances of Column 3 of 
Table II. Section S5.7.2.3 is amended accord- 
ingly. 

S5.8 The notice had proposed to transfer the 
emergency braking capability requirement for 
trailers from S5.8 to S5.6.7. Until such time as 
the agency decides to adopt S5.6.7, S5.8 will be 
retained. To provide emergency capability for 
converter dollies, in the absence of mandatory 
parking brakes for them, the NHTSA has 
amended the section to provide for application 
of the dolly's service brakes in the event of com- 
plete air pressure loss in the control lines. This 
system is presently installed in virtually all 
dollies, as a result of regulations issued by the 
Bureau of Motor Carrier Safety (49 CFR 393.43) 
and is considered to be a practicable substitute 
for the parking brakes in emergency situations. 

S6.1 A number of revisions to the test condi- 
tions of S6.1 were proposed. These revisions 
are adopted in substance, with some changes in 
structure and in section numbering. The new 
truck-tractor test condition, whose insertion as 
S6.1.2 had caused confusion as to the fate of the 
old S6.1.2, has been adopted as S6.1.10, thereby 
leaving the current sections S6.1.2 to S6.1.9 with 
their present numbering. 

S6.1.8 The road test burnish procedures pro- 
posed in the notice are being adopted as an op- 
tional procedure for the period September 1, 
1974, to September 1, 1976. After September 1, 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 17 



ElhcHv*: SvptamlMr 1, 1974 



1976, the new burnish procedure will replace the 
older procedure as the only burnish prescribed 
for road tests. This two-step arrangement ap- 
pears necessary to permit manufacturers whose 
testing to date has been conducted with the cur- 
rent burnish procedure, and who need additional 
time, to phase in the new procedure. 

S6.1.10 A similar phase-in has been found 
necessary for the new tractor test conditions. 
Several manufacturers had stated that their 
evaluation programs had been conducted without 
trailers and that retesting would be necessary in 
order to certify their vehicles under the new 
conditions. The new conditions are therefore 
adopted as an option for the period September 1, 
1974, to September 1, 1976. During this period 
a manufacturer may choose to test his vehicles 
under either loading condition, and such tests as 
the NHTSA conducts will be in the loading 
condition chosen by the manufacturer for the 
vehicle under test. 

56. 1.10.1 The control trailer to be used under 
S6.1.10 is specified as conforming to Standard 
No. 121. 

56. 1.1 0.2 The center of gravity of the loaded 
trailer is specified as being at a height of 66±3 
inches above the ground. There was a variety 
of opinion in the comments as to how high the 
center of gravity should be, but upon reviewing 
the comments the agency has concluded that the 
66 ±3 inch range originally proposed is reason- 
ably representative of loading conditions. Axle 
load shift due to the rake angle of the trailer bed 
does not appear to be a problem in that each 
axle of the trailer is loaded to its GAWR when 
the trailer is connected to the tractor. 

56.1.10.3 and S6.1.10.4 In response to com- 
ments suggesting that the lengths and weight 
ratings of the trailers specified in the proposal 
were not those in most general use, the agency 
has increased the length of the trailer specified 
in S6.1.10.3, reduced the length of the trailer 
specified in S6. 1.10.4, and lowered the gross axle 
weight rating for each trailer. 

S6.1.10.5 The loading condition of the trailer 
for tests of the tractor's brakes is substantially 
the same as that proposed in the notice. The 
tractor's fifth wheel does not have to be adjust- 
able, as some comments inferred, but if it hap- 



pens to be adjustable it must be adjusted to 
produce the specified weight distribution. The 
axle loads are to be measured at the tire-ground 
interfaces, in response to comments that the for- 
mer reference to the "force transmitted to the 
tractor axles through the kingpin" was not clear 
as to the method of measurement. 

S6.1.10.6 and $6.1.10.7 These sections are de- 
signed to establish performance specifications for 
the trailers to be used for truck-tractor testing. 
They are not intended as performance require- 
ments for trailers, but only as test equipment 
specifications for the tractor tests. The trailer 
loading condition specified is somewhat different 
from that used in testing the performance of the 
tractor, because the tests are aimed at isolating 
the performance of the trailer brakes. The lo- 
cation of the fifth wheel is specified as the posi- 
tion determined under S6.1.10.5, but the trailer 
is loaded so that its axle is at its gross axle 
weight rating and its kingpin is at unloaded 
weight. 

The actuation and release times specified for 
the trailer in the evaluation tests were questioned 
by several comments. It may be necessary, in 
some cases, for a special valve to be installed on 
the tractor if the tractor's system is too slow to 
actuate the trailer's brakes in the time specified. 
The purpose of the timing specification is simply 
to remove the tractor's performance as a factor 
in the trailer brake evaluation. When the trailer 
is used in tests of a tractor pursuant to S5.3.1 it 
will, of course, be connected to the tractor's nor- 
mal control system. 

In addition to specifying the same loading in 
S6.1.10.7 as in S6.1.10.6, the ratio applied to 
determine the trailer's stopping distance under 
S6. 1.10.7 has also been revised to conform to that 
used in S6.1.10.6. To accommodate tractors that 
are not capable of 60-mph speeds, each section 
now specifies that the trailer is tested at the 
speed at which the tractor for which it will be 
used is tested. 

S6.1.11 and S6.1.12 These sections relate to 
special drive conditions and the position of lift- 
able axles, and are adopted as proposed. 

S6.1.13 This new section was proposed to es- 
tablish performance requirements for the trailer 
timing test rig si)ecified in Figure 1. In the 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 18 



light of objections in the coniments to the per- 
formance levels specified, the agency is deferring 
final rulemaking at this time and will issue such 
changes as it may decide upon with an effective 
date beyond September 1, 1974. 

The tables and figures proposed for adoption 
or amendment by the notice are adopted as pro- 
posed, except for the omission of the parking 
brake dynamic test from Table I. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Standard No. 121, Air brake ty»- 
terns (49 CFR 571.121), is amended .... 



Effective date: September 1, 1974. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stet. 718, 
16 U.S.C. 1392, 1407; delegation of authority at 
49 CFR 1.61.) 



Issued on December 20, 1973. 



James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 804 
Januarys, 1974 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 19-20 



Eff»c4lv«: S«pt*mb*r I, 1974 
Mofdi I, 1975 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 74-10; NoHc* 2) 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
brake systems, 49 CFR 571.121, in response to 
several i>etitions for reconsideration of amend- 
ments to the standard published January 3, 1974 
(39 F.R. 804), and after consideration of com- 
ments on a proposal published March 1, 1974 
(39 F.R. 7966). A notice of proposed rulemak- 
ing has been issued separately to propose modi- 
fication of the standard as it applies to trailers. 

Reconsideration of Amendments — 73-13; Notice 3 
The amendments under reconsideration concern 
emergency stopping distance requirements for 
truck tractors, parking brake requirements for 
trailer converter dollies, recovery requirements 
for antilock-equipped brakes, a new test condition 
for loaded truck-tractors, special test conditions 
for certain drive and axle configuration, and a 
new burnish condition for road tests. Several 
manufacturers commented on issues which lie 
beyond the scope of those amendments and are 
therefore inappropriate for treatment in this re- 
sponse. Wagner Electric and Midland-Ross' 
petitions to amend S5.1.2.1 and S5.2.1.2 (Midland 
also petitioned on S5. 1.2.2 and S5.2.1.3) and 
Wagner's petition to modify Table III retarda- 
tion values will therefore be considered as peti- 
tions for new rulemaking to be answered in a 
separate notice. 

The American Trucking Association (ATA) 
requested reconsideration of NHTSA's decision 
to permit either automatic or modulated emer- 
gency brake systems as options while further 
consideration of the modulated system takes 
place. As stated in Notice 3, the NHTSA has 
concluded that some aspects of the system may 
need refinement and that all vehicle manufactur- 
ers cannot in any case make all their vehicles 
conform to modulated brake system requirements 



by the standard's effective date. Accordingly, 
while the majority of the changes proposed in 
response to the ATA petition continue to be 
viewed favorably, for the present ATA's petition 
is denied. 

Wagner Electric and General Motors objected 
to the retention of brake retardation force re- 
quirements for towing vehicles as redundant in 
view of the stopping distance requirements which 
also apply to them. The NHTSA proposed de- 
letion of these dynamometer requirements pre- 
viously and, having considered the latest sub- 
missions and information, hereby amends S5.4.1 
to delete towing vehicles from the standard's 
requirements. The NHTSA has tentatively con- 
cluded that the stopping distance requirements 
can establish satisfactory brake balance between 
towed and towing vehicles, and that the cost of 
dynamometer testing is not justified by corre- 
sponding safety benefits. It should be noted that 
the dynamometer test may be reinstituted if ex- 
perience demonstrates its need. 

Fruehauf, in a late submission to this docket 
and in other docket comments, has emphasized 
the importance to lateral stability of a slower 
release time for trailers. A 0.60-sec maximum 
release time proposed in Notice 1 was not acted 
on in Notice 3 in the belief that it ran counter to 
the need for coordination of braking between 
vehicles in combination, but further study has 
persuaded this agency that a slightly slower re- 
lease time for trailers is not detrimental to safe 
operation of combination vehicles. S5.3.4 has 
been amended accordingly. 

General Motors and the Motor Vehicle Manu- 
facturers Association (MVMA) petitioned for 
deletion of the 12 Ib/in^ minimum pressure re- 
quirement for brakes controlled by an antilock 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 21 



1, 1*74 
Monli I, 1975 



system. The purpose of the minimum preeeure 
is to eliminate oversensitive brakes because of 
the difficulty in modulating them. The lower 
value was established for antilock-controUed 
brakes on the assumption that a fimctioning 
antilock would normally compensate for over- 
eensitivity. A residual value was retained in the 
event of antilock failure, not to compensate for 
driver surprise, as assumed by the MVMA, but 
rather to aid the driver in his efforts to carefully 
modulate a sensitive brake. The NHTSA has 
seen no evidence to support the assertions made 
by MVMA that this requirement could down- 
grade stopping performance. Except for Gen- 
eral Motors' request to clarify antilock "control" 
in this section, the petitions to amend S5.4.3 are 
accordingly denied. S5.4.3 is modified to substi- 
tute "subject to the control of" in place of "con- 
trolled" to make clear that the antilock need not 
be activated. 

General Motors and the MVMA objected to 
the test condition where a vehicle "is loaded to 
its gross vehicle weight rating, distributed pro- 
portionately to its gross axle weight ratings", 
arguing that this distribution formula could lead 
to overload of one or more axles. The General 
Motors illustration indicates a misunderstanding 
of the section's wording. The phrase "is loaded 
to its gross vehicle weight rating" describes a 
weight condition, that of the fully loaded vehicle, 
and the provision requires that this weight be 
distributed in proportion to the gross axle weight 
ratings. General Motors and the MVMA appar- 
ently interpreted the phrase to describe only that 
portion of the gross vehicle weight rating which 
"is loaded" on an unloaded truck to bring its 
weight up to GVAVR. The condition states that 
what is distributed proportionately is the gross 
vehicle weight rating {i.e. the weight of the 
loaded vehicle), and not just that portion of the 
rating that constitutes the "load." There is no 
mathematical possibility of overloading an axle 
under this condition, since the GVWR must be 
no more than the sum of the GAWR's. 

Ford stated with respect to S6.1.10.5 that "on 
some vehicles, it may not be possible to adjust 
the fifth wheel to a position in which the tractor 
can be loaded to GVWR without exceeding the 
GAWR of one axle." It may be that Ford's 
problem arises from the same misunderstanding 



described above with respect to GM and MVMA. 
To the extent, however, that the Ford petition 
implies that a manufacturer can establish a 
GVWR for a truck tractor which can not be 
attained without axle overload, the petition is 
based on a misconception of GVWR and ia there- 
fore denied. 

Wagner Electric requested that the loadings 
in S6.1.10.6 be made uniform with S6.1.10.5 and 
S6.1.10.7. These loadings are not intended to be 
uniform, however, because the first condition 
specifies loading for purposes of truck-tractor 
testing, while the latter two conditions only es- 
tablish test equipment specifications for the 
"control trailer test device" which is used in 
testing the truck-tractor. S6.1.10.6 and S6.1.10.7 
loadings differ so that the service brake and 
emergency brake capabilities of the control trailer 
are separately designed to place greater demands 
on the truck tractor's service braking system than 
its emergency braking system. The calculations 
are based on an evaluation of the capacity of the 
brakes that are expected to be placed on produc- 
tion trailers in accordance with the dynamometer 
test requirements. 

For the benefit of manufacturers who mistak- 
enly consider these test conditions to be minimum 
performance requirements, it should be empha- 
sized that the S6.1.10.6 and S6.1.10.7 values are 
conditions, i.e., characteristics of the control 
trailer test device which must be duplicated as 
closely as possible for testing. As with any other 
test device characteristic, to the degree that the 
control trailer can not produce exactly the right 
stopping distance, the certifying manufacturer 
should ascertain conformity of his vehicles under 
slightly more adverse conditions than those 
specified, in this case by slightly reducing the 
trailer brakes' capacity (to stop in the sf)ecified 
distance). 

General Motors objected that the lighter con- 
trol trailer capacities (18,000 and 32,000 pounds 
in place of 20,000 and 40,000 pounds) specified 
in the amendment would lower control trailer 
performance and thereby increase the perform- 
ance required of truck tractors. The change was 
made to specify commonly used trailers, to aid 
manufacturers in meeting the September 1, 1974, 
effective date. The NHTSA continues to con- 
sider the increased availability of test devices to 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 22 



nbcHv*: $«pt«inb*r 1, 1974 
Manh I, 1975 



be more significant to promulgation of a fully 
satisfactory final rule than the small quantitative 
change noted by General Motors, and their peti- 
tion is therefore denied. 

General Motors and the MVMA requested 
specification of test load density to resolve diffi- 
culties in establishment of the "worst case" center 
of gravity height when testing trucks. Specifi- 
cation of a test load density, however, is unneces- 
sary. The manufacturer of a truck or incomplete 
vehicle should establish the limits of placement 
of the load center of gravity as a part of his 
design considerations, to be specified in the Part 
568 document for an incomplete vehicle or in his 
instructions to users in the case of a completed 
one. This establishes an envelope within which 
the vehicle is certified to comply with Standard 
121 under full load. Once that envelope is estab- 
lished, the appropriate load densities to test the 
vehicle's conformity can be derived from it. 

Several petitions were received with regard to 
brake burnish procedures. The MVTklA and 
Ford requested reinclusion of language found in 
the proposal that specified an acceleration pro- 
cedure for vehicles unable to reach the specified 
speed in one mile. General Motors submitted 
minor changes of an editorial nature and new 
language to specify an increased deceleration rate 
for vehicles unable to reach the specified speed 
in one mile. The NHTSA has concluded that 
language which appeared in the proposal and 
reflects current SAE procedure should be adopted. 
The General Motors increased deceleration 
method represents a new procedure which has not 
been evaluated by the NHTSA or proposed in 
any previous nilemaking. The suggestion of 50 
snubs before allowing a cooling period is also a 
new Greneral Motors proposal which the NHTSA 
has not had the opportunity to evaluate. With 
the exception of one recommendation. General 
Motors' editorial suggestions are adopted to be 
consistent with the titles in Table IV. The word 
"maximum" was deleted from S6.1.8.1 at the re- 
quest of several manufacturers because it was 
inappropriate to the specification of temperature 
range. 

Ford requested the addition of a burnish pro- 
cedure for parking brakes which do not utilize 
the service brake comiwnents. Language has 



been added to specify a burnish procedure for 
these brakes in accordance with the manufactur- 
er's recommendations. 

Two other issues were raised with regard to 
the road test conditions. To answer Wagner 
Electric's petition for clarification of S6.1.10.7, 
the "valve controlling the trailer brakes" may or 
may not be part of the normal commercial system 
of the tractor depending on whether or not the 
normal system can provide the timing specified. 
The purpose of standardizing timing specifica- 
tions is simply to remove the tractor's perform- 
ance as a factor in the test trailer brake evalua- 
tion. When the trailer is used in tests of a 
tractor pursuant to S5.3.1, it will, of course, be 
connected to the tractor's normal control system. 

General Motors questioned the safety benefit 
of wheel lockup requirements for liftable axles 
on buses equipped with two non-steerable axles 
if other axles other than the liftable axle can 
themselves meet the stopping distance require- 
ments. The agency considers the controlled per- 
formance of the liftable axle to be of considerable 
benefit for added stability under braking condi- 
tions other than straight ahead braking required 
by the standard, and on this basis it denies the 
GM petition. 

In other areas of the standard. General Motors 
petitioned for longer emergency stopping dis- 
tances for all vehicles, reasoning that an excep- 
tion to the values for truck-tractors in an 
imloaded condition (based on rarity of opera- 
tion) could be as easily justified for the rare 
emergency stop situation of any vehicle. The 
rationale ignores the fact that the emergency 
values were established in the first place with the 
rarit;y of such occurrences in mind, and that the 
exception is posited on the combined rarity of 
unladen truck-tractor operation involved in an 
emergency situation. The problem of testing 
chassis-cabs can be met by specifying conformity 
to S5.7.2.3 with a specified weight on the rear 
axle representing the vehicle body weight. Gen- 
eral Motors' petition to apply column 4 values 
to all vehicle emergency stopping distance re- 
quirements is therefore denied. 

Wagner Electric petitioned to modify the 
wording of S5.8 concerning emergency applica- 
tion of trailer converter dolly service brakes so 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 23 



iffKMv*: $«pl«mb«r 1, 1974 
March I, 1973 



that the wording would be identical to Bureau 
of Motor Carrier Safety regulations (49 CFR 
393.43). AVagner's proposed wording, however, 
applies to towing vehicle performance, where the 
triggering signal is a low, fi.xed air pressure, and 
the wording would not be appropriate for trailer 
performance, where the triggering signal is a 
venting of the supply line to the atmosphere. 
The S5.8 language is actually compatible with 
§ 393.43(b), in that BMCS calls for towing ve- 
hicles to have an automatic means of activating 
the emergency features of the trailer air brakes, 
and S5.8 calls for compatible automatic features 
on the trailers. AVagner's petition is therefore 
denied. 

General Motors asked whether the S5.4 require- 
ment that brake assemblies meet tests in sequence 
actually exempts some brakes from all three tests 
if they are elsewhere exempted from the first. 
Paragraph S5.4 does not exempt any brake as- 
semblies from any requirement. The brakes on 
a vehicle which does not have to comply with 
S5.4.1 must comply with S5.4.2 and S5.4.3. 

Several comments requested correction of the 
omission of the words "in the service brake 
system" from S5.7.2.3 as published in Notice 3. 
The omission was inadvertent and has been 
corrected. 

General Motors requested an indication that 
stopping sequence steps 2 and 3 in Table I apply 
only to truck-tractors. The steps have been 
changed to indicate that these steps apply only 
to truck-tractor testing by means of a control 
trailer. As for the objection that S6.1.10.7 im- 
plies the emergency system of a truck-tractor 
must control the trailer spring brakes, S6.1.10.7 
has been clarified by the addition of a qualifying 
phrase. S6.1.10.6 and S6.1.10.7 have been further 
clarified by adding headings to indicate that they 
are test equipment specifications. 

In a separate submission to Docket 73-13, 
Wagner Electric requested clarification of the 
trailer test rig timing issue, which had been re- 
served in Notice 3 as a candidate for adoption 
at some later date. Midland-Ross also raised the 
issue with regard to a requested modification of 
Figure 1. The petitions pointed out that an 
NHTSA test showing a failure would be incon- 
clusive if it were compared to manufacturer 

PART 571 ; S 



testing conducted on a faster rig, and showing 
conformity. The remedy is to specify "legal 
baseline" actuation and release times, so the 
manufacturer will know the precise conditions 
under which his equipment must meet the re- 
quirements, and both government and industry 
testing can be conducted so as to produce conclu- 
sive results. The NHTSA therefore establishes 
the actuation and release values proposed in 
Notice 1 with minor modification. They will not 
become effective until September 1, 1975, to 
maintain the validity of testing already con- 
ducted. The values are set at two-significant- 
figure accuracy in agreement with Wagner that 
the values should match the actual trailer per- 
formance values. Because the actuation time is 
lowered to 0.06 seconds, the NHTSA may find it 
necessary to improve its test rig's siJeed by re- 
moving the tractor protection valve. Therefore, 
the valve has been made optional. The perform- 
ance of the test device had been modified from 
the original proposal so that initiating signal 
points are the same as for the actual performance 
tests, and so that initial release pressure agrees 
with the 95-psi requirement of the performance | 
tests. 

Other issues raised by Wagner and Midland- 
Ross in petitions to Notice 3 will be answered in 
a later notice. 

March 1, 197 1^ Proposals 

The NHTSA proposed modification of the 
standard's effective date, brake actuation times, 
and road and dynamometer tests as they apply 
to the service brake .system and emergency stop- 
ping performance of all vehicles subject to the 
standard except trailers (39 F.R. 7966, March 1, 
1974). The proposals would have affected ve- 
hicle types separately to reflect the particular 
problems faced by fire fighting vehicles, "special 
permit" vehicles, on/off-highway vehicles, and 
standard highway trucks and buses. Manufac- 
turer concern centered on the availability of 
components to meet the standard by September 1, 
1974, and the reliability of the antilock systems 
wliich will be utilized by most manufacturers to 
meet the requirements. Having carefully con- 
sidered the comments submitted in response to 
this proposal, the NHTSA hereby delays the 
standard's effective date for trucks and buses to m 

121— PRE 24 



MtacHvai Macdi 1, It75 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 74-10; NoHc* 6) 



ThiB notice responds to six petitions for re- 
consideration of recent amendments to Standard 
No. 121, Air brake systems, 49 CFR 671.121, 
which eetablished a March 1, 1975, effective date 
for trucks and buses, and optional interim re- 
quirements until September 1, 1975, for trucks 
with certain heavy or front eteerable drive axles. 
In addition, this notice also responds to several 
questions on the burnish procedure recently 
raised by International Harvester. 

The NHTSA established the March 1, 1975, 
effective date for trucks and buses after compre- 
hensive consideration of numerous petitions from 
manufacturers and users of air brake-equipped 
vehicles (39 F.R. 17550, May 17, 1974). Manu- 
facturer concerns centered on the availability 
and reliability of components involved in the 
new brake systems, particularly antilock devices, 
and on leadtime necessary to modify vehicles to 
accept these components. 

Ford Motor Company is the only manufac- 
turer of air brake-equipped trucks which peti- 
tioned for reconsideration of the March 1, 1975, 
implementation date for the standard's basic 
provisions. After the time for petitions for re- 
consideration had closed, Chrysler Corporation 
reported on an accident which occurred during 
certification testing of a vehicle equipped with 
antilock devices, and urged the delay of Stand- 
ard No. 121 for an indefinite period. The Amer- 
ican Institute of Merchant Shipping also 
requested an indefinite delay in the standard's 
implementation. 

Ford petitioned for a further 6-month delay 
in the standard as it applies to truck-tractors, 
and a one and one-half year delay as the stand- 
ard applies to other trucks and buses. Ford 
asserts that the suspension and brake modifica- 



tions necessary to meet the dry-stopping distance 
requirements will compromise vehicle hsmdling 
and stability, increase the danger of load shifts, 
and force the introduction of antilock devices 
before Ford considers them reliable. The re- 
quested extension would be used to evaluate the 
effect of the new componentry on overall safety. 

The issues in the Ford petition have been care- 
fully considered by the NHTSA in the process 
of rulemaking and, with the exception of load 
shifting, were addressed in the preamble to the 
amendments which established the March 1, 
1975, date. The NHTSA has reviewed each of 
Ford's concerns, and concludes that implementa- 
tion of the standard as scheduled for trucks and 
buses is reasonable, practicable, and meets the 
need for motor vehicle safety. 

With regard to the handling and stability 
problems experienced by some short- wheel -based 
vehicles in meeting the stopping distance re- 
quirements, the NHTSA maintains its determi- 
nation that adequate time has been made 
available to make the major redesign necessary 
in some vehicles, or to make the decision to dis- 
continue the production of models which are 
simply too short to meet the requirements despite 
design changes. International Harvester, in its 
comments on the rulemaking, indicated that it 
had been ready to meet the proposed January 1, 
1975, effective date and would actually suffer 
economic losses in waiting for the March 1, 1975, 
implementation. 

The availability and reliability of antilock 
systems which will be used by many manufac- 
turers in meeting, the requirements was ques- 
tioned by Ford in its petition. In response to 
Ford's assertion that a manufacturer's report on 
field experience with 8,000 antilock units does 



I 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 88 



E«FmMv*: March 1, 1975 



not appear in the record, a letter from Keleey- 
Hayes (February 1, 1974) containing this infor- 
mation was placed in the NHTSA Docket 
Section before March 1, 1974. The NHTSA 
continues to monitor antilock production and 
testing and cannot agree that the evidence indi- 
cates antilocks will decrease the safety of the 
new trucks in highway operation. Since May, 
the NHTSA engineering staff has visited six of 
the seven major antilock manufacturers to dis- 
cuss antilock reliability and availability. At 
least half of these manufacturers pointed out 
that their plants were prepared for full produc- 
tion to meet the September 1, 1974, date, and 
that they had had to delay production schedules 
because of the six-month delay. Low volume 
production is presently available to vehicle 
manufacturers for their testing and evaluation. 

Concerning antilock reliability, a substantial 
amount of proprietary information was reviewed 
as well as the publicly-known information that 
no highway accident has been attributed to the 
failure of antilock devices. Kelsey-Hayes 
pointed out that it is selling approximately 250 
axle units each month for retrofit. Following 
these visits, the NHTSA sent the seven major 
antilock manufacturers requests for reliability 
data under its investigatory authority, which 
will become part of the record although it may 
be of a proprietary nature which would justify 
not making it public. This data will show mil- 
lions of axle miles of antilock operation with a 
malfunction rate comparable to other equipment 
presently in highway service, and no highway 
accidents attributable to the device. 

Chrysler Corporation reported on a proving- 
ground accident on May 16, 1974, in which an 
antilock-equipped truck rolled over after its rear 
wheels locked and caused skidding during a stop 
from 60 mph. The manufacturer of the antilock 
system reported that the device functioned as it 
was designed to but in response to a false signal. 
The important point, however, as noted in the 
May rulemaking, is that the accident occurred 
as a result of rear-wheel lockup during a panic- 
type, full brake application that would also have 
occurred if the vehicle had not been equipped 
with antilock. In other words, a panic stop 
always involves the risk of uncontrolled skid due 



to lockup, and the presence of the antilock only 
improves the chances of a safe stop in the vast 
majority of instances in which it functions 
properly. 

Ford requested an interpretation of S5.5.1 of 
the standard that would permit use of a pressure 
limiting valve to the front axle that operates 
when it senses electrical failure of the antilock 
system. The NHTSA has advised Ford (and 
Bendix Corporation) that S5.5.1 does not pro- 
hibit use of such a valve designed to operate in 
the event of electrical failure. 

Ford also raised the problem of load shift 
under heavy braking. The NHTSA has consid- 
ered the effects of the standard and notes that, 
under normal circumstances, stops will continue 
to be made at the same deceleration as in the 
past, consistent with driver comfort and load 
stability. Only in emergency situations will the 
full torque of the new brakes be utilized and in 
this event, the NHTSA concludes that the 
shorter stopping distances outweigh the possible 
safety problem of load shift. 

The Ford petition pointed out that any failure 
of component manufacturers to supply the new 
121 components would make compliance with 
the standard impossible. As of this date the 
NHTSA finds that supplier production is on 
schedule and will provide components on time. 
As recently as July 26, 1974, Rockwell Interna- 
tional assured the NHTSA that its production 
is on schedule. 

For these reasons the Ford petition and 
Chrysler request are denied. The NHTSA 
would like to establish the issuance of this notice 
as the final form of Standard No. 121 with re- 
gard to its effective date and the stopping dis- 
tance requirements, for purposes of review under 
§ 105(a)(1) of the National Traffic and Motor 
Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (15 U.S.C. § 1394). 
Thus, while several areas treated later in this 
notice will be subject to further reconsideration, 
the effective dates and stopping distance require- 
ments will be final as to any person who will be 
adversely affected by them. 

While International Harvester supported the 
March 1, 1975, date for standard highway trucks 
and buses (it would have preferred a January 1, 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 34 



EfTKHv*: March I, 197S 



1975, date), they did petition for reconsideration 
of the NHTSA decision to apply the full stop- 
ping distances to vehicles equipi>ed with front 
steerable drive axles after September 1, 1975. 
White Motor Company and Diamond Reo 
Trucks, Inc., also petitioned for 1 year's delay in 
implementation of the full requirements for 
these axles. 

The majority of front steerable drive axles are 
found on vehicles which use the road regularly 
at highway si)eeds and which require the same 
stopping capability as lighter vehicles. In most 
cases, their non-planetary construction permits 
an uncomplicated adaptation to the standard's 
torque requirements. Furthermore, one vehicle 
manufacturer indicates that it has successfully 
redesigned steerable drive axles in the 18,000- 
to 23,000-pound GAWR range to meet Standard 
No. 121. White, International Harvester, and 
Diamond Reo state that the lighter axles in this 
category are unavailable, but not technically un- 
feasible. The imavailability stems from supplier 
decisions to concentrate on the more common 
non-driving axles found on standard highway 
vehicles in great numbers. An August 8, 1974, 
letter from Rockwell Standard to Docket 74-10 
supports the conclusion that the axles can be 
manufactured, but will not be available until 
September 1, 1976. Accordingly, the NHTSA 
has reconsidered the present effective date of 
September 1, 1975, for full requirements ap- 
plicable to front steerable drive axles and delays 
for one year the full requirements for those axle 
sizes which are not available until September 1, 
1976. 

Diamond Reo and White also requested recon- 
sideration of the implementation of full require- 
ments for vehicles equipped with a front steerable 
non-dri\^g axle with a GAWR of 16,000 pounds 
or more, which are subject to interim dynamom- 
eter requirements from March 1, 1975, to Sep- 
tember 1, 1975. The manufacturers base their 
requests for a 1-year delay on difficulties in se- 
curing a proven brake assembly capable of han- 
dling the higher torque levels. B. F. Goodrich 
recently dropped development of its heavy air- 
over-hydraulic disc brake system, to which at 
least one truck manufacturer, White Trucks, was 
committed. White states that disc brakes are 



necessary for heavy front axles and has encoun- 
tered severe axle-to-axle imbalance problems in 
its attempts to use other disc brake assemblies 
at this date. A major axle supplier has notified 
the NHTSA that the axle itself can be ready by 
September 1975. 

The NHTSA has evaluated the foundation 
brake assemblies available to this vehicle group 
and concludes that a year's field testing and ex- 
perience is necessary and desirable to assure that 
the new components will perform as designed 
when placed in highway service. For this reason 
the full requirements of Standard No. 121 will 
become effective for vehicles -with a front steer- 
able axle of 16,000 pounds GAWR or more on 
September 1, 1976. 

With regard to this vehicle group. Interna- 
tional Harvester claimed that the requirement 
that the brakes be "fully applied" was unfairly 
introduced into the interim requirements and 
interferes with braking action. Apparently full 
pressure applications may cause erratic behavior 
in some large vehicles with very light bodies, 
during dry stops in the unloaded condition. 

Full application is required to ensure that ve- 
hicles provide the lateral tractive capability of 
an unlocked wheel during panic braking. This 
interim requirement was proposed in March 1974 
as relief from full requirements which have been 
in effect since February 1971. The NHTSA 
does not consider it unfair to propose and make 
final an optional stopping requirement which 
represents relief from more stringent require- 
ments. More important, the NHTSA considers 
it crucial to maintain complete directional sta- 
bility in a panic stop, loaded or unloaded, if the 
vehicle is unable to meet the stopping distance 
requirements in that condition. Accordingly, 
the International Harvester petition is denied. 

Diamond Reo also requested that the interim 
stopping distances for standard highway vehicles 
be adopted as the full requirements. Their ve- 
hicles meet the shorter distances but not by a 
sufficient margin to absolutely assure them that 
every one of their vehicles will pass. The fact 
that the vehicles are capable of stopping well 
within the shorter distances persuades the 
NHTSA that this safety level can and should 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 35 



EITkHv*: March 1, 1975 



be maintained. Manufacturers are required by 
the Safety Act to "exercise due care" in certify- 
ing that vehicles comply with the applicable 
standards (15 U.S.C. § 1397(b) (2)). In view 
of the statutory language, Diamond Reo's re- 
quest for reconsideration is denied. 

In a related matter, the NHTSA has been 
asked by the Federal Register to redesignate the 
present Table V as Table Ila, which is accom- 
plished in this notice. 

Manufacturers raised several matters which 
were not addressed by Notice 2 and are not, 
therefore, properly raised as petitions for recon- 
sideration. The NHTSA finds it desirable, how- 
ever, to respond to them in this notice, in view 
of the standard's imminent effective date. 

Most important was a question by Interna- 
tional Harvester in a July 27, 1974, visit by 
NHTSA engineers to their plant. They indi- 
cated that some 121 vehicles may have difficulty 
in achieving the required burnish temperatures 
because of the use of the automatic pressure lim- 
iting valve that tailors the torque at the front 
axle. The burnish conditions of Standard No. 
121 essentially standardize the preparation of 
new truck, bus, and trailer brakes for testing 
under the standard. 

In the absence of a specification for these 
valves, it appears that manufacturers have in- 
stituted various practices to assure uniformly 
good burnishes. It is apparent that different 
vehicles respond to the burnish procedure with 
distinctive problems and require solutions tail- 
ored to their particular brake packages. 

From a regulatory standpoint, however, an 
optional procedure complicates enforcement of a 
standard, particularly where a manufacturer has 
tested one way and the NHTSA tests the other. 
Test results with the limiting valve, for example, 
may not be easily comparable with test results 
in which the valve was bypassed. Both the 
manufacturer and the NHTSA need a specifica- 
tion that permits flexibility in achieving a uni- 
form burnish in different vehicles, but does not 
permit two burnish options. 

To end this confusion, the NHTSA further 
specifies the burnish procedure to require that a 
limiting valve be in use except in the event the 
temperature of the hottest brake on a rear axle 



exceeds the temperature of the hottest brake on 
the front axle by 125° F. In this way the manu- 
facturer and the NHTSA will follow the same 
test procedure. It should be emphasized that 
this specification in no way invalidates the test- 
ing undertaken to date. Such data can be the 
basis of certification. 

In answer to another International Harvester 
question, brake euljustmente can be made during 
the burnishing to control brake temperatures. 
It should be noted that NHTSA is considering 
a limit on adjustments to three, to be made only 
during the first 250 snubs. Finally, the NHTSA 
has indicated to Kelsey-Hayee that it would add 
"after-stop" to the burnish procedures to de- 
scribe the specified temperatures more precisely. 
The NHTSA intends to measure the tempera- 
tures within 30 seconds of brake release, but will 
not reject manufacturer readings taken at any 
time if they are reasonably related to the tem- 
peratures actually generated by the snubs. Thie 
latitude is necessary to avoid invalidation of 
manufacturer testing up to this time. 

International Harvester asked that the park- 
ing brake requirements of S5.6.2 be modified to 
require 20 percent grade holding ability "to the 
limit of traction". The NHTSA has determined 
that the present grade holding capability is de- 
sirable, and it has already provided an alterna- 
tive requirement in the standard that brakes with 
a specified static retardation force be provided 
on all axles. The NHTSA concludes that the 
option makes a reduction of the grade-holding 
requirements unnecessary. 

Diamond Beo requested that air reservoir 
volume on trucks and buses be reduced from 
present requirements. The NHTSA has already 
reduced the volume from 16 times the combined 
service brake chamber volumes to 12 times that 
volume, and concludes that a further reduction 
is not in the interests of motor vehicle safety. 
The Diamond Reo request concerning the anti- 
lock electrical cireuit has already been answered 
by a letter denial of Jime 28, 1974. 

Wagner Electric requested a minor revision 
of Figure 1, Trailer Test Rig, which the NHTSA 
makes in the interests of consistency of terminol- 
ogy. The word "control" is subetituted for 
"pedal". 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 86 



EffKllv*: March 1, 1975 



Finally, the NHTSA has been receiving some 
indications that manufacturers may arbitrarily 
specify a higher GAWR than normal simply to 
avoid requirements of the standard. The 
NHTSA therefore takes this opportunity to ex- 
plain the manufacturer's responsibility to spec- 
ify the GAWR of axle systems on his products. 

The NHTSA defines gross axle weight rating 
as follows: 

"Gross axle weight rating" or "GAWR" 
means the value specified by the manufacturer 
as the load-carrying capacity of a single axle 
system, as measured at the tire-ground inter- 



Because the GAWR is measured at the tire- 
ground interfaces, it means that the tires, wheels, 
brakes, and suspension components are included 
in the determination. It is obvious that the 
GAWR of the whole system cannot exceed the 
rating of any one component, such as tires. Both 
the NHTSA in its compliance tests and defects 
investigations, and the Bureau of Motor Carrier 
Safety on the road, will judge the vehicle on the 



basis of the values assigned. Therefore it is in 
the interest of the manufacturer to assign values 
which accurately reflect the load-bearing ability 
of the vehicle and its tires and suspension. 

In consideration of the foregoing, Standard 
No. 121 (49 CFR 571.121) is amended. . . . 

Elective date: March 1, 1975. Because the 
Standard's effective date for trucks and buses 
occurs sooner than 180 days and because these 
amendments create no additional burden, it is 
found for good cause shown that an earlier ef- 
fective date than 180 days from the date of 
publication is in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 
(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority 
at 49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on November 6, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 39880 
November 12, 1974 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 37-38 



HhcMvai JoniMiy 1, 197S 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systams 
(Docket No. 74-10; NoMc* 11) 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
brake systems, 49 CFR 571.212, to establish a new 
test category (and an effective date) for highly 
specialized tractor- trailer vehicle combinations, 
and to specify modified brake retardation force 
requirements for trailers until September 1, 1976. 

The National Highway Traffic Safety Admin- 
istration (NHTSA) proposed these actions, 
along with other actions that deal with special- 
ized trucks, in a notice published November 14, 
1974 (39 F.R. 40168). The NHTSA is acting as 
soon as possible on the retardation force and in- 
tegral tractor-trailer issues because they directly 
affect the manufacture of trailers, which will be 
subject to the standard's requirements on Jan- 
uary 1, 1975. The issue of exemption for over- 
size and specialized trucks (which have a March 
1, 1975, effective date) will be addressed in the 
near future by a separate notice. 

The NHTSA takes note of its recent proposal 
and request for comments on a f)ostponement of 
this standard (39 F.R. 43639, December 17, 1974). 
The NHTSA is proceding with this rulemaking 
action independently of that proposal to maintain 
as much continuity as possible in the regulation 
as presently issued. 

The manufacturers and users of auto trans- 
porter combination vehicles and the Truck 
Trailer Manufacturers Association supported the 
proposal to exempt "integral tractor-trailers" 
from applicability of the standard until Septem- 
ber 1, 1976, because of their particular testing 
difficulties. It has been suggested that the term 
"integral tractor-trailer" should be replaced by 
a more descriptive designation of the combination 
vehicles in question. The NHTSA agrees and 
modifies the definition to refer to the transporta- 
tion of motor vehicles, and to change the defined 



term to "auto transporters." The conunents re- 
quested deletion of a requirement in the defini- 
tion which limited these vehicles to those 
designed "by a single manufacturer, or person 
who alters a certified vehicle." The conmients 
expressed concern that the phrase would eliminate 
the manufacture of tractor an^ trailer portions 
separately. Some manufacturers also believed 
that the reference to "certified vehicles" meant 
that any incomplete truck tractor equipp>ed with 
121-type equipment would have to be certified 
upon completion by the manufacturer of auto 
transporters. 

The cited requirement does not exclude manu- 
facture by separate individuals of the two por- 
tions of the combination, although the preamble 
inadvertently referred to "trucks and trailers 
manufactured by a single manufacturer for use 
in combination." It is possible that one or more 
persons other than a vehicle manufacturer or 
alterer may be responsible for the integral de- 
sign. The NHTSA therefore deletes the phrase 
in question to permit continued flexibility in the 
design of these vehicles. 

The reference to alteration of a "certified ve- 
hicle" confused some businesses which modify 
stock truck-tractors for use in auto transporters. 
They believed that a completed vehcile that had 
been certified to meet Standard No. 121, or an 
incomplete vehicle with documents referring to 
Standard No. 121, could not qualify for an ex- 
emption as a portion of an auto transporter. In 
actuality, a complete and certified vehicle, or an 
incomplete vehicle, can be modified to become a 
portion of an auto transporter, which would 
thereby qualify for exemption whatever its pre- 
vious status. 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 89 



EffwHv*: January 1, 197S 



Bankhead Transportation requested clarifica- 
tion with regard to manufacture of new auto 
transporter trailers to be fitted to existing truck 
tractors that are modified to accept the new 
trailer, These trailers constitute a portion of an 
auto transporter and as such are exempt until 
September 1, 1976. The NHTSA has modified 
the language of S5.3 in one respect from that 
proposed, to make clear that a transporter trailer 
manufactured without an equivalent transporter 
tractor would be tested separately under the re- 
quirements of S5.3.2 after September 1, 1976. 

The NHTSA also proposed that the retarda- 
tion force requirements of the standard, which 
apply to trailers (and, of an optional basis, to a 
small category of large trucks until September 1, 
1967), be somewhat reduced because of the degree 
of variability being experienced in brake lining 
performance. The NHTSA requested comments 
on lower values and on whether such new values 
should be permanent, or only temporary while 
further information is developed on variability. 

With the exception of General Motors Cor- 
poration and Automotive Research Associates, 
Incorporated (which suggested changes in dyna- 
mometer procedures instead of values), the com- 
mentors supported the reduction of retardation 
force values for trailers. General Motors argued 
that brake force reductions of the trailer should 
not be undertaken without similar reductions in 
stopping distance requirements for trucks, and is 
particular towing vehicles. 

The NHTSA, in an amendment published May 
17, 1974 (39 F.R. 17750), has already acknowl- 
edged the variability of production brake assem- 
blies on trucks and buses by establishing longer 
stopping distances for an interim period until 
September 1, 1975. The NHTSA recently denied 
a petition by Diamond Reo to make these longer 
distances the permanent values of the standard 
(39 F.R. 39880). A Paccar Corporation petition 
presently under consideration on the subject of 
stopping distances also raises the issue of relaxed 
stopping requirements. The NHTSA concludes 
that its decision on that petition will be resjx)n- 
sive to the points raised by General Motors. 

Several comments on the proposed lower re- 
tardation forces included data that further sub- 
stantiate the determination that variability of 



brake linings is not sufficiently small to permit 
100 percent compliance of every brake assembly 
at the present values. Wagner Electric Corpora- 
tion, which originally petitioned for use of the 
values proposed by the NHTSA, has submitted 
new data which support a slightly lower minima 
force level to supjwrt the desired mean p)erfonn- 
ance of approximately 60 pounds. Data supplied 
by Raybestos Manhattan demonstrate a varia- 
bility to the 3-sigma limit of slightly more than 
20 percent calculated by the NHTSA on earlier 
testing. Molded Materials Company disagreed 
that compatibility of combination vehciles re- 
quired 60 percent mean retardation values, but 
supported the proposed lower minimum force 
levels as a means to achieve compatibility. Abex 
Corporation supported the lower values so that 
actual production experience could be accumulated 
as a basis for future changes. 

The NHTSA concludes on the basis or sub- 
mitted data that values slightly lower than those 
proposed will better accommodate the demon- 
strated variability of brake lining material. 
Therefore, values of 0.06, 0.13, 0.20, 0.27, 0.34, 
0.41, and 0.47 will replace the present values for 
trailers. 

Manufacturers and users of brake lining 
differed on whether the new values should per- 
manently replace the previous values. The 
NHTSA did not receive conclusive information 
indicating that the variability in performance 
will remain in production units. The NHTSA 
concludes, therefore, that interim values will 
permit the accumulation of significant field ex- 
perience on vehicle compatibility and lining 
variability, and that a judgment will be made on 
the basis of that data in the future. 

Only Kelsey-Hayes commented on the proposal 
to apply these new retardation force values to 
trucks with heavy (or driving) front axles dur- 
ing their interim requirements. As a manufac- 
turer of front axle brake assemblies for this 
vehicle category, Kelsey-Hayes pointed out that 
the revision was not supported for truck front 
axle brake assemblies and would require an un- 
justified retooling for a period of no more than 
18 months. The NHTSA agrees that the data 
underlying the proposal supports a modification 
for trailer brake assemblies only. Accordinglv 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 40 



the NHTSA does not reduce the optional interim 
retardation force requirements for trucks speci- 
fied in S6.1.3.2. 

In a separate matter, Rockwell International 
Corporation asked whether the discussion of 100 
percent compliance with Standard No. 121*8 re- 
tardation force requirements was a modification 
of earlier NHTSA discussion on the "due care" 
responsibility of each manufacturer to ensure 
that each of his products meets the requirements 
of the standard (39 F.R. 17760, May 17, 1974). 
The requirement to exereise "due care" that each 
vehicle comply with Standard No. 121 is a statu- 
tory requirement (16 U.S.C. 1897), and the 
above-cited discussion remains the NHTSA 
position. 



MhcHvai Jinuty I, I97S 

In consideration of the foregoing, Standard 
No. 121 (49 C.F.R. 671. 121) is amended. . . . 

Effective date: January 1, 1976. Because of 
the imminent effective date of the standard for 
trailere (January 1, 1976), the National High- 
way Treffic Safety Administration finds, for good 
cause shown, that an effective date sooner than 
80 days is in the public interest. 

(Sec. 108, 119, Pub. L. 89-668, 80 Stat. 718 (16 
U.S.C. 1892, 1407) ; delegation of authority at 49 
C.F.R. 1.61) 

Issued on December 31, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

40 F.R. 1246 
January 7, 1975 



PART 671: S 121— PRE 41-42 



EffKHv*: S*plMnb«r 1, 1976 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

(Docket No. 74-10; NoHco 12) 
Air Brake Systems 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
brake systems, 49 C.F.R. 571.121, to delete as of 
September 1, 1976, the emergency brake option 
that for trucks and buses permits automatic ap- 
plication of the parking brakes in place of a 
modulated emergencj' brake system. A notice 
of proposed rulemaking to be issued shortly pro- 
poses modification of the air brake system park- 
ing brake requirements and the trailer emergency 
braking requirements. 

Based on a December 1972 petition from the 
American Trucking Associations (ATA), the 
NHTSA proposed elimination of the automatic 
parking brake for use as an emergency braking 
capability (38 F.R. 14963, June 7, 1973). In 
response to comments on that proposal which 
stated that leadtime was insuflBcient to implement 
the proposal by September 1, 1974, the NHTSA 
indicated it would defer final action to a later 
date and issue any changes with an effective date 
beyond September 1, 1974 (39 F.R. 804, January 
3, 1974). The NHTSA again indicated in May 
1974 that "the majority of the changes proposed 
in response to the ATA petition continue to be 
viewed favorably." (39 F.R. 17550, May 17, 
1974). The NHTSA has now completed its con- 
sideration of the modulated braking provision 
and hereby amends the standard as proposed in 
June 1973, with an effective date of September 1, 
1976, to permit adequate time for engineering 
necessary changes. It appears, in fact, that the 
majority of new brake systems are designed to 
meet generally the modulated emergency brake 
requirements. 

The fundamental change is elimination of the 
option that permits automatic application of the 
parking brakes in place of a modulated emer- 
gency brake system. The NHTSA agrees with 



the ATA that a driver should not be forced to 
use two different methods of applying the emer- 
gency brakes, depending on what vehcile he is 
driving at the time. 

In the parikng brake system proposal to be 
published shortly, it is proposed that the parking 
brake provisions found as options in the present 
S5.7 be made mandatory in a revised S5.6 park- 
ing brake section. Thus the present S5.7 require- 
ment that a vehicle with a modulated brake 
capability also have a parking brake capable of 
manual application at any service reservoir pres- 
sure level would be found in the parking brake 
section. Also the requirement that the parking 
brake be capable of application in the event of a 
failure of specific components common to the 
service brake and emergency braking systems 
would be moved to the revised parking brake 
section. Finally the requirement that a parking 
brake be releasable only if it can be reapplied 
would be found in the new parking brake 
provisions. 

Several other requirements proposed in June 
1973 for the modulated emergency brake system 
are found in this amendment. The modulated 
emergency brake must be applied, released, and 
be capable of modulation, by means of the service 
brake control. The NHTSA has concluded that 
the driver is most likely to maintain the best con- 
trol of his vehicle when he can modulate any 
braking available to him througd a single control. 
The emergency system must be capable of two 
full applications and releases in the event the 
service brake system fails. This ensures that a 
disabled vehicle can be safely moved off the 
roadway. 

As proposed in June 1973 and made final in 
this notice, the emergency brake system of a 



PART 571 ; S 121— PRE 43 



towing vehicle must operate in the event the 
trailer air control line or the trailer supply and 
control lines fail. These requirements ensure 
that a loaded combination vehicle can stop in 
specified distances with a failed control line, and 
that a loaded straight truck (capable of towing) 
or "bobtail" tractor-trailer is capable of stopping 
in the event a trailer breaks away. Additionally, 
the service brake control of a towing vehicle must 
be capable of modulating the brakes on a towed 
vehicle following a failure on the towing vehicle. 
Also, the emergency stopping distance require- 
ment presently in the standard becomes the only 
permissible test of a truck or bus emergency brak- 
ing system. 

A new test condition has been added to specify 
when to vent the control and supply lines to 
atmosphere for test purposes. 



As noted above, the majority of these changes 
appear to be incorporated in large measure in the 
design of the new brake systems. The NHTSA 
concludes that truck and bus manufacturers are 
capable of meeting these modulated brake re- 
quirements by September 1, 1976. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Standard 
No. 121 (49 C.F.R. 571.121) is amended 

Elective date: September 1, 1976. 

(Sec. 103, 119 Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stet. 718 (16 
U.S.C. 1392, 1407), delegation of authority at 49 
C.F.R. 1.51 and 49 C.F.R. 501.8). 

Issued on January 10, 1976. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

40 F.R. 2989 
January 17, 1975 



PAET 671; S 121— PEE 44 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 



Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 74-10; Notice 14) 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
brake systems, 49 C.F.R. 571.121, to exempt a 
small category of oversize and construction ve- 
hicles from the applicability of the standard. 
The exemption criteria were proposed in a Jan- 
uary 28, 1975, notice (40 F.R. 4153), which ex- 
panded the criteria for this specialized vehicle 
category in response to comments on an earlier 
exemption proposal (39 F.R. 40168, November 14, 
1974). 

In making the proposal, the NHTSA tenta- 
tively determined that the specialized configura- 
tion of this small category makes compliance 
with the standard so difficult and expensive that 
an exemption from the standard would be justi- 
fied. It was noted that the vehicle function in 
these cases generally results in restricted opera- 
tion on the highway (e.g., at low speed, in permit 
operation, or during daylight hours) and that as 
a result, vehicle exposure on the highway is 
limited. 

The NHTSA proposed a series of criteria in- 
tended to comprehensively identify vehicles with 
these characteristics. Permanent exemption would 
be granted to any vehicle that has (1) an overall 
vehicle width of 108 inches or more, (2) a speed 
attainable in two miles of not more than 33 mph, 
(3) a speed attainable in two miles of not more 
than 45 mph, all-wheel drive, and no cargo- or 
passenger-carrying capacity, (4) an axle that has 
a GAWR of 29,000 pounds or more, (5) two or 
more front steerable axles with a GAWR of 
16,000 pounds or more for each axle; or (6) a 
steerable drive axle driven through gear reduc- 
tion contained within the wheel. 

Three of the nimibered criteria ((3), (5), and 
(6)) were intended to describe the lighter and 
more maneuverable vehicles whose drive axle con- 



figuration or high center of gravity make con- 
formity with the standard expensive and difficult. 
An example of this vehicle type is the large, 
carrier-mounted mobile crane. Based on sub- 
mitted comments, it appears that these criteria 
should be combined as a single compound cri- 
terion in order to avoid inequities in the applica- 
bility of the standard. Specifically, either of the 
criteria numbered (5) or (6) could, of itself, 
permit heavy or cargo-carrying vehicles on the 
highway at unlimited speed without 121-type 
brakes while far smaller vehicles would be sub- 
ject to the regulation. To accomplish the re- 
arrangement, the exception criteria numbered 
(3), (5), and (6) are combined in a new category 
(d) to require for this exception that an expected 
vehicle have a speed attainable in two miles of 
not more than 45 mph, no cargo- or passenger- 
carrying capacity, and either (1) all-wheel drive, 
(2) a steerable drive axle driven through gear 
reduction contained within the wheel, or (3) two 
or more front steerable axles. 

It is recognized that total withdrawal of the 
16,000-pound tandem steerable axle exemption 
would make those vehicles with an unlimited 
highway si>eed unavailable until the axles are 
developed or the vehicle speed is reduced to 45 
mph. Therefore the NHTSA will make final its 
proposed 16,000-pound exemption, but only for 
the interim period until September 1, 1976. 

With regard to the 45-mph maximum speed 
criterion, FMC Corporation suggested that the 
speed be raised somewhat to ensure that vehicles 
excepted on this criterion can use the interstate 
highway system. The NHTSA does not agree 
that it should encourage xise on the interstate 
system of large, high-center-of-gravity vehicles 
that are not subject to a minimum braking stand- 
ard. Accordingly, FMC's request is denied. 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 46 



MkKvci March 1, 1975 



Little comment was received on the other cri- 
teria. Ford Motor Company suggested a 24,000- 
pound figure in place of the 29,000- pound pro- 
posal. For reasons cited in the January proposal 
in response to an identical request by Mack this 
request is denied. 

To the degree that this amendment does not 
grant the requests for exemption raised by 
Marmon Transmotive in its December 23, 1974, 
letter to the Administrator, that pwtition is 
denied. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Standard 
No. 121 (49 C.F.R. 671.121) is amended. . . . 

Effective date: March 1, 1975. Because these 
amendments relieve a restriction and because of 



the imminence of the standard's effective date, it 
is found for good cause shown that an effective 
date sooner than 30 days from the date of their 
publication in the Federal liegister is in the 
public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat 718 
(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority 
at 49 C.F.R. 1.51.) 

Issued on February 28, 1075. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

40 F.R. 8953 
MQrch 4, 197S 



PAET 671; S 121— PRE 46 



EffMHv*: March 21, 1975 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 74-10; Notice 15) 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
brake systems, 49 C.F.R. § 571.121, in response to 
petitions for reconsideration of requirements 
established for trucks and buses, by revision of 
the retardation force requirements applicable to 
on/off highway vehicles until September 1, 1975, 
or September 1, 1976. 

The National Highway TrafiSc Safety Admin- 
istration (NHTSA) established the final form 
of Standard No. 121 for purix)ses of judicial re- 
view in November 1974 (39 F.R. 39880, Novem- 
ber 21, 1974) (Notice 6). Notice 6 established 
interim stopping distance requirements for stand- 
ard highway vehicles, and retardation force re- 
quirements for some on/off highway vehicles. 
Petitions for reconsideration of the decision were 
received from White Motor Corporation, Mack 
Trucks, International Harvester, PACCAR Cor- 
poration, Diamond Reo, and Breeze Corporations. 
General Motors effectively requested reconsidera- 
tion in its response to a separate November 
notice (39 F.R. 40168, November 14, 1974) (No- 
tice 7) by supporting reduced trailer require- 
ments only with corresponding reduction of truck 
stopping distance requirements. 

General Motors, in its response to Notice 7, 
indicated that similar 121 vehicles can register 
as much as a 20-percent difference in stopping 
distances as a result of uncontrolled variability 
in brake component performance. International 
Harvester, which until recently had supported 
5-p)ercent longer stopping distances on an interim 
basis, now points to certain variables, including 
brake linings, in requesting longer distances on 
a permanent basis. Diamond Reo reported the 
same experience in its comments to Notice 2 of 
Docket No. 74-10. PACCAR requested that S5.3 
(stopping distance) be "temporarily repealed" 



and that longer stoping distances be considered 
for the future. The NHTSA concludes that 
PACCAR's request is essentially a petition for 
rulemaking to increase the stopping distances on 
a permanent basis. 

These positions raise issues which can arise 
whenever a standard is first implemented: (1) 
that production variables are so great that in- 
ordinate compliance margins are required and 
(2) that the brake packages necessary to achieve 
these compliance margins are so aggressive that 
the handling qualities and durability of affected 
vehicles are significantly degraded. The NHTSA 
is, of course, interested in receiving on a con- 
tinuing basis any new technical information (par- 
ticularly test data on production vehicles) that 
bears on these important safety issues. Based on 
the information submitted to date, however, 
NHTSA is not prepared to grant the outstanding 
petitions at this time. 

PACCAR also requested that the stopping 
distance requirements be delayed until the per- 
formance of antilock systems and certain test 
procedures, conditions, and the control trailer 
test device are specified in areas considered de- 
ficient by PACCAR. AVhile these issues might 
appropriately be considered for future rulemak- 
ing, the NHTSA does not agree that change of 
these important elements of the standard should 
delay orderly implementation of the standard. 
Accordingly, the PACCAR request in these areas 
is denied. 

The second area of the standard in which man- 
ufacturers seek reconsideration is limited relaxa- 
tion of requirements for vehicles with front 
steerable drive axles (S5.3.1.2). Based on un- 
availability of this axle design, vehicles manu- 
factured before September 1, 1975, with a front 



PART 571 ; S 121— PRE 47 



EffMHv*: March 21. 197S 



steerable drive axle of any size may meet retarda- 
tion force requirements in place of stopping dis- 
tance requirements. Because of unavailability of 
the lighter front driving axles for a greater 
period, vehicles manufactured before September 
1, 1976, with a front steerable drive axle with a 
gross axle weight rating (GAWR) of less than 
18,000 pounds may meet retardation force re- 
quirements in place of stopping distance require- 
ments. 

Diamond Reo, International Harvester, and 
Mack Trucks, Inc., now request that the heavier 
axles also be permitted relaxed requirements un- 
til September 1, 1976. White Motor Company 
in its response to Notice 10 of Docket No. 74-10 
requested the relaxed requirements until Septem- 
ber 1, 1977. The NHTSA indicated in Notice 6 
that this axle type is available and has been 
offered by Oshkosh Truck Company to the other 
manufacturers of this vehicle class. While Dia- 
mond Reo does not indicate it considered the 
Oshkosh axle, the other manufacturers indicate 
that redesign of their limited vehicle output in 
this area to accept the Oshkosh axle would be 
unjustified because of cost. Oshkosh, on the 
other hand, has offered to provide, at cost, tech- 
nical assistance in the installation of Oshkosh 
axles to non-Oshkosh pilot test vehicles, and 
consultation and review of test data obtained 
from truck-manufacturer-conducted tests. 

The NHTSA concludes, based on all informa- 
tion available, that the axle is available at this 
time and that sufficient leadtime has been made 
available for the location and testing of an axle 
of this type. The manufacturers who request 
further delay do not claim that the installation 
is technologically unfeasible or otherwise imprac- 
ticable. Although they cite adverse economic con- 
sequence for the limited numbers of vehicles they 
produce in this category, this argument does not 
consider the major economic consequences for the 
Oshkosh Company, who state that 72 percent of 
their vehicle production would be adversely af- 
fected by any further delay. The petitions of 
White, International Harvester, Diamond Reo, 
and Mack are accordingly denied. 

Due to unavailability until September 1, 1976, 
front steerable non-driving axles with a GAWR 
in excess of 16,000 poimds are permitted the same 



relaxed requirements as the driving axles just ^ 
discussed. White Motor Corporation, in its com- 
ments to Notice 10 of Docket No. 74-10, requested 
the relaxed requirements be extended to Septem- 
ber 1, 1977, because of the long leadtime asso- 
ciated with manufacture of these vehicles. The 
NHTSA will monitor the availability of these 
axles to ensure their readiness for September 1, 
1976, and will consider a later effective date for 
them if they are not available as presently sched- 
uled. At this time, however, it appears that the 
axles will be ready sufficiently in advance of Sep- 
tember 1, 1976, to permit satisfaction of the full 
requirements on that date. Accordingly White's 
petition is denied. 

As earlier noted, both the vehicles equipped 
with certain driving or non-driivng front steer- 
able axles are permitted to meet retardation force 
requirements in place of distance requirements 
for an interim period. A reduction of these re- 
tardation force requirements was the subject of a 
proposal in Notice 7, which was acted on for 
trailers in Notice 11 (40 F.R. 1246, January 7, 
1975). It was concluded that no argument had 
been made for a temporary reduction of retarda- 
tion forces on the front axle of heavy trucks, A 
most of which are integral trucks which ex- 
perience high levels of dynamic load shift during 
braking. Comments by PACCAR to Notice 6, 
however, emphasized that retardation force re- 
quirements at the rear axle could be reduced be- 
cause the load shift off the rear axle effectively 
results in over-torque of that axle. 

The NHTSA's intent in substituting retarda- 
tion force requirements for stopping distance is 
to ensure the best braking that is presently avail- 
able, and it appears that rear brake retardation 
requirements may, in some cases, inhibit the tai- 
loring of brake systems on different vehciles to 
achieve this goal. The most satisfactory means 
to reduce rear axle requirements while maintain- 
ing front axle requirements is to eliminate re- 
quirements for the vehicle as a whole, to permit 
the manufacturer latitude in selecting retardation 
force requireemnts at the rear axle. The present 
requirements for front axle retardation forces 
remain in the standard, and by this notice, the 
NHTSA deletes the requirement for retardation 
force values for the vehicle as a whole. 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 48 



MbcHv*: Mardi SI, l*7S 



PACCAR requested complete withdraws^ of 
the retardation force requirements, as well as the 
brake power and fade requirements as they affect 
all trucks. The NHTSA, of course, considers 
these characteristics of a brake system funda- 
mental, and does not agree that the requirements 
are impracticable or should be withdrawn. 
PACCAR's request is therefore denied. 

With regard to the vehicles that may meet re- 
tardation force requirements in place of stopping 
distances. International Harvester requested con- 
firmation that S6.3.1.2 is an option that the man- 
ufacturer may choose to ignore in the loaded or 
unloaded condition if the vehcile in question meets 
the stopping distance requirements in that condi- 
tion. This agency stated in the preamble to 
Notice 6 that "the NHTSA considers it crucial 
panic stop, loaded or unloaded, if the vehicle is 
to maintain complete directional stability in a 
unable to meet the stopping distance require- 
ments in that condition." International Har- 
vester's understanding of this language is correct. 

PACCAR requested deletion of brake actua- 
tion requirements as redimdant in view of stop- 
ping distance requirements. The NHTSA has 
considered elimination of the requirements pre- 
viously, and concluded at that time that the re- 
quirement should be maintained (37 F.R. 3905, 
February 24, 1972). At this time the actuation 
requirements ensure fast braking on the vehicles 
under S5.3.1.2 which need not meet stopping dis- 
tance requirements. The NHTSA will consider 
this PACCAR request for future rulemaking but 
does not act on the petition for amendment at 
this time. 



Finally, PACCAR requested specification of 
antilock performance characteristics. The stand- 
ard does not require antilock systems, and the 
NHTSA has concluded that specification for man- 
ufacturers who utilize these devices would be 
design restrictive, without a corresponding safety 
benefit. No manufacturer other than PACCAR 
indicates that a safety need exists to specify the 
cycling of antilocks, and the NHTSA is unable 
to determine from the PACCAR petition what 
evidence exists that antilock specification would 
improve vehicle handilng. PACCAR's petition 
is accordingly denied. 

In areas unrelated to the petitions for recon- 
sideration, the NHTSA corrects an error in 
S6.1.8.1 and adds a clarifying word to S5.7.1.2, 
without in any way changing the requirements 
of those paragraphs. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Standard 
No. 121 (49 C.F.R. § 571.121) is amended 

Effective date: March 21, 1975. Because of 
Standard No. 121's March 1, 1975, effective date 
and because this order relieves a restriction, it is 
found for good cause shown that an effective date 
sooner than 30 days from the date of publication 
of that order is in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 (15 U.S.C. 
1392, 1407) ; delegation of authority at 49 C.F.R. 
1.51). 

Issued on March 14, 1975. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

40 F.R. 12797 
March 21, 1975 



PART 571 ; S 121— PRE 4^-80 



EffMtIv*: Jun* 16, I97S 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 74-10; Notico 16) 



This notice responds to three petitions for re- 
consideration of the National Highway Traffic 
Safety Administration's December 31, 1974, deci- 
sion to implement Standard No. 121, Air brake 
systems, as scheduled on January 1, 1975, for 
trailers and on March 1, 1975, for trucks and 
buses. The petition of American Fire Apparatus 
Company for reconsideration of the September 1, 
1975, effective date for fire fighting apparatus is 
granted for a period of six months. The petitions 
of the Milk Industry Foundation and of Repre- 
sentative James H. Quillen for delay of the stand- 
ard as a whole are denied. The petition of White 
Motor Corporation has already been responded 
to by Notice 15 of Docket No. 74-10 (40 F.R. 
12797, March 21, 1975). 

The Milk Industry Foimdation (the Foimda- 
tion) requested delay of the standard as it applies 
to trucks and buses until March 1, 1976, to permit 
further testing of the new braking systems (and 
redesign as necessary) and to conduct an analysis 
of the economic impact of the standard. The 
Foundation believes that insufficient time has been 
allowed for vehicle testing. 

The NHTSA has evaluated the readiness of 
manufacturers to meet the standard throughout 
the four years since issuance. The original Jan- 
uary 1, 1973, effective date was delayed imtil 
September 1, 1974. In early 1974, the vehicle and 
component test programs involved in implemen- 
tation were again evaluated, and the NHTSA pro- 
posed delay of the effective date to January 1, 1975 
(39 F.R. 7966, March 1, 1974) (39 F.R. 17563, 
May 17, 1974). Based on submitted comments, 
it was determined that a March 1, 1975, effective 
date for trucks and buses, and a January 1, 1975, 
date for trailers would permit adequate time to 
complete prepmrations for the standard's imple- 



mentation (39 F.R. 17750, May 17, 1974) (39 F.R. 
20380, June 10, 1974). These delays were under- 
taken although one manufacturer expressed 
readiness to meet the September 1974 date, and 
International Harvester, the largest manufacturer 
of air-braked vehicles, expressed readiness to 
meet the January 1, 1975, effective date. This 
decision was reevaluated in November 1974 and 
found to remain valid, although a few larger 
vehicle types were permitted a later date (39 F.R. 
39880, November 12, 1974). 

The Foundation also requested that the stand- 
ard be delayed until its economic impact is eval- 
uated. The NHTSA conducted an evaluation of 
economic impact shortly before implementation 
of the standard (39 F.R. 43639, December 17, 
1974) and, based on several hundred comments, 
concluded that the standard should be imple- 
mented (40 F.R. 1248, January 7, 1975). The 
NHTSA disagrees with the Foundation that the 
evaluation should have been conducted in accord- 
ance with Executive Order 11821 (on inflation 
impact studies) when the final criteria and pro- 
cedures for implementation of the Order were 
not yet established. The NHTSA has committed 
itself to continue monitoring the effectiveness of 
its standard in accordance with its statutory 
mandate, with a view to identifying any modifica- 
tions that would lower costs while achieving com- 
parable levels of safety. 

As indicated by the submissions of the Milk 
Industry Foundation, there has evidently been 
much confusion among user groups such as the 
dairy industry over the effect of the braking 
standards on their operations. In order to meet 
the requirements that a vehicle stop in a specified 
distance when tested by the government, chassis 
manufacturers have in some cases specified center 



PART 671; S 121— PRE 61 



MlMllvai Jhm I«, I97S 



of gravity heights for conformity purposes that 
are lower than the loaded center of gravity of 
trucks that these operators are accustomed to 
using. The body builders who complete and 
certify the trucks have passed these center of 
gravity specifications on to the user groups. This 
has given rise to fears on the part of the dairy 
industry and others that they must reduce the 
loads carried on their trucks. 

Actually, this is neither the legal effect nor 
the intended iwlicy effect of the standard. The 
standard does not regulate the manner in which 
trucks are loaded or used on the road, and users 
are free to use their own judgment in loading 
their trucks, as they have been in the past. The 
standard is designed so that a properly-designed 
vehicle which satisfies its performance require- 
ments under the conditions stipulated for com- 
pliance testing will perform safely under all 
reasonable conditions or real world use. Trucks 
equipped with the stronger and better-modulated 
brakes required by the standard, when loaded 
similarly to those in the past, should in fact be 
much safer both for their occupants and for the 
rest of the driving public than comparable ve- 
hicles were before. If the NHTSA should dis- 
cover vehicles being produced that do not perform 
safely when loaded in a normal manner and can 
establish that this condition is attributable to 
deficiencies in vehicle manufacture or design, it 
can proceed against their manufacturers under 
its safety-related defect jurisdiction. 

Representative Quillen requested consideration 
of a significant postponement of the standard, 
believing that a delay would increase truck sales. 
An examination of the truck market indicates that 
several months' inventory of trucks manufactured 
without the new systems remained unsold on 
March 1, 1976, suggesting that the economic down- 
turn, rather than the new systems, accounts for 
many lost sales. The American Trucking Asso- 
ciations statistics on general freight tonnage in- 
dicate a steady decline in highway tonnage from 
the high figure reached in November 1978. It 
does appear that scnne of the slowdown is at- 



tributable to "pre-buying" of trucks to avoid 
Standard No. 121, but this effect would occur 
whatever the date of implementation. Accord- 
ingly the petitions of the Milk Industry Founda- 
tion and Representative Quillen are denied. 

American Fire Apparatus Company has re- 
quested that the NHTSA reconsider its decision 
to implement the standard as scheduled, so far as 
it applies to fire fighting vehicles. NHTSA policy 
has been to grant fire fighting vehicles a mini- 
mum of two years from the issuance of any 
standard to achieve compliance because of the 
unique leadtime problems associated with the 
industry. (49 CFR § 671.8). On this basis, the 
NHTSA granted a delay of the effective date 
from September 1, 1974, to September 1, 1976, 
for these vehicles at the request of American Fire 
Apparatus (39 F.R. 17760, May 17, 1974). At 
the same time the general implementation date 
was extended six months. The NHTSA agrees 
that fire fighting apparatus is entitled to a full 
year's delay because of its long leadtime problems. 

By this notice, the NHTSA denies aU out- 
standing petitions for reconsideration of Stand- 
ard No. 121's effective dates, with the exception 
of the date for fire fighting vehicles. 

In consideration of the foregoing, Standard No. 
121 (49 CFR § 671.121) is amended 

Effective date : June 16, 1976. Because the pre- 
viously established effective date for fire fighting 
apparatus was less than 180 days after the date 
of publication of this amendment in the Federal 
Register, it is found for good cause shown that 
an effective date less than 180 days from the date 
of publication is in the public interest 

(Sec. 108, 119, Pub. L. 89-668, 80 Stat. 718 (16 
U.S.C. 1392, 1407) ; delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.61). 

Issued on May 12, 1976. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

40 F.R. 21031 
May 15, 1975 



PABT 671; S 121— PRE 



Effective: September I, 1976 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 74-10; Notice 17) 



This notice responds to six petitions for recon- 
sideration of a recent amendment of Standard 
No. 121, Ah' Brake Systems, 49 CFR 571.121. 
That amendment deleted as of September 1, 
1976, the emergency brake option that permits 
automatic application of parking brakes in place 
of a modulated emergency brake system on trucks 
and buses (40 FR 2989, January" 17, 1975). In 
addition, that notice standardized the operation 
of the emergency brake control, specified a mini- 
mum number of emergency brake applications 
and releases, and provided for the integrity of 
the towing vehicle braking system in the event 
of failure of the air lines to the towed vehicle. 
On the basis of information and arguments pre- 
sented by several petitioners, the National High- 
way Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 
hereby withdraws the amendment that specified 
a minimum number of emergency brake applica- 
tions and releases. 

None of the petitions for reconsideration ob- 
jected to the NHTSA's deletion of automatic 
parking brake application as a means of provid- 
ing emergency braking capability. There were 
no objections to the specification that the emer- 
gency brake system control be the same control 
as that for the service brake system. These pro- 
visions remain unchanged, and will become effec- 
tive September 1, 1976. 

The standard tests the emergency braking 
capability of a vehicle by introducing a "single 
failure in the service brake system." Bendix 
Corporation requested that this requirement be 
replaced by a requirement for emergency brak- 
ing capability "with either circuit's reservoir at 
zero psi." Presumably Bendix is suggesting that 
the "split system" design found on today's air- 
braked trucks be tested by draining either side 



of the system. Standard No. 121 does not specify 
a particular type of emergency brake system and 
cannot therefore specify failing any particular 
component. The NH'^SA believes a vehicle 
should be capable of making stable in-line stops 
within the specified distance with a failure in any 
hose or reservoir in the service brake system. 
For instance, a failure in the air hose to the right 
front wheel sliould not make it impossible for 
a driver to keep the vehicle within a 12 foot wide 
lane. The agency does intend to clarify the 
status of various air lines in powered vehicles, 
particularly towing vehicles, to answer questions 
raised by International Harvester and the State 
of California concerning service brake system 
failure. These clarifications will appear in an 
upcoming notice on parking brake systems. 

International Harvester, Ford, Midland-Ross, 
and Bendix objected to the requirement of S5.7.3 
that requires the emergency brake system to be 
capable of not less than two applications and 
releases, as determined by brake chamber air 
pressure of 60 psi or more during the pressure 
phase of operation, and brake chamber air pres- 
sure of not more than 1 psi during the pressure 
release phase of operations. The manufacturers 
(and the American Trucking Associations) were 
concerned that the specification of 1- to 60-psi 
values was design-restrictive and would force 
substantial redesign of vehicles before the exist- 
ing new designs can be thoroughly tested. Some 
of the petitions questioned wliether the test would 
be conducted statically or dynamically. 

The NHTSA is concerned that manufacturers 
not be upduly burdened with modifications to 
their systems during the initial introduction pe- 
riod of the standard. The agency has regularly 
indicated in its correspondence that it is monitor- 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 53 



Effective: September 1, 1976 



ing implementation of the standard to minimize 
disruption and costs wliile maintaining the stand- 
ard's safety benefits. The maximum and mini- 
mum pressure values in question were specified 
simply as objective testing criteria and are not 
intended as design restrictions that fulfill a safety 
function. 

In view of the redesign problems noted and 
their accompanying disruption, the NHTSA 
withdraws the application-and-release specifica- 
tion and will not reestablish it without further 
notice and opportunity to comment. (In answer 
to Bendix's question, it is noted that the 60 psi 
value in the pressure release phase was not in- 
tended to replace the "zero-torque" criterion for 
release of spring brakes.) 

Midland-Ross, International Harvester, and 
Ford expressed several objections to the three 
requirements of S5.7.4 and the related test con- 
ditions of S6.1.14. The requirements are intended 
to assure that a combination vehicle remains 
capable of emergency braking performance in the 
event of hose failure between the towed and tow- 
ing veliicles, including failure of both hoses due 
to trailer breakaway. 

Comments incorrectly assumed that the re- 
quirements specify modulation of the trailer 
braking system in the event of hose failure under 
S5.7.4(b) and (c). In fact, section S5.7.4 does 
not require trailer braking requirements, but only 
specifies that a towing vehicle meet the enu- 
merated requirements under certain conditions. 

To eliminate confusion about the role of 
trailers in these tests, sections S5.7.4(a) and (b) 
are hereby revised to make it clearer that the 
vented line(s) to the trailer are only test con- 
ditions under which the towing vehicle must 
demonstrate emergency braking stopping distance 
capability. To eliminate a separate source of 
confusion in section S5.7.4(a), which is intended 
to simulate trailer breakaway, the section is also 
revised to eliminate an incorrect requirement for 
testing with a failed control line and an intact 
trailer supply line. 

Midland-Ross and International Harvester ob- 
jected to the test conditions of S6.1.14, which 
underlie S5.7.4(a) and (b). The S6.1.1.4 proce- 
dure is intended to simulate a trailer breakaway 
or, in the alternative, a failed control line on a 



loaded combination vehicle. International Har- 
vester expressed the belief that five new tests 
were thereby added to the standard. It is now 
made clear tliat only one additional test of a 
single-unit vehicle capable of towing is required, 
and two additional tests of a truck tractor are 
required. These tests are conducted in the test 
sequence at steps 4(e) (loaded) and 6(e) (un- 
loaded). 

International Harvester questioned as un- 
realistic the criterion in S6.1.14 that specifies a 
1-minute delay in braking following rupture of 
a brake line. The NHTSA recognizes that the 
towing vehicle protection system is expected to 
act in much less than 1-minute to protect the 
air pressure in the towing veliicle from the effects 
of a loss of air pressure in the towed vehicle. 
The 1-minute interval is intended only to permit 
adverse "testing-to-failure" of an inadequately 
designed system. As a practical matter, the 
NHTSA will test when air pressure is lowest 
during the 1-minute period. 

Midland-Ross implied in its comments on 
S6.1.14 that the S5.7.4(a) test would be con- 
ducted with a trailer attached whose emergency 
brake system is activated during testing. As 
noted earlier, S5.7.4 applies only to a towing 
vehicle and only its brakes are tested. In 
S5.7.4(a), no trailer is attached to the towing 
vehicle (simulating a breakaway). In S5.7.4(b), 
a trailer is attached (simulating a failure), but 
only tractor brake activation is permissible. 

Midland-Ross expressed the belief that S5.7.4 
(c) requires modulation of the trailer brakes 
in the event of a failed air control or supply 
line. In fact, the section only requires that a 
towing vehicle be capable of modulating the air 
in the supply or control line following a single 
failure in the service brake system on the tow- 
ing vehicle, but does not require modulation of 
the towed vehicle emergency brake system under 
any circumstances (including control line fail- 
ure). The requirement ensures that a single 
failure in the truck itself will not prevent modu- 
lation of an unimpaired system from the towing 
vehicle protection system rearwards. A clarifica- 
tion has been added to limit the single failure 
to the service brake system of the towing vehicle, 
not including either of the air lines to the towed 
vehicle. 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 54 



Effective: September 1, 1976 

Because several modifications are being made (See. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 

to the requirements of S5.7 as previously pub- (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407) ; delegation of authority 

lished, the NHTSA is republishing the entire at CFR 1.51.) 

provisions of S5.7 as they will become effective Issued on July 23 1975. 

September 1, 1976, although paragraphs S5.7, 

S5.7.1, S5.7.2, and S6.1.14 remain unchanged. . ,-, ^ 

James B. Gregory 

In consideration of the foregoing, S5.7 of 'Vdministrator 

Standard No. 121 (49 CFR § 571.121) is amended, 
effective September 1, 1976. ... 40 F R 31771 

Eifective date; September 1, 1976. July 29, 1975 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 55-56 



Effcctiv*: Auguil 27, 1975 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 75-16; Notice 2) 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
Brake Systems, 49 CFR 571.121, to establish new 
service brake system stopping distances until 
January 1, 1978, and increase brake actuation 
and release times on trucks, buses, and trailers. 
This notice also excludes from the standard 
trailers with an unloaded vehicle weight that is 
not less than 95 percent of the gross vehicle 
weight rating (GVWR), and any other vehicle 
with an unloaded vehicle weight that is not less 
than 95 percent of the GVIVR and which has a 
maximum speed of 45 mph. 

The NHTSA proposed reduction of Standard 
No. 121's stopping distance requirements (40 FR 
24915, June 11, 1975), because data submitted 
by manufacturers of air-braked vehicles and air 
brake components indicated that variability of 
performance of certain braking and related com- 
ponents could in some vehicles necessitate more 
aggressive brake packages than are desirable to 
achieve the stopping distances contemplated in 
development of the standard. The agency also 
proposed increases in permissible brake actuation 
times to promote optimum cycling of the anti- 
lock systems used by most manufacturers in meet- 
ing the stopping distances. At the same time, 
the agency denied the petitions of the American 
Trucking Associations (ATA) and Consolidated 
Freightways (Consolidated) for extension of the 
required stopping distances as necessary to elimi- 
nate the necessity of high-torque brakes and anti- 
lock systems, and for suspension in whole or part 
of the standard's requirements. The denials were 
based on NHTSA's view that increased direc- 
tional stability is critical to improvement of brake 
system performance on heavy vehicles, particu- 
larly articulated vehicles, that share the highway 
with passenger cars and other light vehicles. 



Vehicle manufacturers and component sup- 
pliers supported without exception the increase 
in stopping distances. Additional discussions 
and data submitted by some manufacturers in- 
dicate that substantial effort is being made to 
identify and control all of the variables which 
affect compliance of air-braked vehicles with 
Standard No. 121. Most manufacturers recom- 
mended that the proposed extended distances be 
made permanent, but the NHTSA concludes that 
insufficient data exist at this time on which to 
base such a decision. Accordingly, the stopping 
distances are modified as proposed for a period 
that ends January 1, 1978. The NHTSA does 
not, therefore, accept the recommendations of 
Freightliner and Mack for longer distances, or 
the Freightliner recommendation for testing at 
55 mph. 

The proposed language has been modified to 
specify correctly the NHTSA's intent to extend 
service brake stopping distances on a skid number 
75 surface for all vehicles under S5.3.1.2 and 
S5.3.1.3. Also, the additional sentence proposed 
for S5.3.1.3 was essentially redundant in view 
of the modifications to Table Ila, and that sen- 
tence has been deleted. 

Manufacturers also supported the proposed 
increase in permissible brake actuation timing 
from 0.35 to 0.40 seconds for trucks and buses, 
from 0.25 to 0.35 seconds for trailer converter 
dollies, and from 0.25 to 0.30 seconds for trailers 
other than trailer converter dollies. The ATA 
recommended establishment of a minimum as 
well as maximum limit. While this suggestion 
may have merit, the NHTSA does not have suf- 
ficient time at this point to fully consider the 
suggestion, and will therefore treat it as a peti- 
tion for rulemaking. 



PART 571: S 121— PRE 57 



Effecllve: August 27, 1975 



Bendix suggested that, the increased actuation 
be permitted only for an interim period, but the 
NHTSA has evidence of degraded performance 
generated by the present timing which justifies 
a permanent change. Bendix is requested to sub- 
mit any data for consideration that support its 
view that superior systems will exist by January 
1, 1978, that provide both a faster and smoother 
response. 

Freightliner Corporation repeated its view that 
actuation and release times are design-restrictive 
without corresponding safety benefit. Wliile the 
NHTSA is willing to consider Freightliner's 
view for future action, it is noted that the ATA 
suggestion of minimum and maximum limits 
conflicts directly with Freightliner's point of 
view. In any case, elimination of these require- 
ments was not contemplated by the scope of the 
proposal and will not be undertaken at this time. 

Several manufacturers indicated that the peti- 
tions for longer actuation time implied the need 
for an increase in brake release times as well. 
Wliite Motor Corporation supplied data sub- 
stantiating the view that optimization of in- 
creased brake actuation times depends in part 
on design freedom to increase the release time 
in the necessary valving. Although increased re- 
lease times were not proposed by the June notice, 
an increase in release times comparable to actua- 
tion times was contemplated by the intent of the 
modifications to permit somewhat slower valve 
action. To accomplish the intended revision, the 
NHTSA concludes that it is in the public interest 
to modify both the actuation and release time 
of S5.3.3 and S5.3.4 by an increase in permis- 
sible timing of 0.05 seconds. Fruehauf's sug- 
gested increase in trailer timing to 0.35 will be 
further considered, but the NHTSA does not 
believe it necessary to act on this level of increase 
without benefit of comments by interested persons. 

The ATA, Consolidated, the Milk Industry 
Foundation, and Hackney Brothers submitted 
arguments that the stopping distance and brake 
timing modifications were insufficient to solve 
fundamental cost and reliability problems attri- 
buted by them to Standard No. 121. The ATA 
cited recall campaigns of antilock systems as 
evidence that the presence of high-torque front 
brakes on some trucks creates safety problems 
in the event of antilock malfunction. The ATA 



also asserted that "no lockup" performance on 
trailers contributes insignificantly to highway 
safety, and asked that antilock, if mandated, be 
required only on a vehicle's drive axles. 

Consolidated relied on a manufacturer's state- 
ments of vehicle instability with the 121 brake 
systems as a ground for suspension of the stand- 
ard. The company also cited cost estimates for 
the standard, and requested that they be sub- 
stantially reduced by dropping the "no lockup" 
requirement entirely, or requiring it only on the 
vehicle's drive axles, and by extending stopping 
distances to eliminate the requirement for front 
axle 121 -type brakes. 

The NHTSA has undertaken an extensive 
evaluation of the standard's effect on truck brak- 
ing characteristics. One element of that evalua- 
tion is testing by the NHTSA's Safety Research 
Laboratory of pre-121 and 121-equipped truck 
tractors. One series of tests (on a dry surface 
with a skid number somewhat higher than 75) 
included a stop from 60.8 mph in 231.2 feet by 
a 121-equipped International Harvester tractor 
(with front axle antilock disconnected and a full 
brake application) and a 121-equipped trailer 
in which the front wheel brakes never locked up. 
This experience indicates that 121-type front 
brake package need not be so aggressive as to 
create a safety hazard in the event of an antilock 
malfunction which escapes the notice of the 
driver. 

The NHTSA's monitoring of the standard's 
implementation also supports NHTSA's position 
that the malfunctions experienced in initial anti- 
lock production and installation are an inevitable 
consequence of the introduction of a new system 
in high production. Those malfunctions that 
have been determined to be safety -related and 
that could result in unsafe highway operation 
have been recalled for remedy by the manufac- 
turers concerned. 

The NHTSA has evaluated Consolidated's re- 
vised cost objections to the standard. The in- 
formation submitted does not modify the 
NHTSA's earlier conclusions. Accordingly, the 
NHTSA reaffirms its decisions not to revise or 
revoke the standard as requested by the ATA, 
Consolidated, the Milk Industry Foundation, or 
Hackney Brothers. 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 58 



Effective: August 27, 1975 



Consolidated characterized its comments as 
both a petition for reconsideration and, in the 
alternative, as a petition to modifj' the standard. 
A petition for reconsideration may under 49 
CFR 553.35 be submitted in response to a "rule" 
issued by the agency, but the denial of a peti- 
tion is not itself a "rule" within the meaning of 
that section. Therefore Consolidated's "petition 
for reconsideration" is invalid. Considered in 
the alternative as a petition for rulemaking to 
modify the standard, the NHTSA denies the 
petition for the reasons noted. 

Other comments to the docket requested 
changes to the standard which the NHTSA will 
consider further but cannot dispose of at this 
time. The revisions in this notice must be issued 
prior to September 1, 1975, so that manufacturers 
are not required to meet the 245-foot stopping 
distance which becomes effective September 1, 
1975. The issues, in addition to others noted 
earlier, that will be further considered are : 

(1) Freightliner's request for deletion of the 
dynamometer requirements for the front axle; 

(2) PACCAR's request for modification of dyna- 
mometer requirements on the drive axles; and 

(3) several manufacturers' requests for a de- 
creased grade in the parking brake requirement. 
The XHTSA does not agree with Freightliner 
that the test surface and control trailer specifica- 
tions are insufficiently objective, or that the wet 
surface and emergency brake stopping distances 
need to be increased. Testing by the NHTSA 
Safety Research Laboratory does not indicate a 
need to increase these distances. The agency will, 
of course, continue to evaluate any new data that 
indicate more objective specifications can be rea- 
sonably implemented, or that longer distances are 
advisable. 

The third proposal for modification of the 
standard was revision of the standard's appli- 
cability to exclude trailers with a GVWR of 
10,000 pounds or less, trailers with an unloaded 
vehicle weight that is not less than 95 percent 
of its GVWR, and any other vehicle that has a 
maximum speed of 45 mph, an unloaded vehicle 
weight that is not less than 95 percent of its 
GVWR, and no passenger-carrying capacity. 

No comments opposed the exclusion of trailers 
whose unloaded vehicle weight is not less than 



95 percent of the GV^VR, and the standard is 
accordingly amended to exclude this vehicle 
group. 

The State of California objected to exclusion 
of light trailers (GVWR of 10,000 pounds or 
less) on several grounds. Their comments point 
out that a light trailer built for low density 
loads can be dangerously overloaded. The State 
also cited that ease with which higher GVWR 
trailers could be derated in order to take advan- 
tage of the exclusion for lighter vehicles. Cali- 
fornia also noted the increased complexity of 
enforcement of the standard with added exclu- 
sions of this type. Altec Industries, which peti- 
tioned for the exclusion, argued that the exclusion 
should be broadened to 15,000 pounds GVWR. 
On balance, the NHTSA agrees with California 
that the exclusion might create more safety prob- 
lems than safety benefit. In view of this con- 
clusion, the agency has decided not to revise the 
standard's applicability in this respect. 

The NHTSA also proposed exclusion of ve- 
hicles with the following characteristics : a speed 
attainable in 2 miles of not more than 45 mph, 
an unloaded vehicle weight that is not less than 
95 percent of the vehicle GVWR, and no pas- 
senger-carrying capacity. Manufacturers of those 
vehicles generally supported the proposal but 
expressed confusion over each of the criteria. 
The largest question arose over the meaning of 
what constitutes the "unloaded vehicle weight." 
Crane Carrier, FMC Corporation, The Heavy 
Specialized Carriers Conference (HSCC), and 
Koehring pointed to the significant difference 
between the GVWR and the actual traveling 
weight of crane carrier models, considering 
special equipment which may or may not be in- 
cluded with the vehicle as optional or be per- 
mitted on the vehicle in transit. 

The NHTSA has expressed the unloaded ve- 
hicle weight criterion in terms defined in § 571.3 
of its regulations (49 CFR §571.3) in a way 
which avoids these problems raised by the manu- 
facturers. As defined, "unloaded vehicle weight" 
will normally be the GVWR of a vehicle minus 
its rated cargo load and its assigned occupant 
weight (at least 150 pounds). The rated cargo 
load would not include the weight of portions 
of a vehicle which are essential to its specialized 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 59 



Effective: August 27, 1975 



function whether or not they are removed in 
accordance with State regulation for transit pur- 
poses. To arrive at "unloaded vehicle weight," 
a manufacturer must only refer to the GVIVR 
he has assigned to his vehicle, and subtract from 
it the rated cargo load he has assigned plus 150 
pounds of each occupant position. These calcula- 
tions are totally separate from the presence of 
particular optional equipment or necessary com- 
ponents which may or may not be removed for 
highway travel. 

Manufacturers and the HSCC also asked 
whether occupant positions for crew members 
such as flagman or crane operator could be pro- 
vided without constituting "passenger-carrying 
capacity." The NHTSA uses the word pas- 
senger in this context to mean a person who does 
not help to operate the vehicle or its equipment, 
i.e., who is not part of an operating crew. Posi- 
tions for the crew necessary to operate a vehicle's 
specialized equipment would not disqualify a 
vehicle under the passenger-carrying criterion. 

Manufacturers recommended that the speed 
limitation of 45 mph be raised to 50 mph to allow 
unrestricted travel on all highway systems. The 
NHTSA remains convinced that this equipment 
with a high center of gravity and limited brak- 
ing poses a safety problem when traveling at 
near highway speed in the flow of traffic. With 
the national speed limit at 55 mph, it is con- 
sidered prudent to limit the speed of air-braked 
vehicles without 121 brake systems to a maxi- 
mum attainable speed of 45 mph. For the benefit 
of the HSCC, it is noted that the definition of 
maximum attainable speed specifies a level sur- 
face for the basis of speed determination. 



With regard to these vehicles, American-Cole- 
man Company has requested that all vehicles 
equipped with a front steerable drive axle of 
8,000 pounds GVWR or more be excluded from 
the requirements of Standard No. 121. The 
NHTSA has already fully considered this re- 
quest, and in a series of notices (30 FR 40168, 
November 14, 1974; 40 FR 4153, January 28, 
1975; 40 FR 8953, March 4, 1975), explained its 
reasons for not proposing such an exclusion. 
American-Coleman's petition is repetitious of its 
earlier petition and contains no new data for 
consideration. Accordingly, it is denied. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Standard 
No. 121 (49 CFR 571.121) is amended 

Effective date: August 27, 1975. Because these 
amendments do not impose additional require- 
ments on any person and because they must re- 
place provisions effective September 1, 1975, it 
is found for good cause shown to be in the public 
interest that they become effective sooner than 
30 days following publication in the Federal 
Register. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 
(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority 
at 49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on August 15, 1975. 



Robert L. Carter 
Acting Administrator 

40 F.R. 38160 
August 27, 1975 



PART 571: S 121— PRE 60 



Effective: December 5, 1975 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 75-7; Notice 3) 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
Brake Systems, 49 CFR 571.121, to permit bulk 
agricultural commodity trailers designed with a 
high ground clearance and other special features 
for use with farm tractors during harvests to 
meet emergency and parking brake requirements 
other than those specified in So. 6 and S5.8 of the 
standard. 

This amendment follows reevaluation of a peti- 
tion filed by Utility Trailer Manufacturing Com- 
pany, in light of further data submitted by the 
company on August 6. 1975, and September 23, 
1975 (these materials appear in NHTSA Docket 
Xo. 75-5). The NHTSA proposed to exclude 
certain specialized agricultural trailers from the 
emergency and parking brake requirements be- 
cause "spring" brakes utilized for these systems 
were creating particular difficulty in harvest op- 
erations (40 FR 13316, March 26, 1975). Com- 
ments persuaded the agency not to proceed with 
the proposal at that time for two reasons (40 
FR 28097. July 3, 1975). It appeared that con- 
trol of air leakage and the installation of a 
manual parking brake control would permit dis- 
engagement in most cases, and that manual 
release and application would serve in the in- 
stances when all air had leaked away. The 
second reason to withdraw the proposal was that 
the excluded category was not defined well 
enough to limit the extent of the exclusion. 

Utility has since supplied information indicat- 
ing that air leakage cannot be controlled suf- 
ficiently to rely on it for the release of spring 
parking brakes under the specialized conditions 
of harvest operations. More significantly. Utility 
reports that inexperienced persons who mechani- 
cally release the spring brakes often fail to re- 
engage them for highway operation, permitting 



the trailer to operate on the highway without a 
secondary means of braking. 

With regard to the agency's concern that 
manufacturers supplying spring brakes to meet 
the standard would be placed at a competitive 
disadvantage by the exclusion, utility indicates 
that the manufacturers of the specialized trailers 
in question would approve of a parking and 
emergency braking system other than spring 
brakes. The competitive disadvantage would 
actually have occurred only with those highway 
trailers that were unintentionally included in the 
overly broad proposed definition. 

With the newly submitted information in mind, 
the NHTSA has decided to issue the proposed 
exclusion, but in a more limited form than pro- 
posed. To limit the effect of this amendment 
to those trailers for which it is intended, the 
proposed definition is modified to describe more 
precisely trailers that are actually disconnected 
from highway truck-tractors and drawn through 
the fields as part of their function. 

As discussed in the preamble to the proposal, 
the exclusion would have entirely excluded the 
trailers from the standard's emergency and park- 
ing brake requirements, relying on Bureau of 
Motor Carrier Safety Regulations to ensure the 
use of a "breakaway" system in their place. It 
is now apparent, however, that many of the ve- 
hicles in question would operate intrastate only, 
and that the breadth of the proposal must be 
somewhat restricted, to exclude only vehicles that 
are fitted with a breakaway system that complies 
with BMCS requirements. 

In order to permit manufacturers of these 
specialized vehicles to commence manufacture for 
the 1976 harvest season, the NHTSA has decided 
to extend the duration of the limited exclusion 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 61 



EfFecllve: December 5, 1975 

from the proposed date of January 1, 1976, to that an immediate effective date is in the public 

March 1, 1976. Utility requested that the date interest. 

be extended to June 30, 1976, and the NHTSA (gee. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 

will issue a further proposal if any further delay (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407) ; delegation of authority 

of this magnitude appears justified. at 49 CFR 1.51.) 

In consideration of the foregoing, S5.6 and Issued on November 28, 1975. 

S5.8 of Standard No. 121 (49 CFR 571.121) are 
amended. . . . 

Effective date : December 5, 1975. Because this . 1 • • ' 

J .i ,, jji- 1 Admmistrator 

amendment does not place additional require- 
ments on any person, and because manufacturers 

must be informed of future requirements for 40 F.R. 56898 

their products, it is found for good cause shown December 5, 1975 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 62 



Effective: Januory 6, 1976 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 75-16; Notice 6) 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
BraA-e Sysfcms, to suspend until January 1, 1977, 
the service brake stopping; distance requirements 
as they apply to buses. 

The XHTSA proposed a 1-year suspension of 
service brake stopping distances (40 FR 52856, 
November 13, 1975) follo\vin<; a public meeting 
on Standard No. 121 (49 CFR 571.121). Bus 
performance was reviewed by manufacturers and 
users, and by Rockwell International Corpora- 
tion, presently the manufacturer of most of the 
axles and antilock components installed in transit 
and intercity buses. Other data collected by the 
NHTSA substantiate a pattern of erratic be- 
havior in bus antilock equipment used in most 
transit and intercity operation that warrants dis- 
connection while a correction is fully developed. 
The proposed suspension was based on manu- 
facturer and user requests for a period in which 
modified hardware could be field-evaluated along 
with other antilock systems being offered for bus 
applications. 

The comments uniformly supported the pro- 
posed suspension of service brake stopi)ing dis- 
tance requirements (including the "no lockup" 
requirement) for transit and intercity buses. 
However, component suppliers, bus manufac- 
turers, and bus users differed over the extent 
of the proposal in three areas. 

Rockwell and General Motors expressed con- 
cern that the preamble to the proposal had not 
made clear whether the proposal was intended 
to meet problems other than erratic antilock per- 
formance. Transport of New Jersey also objected 
that the proposal might be narrowly construed 
to mean that only the "no lockup" aspect of the 
stopping distance requirements would be sus- 
pended. AM General questioned whether the 



revision included "any attempt to impose stop- 
ping distance and lane limit test requirements." 

The NHTSA proposed suspension of the serv- 
ice brake stopping distance requirements (S5.3.1) 
in their entirety, not just the "no lockup" re- 
quirements of the section. Suspension of the 
entire requirement was intended to moderate the 
maintenance and misadjustment problems that 
are associated with the faster wearing brake lin- 
ings provided in compliance with the standard. 

General Motors noted that, because of the 
unique configuration of the braking system on its 
new transit bus, the limited nature of the 
NHTSA's proposed suspension, specifically the 
continuation of the partial system failure require- 
ments; inadvertently prevents their bus from 
utilizing the lower-coefficient linings intended by 
the proposal. This issue is presently under con- 
sideration by the agency, and may be the subject 
of another proposal to be issued shortly. 

The second area of concern to some manufac- 
turers was whether the NHTSA intended to 
cover school buses with the proposed exclusion. 
General Motors and AVagner Electric Corpora- 
tion e.xpressed the view that school buses should 
not be included. International Harvester, Crown 
Coach, and several school districts believed that 
the vehicles should be included in the suspen- 
sion. The NHTSA intended to include school 
buses in its proposal and, based on review of the 
comments, has concluded that these buses should 
be included in the suspension. 

International Harvester pointed out that the 
stop-and-go cycle of school bu.ses can cause dis- 
tinctive stresses on the air brake system that 
are similar to that encountered in transit bus 
operation. While not made explicit, Crown 
Coach's comments illustrate that some school 



PART 571 ; S 121— PRE 63 



Effectiv*: January 6, 1976 



buses utilize the same axles and antilock com- 
ponent as transit and intercity buses. Limiting 
the suspension to a portion of the air-braked 
school buses would create an unintended economic 
disadvantage for some school buses of this type. 

Wagner and General Motors argued tliat some 
school buses utilize truck chassis and brake sys- 
tems, and that these systems do not suffer from 
the same problems as the bus components criti- 
cized at the public meeting. It is true that the 
components utilized generally in trucks and also 
used in some buses have been determined to be 
reliable (40 FR 59222, December 22, 1975). The 
usage cycles of various vehicles are, however, 
evidently an important factor in some of the 
problems that have been experienced. Consider- 
ing the similarity in the usage of school buses 
to that of transit buses, this agency has decided 
that the most desirable course of action is to 
include school buses in the suspension of stopping 
distance requirements. 

The third area in which commenters ques- 
tioned the extent of the proposal was the length 
of the suspension. Bus operators and their 
associations {e.g., National Association of Motor 
Bus Owners (NAMBO), American Public 
Transit Association (APTA), Chicago Transit 
Authority) and bus manufacturers (General 
Motors, AM General, and Eagle International) 
generally argued that a 1-year evaluation period 
following development of adequate corrections to 
existing or new hardware would be necessary. 
Motor Coach Industries and Transportation 
Manufacturing Corporation (manufacturers of 
the majority of intercity buses) supported the 
1-year proposal without commenting on the ade- 
quacy of the proposed 1-year suspension period. 
Rockwell, as the present manufacturer of most of 
the transit and intercity bus axles and antilock 
systems, cautioned the NHTSA that a specific 
date for the effectiveness of S5.3.1 would reduce 
the thoroughness of the evaluation program. The 
company did support the 1-year suspension. 

The proposal was for a 1-year suspension only. 
This agency has not found this to be an emer- 
gency situation that would justify promulgating 
a delay greater than that proposed without the 
benefit of notice and opportunity to comment. 
Therefore, the NHTSA liereby makes final its 
proposed 1-year suspension of the stopping dis- 



tance requirements, and will further evaluate the 
requests for a longer period of suspension. Bus 
manufacturers have stated that they intend to 
initiate field evaluation of improved antilock 
systems, and this agency will actively monitor 
these efforts as the basis for future action. The 
support of field testing by NAMBO and APTA 
will also be important in making meaningful 
evaluations of anticipated system modifications. 

Chrysler, Freight liner, and International Har- 
vester recommendations on other aspects of the 
standard and its applicability to other vehicle 
types have been responded to in the NHTSA's 
recent proposal for modification of the standard's 
performance levels for trucks, buses and trailers 
(40 FR 59222, December 22, 1975). 

AM General asked whether buses manufac- 
tured during the suspension could be required 
to be retrofitted in the future. The answer is 
no. The motor vehicle safety standards in effect 
at any date apply according to their terms only 
to vehicles manufactured on that date. In an- 
swer to AM General's question whether the anti- 
lock system on 121-equipped buses may "be 
completely deactivated and dismantled and the 
vehicle returned to the pre-FMVSS #121 
status," it is the position of the NHTSA that 
manufacturers and operators are the persons qual- 
ified and required to determine the safest con- 
figuration for operation of their vehicles, subject 
to applicable Bureau of Motor Carrier Safety 
regulations. With regard to the effect of Federal 
law on the modification of safety systems, a 
manufacturer of air-braked buses that conform 
to the air brake standard may instruct the owners 
of its products to disconnect the antilock system 
used to meet the standard, for the period neces- 
sary to correct a safety-related defect in the sys- 
tem that may make its operation hazardous. 

It is also noted that this amendment constitutes 
the NHTSA's favorable response to APTA's 
October 6, 1975, request for modification of the 
standard, and the October 22, 1975, petitioii of 
the Eastern Bus ]Maintenance Men's Conference 
concerning Standard No. 121. 

In consideration of the foregoing, S5.3.1 of 
Standard No. 121 (49 CFR 571.121) is amended 
by the addition of the phrase "Except for a bus 
manufactured before January 1, 1977, and" at the 
beginning of the first sentence. 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 64 



Effective January 6, 1976 

Effective date: January 6, 1976. Because this Issued on January 6, 1976. 

amendment represents a relaxation of the require- 
ments of the standard and does not place addi- 
tional requirements on any person, it is found James B. Gregory 
for good cause shown that an immediate effective Administrator 
date is in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 
(14 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority 41 F.R. 1598 

at 49 CFR 1.50.) January 9, 1976 



\ 



PART 571; S 121— PRE 65-66 



EffacHve: Fabruory 26, 1976 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

(Docket No. 75-5; Notice 5) 

Air Brake Systems 



This notice amends Standard No. 121, Air 
Brake Systems, by extending until June 30, 1976, 
the period in whicli bulk agricultural commodity 
trailers designed with a high ground clearance 
and other special features for use with farm 
tractors during harvest can meet emergency and 
parking brake requirements other than those 
specified in S5.6 and S5.8 of the standard. 

Standard No. 121, 49 CFE 571.121, presently 
permits this specialized agricultural trailer cate- 
gory the option, until March 1, 1976, of meeting 
the parking brake requirements of the standard 
(actuation by an energj' source unaffected by air 
loss in the service brake system) or the air- 
actuated "breakaway" system that complies with 
Bureau of Motor Carrier Safety requirements 
(49 CFR §393.43). The NHTSA proposed ex- 
tension of the March date to June 30, 1976 (41 
FR 1763, January 12, 1976) to permit completion 
of the bulk agricultural commodity trailers nec- 
essary for the 1976 harvest season, in response to 
a petition of the Utility Trailer Manufacturing 
Company. In a separate action, the NHTSA 
has also proposed that the present parking brake 
requirements for all vehicles subject to the stand- 
ard be broadened in a closely similar fashion to 
permit the use of an air energy source, with 
single diaphragm brake chambers as well as dual 
diaphragm brake chambers for actuation of the 
parking brake (40 FR 56920, December 5, 1975). 
It is clear, however, that separate and swifter 
action than the general proposal is necessary to 
permit the manufacture of trailers for the 1976 
harvest. 

Utility Trailer Manufacturing Company sup- 
ported the extension of the period to June 30, 
1976, and advocated extension of the option to 
all other air-braked vehicles. Wesco Truck and 



Trailer Sales (Wesco) also supported the pro- 
posal and suggested that a 2-year suspension of 
the standard would permit perfection of the new 
brake systems. Wesco recommended that the 
parking brake system be made optional on this 
type of agricultural trailer. Fruehauf Corpora- 
tion supported the proposal without qualification. 

In view of the comments received and the 
NHTSA's continued view that the special con- 
siderations for in-field use should be given to 
agricultural trailers with regard to parking 
brake requirements, the agency has decided to 
amend the standard as proposed. The other rec- 
ommendations by Utility and Wesco are noted, 
but they do not fall within the limits of action 
proposed by the NHTSA. 

In consideration of the foregoing, the last sen- 
tences of paragraphs S5.6 and S5.8 of Standard 
No. 121 (49 CFR 571.121) are amended by 
changing the date "March 1, 1976" to "June 30, 
1976." 

Effective date; February 26, 1976. Because 
this amendment creates no additional require- 
ments for any person, and because trailer manu- 
facturers need to know the extent of the option 
period as the basis for planning manufacturing 
schedules, an immediate effective date is found 
to be in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-663, 80 Stat. 718 
(16 U.S.C. 1392, 1407) ; delegation of authority 
at 49 CFR 1.50.) 

Issued on February 20, 1976. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

41 F.R. 8347 
February 26, 1976 



PAET 571; S 121— PRE 67-68 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO 
MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems — Parking Brakes 
(Docket No. 75-16; Notice 27) 



Action; Final rule. 

Summary; This notice amends the air brake 
standard to expand the latitude which a ve- 
hicle manufacturer has in selecting means to 
comply with the parking brake requirements. 
The amendment makes final one of several 
changes to the parking and emergency brake re- 
quirements that had been proposed previously. 
The other proposed changes have been reexamined 
in light of comments to the proposal and to a 
separate proposal outlining plans for replace- 
ment of FMVSS 121 by a new standard. . The 
NHTSA has decided to suspend rulemaking 
action on those items until research results and 
other further information is available. 
Effective date; August 9, 1979. 
For further information contact: 

Mr. Duane Perrin, Office of Crash Avoidance, 
National Highway Traffic Safety Adminis- 
tration. Washington. D.C., 20590 (202-426- 
2153). 

Supplementary information; Standard No. 121 
(49 CFR 571.121) regulates the braking system 
performance of air-braked trucks, buses, and 
trailers. The standard has been in effect for 
trailers since January 1. 1975, and for trucks and 
buses since March 1, 1975. The standard con- 
tains requirements for service brake systems, 
emergency brake systems, and parking brake 
systems. 

More than four years' experience with the 
standard on the part of manufacturers, users, the 
agency, and other interested parties indicate a 
possibility that some of the emergency and park- 
ing brake performance requirements could be 
more broadly stated to allow new design options 
that offer a level of safety equivalent to that 



offered by existing designs. On September 14, 
1978, the NHTSA issued a notice of proposed 
rulemaking (43 FR 41056) that would have sub- 
stantially revised the parking brake requirements 
for all vehicles and the emergency brake require- 
ments for trailers. Subsequent to the issuance 
of that proposal, a mandate was is.sued by the 
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in- 
validating certain aspects of FMVSS 121 (43 
FR 48646, October 19, 1978). In light of the 
court decision, the NHTSA has tentatively de- 
cided to issue a new heavy duty vehicle brake 
standard, FMVSS 130, which will eventually 
replace FMVSS 121. An Advance Notice of 
Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) on Standard 
No. 130 was issued in February (44 FR 9783, 
February 15, 1979). 

Responses to the ANPRM on Standard No. 
130 underscored the need for stability in the 
industrj'. To achieve stability, commenters sug- 
gested avoiding unnecessary changes in Standard 
No. 121, which remains in effect until FMVSS 
130 is issued. In addition, conmienters on the 
September notice pointed out areas where some 
of the proposed changes need further research 
and consideration. For these reasons, most of 
the changes to the parking and emergency brake 
sections of Standard No. 121 that were proposed 
in September are being tentatively put aside. 
Some of the changes proposed in the September 
notice may be raised again in the new proposal 
for Standard No. 130, after further information 
is obtained by the agency. 

The NHTSA has determined, however, that 
one of the proposed changes should not be de- 
layed until rulemaking is completed on FMVSS 
130. That change allows the application of park- 
ing brakes by means of service brake air, as long 



PART 571; S 121-PRE 121 



as the application can be made when a faihire 
exists in the service brake system, and as lonfr 
as the parking brake is held in the applied posi- 
tion by mechanical means. The standard pre- 
viously required parkins brakes to l)e applied 
by a separate enerfj^y soiree, and this change 
allows an alternative to the spring-applied park- 
ing brake systems now used. The alternative 
systems could be less costly and liave essentially 
the same performance as current systems. In 
addition, tlie change allows more compact sys- 
tems to be produced for vehicles such as auto 
transporters where space for moimting of com- 
ponents is at a premium. 

The changes to the parking brake application 
requirements proposed in September (Docket 
No. 75-16; Notice 22) were opposed by the Cali- 
fornia Highway Patrol (CHP), on the assump- 
tion that a diaphragm inside a brake chamber 
is considered part of the brake chamber liousing, 
and tliat the proposal would have allowed a re- 
duction in safety over current systems. Previous 
interpretations, however, have clarified that a 
brake chamber housing is only the outer body 
of the chamber and does not include the dia- 
phragm. Thus, the prescribed performance must 
be achieved with any type of failure in the serv- 
ice brake system, including a ruptured dia- 
phragm. The NHTSA concludes, therefore, that 
this interpretation satisfies the concerns of the 
CHP. The CHP also suggested a slight reword- 
ing to indicate that the required force is applied 
at the drawbar and not in the parking brake 
itself. The wording has been changed somewhat 
to clarify that point. 

The American Trucking Associations (ATA) 
and Transquip Industries objected to the pro- 
posal because it wo>ild require a second reservoir 
on an air-applied parking brake system in order 
for the parking brakes to l)e applied in the event 
of a failure of the service reservoir. The 
NHTSA understands that the use of only one 
reservoir would reduce cost. However, it would 
also offer a significant reduction in performance 
as compared to present systems, because certain 
service brake system failures could occur for 
which there would be no secondary means of 
braking the vehicle. Accordingly, the NHTSA 
concludes that ATA and Transquip Industries' 



objections do not warrant any change in the 
amendment. 

Traffic Transport Engineering, an auto trans- 
porter manufacturer, requested clarification of 
whether two relay valves would be required in 
an air-applied system, since the parking brakes 
would have to l)e capable of application with 
any single failure, and the relay valve could fail. 
Since relay valve failures are relatively common, 
the NHTSA considers it necessary to preserve 
the performance acliieved by present systems. 
Currently, tlie failure of a relay valve would 
not prevent emergency application of the trailer 
brakes. Tlius, if a manufacturer chooses to 
equip a trailer with air-applied parking brakes, 
he would have to devise a means of achieving 
a brake application in case of failure of the serv- 
ice brake relay valve. That could be accom- 
plished by using a second relay valve and reser- 
voir. 

The Dolphin Brake Corporation asked for 
clarification of the proposed wording to deter- 
bine whether or not their parking brake that 
applies by means of hydraulic fluid would meet 
the requirements. The NHTSA believes that the 
wording is sufficiently clear to indicate that, like 
an air-applied system, such a brake would only | 
meet the requirements if a mechanical means of 
holding the application in the event of loss of 
fluid pressure were incorporated. 

In order to minimize changes to FMVSS 121, 
the amended wording for application and hold- 
ing will remain in one paragraph. S5.6.3, as cur- 
rently in the standard. 

Since this amendment relieves a restriction it 
is being made effective immediately. 

In consideration of tlie foregoing, the first 
.sentence of paragraph S5.6.3 of Standard No. 
121 (49 CFE 571.121) is amended .... 

The principal authoi-s of this notice are Duane 
Perrin of the Office of Crash .Vvoidance and 
Roger Tilton of the Office of Chief Counsel. 

Issued on August 6. 1979. 

Joan Claybrook 
.Vdministrator 

44 F.R. 46850 
August 9, 1979 



PART 571; S 121-PRE 122 



i 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO 
MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 



(Docket No. 75- 

Actian: Correction. 

Summary: On August 9, 1979, the NHTSA pub- 
lished i'' the Federal Register a final rule amend- 
ing the applicability section (S3) of Standard 
No. 121. Air Brake Systenw. That notice, which 
added a sentence to the end of S3, contained 
an error in its reference to section S5.7.3. The 
notice appears to show that the entire section of 
So. 7.3 no longer applies to trucks and trailers, 
when the agency intended only for subpara- 
graphs (a) and (b) to be inapplicable to trucks 
and trailers. These vehicles do have to comply 
with S5.7.3(c). Accordingly, the August 9 
notice is corrected by changing the last sentence 
of section S3 to read: Notwithstanding anj' lan- 
guage to the contrary, sections S5.3.1, S5.3.1.1, 



16; Notice 281 

S5.3.2, S5.3.2.2, S5.7.1, S5.7.3(a) and S5.7.3(b) 

of this standard are not applicable to trucks and 

trailers. 

Ejfective date: September 13, 1979. 

For further information contact : 

Mr. Scott Shadle, Office of Crash Avoidance, 
National Highway Traffic Safety Adminis- 
tration. AVashington. D.C. 20.590 (202-426- 
21.53). 

Issued on September 4. 1979. 

Michael M. Finkelstein 
Associate Administrator for 
Rulemaking 

44 F.R. 53166 
September 13, 1979 



PART 571; S 121-PRE 123-124 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO 
MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems — Correction 
(Docket No. 75-16; Notice 29) 



Action: Final rule; correction. 

Summary: On Aujrust 9, 1979, the NIITSA pub- 
lished in the Federal Register a final rule amend- 
ing the applicability section (S3) of Standai'd 
No. 121, Air Brake Systems. On September 13, 
the agencj' published a correction of that final 
rule. An error was made in the September 13, 
correction when reference to section 85.3.2.1 was 
inadvertently deleted from the notice. . Accord- 
ingly, the final rule is corrected by changing the 
last sentence of section S3 to read: Notwith- 
standing any language to the contrary, §§ 5.3.1, 
5.3.1.1, 5.3.2. 5.3.2.1, 5.3.2.2. .5.7.1, 5.7.3(a) and 
5.7.3(b) of this standard are not applicable to 
trucks and trailers. 



Effective date : October 1, 1979. 
For further informxition contact: 

Mr. Scott Shadle, Office of Crash Avoidance, 
National Highway Traffic Safety Adminis- 
tration. Washington, D.C. 20590 (202-126- 
2153). 

Issued on September 25, 1979. 

Michael M. Finkelstein 
Associate Administrator for 
Rulemaking 

44 F.R. 57100 
October 4, 1979 



PART 571; S 121-PRE 125-126 



I 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 

FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 

Air Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 79-03; Notice 4) 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUIMIMARY: This notice amends Standard No. 121, 
Air Brake Systems, to require trucks, buses and 
trailers equipped with air brakes to have service 
brake systems acting on all wheels. This amend- 
ment is being made in response to reports from 
several manufacturers that some trucks and 
trailers were soon to be constructed without front 
axle brakes. The agency concludes that such a 
change would result in a serious downgrading 
of existing brake systems and, accordingly, 
issues this amendment to prevent this from hap- 
pening. 

EFFECTIVE DATE: This amendment is effective July 
24, 1980 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 

Mr. John Machey, Crash Avoidance Division, 
National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, 400 Seventh 
Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20590 
(202426-1714) 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On October 18, 
1979, the agency published a notice of proposed 
rulemaking (44 FR 60120) proposing the implemen- 
tation of a small part of a new safety standard, 
Standard No. 130, Heavy Duty Vehicle Brake 
Systems. The agency has also issued two ANPRMs 
relating to long- and short-term rulemaking issues 
concerning Standard No. 130. Resolution of the 
issues raised in those notices will occur after all 
necessary agency research and analyses have been 
completed. The October 18 notice, which was very 
limited in its scope, proposed the implementation 
of a requirement that heavy duty vehicles have 
brakes acting on all wheels. The requirement was 
proposed in response to a developing problem that 
was brought to the agency's attention by both 



vehicle and equipment manufacturers concerning 
front axle brakes. 

Standard No. 121, Air Brake Systems, formerly 
required trucks and trailers to comply with certain 
stopping distances and other road test require- 
ments. To achieve these requirements, trucks and 
trailers were equipped with front axle brakes 
which aid significantly in improving vehicle stop- 
ping capability. However, in PACCAR v. NHTSA, 
573 F.2d, 632 (9th Cir. 1978) cert, den'd 439 U.S. 
862, the road test requirements were invalidated 
as they apply to trucks and trailers. In light of this 
development, several manufacturers tentatively 
decided to remove front axle brakes as a way to 
reduce slightly the costs associated with the pro- 
duction of heavy duty vehicles. 

When the agency discovered that manufacturers 
intended to remove front axle brakes, the NHTSA 
reexamined data available to it concerning the ef- 
fect that such a removal of brakes would have upon 
the capability of these vehicles to make safe stops. 
The results of this examination, which were de- 
taUed in the proposal and which are available in 
the docket, lead the agency to conclude that the 
removal of front axle brakes increases a vehicle's 
stopping distance. The amount of this increase 
depends upon the type of vehicle, the vehicle 
loading and the effectiveness of its remaining 
brake systems. Sometimes the increase in stopping 
distances is substantial. 

The agency considers any increase in the stop- 
ping distance of heavy vehicles to be contrary to 
the interests of safety. Existing heavy duty 
vehicles equipped with front axle brakes already 
have longer stopping distances than many smaller 
vehicles on the road. This disparity in the stopping 
distances between large and small vehicles in- 
creases the likelihood of accidents between 
vehicles when both are involved in emergency 
braking maneuvers. To permit a reduction in the 
braking capabUities of heavy vehicles, that would 



PART 571; S121-PRE 127 



result in exacerbating the disparity between the 
stopping distances of heavy and lighter vehicles, 
could result in an increased risk of accidents to the 
occupants of both vehicle groups. To prevent the 
downgrading of heavy vehicle brake systems, the 
agency issued its notice of proposed rulemaking to 
require brakes acting on all wheels. 

Sixteen comments were received in response to 
the notice of proposed rulemaking. Most of the 
commenters concurred with the agency's attempt 
to prevent the downgrading of heavy duty vehicle 
brake systems. However, many of the commenters 
raised minor objections to the manner in which the 
proposed action was to be taken. 

The largest single complaint from the com- 
menters concerning the proposal was that it would 
implement only a small portion of a new safety 
standard. Many commenters suggested that the 
agency should not implement any part of that 
standard (Standard No. 130) until all research has 
been completed and the agency is prepared to 
issue the standard in its entirety. In connection 
with this comment, several manufacturers sug- 
gested that the proposed amendment would be 
more appropriately placed in Standard No. 121. 

Manufacturers argued the merits of amending 
Standard No. 121 rather than implementing Stand- 
ard No. 130 in several ways. First, they argued 
that by implementing Standard No. 130 in a 
piecemeal fashion, the agency is subjecting itself to 
many of the criticisms that have surrounded 
Standard No. 121. Therefore, they suggested that 
the agency defer action on Standard No. 130 until a 
complete standard can be issued. Further, they 
stated that the implementation of a new safety 
standard would increase paperwork and would re- 
quire changes in certification labels and incomplete 
vehicle documents. They suggest these changes 
would add costs and would require extending the 
leadtime before the proposed requirement could 
become effective. On the other hand, manufac- 
turers stated that an amendment of Standard No. 
121 would not require them to change certification 
labels or modify incomplete vehicle documents. 
This would lower the costs associated with the pro- 
posal. Also, the leadtime for implementing a 
change in Standard No. 121 would be minimal. 

In response to the manufacturers first argument 
that no portion of Standard No. 130 should be im- 
plemented until the entire standard is ready for 
issuance, the agency disagrees. Currently, the 



NHTSA is conducting several research programs 
concerning heavy duty vehicle brakes. Some of this j 
rulemaking is long-term while some is short-term. 
The agency contemplates implementation of some 
portions of the short-term rulemaking actions prior 
to obtaining information on all of its long-term 
rulemaking goals. This is the typical rulemaking 
process for many of the agency's standards. It is 
not in the interest of safety to defer short-term 
safety gains while waiting for the results of long- 
term safety rulemaking. 

The agency is more persuaded by the manufac- 
turers's second argument that implementation of a 
portion of Standard No. 130 at this time would un- 
necessarily impose additional paperwork burdens 
upon manufacturers, whereas amending Standard 
No. 121 to accomplish the same result would not in- 
crease their paperwork burdens. As the NHTSA 
indicated in the notice proposing this amendment, 
the agency seeks only to maintain the existing 
quality of braking systems. Whether this goal is 
achieved by amending Standard No. 121 or im- 
plementing part of Standard No. 130 is not impor- 
tant to the agency. However, since manufacturers 
would prefer amending Standard No. 121 and since 
implementing part of Standard No. 130 would be 
more costly, the agency agrees with those com- m 
menters who would prefer an amendment of Stand- I 
ard No. 121, and that standard is amended by this 
notice. Several commenters objected to the pro- 
posal on the grounds that it was a design standard 
rather than a performance standard. These com- 
menters suggested that the agency should delay 
amendments implementing any requirements until 
the correct performance requirements are 
developed. The agency disagrees. 

All of the agency's safety standards affect 
design choices to some degree. The very setting of 
any performance standard implies some narrowing 
of design choice. Although the agency attempts to 
minimize the effect, in some instances a significant 
limitation on design is necessary to secure a par- 
ticular type of safety improvement. Standard No. 
121 does not differ from other safety standards in 
its effect on design. It uses performance re- 
quirements although some elements of design are 
restricted. Even though this amendment increases 
slightly the standard's effect on design choice, the 
standard remains performance oriented. Further, 
the effect of the old standard was to require brakes 
acting on all wheels. Although this amendment is 



PART 571; 8121 -PRE 128 



more specific in that requirement, the result is 
the same. Commenters should note that the 
agency is not specifying the design of the brakes 
that must be used on each wheel. Accordingly, 
the NHTSA concludes that this amendment does 
not substantially or unnecessarily affect design 
and allows manufacturers significant flexibility in 
the design and improvement of their braking 
systems. 

As a result of the PACCAR decision and the 
resulting possibility of brake performance down- 
grading, the agency is forced to take immediate 
corrective action. The PACCAR decision raised 
questions concerning the stopping distance re- 
quirements for trucks and trailers. The Court 
urged the agency to reexamine its stopping dis- 
tance requirements and to ensure the propriety 
of any requirement that might be reimposed. In 
response, the agency has commenced exploratory 
rulemaking to determine the appropiate stopping 
distances for trucks and trailers. When the 
rulemaking is completed, it is contemplated that 
stopping distance requirements will be reim- 
posed. The agency cannot reimpose those re- 
quirements until the research is completed. Given 
the absence of stopping distance requirements 
for trucks and trailers, and the time required for 
k reimplementing stopping distances and the im- 
' mediate problem of brake system downgrading, 
the agency must adopt a more expedient ap- 
proach to prevent the existing levels of safety in 
heavy-duty vehicle brakes from being reduced. 

Kelsey-Hayes supported this rulemaking ac- 
tion but at the same time requested an inter- 
pretation of an entirely unrelated section of 
Standard No. 121. Unrelated requests for inter- 
pretations should not be included with docket 
comments on a specific proposal. The agency will, 
however, respond to Kelsey-Hayes by a letter or 
in a separate notice. 

In accordance with Executive Order 12044, the 
agency has reviewed the impacts of this proposed 
amendment and has determined that it is not 
significant. Since the amendment will merely re- 
quire manufacturers to continue to manufacture 
vehicles as they are doing currently, the costs 
associated with this amendment will be minimal. 
Further, the agency has adopted the manufac- 
turers' suggestions to incorporate this amend- 
ment in Standard No. 121 to further minimize the 
possibility of any increased costs. 



Since this amendment imposed no additional 
burdens upon any manufacturer and only re- 
quires manufacturers to continue existing 
manufacturing practices and since it is in the in- 
terest of safety to prohibit as soon as possible the 
manufacture of vehicles without front axle 
brakes, the amendment is effective 45 days after 
publication in the Federal Register. In the notice 
proposing this amendment, commenters objected 
to an immediate effective date especially if the 
amendment were made in Standard No. 130. Com- 
menters indicated that more time would be re- 
quired to change certification labels. Since the 
amendment is being incorporated into the ex- 
isting Standard No. 121, the agency considers 
these objections to the effective date to be no 
longer valid. Nonetheless, the agency is giving 45 
days of leadtime to ensure that all manufacturers 
have ample time to comply with the re- 
quirements. 

In accordance with the foregoing. Volume 49 of 
the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 571 is 
amended by revising Standard No. 121, Air Brake 
Systems, as follows: 

1. A new paragraph S5.1.8 is added to 49 CFR 
Part 571.121 to read: 

S5.1.8 Brake distribution. Each vehicle shall be 
equipped with a service brake system acting on 
all wheels. 

2. A new paragraph S5.2.2 is added to 49 CFR 
Part 571.121 to read: 

S5.2.2 Brake distribution. Each trailer shall be 
equipped with a service brake system acting on 
all wheels. 

The principal authors of this notice are John 
Machey of the Crash Avoidance Division and 
Roger Tilton of the Office of Chief Counsel. 

Issued on June 2, 1980. 



Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 

45 FR 38380 
June 9, 1980 



\ 



PART 571; S121-PRE 129-130 



i 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 121 



Air Brake Systems— Trucks, Buses and Trailers 
(Docket Nos. 70-16, 70-17; Notice No. 2) 



51. Scope. This standard establishes perform- 
ance and equipment requirements for brai<ing 
systems on vehicles equipped with air brake 
systems. 

52. Purpose. The purpose of this standard is 
to insure safe braking performance under normal 
and emergency conditions. 

53. Application. This standard applies to 
trucks, buses, and trailers equipped with air 
brake systems. However, it does not apply to: 

(a) Any vehicle that has an overall vehicle 
width of more than 102 inches with extendable 
equipment in the fully retracted position; 

(b) Any vehicle equipped with an axle that 
has a gross axle weight rating (GAWR) of 
29,000 pounds or more; 

(c) Any truck or bus that has a speed attain- 
able in 2 miles of not more than 33 mph; 

(d) Any truck that has a speed attainable in 
2 miles of not more than 45 mph, an unloaded 
vehicle weight that is not less than 95 percent 
of its GVWR, and no capacity to carry occu- 
pants other than the driver and operating crew; 

(e) Any trailer that has a gross vehicle weight 
rating GVWR of more than 120,000 pounds 
and whose body conforms to that described in 
the definition of "Heavy hauler trailer" set forth 
inS4; 

(f) Any trailer that has an unloaded vehicle 
weight which is not less than 95 percent of its 
GVWR; and 

(g) Any load divider dolly. 

In addition, the standard does not apply to a 
heavy hauler trailer manufactured before Jan- 
uary 1, 1979; any vehicle manufactured before 
January 1, 1979, that, in combination with 



another vehicle, constitutes a part of an auto 
transporter; and any vehicle manufactured be- 
fore September 1, 1977, that has a GAWR for 
any axle of 24,000 pounds or more, or two or 
more front steerable axles with a GAWR of 
16,000 pounds or more for each axle. 

S4. Definitions. 

"Air brake system" means a system that uses 
air as a medium for transmitting pressure or 
force from the driver control to the service brake, 
but does not include a system that uses com- 
pressed air or vacuum only to assist the driver in 
applying muscular force to hydraulic or me- 
chanical components. 

"Antilock system" means a portion of a serv- 
ice brake system that automatically controls the 
degree of rotational wheel slip at one or more 
road wheels of the vehicle during braking. 

"Auto transporter" means a truck and a 
trailer designed for use in combination to trans- 
port motor vehicles, in that the towing vehicle 
is designed to carry cargo at a location other 
than the fifth wheel and to load this cargo only 
by means of the towed vehicle. 

"Heavy hauler trailer" means a trailer with 
one or more of the following characteristics: 

(1) Its brake lines are designed to adapt to 
separation or extension of the vehicle frame; 
or 

(2) Its body consists only of a platform 
whose primary cargo-carrying surface is not 
more than 40 inches above the ground in an 
unloaded condition, except that it may include 
sides that are designed to be easily removable 
and a permanent "front-end structure" as that 
term is used in § 393.106 of this title. 



PART 571; S 121-1 



"Initial brake temperature" means the average 
temperature of the service brakes on the hottest 
axle of the vehicle 0.2 miles before any brake 
application. 

"Load divider dolly" means a trailer com- 
posed of a trailer chassis and one or more axles, 
with no sohd bed, body, or container attached, 
and which is designed exclusively to support 
a portion of the load on a trailer or truck ex- 
cluded from all the requirements of this stand- 
ard. 

"Skid number" means the frictional resistance 
of a pavement measured in accordance with 
American Society for Testing and Materials 
Method "E-274-70 (as revised July 1974)" at 40 
mph, omitting water delivery as specified in para- 
graphs S7.1 and 7.2" of that method. 

"Speed attainable in two miles" means the 
speed attainable by accelerating at maximum rate 
from a standing start for two miles on a level 
surface. 

S5. Requirements. Each vehicle shall meet 
the following requirements under the conditions 
specified in S6. 

S5.1 Required equipment— trucl(S and buses. 

Each truck and bus shall have the following 
equipment: 

55.1.1 Air Compressor. An air compressor of 
sufficient capacity to increase air pressure in the 
supply and service reservoirs from 85 pounds per 
square inch (psi) to 100 (psi) when the engine 
is operating at the vehicle manufacturer's maxi- 
mum recommended rpm within a time, in seconds, 
determined by the quotient 

actual reservoir capacity x 25 
required reservoir capacity 

55.1.2 Reservoirs. One or more service reser- 
voir systems, from which air is delivered to the 
brake chambers, and either an automatic con- 
densate drain valve for each service reservoir or 
a supply reservoir between the service reservoir 
system and the source of air pressure. 

SS.1.2.1 The combined volume of all service 
reservoirs and supply reservoirs shall be at least 
twelve times the combined volume of all service 
brake chambers at maximum travel of the pistons 
or diaphragms. 



55.1.2.2 Each reservoir shall be capable of 
withstanding an internal hydrostatic pressure of 
five times the compressor cutout pressure or 500 
p.s.i., whichever is greater for 10 minutes. 

55.1.2.3 Each service reservoir system shall be 
protected against loss of air pressure due to 
failure or leakage in the system between the 
service reservoir and the source of air pressure, 
by check valves or equivalent devices whose 
proper functioning can be checked without dis- 
connecting any air line or fitting. 

55.1.2.4 Each reservoir shall have condensate 
drain valve that can be manually operated. 

S5.1.2.3 Towing vehicle protection system. If 

the vehicle is intended to tow another vehicle 
equipped with air brakes, a system to protect the 
air pressure in the towing vehicle from the effects 
of a loss of air pressure in the towed vehicle. 

55.1.4 Pressure gauge. A pressure gauge in 
each service brake system, readily visible to a 
person seated in the normal driving position, 
that indicates the service reservoir system air 
pressure. The accuracy of the gauge shall be 
within plus or minus 7 percent of the compressor 
cut-out pressure. 

55.1.5 Warning signal. A signal, other than 
a pressure gauge, that gives a continuous warn- 
ing to a person in the normal driving position 
when the ignition is in the "on" or "run" position 
and the air pressure in the service reservoir sys- 
tem is below 60 psi. The signal shall be either 
visible within the driver's forward field of view, 
or both audible and visible. 

55.1.6 Antilock warning signal. A signal on 
each vehicle equipped with an antilock system 
that gives a continuous warning to a person in 
the normal driving position when the ignition is 
in the "on" or "run" position in the event of a 
total electrical failure of the antilock system. 
The signal shall be either visible within the 
driver's forward field of view or both audible, 
for a duration of at least 10 seconds, and con- 
tinuously visible. The signal shall operate in the 
specified manner each time the ignition is re- 
turned to the "on" or "run" position. 

55.1.7 Service braice stop lamp switch. A 

switch that lights the stop lamps when the service 



PART 571; S 121-2 



brake control is statically depressed to a point that 
produces a pressure of 6 psi or less in the service 
brake chambers. 

S5.1.8 Brake distribution. Each vehicle shall be 
equipped with a service brake system acting on all 
wheels. 

55.2 Required equipment— trailers. Each trailer 
shall have the following equipment: 

55.2.1 Reservoirs. One or more reservoirs to 
which the air is delivered from the towing vehicle. 

55.2.1.1 A reservoir shall be provided that is 
capable, when pressurized to 90 psi, of releasing the 
vehicle's parking brakes at least once and that is 
unaffected by a loss of air pressure in the service 
brake system. 

55.2.1.2 Total service reservoir volume shall be 
at least eight times the combined volume of all serv- 
ice brake chambers at maximum travel of the 
pistons or diaphragms. 

55.2.1.3 Each reservoir shall be capable of 
withstanding an internal hydrostatic pressure of 
500 p.s.i. for 10 minutes. 

55.2.1.4 Each reservoir shall have a condensate 
drain valve that can be manually operated. 

55.2.1.5 Each service reservoir shall be pro- 
tected against loss of air pressure due to failure or 
leakage in the system between the service reservoir 
and its source of air pressure by check valves or 
equivalent devices. 

55.2.2 Brake distribution. Each trailer shall be 
equipped with a service brake system acting on all 
wheels. 

55.3 Service brakes— road tests. The service 
brake system on each truck and bus shall, under the 
conditions of S6. 1 , meet the requirements of S5.3. 1 , 
S5.3.3, and S5.3.4 when tested without adjustments 
other than those specified in this standard. The 
service brake system on each trailer shall, under the 
conditions of S6. 1 , meet the requirements of S5.3.2, 
S5.3.3, and S5.3.4 when tested without adjustments 
other than those specified in this standard. How- 
ever, the truck and trailer portions of an auto 
transporter (if both are manufactured after January 
1, 1979) shall, in combination, meet the require- 
ments of S5.3.1 as they apply to a single unit truck 
or bus, in place of the requirements of S5.3.2 as they 
apply to the trailer portion, and in place of the re- 



quirements of S5.3.1 as they apply to the truck por- 
tion in the loaded condition. 

S5.3.1 Stopping distance— trucks and buses. 

Except for a school bus when stopped six times for 
each combination of weight, speed, and road condi- 
tion specified in S5.3.1.1, in the sequence specified 
in Table I, the vehicle shall stop at least once in not 
more than the distance specified in Table II, 
measured from the point at which movement of the 
service brake control begins, without any part of the 
vehicle leaving the roadway and without lockup of 
any wheel at speeds above 10 mph except for 

(a) Controlled lockup of wheels of not more than 
one second allowed by an antilock system, or 

(b) Lockup of wheels on nonsteerable axles other 
than the two rearmost nonliftable, nonsteerable 
axles on a vehicle with more than two nonsteerable 



TABLE I 
STOPPING SEQUENCE 

1. Burnish 

2. Control trailer service brake stops at 60 mph 
(for truck-tractors tested with a control trailer 
in accordance with S6. 1.10.6). 

3. Control trailer emergency brake stops at 60 
mph (for truck-tractors tested with a control 
trailer in accordance with S6.1.10.7). 

4. Stops with vehicle at gross vehicle weight 
rating: ' 

(a) 20 mph service brake stops on skid number 
range 71-81. 

(b) 60 mph service brake stops on skid number 
range 71-81. 

(c) 20 mph service brake stops on akid number 
range 20-30. 

(d) 20 mph emergency brake stops on skid 
number range 71-81. 

(e) 60 mph emergency brake stops on skid 
number range 71-81. 

5. Parking brake test with vehicle loaded to 
gross vehicle weight rating. 

6. Stops with vehicle at unloaded weight plus 
500 lb.: 

(a) 20 mph service brake stops on skid number 
range 71-81. 



PART 571; S 121-3 



on skid 



(b) 60 mph service braite stops on skid number 
range 71-81. 

(c) 20 mph service brake stops on skid number 
range 20-30. 

(d) 20 mph emergency brake stops on skid 
number range 71-81. 

(e) 60 mph emergency brake stops 
number range 71-81. 

7. Parking brake test with vehicle at unloaded 
weight plus 500 lb. 

S5.3.1.1 Stop the vehicle from 60 m.p.h. and 
20 mph on a surface with a skid number in 
the range of 71 to 81, and from 20 mph on a 
wet surface with a skid number in the range 
of 20 to 30, with the vehicle (a) loaded to its 
gross vehicle weight rating, and (b) at its un- 
loaded vehicle weight plus 500 pounds (including 
driver and instrumentation). If the speed at- 
tainable in 2 miles is less than 60 mph, the ve- 
hicle shall stop from a speed in Table II that is 
4 to 8 mph less than the speed attainable in 2 
miles. 

Table II.— Stopping Distance in Feet 



Vehicle- 



Service Brake 
stopping distance 



Emergency Brake 
stopping distance 



speed 


Column 1 


Column 2 


Column 3 


Column 4 


in 


Skid 


Skid No. 


Skid No. 


71-81 


miles 


Skid No. 


20-20 






per hour 


71-81 








20 


35 


60 


83 


85 


25 


53 




123 


131 


30 


75 




170 


186 


35 


101 




225 


250 


40 


131 




288 


325 


45 


165 




358 


409 


50 


203 




435 


504 


55 


246 




520 


608 


60 


293 




613 


720 



S5.3.2. Stopping capability— trailers. When 
tested at each combination of weight, speed, and 
road condition specified in S5.3.2.1, in the se- 
quence specified in Table I, with air pressure of 
90 psi in the control line and service reservoir 
system and with no application of the towing 
vehicle's brakes, a trailer shall stop without any 
part of the trailer leaving the roadway and with- 



out lockup of any wheel at speeds above 10 mph, 
except for 

(a) Controlled lockup of wheels of not more 
than one second allowed by an antilock 
system; or 

(b) Lockup of wheels on nonsteerable axles 
other than the two rearmost nonliftable; 
nonsteerable axles on a trailer with more 
than two nonsteerable axles; or 

(c) In the case of an axle system having more 
than four wheels, lockup of any wheel 
other than the outermost wheel at each 
end of the axle system. 

55.3.2.1 Stop the vehicle from 60 m.p.h. and 
20 mph on a surface with skid number in the 
range of 71 to 81, and from 20 mph on a wet 
surface with a skid number in the range of 20 
to 30, with the vehicle (a) loaded to its gross 
vehicle weight rating, and (b) at its unloaded 
vehicle weight plus 500 pounds (including in- 
strumentation). 

55.3.2.2 When stopped in accordance with 
S5.3.2., any trailer designed exclusively for har- 
vesting logs or pulpwood and constructed with 
a skeletal frame with no means for attachment 
of a solid bed, body, or container, and with an 
arrangement of air control lines and reservoirs 
designed to minimize damage in off-road opera- 
tions, need not meet the requirements relating to 
wheel lockup, but must nevertheless meet the re- 
quirements of staying within the 12-foot lane. 

S5.3.3 Brake actuation time. With an initial 
service reservoir system air pressure of 100 psi, 
the air pressure in each brake chamber shall, 
when measured from the first movement of the 
service brake control, reach 60 psi in not more 
than 0.45 seconds in the case of trucks and buses, 
0.35 seconds in the case of trailer converter dol- 
lies, and 0.30 seconds in the case of trailers other 
than trailer converter dollies. A vehicle designed 
to tow a vehicle equipped with air brakes shall 
be capable of meeting the above actuation time 
requirement with a 50-cubic-inch test reservoir 
connected to the control line coupling. A trailer, 
including a trailer converter dolly, shall meet the 
above actuation time requirement with its brake 
system connected to the test rig shown in 
Figure 1. 



PART 571; S 121-4 



FIGURE 1 
TRAILER TEST RIG 



relative to brake chamber air pressure shall have 
values not less than those shown in Column 1 
of Table III. Retardation force shall be deter- 
mined as follows: 



RESERVOIR 

12000 cu >n I 



TRACTOR PROTECTION VALVE 

(OPTIONAL I 

SUPPLY COUPLING - 



TABLE III 
BRAKE RETARDATION FORCE 



RESERVOIR 

(2000 cu ■" ) 



U^ 



^ 



CONTROL COUPLING 
^ SERVICE BRAKE PEDAL 



S5.3.4 Brake release time. With an initial 
service brake chamber air pressure of 95 psi, the 
air pressure in each brake chamber shall, when 
measured from the first movement of the service 
brake control, fall to 5 psi in not more than 
0.55 seconds in the case of trucks and buses, and 
fall to 5 psi in not more than 0.65 seconds in the 
case of trailers, including trailer converter dollies. 
A vehicle designed to tow another vehicle 
equipped with air brakes shall be capable of 
meeting the above release time requirement with 
a 50-cubic-inch test reservoir connected to the 
control line coupling. A trailer, including a 
trailer converter dolly, shall meet the above re- 
lease time requirements with its brake system 
connected to the test rig shown in Figure 1. 

S5.4 Service brake system— dynamometer tests. 

When tested without prior road testing, under 
the conditions of S6.2, each brake assembly shall 
meet the requirements of S5.4.1, S5.4.2, and 
S5.4.3 when tested in sequence and without ad- 
justments other than those specified in the stand- 
ard. For purposes of the requirements of S5.4.2 
and S5.4.3, an avierage deceleration rate is the 
change in velocity divided by the deceleration 
time measured from the onset of deceleration. 

SS.4.1 Brake retardation force. The sum of 

the retardation forces exerted by the brakes on 
each vehicle designed to be towed by another 
vehicle equipped with air brakes shall be such 
that the quotient 

sum of the brake retardation forces 

sum of GAWRs 



BRAKE RETARDATION 


BRAKE CHAMBER 


FORCE GAWK 


PRESSURE, p.s.i. 


Column 1 


Column 2 



0.05 
0.12 

0.18 
0.25 
0.31 
0.37 
0.41 



20 
30 
40 
50 
60 
70 
80 



SS.4.1. 1 After burnishing the brake pursuant 
to S6.2.6, retain the brake assembly on the inertia 
dynamometer. With an initial brake temperature 
between 125 °F and 200 °F, conduct a stop from 
50 mph, maintaining brake chamber air pressure 
at a constant 20 psi. Measure the average torque 
exerted by the brake from the time the specified 
air pressure is reached until the brake stops and 
divide by the static loaded tire radius specified 
by the tire manufacturer to determine the re- 
tardation force. Repeat the procedure six times, 
increasing the brake chamber air pressure by 10. 
After each stop, rotate the brake drum or disc 
until the temperature of the brake falls to be- 
tween 125°F. and 200°F. 

S5.4.2 Brake power. When mounted on an 
inertia dynamometer, each brake shall be capable 
of making 10 consecutive decelerations at an 
average rate of 9 fpsps from 50 mph to 15 mph, 
at equal intervals of 72 seconds, and shall be 
capable of declerating to a stop from 20 mph at 
an average deceleration rate of 14 fpsps one 
minute after the 10th aceleration. The series of 
decelerations shall be conducted as follows: 

S5.4.2.1 With an initial brake temperature 
between 150°F and 200°F for the first brake 
application, and the drum or disc rotating at a 
speed equivalent to 50 mph, apply the brake and 



PART 571; S 121-5 



decelerate at an average deceleration rate of 9 
fpsps to 15 mph. Upon reaching 15 mph, accel- 
erate to 50 mph and apply the brake for a second 
time 72 seconds after the start of the first appli- 
cation. Repeat the cycle until 10 decelerations 
have been made. The service line air pressure 
shall not exceed 100 psi during any deceleration. 

S5.4.2.2 One minute after the end of the last 
deceleration required by S5.4.2.1 and with the 
drum or disc rotating at a speed of 20 mph, de- 
celerate to a stop at an average deceleration rate 
of 14 fpsps. The service brake line air pressure 
shall not exceed 108 psi. 

S5.4.3 Brake recovery. Starting 2 minutes 
after completing the tests required by S5.4.2, the 
brake of a vehicle other than either front axle 
brake of a truck-tractor shall be capable of mak- 
ing 20 consecutive stops from 30 mph at an aver- 
age deceleration rate of 12 ft/s/s, at equal 
intervals of 1 minute measured from the start of 
each brake application. The service line air 
pressure needed to attain a rate of 12 ft/s/s shall 
be not more than 75 Ib./in.^, and not less than 
20 Ib./in.^ for a brake not subject to the control 
of an antilock system, or 12 Ib./in.^ for a brake 
subject to the control of an antilock system. 

55.5 Antilock system. 

55.5.1 Antilock system failure. On a vehicle 
equipped with an antilock system, electrical fail- 
ure of any part of the antilock system shall not 
increase the actuation and release times of the 
service brakes. 

55.5.2 Antilock system power— trailers. On a 

trailer equipped with an antilock system that re- 
quires electrical power for operation, the power 
shall be obtained from the stop lamp circuit. 
Additional circuits may also be used to obtain 
redundant sources of electrical power. 

55.6 Parking brake system. Each vehicle 
other than a trailer converter dolly shall have a 
parking brake system that under the conditions 
of S6.1 meets the requirements of S5.6.1 or 
S5.6.2, at the manufacturer's option, and the re- 
quirements of S5.6.3 and S5.6.4. However, a 
trailer that is designed to transport bulk agricul- 
tural commodities in off-road harvesting sites and 
to a processing plant or storage location, as evi- 



denced by skeletal construction that accommo- 
dates harvest containers, a maximum length of 28 
feet, and an arrangement of air control lines and 
reservoirs that minimizes damage in field opera- 
tions, shall meet the requirements of this section 
or, at the option of the manufacturer, the require- 
ments of § 393.43 of the title. 

S5.6.1 Static retardation force. With all other 
brakes rendered inoperative, during a static 
drawbar pull in a forward or rearward direction, 
the static retardation force produced by the ap- 
plication of the parking brakes shall be: 

(a) In the case of a vehicle other than a truck- 
tractor that is equipped with more than two 
axles, such that the quotient 

static retardation force 



GAWR 

is not less than 0.28 for any axle other than a 
steerable front axle; and 

(b) In the case of a truck-tractor that is 
equipped with more than two axles, such that 
the quotient 

static retardation force 



GVWR 
is not less than 0.14. 

55.6.2 Grade fiolding. With all parking 
brakes applied, the vehicle shall remain sta- 
tionary facing uphill and facing downhill on a 
smooth, dry portland cement concrete roadway 
with a 20% grade, both (a) when loaded to its 
gross vehicle weight rating, and (b) at its un- 
loaded vehicle weight plus 500 pounds (includ- 
ing driver and instrumentation). 

55.6.3 Application and fiolding. The parking 
brakes shall be applied by an energy source that 
is not affected by loss of air pressure or brake 
fluid pressure in the service brake system. Once 
applied, the parking brakes shall be held in the 
applied position solely by mechanical means. 

55.6.4 Parking brake control— trucks and buses. 

The parking brake control shall be separate from 
the service brake control. It shall be operable 
by a person seated in the normal driving posi- 
tion. The control shall be identified in a manner 
that specifies the method of control operation. 



PART 571; S 121-6 



The parking brake control shall control the park- 
ing brakes of the vehicle and of any air braked 
vehicle that it is designed to tow. 

S5.7 Emergency brake system— trucks and 
buses. Each vehicle shall be equipped with an 
emergency brake system which, under the con- 
ditions of S6.1, conforms to the requirements of 
S5.7.1 through S5.7.3. The emergency brake 
system may be a part of the service brake system 
or incorporate portions of the service brake and 
parking brake systems. 

S5.7.1 Emergency brake system performance. 

When stopped six times for each combination 
of weight and speed specified in S5.3.1.1 on a 
road surface with a skid number of 75, with a 
single failure in the service brake system of a 
part designed to contain compressed air or brake 
fluid (except failure of a common valve, mani- 
fold brake fluid housing, or brake chamber hous- 
ing), the vehicle shall stop at least once in not 
more than the distance specified in Column 3 of 
Table II, measured from the point at which 
movement of the service brake control begins, 
without any part of the vehicle leaving the road- 
way, except that a truck-tractor tested at its un- 
loaded vehicle weight plus 500 pounds shall stop 
at least once in not more than the distance 
specified in Column 4 of Table II. 

55.7.1.1 Automatic application. The parking 
brakes shall be automatically applied and the 
supply line to any towed vehicle vented to at- 
mospheric pressure when the air pressure in all 
service reservoirs is less than the automatic ap- 
plication pressure level. The automatic applica- 
tion pressure level shall be between 20 and 45 
p.s.i. 

55.7.1.2 Automatic braking performance. With 
the parking brake automatically applied, a ve- 
hicle shall either be capable of meeting the re- 
quirements of S5.7.2.3, with distances measured 
from the point of automatic application, or shall 
have a static retardation force quotient not 
greater than 0.40 for any axle, determined in 
accordance with S5.6.1. 

55.7.1.3 Release after automatic application. 

After automatic application, the parking brakes 
shall be releasable at least once by means of a 
parking control. The parking brakes shall be 



releasable only if they can be automatically re- 
applied and exert the force required by S5.6 
immediately after release. 

S5.7.1.4 Manual operation. The parking 
brakes shall be manually operable and releasable 
when the air pressure in the service reservoir 
system is sufficient to keep the parking brakes 
from automatically applying. 

S5.7.2 Emergency brake system operation. 

The emergency brake system shall be applied and 
released, and be capable of modulation, by means 
of the service brake control. 

55.7.2.1 Emergency braking control. The 

emergency braking system shall be controlled by 
the service brake control or the parking brake 
control. The control for the emergency braking 
system shall control the brakes on any towed 
vehicle equipped with air brakes. 

55.7.2.2 Emergency braking system failure. 

In the event of a failure of a valve, manifold, 
brake fluid housing, or brake chamber housing 
that is common to the service brake and emer- 
gency braking systems, loss of air shall not cause 
the parking brake to be inoperable. 

55.7.2.3 Emergency braking stopping distance. 

Except as specified in S5.7.2.3.1 and S5.7.2.3.2, 
when stopped six times for each combination of 
weight and speed specified in S5.3.1.1 on a road 
surface with a skid number of 75, with a single 
failure in the service brake system of a part de- 
signed to contain compressed air or brake fluid 
(except failure of a common valve, manifold, 
brake fluid housing, or brake chamber housing), 
the vehicle shall stop at least once in not more 
than the distance specified in column 3 of Table 
II, measured from the point at which movement 
of the brake control begins, without any part of 
the vehicle leaving the roadway, except that a 
truck-tractor tested at its unloaded vehicle weight 
plus 500 pounds shall stop at least once in not 
more than the distance specified in Column 4 of 
Table II. 

S5.7.2.3.1 A truck manufactured before Sep- 
tember 1, 1976, that has a front steerable non- 
driving axle with a GAWR of 16,000 pounds or 
more, or a front steerable drive axle with a 
GAWR of less than 18,000 pounds, and a truck 



PART 571; S 121-7 



manufactured before September 1, 1975, that has 
a front steerable drive axle of any GAWR, must 
stop in accordance with S5.7.2.3 without any 
part of the vehicle leaving the roadway, but need 
not stop in the distances specified. 

S5.7.2.3.2 When stopped in accordance with 
S5.7.2.3, a truck or bus manufactured before 
September 1, 1975, other than a truck described 
in S5.7.2.3.1, shall stop at least once for each 
speed and weight condition on a surface with a 
skid number of 75 in not more than the distance 
specified in Table Ila instead of meeting the stop- 
ping distances specified in Table II for stops on 
a surface with a skid number of 75. 

S5.7.3 Towing vehicle emergency brake re- 
quirements. In addition to meeting the other 
requirements of S5.7, a vehicle designed to tow 
another vehicle equipped with air brakes shall— 

(a) In the case of a truck-tractor in the un- 
loaded condition and a single unit truck which 
is capable of towing an air-brake equipped ve- 
hicle and is loaded to gross vehicle weight rating, 
be capable of meeting the requirements of S5.7.1 
by operation of the service brake control only, 
with the trailer air supply line and air control 
line from the towing vehicle vented to the at- 
mosphere in accordance with S6.1.14; 

(b) In the case of a truck-tractor loaded to 
gross vehicle weight rating, be capable of meet- 
ing S5.7.1 by operation of the service brake con- 
trol only, with the air control line from the 
towing vehicle vented to the atmosphere in ac- 
cordance with S6.1.14; and 

(c) Be capable of modulating the air in the 
supply or control line to the trailer by means of 
the service brake control with a single failure in 
the towing vehicle service brake system as speci- 
fied in S5.7.1. 

S5.8 Emergency braking capability— trailers. 

Each trailer other than a trailer converter dolly 
shall have a parking brake system that conforms 
to S5.6 and that applies with the force specified 
in S5.6.1 or S5.6.2 when the air pressure in the 
supply line is at atmospheric pressure. A trailer 
converter dolly shall have, at the manufacturer's 
option, (a) a parking brake system that conforms 
to S5.6 and that applies with the force specified 
in S5.6.1 or S5.6.2 when the air pressure in the 



supply line is at atmospheric pressure, or (b) an 
emergency system that automatically controls the 
service brakes when the serivce reservoir is at 
any pressure above 20 Ib./in.^ and the supply line 
is at atmospheric pressure. However, a trailer 
that is designed to transport bulk agricultural 
commodities in off-road harvesting sites and to a 
processing plant or storage location, as evidenced 
by skeletal construction that accommodates har- 
vest containers, a maximum length of 28 feet, and 
an arrangement of air control lines and reservoirs 
that minimizes damage in field operations, shall 
meet the requirements of this section or, at the 
option of the manufacturer, the requirements of 
§ 393.43 of this title. 

S6 Conditions. The requirements of S5 shall 
be met under the following conditions. Except 
as otherwise specified, where a range of condi- 
tions is specified, the vehicle must be capable of 
meeting the requirements at all points within 
the range. 

S6.1 Road test conditions. 

56.1.1 Except as otherwise specified, the ve- 
hicle is loaded to its gross vehicle weight rating, 
distributed proportionally to its gross axle weight 
ratings. 

56.1.2 The inflation pressure is as specified 
by the vehicle manufacturer for the gross vehicle 
weight rating. 

56.1.3 Unless otherwise specified, the trans- 
mission selector control is in neutral or the clutch 
is disengaged during all decelerations and during 
static parking brake tests. 

56.1.4 All vehicle openings (doors, windows, 
hood, trunk, cargo doors, etc.) are in a closed 
position except as required for instrumentation 
purposes. 

56.1.5 The ambient temperature is between 
32°F and 100°F. 

56.1.6 The wind velocity is zero. 

56.1.7 Unless otherwise specified, stopping 
tests are conducted on a 122-foot wide, level, 
straight roadway having a skid number in the 
range of 71 to 81, inclusive, chosen at the option 
of the manufacturer. The vehicle is aligned in 



PART 571; S 121-8 



the center of the roadway at the beginning of 
the stop. 

S6.1.8 The brakes are burnished before testing 
in accordance with S6. 1.8.1. However, for ve- 
hicles with parking brake systems not utilizing 
the service brake friction elements, burnish the 
friction elements of such systems prior to the 
parking brake test according to the manufactur- 
er's recommendations. 

S6.1.8.1 With the transmission in the highest 
gear appropriate for the series given in Table 
IV make 500 brake applications at a deceleration 
rate of 10 ft/s/s, or at the vehicle's maximum 
deceleration rate, if not less than 10 ft/s/s, in the 
sequence specified in Table IV. After each brake 
application, accelerate to the speed specified 

Table IV 

Snub conditions 
Series Snubs (highest speed specified) 



1 


175 


40 to 20 mph. 


2 


25 


45 to 20 mph. 


3 


25 


50 to 20 mph. 


4 


25 


55 to 20 mph. 


5 


250 


60 to 20 mph. 



and maintain that speed until making the next 
brake application at a point 1 mile from the 
initial point of the previous brake application. 
If a vehicle cannot attain the specified speed in 
1 mile, continue to accelerate until the specified 
speed is reached or until the vehicle has traveled 
1.5 miles from the initial point of the previous 
brake application. If during any of the brake 
applications specified in Table IV, the hottest 
brake raches 500° F, make the remainder of 
the 500 applications from that snub condition 
except that a higher or lower snub condition 
shall be used as necessary to maintain an after- 
stop temperature of 500° F±50° F. Any auto- 
matic pressure limiting valve is in use to limit 
pressure as designed, except that any automatic 
front axle pressure limiting valve is bypassed if 
the temperature of the hottest brake on a rear 
axle exceeds the temf)erature of the hottest brake 
on a front axle by more than 125° F. A bypassed 
valve is reconnected if the temperature of the 
hottest brake on a front axle exceeds the tem- 
perature of the hottest brake on a rear axle by 



100° F. After burnishing, adjust the brakes as 
recommended by the vehicle manufacturer. 

56.1.9 Static parking brake tests for a semi- 
trailer are conducted with the front end sup- 
ported by an unbraked dolly. The weight of 
the dolly is included as part of the trailer load. 

56.1.10 In a test other than a static parking 
brake test, truck-tractor is tested at its gross 
vehicle weight rating by coupling it to a flatbed 
semitrailer (hereafter, control trailer) as speci- 
fied in S6.1.10.1 to S6.1.10.7. 

56.1.10.1 The control trailer conforms to this 
standard. 

56.1.10.2 The center of gravity of the loaded 
control trailer is on the trailer's longitudinal 
centerline at a height of 66 ±3 in. above the 
ground. 

56.1.10.3 For a truck-tractor with a rear axle 
gross axle weight rating of 26,000 lb or less, 
the control trailer has a single axle with a gross 
axle weight rating of 18,000 lb and a length, 
measured from the transverse centerline of the 
axle to the centerline of the kingpin, of 258 ± 6 in. 

56.1.10.4 For a truck-tractor with a total rear 
axle gross axle weight rating of more than 26,000 
lb the control trailer has a tandem axle with a 
combined gross axle weight rating of 32,000 lb 
and a length, measured from the transverse cen- 
terline between the axles to the centerline of the 
kingpin, of 390 ±6 in. 

56.1.10.5 The control trailer is loaded so that 
its axle is loaded to its gross axle weight rating 
and the tractor is loaded to its gross vehicle 
weight rating, with the tractor's fifth wheel ad- 
justed so that the load on each axle measured 
at the tire-ground interface is most nearly pro- 
portional to the axles' respective gross axle 
weight ratings. 

56.1.10.6 Test equipment specification. The 

control trailer's service brakes are capable of 
stopping the combination from the maximum, 
speed at which the tractor is tested, under the 
conditions of S6.1, without assistance from the 
tractor brakes, in the distance found by multi- 
plying the value 68, 90, 115, 143, 174, 208, or 245 
(corresponding to a speed of 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 



PART 571; S 121-9 



55, or 60 mph as appropriate for the truck- 
tractor tested) by the ratio: 

weight on all axles of combination 
weight on trailer axles 
with the tractor's fifth wheel adjusted as speci- 
fied in S6.1.10.5, the trailer service reservoirs 
pressurized to 100 Ib./in.^, and the trailer loaded 
so that its axle is at gross axle weight rating 
and its kingpin is at empty vehicle weight. The 
stopping distance is measured from the point at 
which movement of the valve controlling the 
trailer brakes begins. The service brake cham- 
bers on the trailer reach 60 Ib./in.^ in not less 
than 0.20 second and not more than 0.30 second, 
measured from the instant at which movement 
of the valve controlling the trailer brakes begins. 

S6.1.10.7 Test equipment specification. The 

control trailer's emergency brakes are capable of 
stopping the combination under the conditions 
of S6.1 from the maximum speed at which the 
tractor is tested, without assistance from the 
tractor's brakes, in the distance found by multi- 
plying the emergency brake stopping distance in 
column 3 of Table II by the ratio: 

weight on all axles of combination 
weight on trailer axles 
with the combination loaded in accordance with 
S6.1.10.5. Stopping distance is measured from 
the point at which movement of the valve con- 
trolling the trailer brakes begins. In the case of 
control trailers that utilize parking brakes for 
emergency stopping capability, the pressure in 
the trailer's spring parking brake chambers falls 
from 95 Ib./in.^ to 5 Ib./in.^ in not less than 0.50 
second and not more than 0.60 second, measured 
from the instant at which movement of the valve 
controlling the trailer's spring parking brakes 
begins. 

S6.1.11 Speciai drive conditions. A vehicle 
equipped with an interlocking axle system of a 
front wheel drive system that is engaged and 
disengaged by the driver is tested with the sys- 
tem disengaged. 

S6.1.1.12 Lif table axles. A vehicle with a lift- 
able axle is tested at gross vehicle weight rating 
with the liftable axle down and at unloaded ve- 
hicle weight with the liftable axle up. 



[S6.1.13 The trailer test rig shown in Figure 1 
is capable of increasing the pressure in a 50 cubic 
inch reservoir from atmospheric to 60 Ib./in.^ in 
0.06 second, measured from the first movement 
of the service brake control to apply service 
brake pressure and of releasing pressure in such 
a reservoir from 95 to 5 Ib./in.^ in 0.22 second 
measured from the first movement of the service 
brake control to release service brake pressure. 

56.1.14 In testing the emergency braking 
system of towing vehicles under S5.7.3(a) and 
S5.7.3(b) the hose(s) is vented to the atmos- 
phere at any time not less than 1 second and 
not more than 1 minute before the emergency 
stop begins, while the vehicle is moving at the 
speed from which the stop is to be made and any 
manual control for the towing vehicle protection 
system is in the position to supply air and brake 
control signals to the vehicle being towed. No 
brake application is made from the time the 
line(s) is vented until the emergency stop begins 
and no manual operation of the parking brake 
system or towing vehicle protection system occurs 
from the time the line(s) is vented until the 
stop is completed. 

56.1.15 Initial brake temperature. The tem- 
perature of each brake is measured by a single 
plug-type thermocouple installed in the center 
of the lining surface of the most heavily loaded 
shoe or pad as shown in Figure 2. The thermo- 
couple is outside any center groove. With the 
exception of conditions specified for burnishing 
brakes in paragraph S6.1.8, repetitive test runs 
are separated by an interval of time sufficient 
to reach any initial brake temperature in the 
range of 150 °F to 200 °F. If the initial brake 
temperature for the first stop in a test procedure 
has not been reached, heat the brakes to the ini- 
tial brake temperature by making not more than 
10 snubs from not more than 40 to 10 mph at a 
deceleration not greater than 10 fpsps. 

S6.2 Dynamometer test conditions. 

56.2.1 The dynamometer inertia for each wheel 
is equivalent to the load on the wheel with the 
axle loaded to its gross axle weight rating. 

56.2.2 The ambient temperature is between 
75 °F and 100 °F. 



PART 571; S 121-10 



56.2.3 Air at ambient temperature is directed 
uniformly and continuously over the brake drum 
or disc at a velocity of 2,200 feet per minute. 

56.2.4 The temperature of each brake is 
measured by a single plus type thermocouple 
installed in the center of the Uning surface of 
the most heavily loaded shoe or pad as shown in 
Figure II. The thermocouple is outside any 
center groove. 

56.2.5 The rate of brake drum or disc rota- 
tion on a dynamometer corresponding to the rate 
of rotation on a vehicle at a given speed is cal- 
culated by assuming a tire radius equal to the 
static loaded radius specified by the tire manu- 
facturer. 

56.2.6 Brakes are burnished before testing 
as follows: Place the brake assembly on an in- 
ertia dynamometer and adjust the brake as rec- 
ommended by the brake manufacturer. Make 
200 stops from 40 mph at a deceleration of 10 
fpsps, with an initial brake temperature on each 
stop of not less than 315°F and not more than 
385 °F. Make 200 additional stops from 40 mph 
at a deceleration of 10 fpsps with an initial 
brake temperature on each stop of not less than 
450 °F and not more than 550 °F. After burnish- 
ing, the brakes are adjusted as recommended by 
the brake manufacturer. 

56.2.7 The brake temperature is increased to 
a specified level by conducting one or more stops 



FIGURE 2 
THERMOCOUPLE INSTALLATION 



"'"■"•^^ 




from 40 mph at a deceleration of 10 fpsps. The 
brake temperature is decreased to a specified 
level by rotating the drum or disc at a constant 
30 mph. 

36 F.R. 3817 
February 27, 1971 



PART 571; S 121-11 



IINctIv*! $«pl«mb«r 1, 1973 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 122 
Motorcycitt Brake Systems 



This notice amends Part 571 of Title 49, Code 
of Federal Regulations, to add a new Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 122 (49 CFR § 571.- 
122) that establishes performance requirements 
for motorcycle brake systems. A notice of pro- 
posed rulemaking on this subject was published 
on March 24, 1971 (36 F.R. 5516). 

The safety aflforded by a motorcycle's brak- 
ing system is determined by several factors, in- 
cluding stopping distance, linear stability whib 
stopping, fade resistance, and fade recovery. A 
safe system should have features that both guard 
against malfunction and stop the vehicle should 
a malfunction occur in the normal service sys- 
tem. Standard No. 122 covers each of these 
aspects of brake safety, establishing equipment 
and performance requirements appropriate for 
two-wheeled and three-wheeled motorcycles. 
These requirements do not differ greatly from 
the proposals, and conmients received in response 
to the notice have been considered in promulgat- 
ing the rule. 

I. Equipment. Each motorcycle is required 
to have either a split hydraulic service brake 
system or two independently actuated service 
brake systems. The latter system encompasses 
a hydraulic service brake system combined with 
a hand operated parking brake system. Although 
several objections were received to the split 
hydraulic service brake system proposal, the 
NHTSA has determined that partial failure 
braking features are necessary in the event of a 
hydraulic pressure loss in the normal service 
brake system. If a motorcycle has a hydraulic 
service brake system, it must also have a reservoir 
for each master cylinder, and a master cylinder 
reservoir label advising the proper grade of DOT 
brake fluid. If the service brake system is a 
split hydraulic type, a failure indicator lamp 
is required. 



Additionally, three-wheeled motorcycles must 
be equipped with a friction type parking brake 
with a solely mechanical means to retain engage- 
ment. Some commenters felt that pin or pawl 
type brakes should be permitted. The Admin- 
istration does not know of an impact test ade- 
quate to test the strength of a mechanical lock, 
and pin or pawl type brakes, prone to failure 
upon impact, have been found to be inadequate. 
The NHTSA concurs, however, with comments 
objecting to the proposed parking brake indicator 
lamp, and has determined that the safety bene- 
fits involved are negligible in comparison with 
the expense of providing it. 

II. Performance. Conformity with perform- 
ance requirements will be determined by subject- 
ing motorcycles to a series of road tests. Vehicles 
must demonstrate the effectiveness of their serv- 
ice brake systems by stopping within specified 
distances from 30 mph, 60 mph, 80 mph, and 
from a speed divisible by 5 mph that is 4 mph 
to 8 mph less than the maximum vehicle speed. 

Motorcycles will demonstrate fade resistance 
of their braking systems by making recovery 
stops subsequent to a series of fade stops from 
60 mph. The hand lever force for the final re- 
covery stop must be within plus 20 pounds and 
minus 10 pounds of the baseline check average 
force. This is a modification of the proposed 
"plus 10 pounds or 20 percent, whichever, is less, 
and minus 20 percent," based upon comments 
requesting the substitution of absolute values. 
The same modification is made in the final water 
recovery stop. The maximum speed fade and 
recovery proposal has not been adopted, as two 
and three-wheeled motor vehicles do not have 
the inherent cooling problems that braking sys- 
tems on four-wheeled vehicles experience. Reten- 
tion of the 60 mph stops will ensure that the 
system maintain adequate stopping ability despite 



PART 571; S 122— PRE 1 



EffKtiv*: September I, 1973 

the high temi)eratures created by prolonged use, 
and may reveal undesirable brake lining char- 
acteristics such as glazing. 

The test sequence has been rearranged so that 
the parking brake system test for three-wheeled 
motorcycles occurs immediately before the water 
recovery test. At this point in the test sequence 
the brakes will have been fully burnished, and 
the test will therefore be more indicative of 
service performance. Parking brake application 
forces have been modified from the proposal, and 
specify a maximum applied force of not more 
than 90 pounds for a foot-operated system and 
55 pounds for a hand-operated system. These 
forces are identical to those specified in S6.10, 
the test condition on brake actuation forces, and 
result in a uniformity of brake actuation forces 
throughout the standard. 

Finally, a motorcycle must demonstrate ac- 
ceptable stopping performance after its brake 
system has been exposed to water. Comments 
expressed dissatisfaction with the proposed test 
procedure, stating that complete immersion of 
the brakes is not indicative of the manner in 
which they become wet in actual service. NHTSA 
agrees that poor braking performance often is 
not attributable to complete immersion, but 
rather to prolonged exposure to a constant spray 
from the road surface. However, there is no 
basis on which to specify a test procedure reflect- 
ing these conditions, and the immersion procedure 
has, therefore, been retained. 

At the end of the test procedure the brake 
system must pass a durability inspection. 

All stops must be made without lockup of any 
wheel. Two-wheeled motorcycles must remain 
within an 8-foot-wide lane during stops (modi- 
fied from the proposed 6-foot-wide lane), and 
three-wheeled ones within a lane equal to vehicle 
width plus five feet. Some commenters asked 
that tests be performed with the clutch engaged. 
However, the effectiveness of a brake system in 
bringing a vehicle to a stop within required 
distances is more accurately judged by requiring 
that stops be made with the clutch disengaged; 
there is less reliance on extraneous factors such 
as use of engine retardation as a braking assist 
and the varying skills of individual drivers when 
shifting downward through gears. 



Regarding test conditions, comments were re- 
ceived that it is unnecessary for both braking 
systems of a two-wheeled motorcycle to be within 
the specified pedal and lever force range simul- 
taneously. The Administration did not concur 
with these comments. The safety of cyclists 
requires not only that motorcycles be capable of 
stopping within specified distances, but also that 
this capability be demonstrated when reasonable 
forces are applied to the brake lever and pedal. 

Several commenters also objected to the "im- 
possibility" of the test condition that "the wind 
velocity is zero." The comment reveals misunder- 
standing of the significance of the test condi- 
tions. A manufacturer may test for compliance 
by running the tests under any wind conditions 
that are adverse to the vehicle; obviously if the 
vehicle meets the requirements under adverse 
wind conditions, it will meet them under no- 
wind conditions. Similarly, the Government will 
prove noncompliance by orienting the test runs 
so that wind conditions are favorable to the 
vehicle. Thus, the condition uniquely allows 
testing under whatever wind conditions are pres- 
ent. It is retained as the most practicable and 
least burdensome test method for all parties. 

Effective date: September 1, 1973. Because of 
the necessity to allow manufacturers sufficient 
production leadtime, it is found for good cause 
shown, that an effective date later than one year 
after issuance is in the public interest. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Title 49, 
Code of Federal Regulations, is amended by add- 
ing §571.122, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 
No. 122, Motorcycle Brake System. 

This notice is issued under the authority of 
section 103 and 119 of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (15 U.S.C. 
1392, 1407) and the delegation of authority from 
the Secretary of Transportation to the National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administrator, 49 CFR 
1.51. 



Issued on : March 1, 1972. 



Charles H. Hartman 
Acting Administrator 

37 F.R. 5033 
March 9, 1972 



PART 571; S 122— PRE 2 



MwtW*: lummy 1, If74 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 122 

Motorcycle Brake Systems 
(Deckel No. 1-3; NoHc* No. 4) 



This notice responds to petitions for reconsid- 
eration of Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 
122 (49 CFR § 571.122), and changes the eflfective 
date of the standard to January 1, 1974. 

Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 122 estab- 
lishing requirements for motorcycle braking 
equipment, stopping distance, brake system fade 
and recovery, and wet brake recovery, effective 
September 1, 1973, was published on March 9, 
1972 (37 F.B. 5033). Thereafter, pursuant to 
49 CFR § 553.35, petitions for reconsideration of 
the rule were filed by Japan Automobile Manu- 
facturers Association, Inc. ("JAMA"), and 
Cushman Motors ("Cushman") through counsel. 
In response to these petitions, the effective date 
of the standard is being changed. The Admin- 
istrator has declined to grant requested relief 
from other requirements of the standard. 

1. Lining inspectum requirement. S5.1.5 of 
Standard No. 122 requires a brake system to be 
installed "so that the lining thickness of drum 
brake shoes may be visually inspected, either di- 
rectly or by use of a mirror without removing 
the drums. . . .'" JAMA has petitioned that the 
word "indirectly" be substituted for "by use of a 
mirror" in order to allow use of a device such 
as a wear indicator on the outside of front and 
rear brake panels. The NHTSA considers wear 
indicators to be a "direct" method of visual in- 
spection since the extent of lining wear may be 
determined without removal of the drums. There 
is no need to amend the Standard to allow their 
use, and JAMA's petition is denied. 

2. Brake wetting procedure. The procedure 
for wetting the brakes prior to testing for wet 
brake recovery (S7.10.2) specifies the complete 
immersion of brake assemblies. 



JAMA has petitioned that a water trough be 
substituted, with water depth varying according 
to the cycle's tire rim size, through which the 
cycle would be driven for 2 minutes at a speed 
of 10 m.p.h. JAMA notes that this is similar 
to the procedure NHTSA proposed in Docket 
No. 70-27, Hydraulic Brake Systems, and com- 
mented that the same procedure should apply to 
all motor vehicles. 

The NHTSA has determined that the inherent 
instability of two- and three-wheeled vehicles 
under wet road conditions justifies a different 
test procedure. The difference in configuration 
between motorcycles and four-wheeled vehicles 
is distinct enough that there is no assurance 
motorcycle brakes will be wet, or wet uniformly, 
by the trough method. It is recognized that 
neither method may represent the way brakes 
become wet under actual road conditions, but 
immersion of brake assemblies has been deter- 
mined to be the more efficiently reproducible 
method of establishing a condition under which 
motorcycle brake system performance may be 
evaluated. The petition is denied. 

3. Stopping distance. JAMA and Cushman 
petitioned for a relaxation of the stopping dis- 
tance requirements of Table I. JAMA recom- 
mended that the stopping distance values in 
Column II (Prebumish effectiveness, partial 
mechanical system) and Column III (Effective- 
ness — total system) up to and including 70 m.pi. 
be the stopping distances specified in SAE Rec- 
ommended Practice J109a. This would mean an 
increase in range of 39-136 feet for the pre- 
bumish stopping distances, and 1-15 feet for 
total system effectiveness over the values of 
Standard No. 122. JAMA alleges that stopping 
distance is highly dependent upon the rider's 



PART 671; S 122— PRE 3 



Effactiv*: January 1, 1974 

ability to control the brakes, and it requested the 
increased stopping distances to compensate for 
variations in the rider's skill. 

Cushman, whose three-wheeled vehicles have a 
top speed of 38 m.p.h., requests that all stopping 
distances from 30 m.p.h. and 35 m.p.h. be modi- 
fied, alleging that the only way it can meet the 
stopping distances is by redesigning its vehicle. 
Cushman also states that it is unaware of any 
incident where the stopping distances achieved 
by its present vehicle have become a factor in an 
accident, and that accordingly there is no need 
for the stopping distances set forth in Table I, 
as they apply to Cushman, in order to protect 
the public. 

The NHTSA recognizes that its standards on 
braking (the forthcoming amendment to Stand- 
ard No. 105, Hydraulic Brake Systems, Standard 
No. 121, Air Brake Systems, and Standard No. 
122, Motorcycle Brake Systems) impose stringent 
requirements on the manufacturers of all types 
of vehicles, and that, in some instances, redesign 
may be necessary. But because of the ever in- 
creasing numbers of vehicles on urban and inter- 
state roadways, and of passenger-miles traveled, 
the NHTSA considers improved braking systems 
to be the highest priority in its progJ-am of ac- 
cident avoidance. Prompt and accurate braking 
response is deemed especially critical in providing 
a margin by which the vulnerable motorcyclist 
may escape death or serious injury. While the 
fatality rate for all motor vehicle occupants fell 
3.8 per cent in 1970, it rose 18.9 per cent for 
motorcycle riders. Motorcycles account for less 
than 2.3 per cent of total vehicle registrations, 
but they are involved in 3.6 per cent of all fatal 
accidents. Therefore, the necessity that the in- 
dustry achieve the full capability of the present 



state of the art has been found to outweigh the 
problems caused the individual manufacturers by 
compliance. 

The NHTSA recognizes the effect of rider 
control upon stopping distance in the wording of 
S7. which deems stopping distance requirements 
met if only one of the specified number of stops 
occurs within the maximum allowable stopping 
distances. Comments to Docket No. 1-3 indicate 
that it is clearly reasonable and practicable to 
require motorcycles to meet the stopping distances 
adopted for Standard No. 122. The petitions of 
JAMA and Cushman are denied. 

4. Effective date. JAMA has requested a 4 
month delay in the effective date of Standard 
No. 122 because model changeover time for Japa- 
nese manufacturers extends through autumn to 
the end of the year. It estimates that only 50 
per cent of the industry could be brought into 
compliance by September 1, 1973. In light of the 
design changes that may be necessitated, the Ad- 
ministrator finds this request reasonable and that 
for good cause shown a later effective date is in 
the public interest. The effective date of Stand- 
ard No. 122 is hereby changed to January 1, 1974. 

The notice is issued pursuant to the authority 
of sections 103 and 119 of the National Traffic 
and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (15 U.S.C. 
1392, 1407) and the delegation of authority from 
the Secretary of Transportation to the National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administrator, 49 CFR 
1.51. 



Issued on June 9, 1972. 



Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 11973 
Jun« 16, 1972 



PART 571; S 122— PRE 4 



iffactlvc: January 1, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 122 

Motorcycle Brake Systems 

(Docket No. 1-3; Notice 6) 



This notice amends Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 122, Motorcycle Brake Systems, 
49 CFR 571.122, to modify the master cylinder 
labeling and the wetting procedure for the water 
recovery test, effective January 1, 1974. 

The amendment is based upon a notice pub- 
lished December 15, 1972, (37 F.R. 26739). The 
NHTSA proposed a change in the wording of 
the master cylinder reservoir label which would 
be identical to that specified in Motor Vehicle 
Safety Standard No. 105a, Hydraulic Brake Sys- 
tems (37 F.R. 17970). In addition, a change in 
the wetting procedure for the water recovery 
test was proposed to require sequential immersion 
of the front and rear brake assemblies in lieu 
of simultaneous immersion. 

The comments received generally supported the 
proposal. Some minor changes were requested, 
and Standard No. 122 is being amended accord- 
ingly. The reservoir labeling requirements have 
been modified in format in a manner consistent 
with recent amendments to Standard No. 105a 
(38 F.R. 1.3017). The height of the lettering 
has been retained at 3/32 of an inch. In order 
to avoid any misinterpretation, it is the NHTSA's 
intent to have the label completed with DOT 
and the grade of fluid designed for use in the 
system and not a manufacturer's brand name 
and number. If, however, silicone-based or petro- 
leum-based fluids are appropriate for the system 
design specific fluids may be designated until a 
DOT grade and performance requirements have 
been specified. A contrast in color will be re- 
quired only of printed labels. For this pur- 
pose, it has been decided that raised or lowered 



letters will provide a sufficient degree of legi- 
bility. 

Finally, based on a comment made by the 
Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association, 
Inc. (JAMA), the wetting procedure for the 
water recovery test has been changed to extend 
the maximum testing time from 5 minutes to 
7 minutes. .TAMA stated that immersion of the 
rear brake ' first would still create engine stall 
problems if the water were allowed to enter the 
engine through the muffler(s) during the front 
brake assembly immersion period. The NHTSA 
feels strongly that the front brake should be 
immersed last due to potential instabilies created 
by a "grabbing" front brake. The extra time 
which has been allotted should be sufficient for 
manufacturers to provide protection for the ex- 
haust system, thereby alle\aating the problem of 
engine stall, and providing a measure of relief 
for those who considered the 5-minute period as 
excessively short. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
§571.122, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 
122, is amended. . . . 

Ejfective date: January 1, 1974. 

(Sees. 103, 112, 119 Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 
718, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1407; delegation of 
authority at 38 F.R. 12147) 

Issued on May 30, 1973. 

James E. Wilson 
Associate Administrator 
Traffic Safety Programs 

38 F.R. 14753 
June 5, 1973 



PART 571; S 122— PRE 5-6 



i 



% 



% 



Effective: October 14, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 122 

(Docket No. 74-16; Notice 2) 



This notice amends 49 CFR 571.108, 571.122, 
and 571.123, Motor Vehicle Safety Standards 
Nos. 108. 122, and 123, to modify current re- 
quirements that apply to motor-driven cycles. 

Interested persons have been afforded an oj)- 
portunity to participate in the making of the 
amendment by a notice of proposed rulemakinjj 
published on April 12, 1974 (39 F.R. 13287) and 
due consideration has been jiiven to all comments 
received in response to the notice, insofar as they 
relate to matters within its scope. 

The prior notice responded to petitions by 
Cycles Peugeot, Ateliers de la Motobecane, and 
S.I.N. F.A.C., manufacturers, and Bermuda Bikes, 
Inc., and Robert F. Smith, retail dealers. The 
notice proposed that a motor-driven cycle whose 
speed attainable in 1 mile is 30 mph or less need 
not be equipped with turn signal lami>s, and maj- 
be equipped with a stop lamp with one-half the 
photometric output otherwise required. Braking 
fade and recovery requirements also would not 
apply to these low-speed vehicles. Maximum 
stopping distance values for the various tests 
.should be added for test speeds of 25, 20, and 15 
mph. Finally, a braking control on the left 
handlebar would be a permissible alternative to 
the required right foot braking control. 

Tlie comments received addressed both areas 
of performance covered in the proposal, and 
areas where no standards currently e.xist, such 
as motors, transmissions, pedals, and a request 
for exemption from Standard No. 119, Tires for 
Vehicles Other Than Passevger Cars. As these 
latter comments cover matters beyond the scope 
of the proposal, this notice does not discuss them. 
The agency, however, has been formally peti- 
tioned for rulemaking covering transmissions 
and Standard No. 119. and will respond to the 
petitioners in the near future. 

The decision by NHTSA not to establish a 
separate category of vehicle was objected to by 



some commenters. In suj)port of their request, 
they argued that the majority of motor-driven 
cycles have engines producing only 1.5 to 2 horse- 
power, and consequent low maximum speeds, 
reducing the need for forward lighting that is 
currently required of these vehicles. Petitioners 
submitted no ilata justifying their request. The 
NHTSA, however, intends to study the matter 
of forward lighting for low-powered two- 
wheeled vehicles througli a research contract 
with the University of Michigan. When the 
contract is completed the agency will then decide 
whether further rulemaking is warranted. 

The proposal distinguished motor-driven 
cycles on the basis of maximum speed attainable 
in 1 mile, rather than on horsepower, and the 
value selected, 30 mph, fell within the maximum 
(40 mph) and minimum (20 mph) suggested by 
commenters. The NHTSA has concluded there- 
fore that the distinction should be adopted as 
proposed. 

Some manufacturers requested restrictive con- 
trols on power plant output, apparently in fear 
that the engine of a vehicle with a top speed of 
30 mph or less could be modified to exceed that 
speed, and therefore cause the vehicle to no 
longer comply with the Federal standards. This 
agency has not found that course of action to be 
practicable. The various ways to modify a ve- 
hicle after purchase cannot be anticipated or 
prevented at the manufacturer level. On the 
other hand, the great majority of consumers use 
their vehicles in the form in which they were 
purchased. The motor-driven cycle category it- 
self contains a limitation of 5 horseiwwer, which 
will be applicable to the special lighting modi- 
fications. In the NHTSAs judgment, modifica- 
tions by consumers and the consequent equipment 
requirements should continue to be regulated at 
the State level. 



PART 571; S 122— PRE 7 



Effective OctelMr 14, 1974 



The fact that the agency took no action to 
propose a reduction in existing headlamp re- 
quirements for motor-driven cycles was criticized 
by several manufacturers as unduly restrictive 
because of the low speed and power output of 
their vehicles. No justification has been shown 
for such a change. Motor-driven cycles therefore 
must have sufficient generating and/or battery 
capacity to meet the headlamp requirements. 

There was no substantive objection to the ac- 
tual proposals for omission of turn signals, re- 
duced stop lamp photometries, relief from brake 
fade requirements, inclusion of maximum allovr- 
able stopping distances for low speeds, and rear 
brake control placement. Accordingly, the 
standards are being amended in the manner 
proposed. 

Standard No. 122 is also being amended to 
delete the final effectiveness test (S5.5) for those 
motor-driven cycles excused from the fade and 
recovery requirements. The purpose of the final 
effectiveness test is to check the stopping ability 
of the vehicle after the fade and recovery tests. 
Since this requirement has been eliminated for 
motor-driven cycles of low top-speed, the final 
effectiveness test is redundant, and an unneces- 



sary duplication of the second effectiveness test. 
No safety |)urpose is served by its retention. 
Language is also added to the fade and recovery 
and final effectiveness test i)rocedures (S7.6, 
S7.7, and S7.8), making it clear that they do not 
ii|)ply to motor-driven cycles whose speed attain- 
able in 1 mile is 30 mph or less. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
Part .571 is amended .... 

Effective date: October 14, 1974. As the 
amendments allow new options for compliance, 
relieve restrictions, and impose no additional 
burdens on regulated persons, it is found for 
good cause shown tha an effective date earlier 
than 180 days after issuance of the amendments 
is in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718, 
15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407; delegation of authority at 
49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on September 6, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 32914 
September 12, 1974 



PART 571 ; S 122— PRE 8 



IHmMv*: DMcmbar 10, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 122 
Motorcycle Brake Systems 



This notice corrects an error in paragraph 
S7.8.1 of 49 CFR 571.122, Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 122, Motorcycle Brake Systems. 

On March 24, 1971 NHTSA proposed (36 FR 
5516) as part of its anticipated motorcycle brak- 
ing standard, that the final eflfectiveness test "re- 
peat S7.6 including S7.3.1". Proposed S7.6 was 
the service brake system second effectiveness test. 
When Standard No. 122 was issued on March 9, 
1972 (37 F.R. 5033) the proposal was adopted, 
in S7.8.1, that the final effectiveness test "Repeat 
S7.6 including S7.3.1". However, in the develop- 
ment of the final rule the test sequence was re- 
arranged and the second effectiveness test had 
'become S7.5. Through oversight, a corresponding 
change was not made in the final effectiveness 
test provisions. Accordingly the change is being 
made by this notice. 



In consideration of the foregoing, paragraph 
S7.8.1 of 49 CFR § 571.122, Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 122 is revised to read "S7.8.1 Serv- 
ice brake system. Repeat S7.5 including S7.3.1". 

Effective date: December 10, 1974. Because the 
notice corrects an error and creates no additional 
burden upon any i>erson, it is found for good 
cause shown that an immediate effective date ig 
in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718, 15 
U.S.C. 1392, 1407 ; delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.51) 

Issued on December 4, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 43075 
December 10, 1974 



PART 571: S 122— PRE 9-10 



EftacNvai Jun* 14, 1976 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 122 
Motorcycle Brake Systems 
(Docket No. 75-27; Notice 4) 



Tliis notice amends Standard No. 105-75, 
Hydraulic Brake Systems, and Standard No. 122, 
Motorcycle Brake Systems, to modify the means 
for establishing the frictional resistance of the 
surface on which stopping distance tests are con- 
ducted. A similar amendment is made to Part 
575, Comwmer Injcrmation, of Title 49 of the 
Code of Federal Regulations. 

The National Highway Traffic Safety Admin- 
istration (NHTSA) proposed the change in 
Standard No. 105-75 (49 CFR 571.105-75), 
Standard No. 121. Air Brake Systems (49 CFR 
571.121), Standard No. 122 (49 CFR 571.122), 
and the Consumer Information Regulations (49 
CFR 575.101) in response to a petition from 
British-Leyland Motors Limited (40 FR 45200, 
October 1, 1975). The existing test procedure in 
these regulations has specified use of the Ameri- 
can Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) 
E-274-65T procedure, using an ASTM E249 tire 
that is no longer manufactured. 

Responses were received on the proposed ASTM 
change from 'White Motor Corporation (White), 
Mack Trucks, Inc. (Mack), Freightliner Corpor- 
ation (Freightliner), Ford Motor Company 
(Ford), General Motors Corporation (GM), 
Chrysler Corporation (Chrysler), American 
Motors Corporation (AMC), and International 
Harvester (IH). The National Motor Vehicle 
Safety Advisory Council made no comment on 
the proposal. 

Most commenters supported use of the .new 
test procedure and tire, although they differed in 
recommendations for correlating the reading 
produced under the new procedure with that pro- 
duced under the old procedure. Manufacturers 
are presently certifying compliance to brake 
standards on test surfaces with a satisfactory 
reading under the old procedure, and they should 



be able to continue testing and certifying com- 
pliance on the same surface without any increase 
in the severity of the tests. To accomplish this 
transition, the correlation in readings between 
the procedures has been determined, and the dif- 
ference is reflected in a change of the dry surface 
value from "skid number" 75 to "skid number" 
81. 

Freightliner urged postponement of any action 
until it could be supported by "adequate and 
statistically reliable test data." AMC also recom- 
mended that the NHTSA do nothing "until the 
industry has had sufficient time to evaluate and 
verify the performance of the ASTM E501 test 
tire on all types of surfaces." 

The change in procedure is prompted by the 
ASTM decision to utilize a new tire in ascertain- 
ing the frictional coefficient of test surfaces. As 
a result the old tire is no longer manufactured 
and only the new tire is available for skid num- 
ber measurement. Manufacturers have conducted 
comparative tests with the new tire to determine 
the correlation between the readings given by the 
two tires. Neither Freightliner nor AMC sub- 
mitted data showing that the agency's proposal 
to adjust the dry surface skid number upwards 
is unjustified. Only Mack submitted data and it 
supported the NHTSA and Federal Highway 
Administration test data that have been placed 
in the docket. General Motors considered the 
agency's proposed upward adjustment to be the 
maximum desirable based on its data. Interna- 
tional Harvester, Chrysler, and Ford supported 
the change in dry surface skid number without 
qualification, and White suggested that a skid 
number of 85 be utilized. The agency finds that 
the AMC and Freightliner requests for further 
delay are unjustified. 



PART 571; S 122— PRE 11 



Ford and Freightliner asked that the skid 
number for the lower coeflBcient (wet) surface 
also be adjusted. The agency's purpose in pro- 
posing the adjustment is limited to changes nec- 
essary to avoid a modification of the test surfaces 
or an increase in the severity of performance 
levels specified under the safety standards. The 
XHTSA earlier concluded that change of the wet 
surface specification was unnecessary, and no 
evidence has been supplied that would modify 
the earlier determination. 

General Motors noted that an editorial change 
to the newer ASTM procedure does not appear 
in early publications of that procedure. To put 
all interested persons on notice of the editorial 
change, the XHTSA has included the change in 
its references to the ASTM E27-}— 70 procedure. 

Freightliner asserted that the newer procedure 
included modification of a formula that justified 
a larger upwards adjustment than that proposed 
by the agency. Actually, the modifications only 
corrected an error in the earlier formula which 
had no effect on the determination of frictional 
coefficient. Manufacturers either utilized a test 
trailer that obviated the need for calculations 
using the formula, or were aware of the error 
and corrected for it in their calculations. Thus 
the adjustment requested by Freightliner is not 
warranted. 

In accordance with recently-enunciated De- 
partment of Transportation policy encouraging 
adequate analysis of the consequences of regida- 
tory action (41 FR 16201, April 16, 1976), the 
agency herewith summarizes its evaluation of the 
economic and other consequences of this amend- 
ment on the public and private sectors, including 
possible loss of safety benefit. Because the new 
references to procedures and a test tire are ex- 
pected to accord with existing practices, the 
amendment is judged not to have any significant 
impact on costs or benefits of the standards and 



consumer information item that are modified by 
the change. 

Standard No. 121, Air Brake Systems, is pres- 
ently subject to judicial review under § 105(a) 
of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety 
Act (15 U.S.C. § 1394(a)). The U.S. Court of 
Appeals hearing the petition for review has indi- 
cated that it prefers to review the standard as it 
presently exists, without unnecessary amendment. 
To the degree possible, the agency is complying 
with that request and therefore, in the case of 
Standard No. 121, will delay the update of 
ASTM procedure until review is completed. 

It is noted that this change in procedure for 
ascertaining the frictional resistance of the test 
surface does not invalidate data collected using 
the older procedure, and manufacturers can pre- 
sumably certify on the basis of stopping distance 
tests conducted on surfaces measured by the old 
tire. 

In consideration of the foregoing, amendments 
are made in Chapter V of Title 49, Code of 
Federal Regulations. 

Effective date: June 14, 1976. Because the 
older test tire is no longer manufactured, and 
because the amendment of procedure and test tire 
is intended only to duplicate the existing pro- 
cedure and tire, this amendment creates no addi- 
tional requirements for any person, and an 
immediate effective date is found to be in the 
public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 
(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority 
at 49 CFR 1.50.) 

Issued on June 8, 1976. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

41 F.R. 24592 
June 17, 1976 



PART 571; S 122— PRE 12 



October 10, 1978 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 122 

(Docket No. 78-14; Notice 1) 

Motorcycle Brake Systems 



This notice amends Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 122 Motorcycle Brake Systems, to 
incorporate an interpretation, clarifying that the 
parking brake system test for a 3-wheeled motor- 
cycle does not require that a vehicle be held on 
a 30 percent grade for 5 minutes if the limit of 
traction of its braked wheels is reached on a 
lower grade so that the vehicle begins to slide. 
This notice also amends the standard to clarifA" 
the conditions under which traction is deter- 
mined. The action is occasioned by a recent in- 
terpretation of the agency proHded in response 
to a petition for temporary exemption from 
Standard Xo. 122 by Daihatsu Motor Company 
whose B-20 vehicle's limit of traction was reached 
on a 20 percent grade (43 F.R. 36548). The 
amendment has no effect upon safety since it is 
a statement and clarification of an existing 

^ agency interpretation. 

Bl Effective date: As an interpretative rule, the 
amendment is effective ujxjn publication in the 
Federal Register. October 10, 1978. 

For further information contact : 
Scott Shadle, OflSce of Rulemaking, National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 
Washington, D.C. 20590 "(202-426-2153). 

Supplementary information : Paragraph So. 6 
of 49 CFR 571.122. Motor Vehicle Safety Stand- 
ard No. 122, requires in part that the parking 
brake sj'stem for a 3-wheeled motorcycle "be 
capable of holding the motorcycle, for 5 minutes 
in both forward and reverse directions, on a 30 
f)ercent grade. . . ." Recently the agency enter- 
tained a petition from Daihatsu Motor Company, 
Ltd. for a renewal of an exemption granted an 
electric motor-driven cycle in 1976 because of the 
inability of its braked wheels to hold it on a 
30 percent grade in the reverse direction. The 
agency disposed of the p)etition by publishing 
an interpretation allowing Daihatsu to certify 
compliance with Standard No. 122, stating that 



the agency did not intended "to dictate design 
requirements such as center of gravity location 
and tire design mandating tliat the vehicle itself 
have a limit of traction sufficient to hold it on 
a grade that is 30 percent or greater when its 
wheels are braked." (43 F.R. 36548) 

NHTSA has decided to incorporate this inter- 
pretation into Standard No. 122 by appropriate 
amendments to the parking brake system require- 
ment (S5.6) and test procedures (S7.9). A 
similar limit-of-traction proWsion already exists 
with respect to the parking brake system require- 
ments for hydraulically braked vehicles (para- 
graph S5.2.l"of 49 CFR 571.105). 

This notice also amends Standard No. 122 to 
set forth the road surface on which traction is 
to be determined. As in the case of the parking 
brake test conditions in paragraph S6.9 of 49 
CFR 571.105 and paragraph S5.6.2 of 59 CFR 

571.121, Air Brake Systems, this notice specifies 
a surface of clean, drj-. smooth portland cement 
concrete. 

Because the amendment is an interpretative 
rule, under the Administrative Procedures Act 
it may be adopted without prior notice and public 
comment (5 U.S.C. 553(b)). 

The principal authors of this amendment are 
Taylor Vinson of the Office of Chief Counsel and 
John Carson of the Office of Rulemaking. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 

571.122, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 122 
is amended. . . . 

(Sees. 103. 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 
(15 U.S.C. 1392. 1407) ; delegation of authority 
at 49 CFR 1.50.) 

Issued on October 3, 1978. 

Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 

43 F.R. 46547-46548 
October 10, 1978 



PART 571; S 122— PRE 13-14 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 122 
Motorcycle Brake Systems 



51. Scope. This standard specifies perform- 
ance requirements for motorcycle brake systems. 

52. Purpose. The purpose of the standard is 
to insure safe motorcycle braking performance 
under normal and emergency conditions. 

53. Application. This standard applies to 
motorcycles. 

54. Definitions. 

"Braking interval" means the distance meas- 
ured from the start of one brake application to 
the start of the next brake application. 

"Initial brake temperature" means the tem- 
perature of the hottest service brake of the vehicle 
0.2 miles before any brake application. 

"Skid number" means the frictional resistance 
of a pavement measured in accordance with 
I American Society for Testing and Materials 
(ASTM) Method E-274-70 (as revised July 
1974) at 40 mph, omitting water delivery as 
specified in paragraphs 7.1 and 7.2 of that 
method. 

"Stopping distance" means the distance 
traveled by a vehicle from the start of the brake 
application to the point where the vehicle stops. 

"Split service brake system" means a brake 
system consisting of two or more subsystems 
actuated by a single control designed so that a 
leakage-type failure of a pressure component in 
a single subsystem (except structural failure of 
a housing that is common to all subsystems) shall 
not impair the operation of the other sub- 
system(s). 

S.5 Requirements. Each motorcycle shall 
meet the following requirements under the con- 
ditions specified in S6, when tested according 
to the procedures and in the sequence specified 
in S7. Corresponding test procedures of S7 are 
indicated in parentheses. If a motorcycle is in- 



TABLE I 

STOPPING DISTANCES FOR EFFECTIVENESS, FADE AND 

PARTIAL SYSTEM TESTS 



Stopping distance, feet 


Effectiveness tests 


Vehicle 
test 
speed 
mph. 


Prebur- 
nish effec- 
tiveness 

total 
system 
(35.2.1) 

I 


Prebur- 
nish effec- 
tiveness 

mechani- 
cal systems 
(S5^.2) 


Effective- 
ness total 

UI 


Effective- 
ness partial 
hydraulic 
systems 
(S5.7i) 

IV 



70 


2M 


527 


75 


sta 


606 


80 


345 


689 


85 


.<W9 


788 


90 


484 


872 


9.^ 


540 


971 


100 


598 


1076 


105 


659 


1188 


110 


72.<1 


1302 


116 


791 


1423 


120 


861 


1549 








TABLE U 
BRAKE TEST SEQUENCE AND REQUIREMENTS 


SEQUENCE L.C. 


Test pro- 
cedure 


Require- 
ments 


1. Instrumentation check 


S7.2 




2. First (Prebumish) effectivess test: 
(al Service brake system 

(bl Partial service brake system 

3. Burnish procedure 


S7.3.I 

S7.3.2 

S7.4 


S5.2.1 
SS.2.2 




S7.5 


S5.3 


5. First fade and recovery test 


. S7.6 


S5.4 


6. Rebumish 

7. Final effectiveness test: 


S7.7 
S7 8 1 


S5.5.1 


(b) Partial servKe brake system 

8. Parking brake test 

(three-wheeled motorcycles only) 


S7.8.2 

S7.9 
S7.10 


S5.5.2 

S5.6 
SS.8 


10. Desi4^ durability 


S7,ll 


S5.g 









I 



PART 571; S 122-1 



capable of attaining a specified speed, its service 
brakes shall be capable of stopping the vehicle 
from the multiple of 5 mph that is 4 mph to 
8 mph less than the speed attainable in 1 mile, 
within stoppping distances that do not exceed 
the stopping distances specified in Table 1. 

S5.1 Required equipment— split service brake 
system. Each motorcycle shall have either a 
split service brake system or two independently 
actuated service brake systems. 

55.1.1 IMechanlcal service bralce system. 

Failure of any component in a mechanical service 
brake system shall not result in a loss of brak- 
ing ability in the other service brake system on 
the vehicle. 

55.1.2 Hydraulic service brake system. A 

leakage failure in a hydraulic service brake system 
shall not result in a loss of braking ability in 
the other service brake system on the vehicle. 
Each motorcycle equipped with a hydraulic 
brake system shall have the equipment specified 
in S5.1.2.1 and S5.1.2.2. 

55.1.2.1 IMaster cylinder reservoirs. Each 
master cylinder shall have a separate reservoir 
for each brake circuit, with each reservoir filler 
opening having its own cover, seal, and cover 
retention device. Each reservoir shall have a 
minimum capacity equivalent to one and one-half 
times the total fluid displacement resulting when 
all the wheel cylinders or caliper pistons serv- 
iced by the reservoir move from a new lining, 
fully retracted position to a fully worn, fully 
applied position. Where adjustment is a factor, 
the worst condition of adjustment shall be used 
for this measurement. 

55.1.2.2 IReservoir labeling. Each motorcycle 
shall have a brake fluid warning statement that 
reads as follows, in letters at least 3/32 of an 
inch high: 

"WARNING: Clean filler cap before removing. 

Use only fluid from a sealed container." 

(Inserting the recommended type of brake fluid 
as specified in 49 CFR § 571.116, e.g. DOT 3) 
The lettering shall be— 

(a) Permanently affixed, engraved or em- 
bossed; 

(b) Located so as to be visible by direct view, 
either on or within 4 inches of the brake fluid 
reservoir filler plus or cap; and 



(c) Of a color that contrasts with its back- 
ground, if it is not engraved or embossed. 

S5.1.3. Split service brake system. In addition 
to the equipment required by S5.1.2 each motor- 
cycle equipped with a split service brake system 
shall have a failure indicator lamp as specified 
in S5.1.3.1. 

S5.1.3.1 Failure Indicator lamp. 

(a) One or more electrically operated service 
brake system failure indicator lamps that is 
mounted in front of and in clear view of the 
driver, and that is activated— 

(1) In the event of pressure failure in any 
part of the service brake system, other than a 
structural failure of either a brake master cyl- 
inder body in a split integral body type master 
cylinder system or a service brake system 
failure indicator body, before or upon appli- 
cation of not more than 20 pounds of pedal 
force upon the service brake. 

(2) Without the application of pedal force, 
when the level of brake fluid in a master cylin- 
der reservoir drops to less than the recom- 
mended safe level specified by the manufac- 
turer or to less than one-half the fluid reservoir 
capacity, whichever is the greater. 

(b) All failure indicator lamps shall be acti- 
vated when the ignition switch is turned from 
the "off' to the "on" or to the "start" position. 

(c) Except for the momentary activation re- 
quired by S5. 1.3. 1(b), each indicator lamp, once 
activated, shall remain activated as long as the 
condition exists, whenever the ignition switch is 
in the "on" position. An indicator lamp acti- 
vated when the ignition is turned to the "start" 
position shall be deactivated upon return of the 
switch to the "on" position unless a failure exists 
in the service brake system. 

(d) Each indicator lamp shall have a red lens 
with the legend "Brake Failure" on or adjacent 
to it in letters not less than %2 of an inch high 
that shall be legible to the driver in daylight 
when lighted. 

S5.1.4 Parking Brake. Each three-wheeled 
motorcycle shall be equipped with a parking 
brake of a friction type with a solely mechanical 
means to retain engagement. 



PART 571; S 122-2 



S5.1.5 Other requirements. The brake system 
shall be installed so that the lining thickness of 
drum brake shoes may be visually inspected, 
either directly or by use of a mirror without 
removing the drums, and so that disc brake 
friction lining thickness may be visually inspected 
without removing the pads. 

S5.2 Service Brake System. First (pre- 
bumish) effectiveness. 

S.5.2.1 Service brake system. The service 
brakes shall be capable of stopping the motor- 
cycle from 30 mph and 60 mph within stopping 
distances which do not exceed the stopping dis- 
tances specified in Column I of Table I (S7.3.1). 

S5.2.2 Partial service brake system. Each in- 
dependently actuated service brake system on 
each motorcycle shall be capable of stopping the 
motorcycle from 30 mph and 60 mph within 
stoping distances which do not exceed the stop- 
ping distances specified in Column II of Table I 
(S7.3.2). 

S.5.3 Service brake system— second effective- 
ness. The service brakes shall be capable of 
stopping the motorcycle from 30 mph, 60 mph, 
80 mph, and the multiple of 5 mph that is 4 mph 
to 8 mph less than the speed attainable in 1 mile 
if this speed is 95 mph or greater, within stop- 
ping distances that do not exceed the stopping 
distances specified in Column III of Table I 
(S7.5). 

S5.4 Service brake system— fade and recovery. 

These requirements do not apply to a motor- 
driven cycle whose speed attainable in 1 mile is 
30 mph or less. 

S.5.4.1 Baseline check— minimum and maxi- 
mum pedal forces. The pedal and lever forces 
used in establishing the fade baseline check aver- 
age shall be within the limits specified in S6.10 
(S7.6. 1). 

55.4.2 Fade. Each motorcycle shall be ca- 
pable of making 10 fade stops from 60 mph at 
not less than 15 fpsps for each stop (S7.6.2). 

55.4.3 Fade recovery. Each motorcycle shall 
be capable of making five recovery stops with a 
pedal force that does not exceed 90 pounds, and 
a hand lever force that does not exceed 55 pounds 



for any of the first four recovery stops and that 
for the fifth recovery stop is within plus 20 
pounds and minus 10 pounds of the fade test 
basehne check average force (S7.6.3). 

55.5 Service brake system— final effectiveness. 

These requirements do not apply to a motor- 
driven cycle whose speed attainable in 1 mile is 
30 mph or less. 

55.5.1 Service brake system. The service 
brakes shall be capable of stopping the motor- 
cycle in a manner that complies with S5.3 
(S7.8.1). 

55.5.2 Hydraulic service brake system— partial 
failure. In the event of a pressure component 
leakage failure, other than a structural failure 
of either a brake master cylinder body in a split 
integral body type master cylinder system or a 
service brake system failure indicator body, the 
remaining portion of the service brake system 
shall continue to operate and shall be capable of 
stopping the motorcycle from 30 mph and 60 
mph within stopping distances that do not exceed 
the stopping distances specified in Column IV 
of Table I (S7.8.2). 

55.6 Parking brake system. The parking 
brake system shall be capable of holding the 
motorcycle stationary (to the limits of traction 
of the braked wheels), for 5 minutes, in both 
forward and reverse directions, on a 30 percent 
grade, with an applied force of not more than 
90 pounds for a foot-operated system and 55 
pounds for a hand-operated system (S7.9). 

55.7 Service brake system— water recovery. 

55.7.1 Baseline check. The pedal and lever 
forces used in establishing the water recovery 
baseline check average shall be within the limits 
specified in S6.10 (S7.10.1). 

55.7.2 Water recovery test. Each motorcycle 
shall be capable of making five recovery stops 
with a pedal force that does not exceed 90 pounds, 
and a hand lever force that does not exceed 55 
pounds, for any of the first four recovery stops, 
and that for the fifth recovery stop is within 
plus 20 pounds and minus 10 pounds of the base- 
line check average force (S7.10.2). 



PART 571; S 122-3 



S5.8 Service brake system design durability. 

Each motorcycle shall be capable of completing 
all braking requirements of S5 without detach- 
ment of brake linings from the shoes or pad, 
detachment or fracture of any brake system com- 
ponents, or leakage of fluid or lubricant at the 
wheel cyclinder and master cylinder reservoir 
cover, seal, or retention device (S7.ll). 

S6. Test conditions. The requirements of S5 
shall be met under the following conditions. 
Whfere a range of conditions is specified, the 
motorcycle shall be capable of meeting the re- 
quirements at all points within the range. 

56.1 Vehicie weight. Motorcycle weight is 
unloaded vehicle weight plus 200 pounds (includ- 
ing driver and instrumentation), with the added 
weight distributed in the saddle or carrier if so 
equipped. 

56.2 Tire inflation pressure. Tire inflation 
pressure is the pressure recommended by the 
manufacturer for the vehicle weight specified in 
paragraph S6.1. 

56.3 Transmission. Unless otherwise speci- 
fied, all stops are made with the clutch disen- 
gaged. 

56.4 Engine. Engine idle speed and ignition 
timing settings are according to the manufac- 
turer's recommendations. If the vehicle is 
equipped with an adjustable engine speed gov- 
ernor, it is adjusted according to the manufac- 
turer's recommendation. 

56.5 Ambient temperature. The ambient tem- 
perature is between 32° and 100° F. 

56.6 Wind velocity. The wind velocity is 
zero. 

56.7 Road surface. Road tests are conducted 
on level roadway having a skid number of 81. 
The roadway is 8 feet wide for two-wheeled 
motorcycles, and overall vehicle width plus 5 
feet for three-wheeled motorcycles. The park- 
ing brake test surface is clean, dry, smooth port- 
land cement concrete. 

56.8 Vehicle position. The motorcycle is 
aligned in the center of the roadv/ay at the start 



of each brake application. Stops are made with- 
out any part of the motorcycle leaving the road- 
way and without lockup of any wheel. 

S6.7 Thermocouples. The brake temperature 
is measured by plug-type thermocouples installed 
in the approximate center of the facing length 
and width of the most heavily loaded shoe or 
disc pad, one per brake, as shown in Figure 1. 




FIGURE 1 

TYPICAL PLUG TYPE 
THERMOCOUPLE INSTALLATIONS 



S6.10 Bral(e actuation forces. Except for the 
requirements of the fifth recovery stop in S5.4.3 
and S5.7.2 (S7.6.3 and S7.10.2) the hand lever 
force is not less than five and not more than 55 
pounds and the foot pedal force is not less than 
10 and not more than 90 pounds. The point of 
initial application of the lever forces is 1.2 inches 
from the end of the brake lever grip. The direc- 
tion of the force is perpendicular to the handle 
grip on the plane along which the brake lever 
rotates, and the point of application of the pedal 
force is the center of the foot contact pad of the 
brake pedal. The direction of the force is per- 
pendicular to the foot contact pad on the plane 
along which the brake pedal rotates, as shown 
in Figure 2. 



PART 571; S 122-4 



n( 2 MKCriON IF fllCE 





IMIME KDMJ 



S7. Test procedures and sequence. Each 
motorcycle shall be capable of meeting all the 
requirements of this standard when tested accord- 
ing to the procedures and in the sequence set 
forth below without replacing any brake sys- 
tem part, or msiking any adjustments to the brake 
system other than as permitted in S7.4. A motor- 
cycle shall be deemed to comply with S5.2, S5.3 
and S5.5 if at least one of the stops specified 
in S7.3, S7.5 and S7.8 is made within the stop- 
ping distances specified in Table I. 

57.1 Braking warming. If the initial brake 
temperature for the first stop in a test procedure 
(other than S7.10) has not been reached, heat 
the brakes to the initial brake temperature by 

' making up to 10 stops from 30 mph at a decelera- 
tion of not more than 10 fpsps. On independ- 
ently operated brake systems, the coldest brake 
shall be within 10° F of the hottest brake. 

57.2 Pretest Instrumentation check. Conduct 
a general check of test instrumentation by mak- 
ing not more than 10 stops from a speed of not 
more than 30 mph at a deceleration of not more 
than 10 fpsps. If test instrument repair, replace- 
ment, or adjustment is necessary, make not 
more than 10 additional stops after such repair, 
replacement or adjustment. 

57.3 Service brake system - first (prebumlshed) 
effectiveness test. 

57.3.1 Service brake system. Make six stops 
from 30 mph and then six stops from 60 mph 
with an initial brake temperature between 130° F 
and 150° F. 

57.3.2 Partial service brake system. For a 

motorcycle with two independently actuated serv- 
ice brake systems, repeat S7.3.1 using each service 
brake system individually. 



57.4 Service brake system— burnish procedure. 

Burnish the brakes by making 200 stops from 
30 mph at 12 fpsps. The braking interval shall 
be either the distance necessary to reduce the 
initial brake temperature to between 130° F and 
150° F or 1 mile, whichever occurs first. Accel- 
erate at maximum rate to 30 mph immediately 
after each stop and maintain that speed until 
making the next stop. After burnishing adjust 
the brakes in accordance with the manufacturer's 
recommendation. 

57.5 Service brake system— second effective- 
ness test. Repeat S7.3.1. Then, make four stops 
from 80 mph and four stops from the multiple 
of 5 mph that is 4 mph to 8 mph less than the 
speed attainable in 1 mile if that speed is 95 mph 
or greater. 

57.6 Service brake system— fade and recovery 
test. These requirements do not apply to a 
motor-driven cycle whose speed attainable in 1 
mile is 30 mph or less. 

57.6.1 Baseline cfieck stops. Make three stops 
from 30 mph at 10 to 11 fpsps for each stop. 
Compute the average of the maximum brake 
pedal forces and the maximum brake lever forces 
required for the three stops. 

57.6.2 Fade stops. Make 10 stops from 60 
mph at not less than 15 fpsps for each stop. 
The initial brake temperature before the first 
brake application shall be between 130° F and 
150° F. Initial brake temperatxires before brake 
applications for subsequent stops shall be those 
occurring at the distance intervals. Attain the 
required deceleration as quickly as possible and 
maintain at least this rate for not less than three- 
fourths of the total stopping distance for each 
stop. The interval between the starts of service 
brake apphcations shall be 0.4 mile. Drive 1 
mile at 30 mph after the last fade stop and im- 
mediately conduct the recovery test specified in 
S7.6.3. 

57.6.3 Recovery test. Make five stops from 
30 mph at 10 to 11 fpsps for each stop. The 
braking interval shall not be more than 1 mile. 
Immediately after each stop accelerate at maxi- 
mum rate to 30 mph and maintain that speed 
until making the next stop. 



PART 571; S 122-5 



S7.7 Service brake system— reburnish. Re- 
peat S7.4 except make 35 burnish stops instead 
of 200 stops. Bralces may be adjusted after re- 
burnish if no tools are used. These require- 
ments do not apply to a motor-driven cycle whose 
speed attainable in 1 mile is 30 mph or less. 



57.8 Service brake system— final effectiveness 
test. These requirements do not apply to a 
motor-driven cycle whose speed attainable in 1 
mile is 30 mph or less. 

57.8.1 Service brake system. Repeat S7.5 
including S7.3.1. 

57.8.2 Partial service brake system test. 

Alter the service brake system on three-wheeled 
motorcycles to induce a complete loss of braking 
in any one subsystem. Determine the line pres- 
sure or pedal force necessary to cause the brake 
system failure indicator to operate. Make six 
stops from 30 mph and then six stops from 60 
mph with an initial brake temperature between 
130° F and 150° F. Repeat for each subsystem. 
Determine that the brake failure indicator is 
operating when the master cylinder fluid level 
is less than the level specified in S5.1.3.1(a)(2), 
and that it complies with S5.1.3.1(c). Check 
for proper operation with each reservoir in turn 
at a low level. Restore the service brake system 
to normal at completion of this test. 

57.9 Parking brake test. Starting with an 
initial brake temperature of not more than 
150° F drive the motorcycle downhill on the 
30 percent grade with the longitudinal axis of 
the motorcycle in the direction of the grade. 
Apply the service brakes with a force not ex- 
ceeding 90 pounds to stop the motorcycle and 
place the transmission in neutral. Apply the 
parking brake by exerting a force not exceeding 
those specified in S5.6 Release the service 
brake and allow the motorcycle to remain at rest 
(to the limit of traction of the braked wheels) 
for 5 minutes. Repeat the test with the motor- 
cycle parked in the reverse (uphill) position on 
the grade. 



57.10 Service brake system— water recovery 
test. 

57.10.1 Baseline check stops. Make three 
stops from 30 mph at 10 to 11 fpsps for each 
stop. Compute the average of the maximum 
brake pedal forces and of the maximum brake 
lever forces required for the three stops. 

57.10.2 Wet brake recovery stops. Com- 
pletely immerse the rear brake assembly of the 
motorcycle in water for 2 minutes with the 
brake fully released. Next completely immerse the 
front brake assembly of the motorcycle in water 
for 2 minutes wdth the brake fully released. 
Perform the entire wetting procedure in not more 
than. 7 minutes. Immediately after removal 
of the front brake from water, accelerate at a 
maximum rate of 30 mph without a brake appli- 
cation. Immediately upon reaching that speed 
make five stops, each from 30 mph at 10 to 
11 fpsps for each stop. After each stop (except 
the last) accelerate the motorcycle immediately 
at a maximum rate to 30 mph and begin the 
next stop. 

87.11 Final inspection. Upon completion of 
all the tests inspect the brake system in an as- 
sembled condition, for compliance with the brake 
lining inspection requirements. Disassemble all 
brakes and inspect: 

(a) The entire brake system for detachment 
or fracture of any component; 

(b) Brake linings for detachment from the 
shoe or pad; 

(c) Wheel cylinder, master cylinder, and axle 
seals for fluid or lubricant leakage; 

(d) Master cylinder for reservoir capacity 
and retention device; and 

(e) Master cylinder label for compliance with 
S5.1.2.2. 



37 F.R. 5033 
March 9, 1972 



PART 571; S 122-6 



HNcflvti S*pt*mlMr ), 1974 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 123 

Motorcycle Controls and Displays 
(Docket No. 70-26; Notice 3) 



This notice amends Part 571 of Title 49, Code 
of Federal Regulations, to add a new Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 123 (49 CFR 
§571.123) that establishes requirements for 
motorcycle controls and displays. A notice of 
proposed rulemaking on this subject was pub- 
lished on November 6, 1970 (35 F.R. 17117). 

The National Highway Traffic Safety Admin- 
istration estimates that over 3,000 accidents may 
be avoided annually by specifying a uniform 
standard for motorcycle controls and displays. 
As this agency commented in the prior notice: 
"Controls and displays link the operator and the 
machine, and if there is confusion as to their 
location, interpretation, or operation, a danger- 
ous situation may result. A cyclist, especially 
the novice and the cyclist who has changed from 
one make of machine to another, must not hesi- 
tate when confronted with an emergency." The 
purpose of the new standard is to minimize 
operator error in responding to the motoring 
environment, by standardizing certain motor- 
cycle controls and displays. 

The basic operational requirement of Standard 
No. 123 is that handlebar-mounted controls be 
operable throughout their full range without the 
operator removing his hand from the handgrip. 
Standard No. K8 requires aH m o t o r cycl es to 
have a supplemental engine stop control, oper- 
able from the right handlebar, intended for use 
in emergency situations. Notice of this require 
ment was proposed in Notice 2 to Docket No. 
69-20, Accelerator Control Systems (35 F.R. 
15241). Standard No. 123 also requires that if 
any of ten other specified equipment items are 
provided on a motorcycle, the location and 
method of operation of the applicable control 
shall be standardized. These items are : manual 
clutch or integrated clutch and gear change, 



foot-operated gear change, headlamp upper- 
lower beam control, horn, turn signal lamps, 
ignition, manual fuel shutoff control, twist-grip 
throttle, front wheel brake, and rear wheel 
brakes. Motorcycles that are designed and sold 
exclusively for use by law enforcement agencies 
are excluded from Standard No. 123, as the 
configuration of certain controls on such vehicles, 
necessary for law enforcement purposes, differs 
from that required by the new standard. Pro- 
posals applicable to the instrument illumination 
intensity control, the electric starter, and the 
kick starter have not been adopted as insufficient 
correlation with motor vehicle safety has been 
found for these items. 

As noted below, some of the location and op- 
erational i^uirements that were proposed have 
not been adopted in the following instances 
Otherwise, the location and operation of controls 
are required as proposed. 

1. Foot-operated gear change. The likelihood 
of inadvertent engagement of reverse gear has 
been found to be so slight that a means to pro- 
hibit it has not been found necessary. Further, 
no requirement has been specified for location of 
neutral gear. Under Proposal A, neutral would 
have occurred lowest in the gear sequence. Pro- 
posal A T^^as not adopted because of the likeli- 
hood of overshooting low gear when downshift- 
ing, thus contributing to a possible loss of 
control. In Proposal B, the transmission would 
be put into neutral by a rearward motion of the 
operator's heel on a control device separate from 
the shift lever. This method was not adopted 
since it appears to have no inherent safety ad- 
vantages over any other means of finding neutral. 
The intent of Proposal B was to ensure that 
neutral can reliably be selected when desired 
without being selected inadvertently when not 



PART 571; S 123— PRE 1 



Elhftiv*! S*pl*mb«r 1, 1974 



desired. The conventional neutral light may 
serve as an aid to Such shifting; however, any 
system which requires eye movements away from 
the road merely to shift gears cannot be consid- 
ered to be an adjunct to safety. 

The present standard does not imjwse specific 
requirements for ease of locating the gear posi- 
tion, or for protection against inadvertent shift- 
ing into neutral. However, the Administration 
considers these to be desirable objectives and 
will consider amending the standard if it ap- 
pears necessary to do so. 

2. Headlamp control. Because heavy gloves 
are needed for safe riding, only a simple "up for 
higher beam, down for lower beam" requirement 
has been adopted. 

3. Turn signal lamps. Because turn signal 
lamps are not a required item of motorcycle 
equipment until January 1, 1973, and the indus- 
try is experimenting with various controls. 
Standard No. 123 specifies only that the turn 
signal lamp control be located on the handlebars. 

4. Ignition: Because of the adoption of the 
requirement that motorcycles be equipped with 
a supplemental engine stop control on the right 
handlebar, the need to specify a location and 
method of operation for the ignition has dimin- 
ished. Accordingly, the sole ignition control 
requirement is that the "off" position be counter- 
clockwise from all other positions. 

6. Manual fuel shutoff control. The require- 
ments adopted do not apply to automatic fuel 
shutoff controls. No location for a manual con- 
trol is specified. Based upon comments, revisions 
have been made in the direction of valve oper- 
ation. 

Substantial modifications have been made as 
well in the display proposals. Because of the 
limited range within which displays can be lo- 



cated on a motorcycle, it has been determined 
that no specific location requirements are neces- 
sary. Illumination of the neutral position and 
the speedometer has been deemed essential; the 
proposal that a green lamp indicate neutral po- 
sition has been adopted, and the speedometer 
must be illuminated whenever the headlamp is 
activated. Because turn signals and upper beam 
indicators are covered in Standard No. 108, they 
have been omitted from the display illumination 
requirements of Standard No. 123. 

Proposals for control identification, stands, 
and passenger foot-rests have been adopted sub- 
stantially as proposed. Since operating instruc- 
tions are invariably provided with motorcycles, 
the NHTSA has not adopted the proposal cov- 
ering them. 

Effective date: September 1, 1974. Because 
of the leadtime necessary for preparation for 
production, it is found, for good cause shown, 
that an effective date later than one year after 
the issue date is in the public interest. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Title 49, 
Code of Federal Regulations, is amended by 
adding § 671.123, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 
No. 123, Motorcycle Controls and Displays, as 
set forth below. 

This notice is issued under the authority of 
sections 103 and 119 of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (15 U.S.C. 
1392, 1407) and the delegation of authority from 
the Secretary of Transportation to the National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administrator, 49 CFR 
1.61. 

Issued on April 4, 1972. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 7207 
April 12, 1972 



PART 671; S 123— PRE 2 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 123 
Motorcycle Controls and Displays 



This notice responds to petitions for recon- 
sideration of Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 
No. 123 (49 CFR §571.123) and amends the 
standard in minor respects. 

Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 123, 
establishing requirements for the location, op- 
eration, identification, and illumination of 
motorcycle controls and displays, effective 
September 1, 1974, was published on April 12, 
1972 (37 F.R. 7207). Thereafter, pursuant to 49 
CFR § 553.35, petitions for reconsideration of the 
rule were filed by Japan Automobile Manufac- 
turers Asociation, Inc. ("JAMA"), Kawasaki 
Motors Corp. (Kawasaki), and Cushman 
Motors ("Cushman") through counsel. In re- 
sponse to these petitions the standard is being 
revised in minor respects. The Administrator 
has declined to grant requested relief from other 
requirements of the standard. 

1. Manual fuel shutoff valve. Standard No. 
123 requires that the manual fuel shutoff control 
point downward when in the "on" position, for- 
ward in the "off" position, and upward to supply 
fuel from a reserve source if one is provided. 

JAMA has requested that the configuration 
found on most Japanese motorcycles be adopted : 
"off" with the control position to the left, "re- 
serve" to the right, and "on" downward. 
JAMA's request was originally made in response 
to the notice proposing control positions for the 
shut-off valve, and was considered at that time. 
JAMA's petition is denied. The NHTSA has 
determined that the control should be stand- 
ardized by requiring its operation along a longi- 
tudinal rather than a transverse axis. In this 
location there is a greater likelihood that in the 
event of a crash, the control will be carried by 
inertia to the off position, thereby shutting off 
the fuel. 

JAMA also asked for an interpretation of the 
words "control pointing" asking if the words 



mean the direction of a non-operational pointer 
indicating the off-position, or the direction of the 
control end operated by the fingers. "Control 
pointing" means the direction of the control end 
operated by the fingers. To eliminate this pos- 
sible ambiguity, the word "pointing" is deleted 
from the entry in Table I. 

2. Headlamp cordrol. The NHTSA requires, 
in Standard No. 123, that the upper headlamp 
beam be activated with an upward motion of the 
beam control, and the lower beam by a down- 
ward motion. Kawasaki has asked that these 
positions be reversed. It reasons that when the 
left thumb is imder the handlebar, the lower 
beam control can be more quickly activated with 
an upward movement of the thumb, rather than 
by raising the thumb above the switch and then 
depressing it. The Administration denies 
Kawasaki's request, as it is considered contrary 
to good human factors engineering. Control 
mechanisms which are used for increasing the 
output of a system are generally designed to be 
switched upward for higher intensity. 

3. Speedometer graduations. Both JAMA 
and Kawasaki have petitioned for reconsidera- 
tion of the requirement that major and minor 
graduations and numerals appear at the 10 and 
5 mph intervals respectively, alleging that op- 
erator confusion could be caused by a clutter of 
numerals and graduations at 5 mph intervals. 
The NHTSA considers these petitions to have 
merit and is amending Standard No. 123, to re- 
quire only minor graduations at the 5 mph 
intervals. 

4. Coiitrol identification. JAMA has peti- 
tioned for an amendment of Table 3 to eliminate 
identification of some controls and to identify 
only control positions. The petition also re- 
quested abbreviation of the identification pres- 
ently required. JAMA alleges difficulty in pro- 
viding all the identification marks due to lack of 



PART 571; S 123— PRE 3 



MmHv*i ScplmilMr I, If 74 



space around the handlebar. It argues that an 
individual operator will not mistake one equip- 
ment item for another on diflferent cycles when 
aU controls are uniformly located as specified by 
Standard No. 123. 

The Administration denies JAMA's petition. 
Labeling control positions without identifying 
the control itself could confuse the novice motor- 
cyclist and may contribute to traffic hazards. 
During the initial learning stage the cyclist will 
not be able to identify controls by their required 
location. Further, there are no common ab- 
breviations with universal acceptance for the 
controls mentioned, viz., choke, starter, horn, and 
neutral indicator. 

JAMA also requested a clarification as to 
whether control identification must be indicated 
in capital letters. The answer is no: use of 
upper or lower case lettering is at the manu- 
facturer's discretion. Kawasaki asked whether 
it is permissible to add information to the 
tachometer identification indicating that it 
registers thousands of revolutions per minute. 
The marking requirements of the standard are 
minimum requirements only, and the NHTSA 
has no objection to further identification of this 
nature for the tachometer. 

5. Three-wheeled motorcycles. Cushman man- 
ufactures three-wheeled motorcycles. It alleged 
that many of the requirements of Standard No. 
123 are incompatible with the configuration of its 
vehicle. It requested that Standard No. 123 be 
amended to exclude three-wheeled motorcycles 
that are designed to achieve a maximum speed 
no greater than 40 mph. Cushman raised a 
number of specific objections concerning control 
location and operation, identification, and dis- 
plays. In view of the disposition of Cushman's 
petition it is not necessary to discuss the objec- 
tions in detail. 



Cushman's petition is denied for the following 
reasons. Petitioner manufactures two types of 
three-wheeled vehicles, identical except for steer- 
ing configuration. One type employs handlebars, 
the other a steering wheel. Its sales literature 
indicates that most models manufactured with 
handlebars are intended for industrial applica- 
tions on private property, and are not intended 
to be licensed as motor vehicles for use on the 
public roads. The remaining models manufac- 
tured with handlebars are intended for police 
use. Standard No. 123 does not apply to this 
type of vehicle. Cushman's models intended for 
street use are equipped with the steering wheel 
as standard equipment. The standard does not 
apply to motorcycles with steering wheels. A 
denial of Cushman's petition means only that, 
after September 1, 197^, three-wheeled motor- 
cycles for street use may not be sold with the 
handlebar option. 

6. MisceUaneoua. A typographical error is 
corrected concerning the integrated clutch and 
gear change. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
§571.123, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 
123, is revised .... Effective date: September 
1, 1974, the same effective date as the standard 
as previously issued '(37 F.R. 7207). 

This notice is issued under the authority of 
sections 103 and 119 of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 
1392, 1407) and the delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.61. 



Issued on August 22, 1972. 



Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 17474 
August 29, 1972 



PART 571; S 123— PRE 4 



Eff*ctiv*: OctelMr 14, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 123 

(Docket No. 74-16; Notic* 2) 



This notice amends 49 CFR 571.108, 571.122, 
and 571.123, Motor Vehicle Safety Standards 
Nos. 108, 122, and 123, to modify current re- 
quirements that apply to motor-driven cycles. 

Interested persons have been afforded an op- 
portimity to participate in the making of the 
amendment by a notice of proposed rulemaking 
published on April 12, 1974 (39 F.R. 13287) and 
due consideration has been given to all comments 
received in response to the notice, insofar as they 
relate to matters within its scope. 

The prior notice responded to petitions by 
Cycles Peugeot, Ateliers de la Motobecane, and 
S.I.N.F.A.C., manufacturers, and Bermuda Bikes, 
Inc., and Robert F. Smith, retail dealers. The 
notice proposed that a motor-driven cycle whose 
speed attainable in 1 mile is 30 mph or less need 
not be equipf)ed with turn signal lamps, and may 
be equipped with a stop lamp with one-half the 
photometric output otherwise required. Braking 
fade and recovery requirements also would not 
apply to these low-speed vehicles. Maximum 
stopping distances values for the various tests 
would be added for test speeds of 25, 20, and 15 
mph. Finally, a braking control on the left 
handlebar would be a permissible alternative to 
the required right foot braking control. 

The comments received addressed both areas 
of performance covered in the proposal, and 
areas where no standards currently exist, such 
as motors, transmissions, pedals, and a request 
for exemption from Standard No. 119, Tires for 
Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars. As these 
latter comments cover matters beyond the scope 
of the proposal, this notice does not discuss them. 
The agency, however, has been formally peti- 
tioned for rulemaking covering transmissions 
and Standard Xo. 119, and will respond to the 
{petitioners in the near future. 

The decision by NHTSA not to establish a 
separate category of vehicle was objected to by 



some commenters. In support of their request, 
they argued that the majority of motor-driven 
cycles have engines producing only 1.5 to 2 horse- 
power, and consequent low maximum speeds, re- 
ducing the need for forward lighting that is 
currently required of these vehicles. Petitioners 
submitted no data justifying their request. The 
NHTSA, however, intends to study the matter 
of forward lighting for low-powered two- 
wheeled vehicles through a research contract 
with the University of Michigan. Wlien the 
contract is completed the agency will then decide 
whether further rulemaking is warranted. 

The proposal distinguished motor-driven 
cycles on the basis of maximum speed attainable 
in 1 mile, rather than on horsepower, and the 
value selected, 30 mph, fell within the maximum 
(40 mph) and minimum (20 mph) suggested by 
commenters. The NHTSA has concluded there- 
fore that the distinction should be adopted as 
proposed. 

Some manufacturers requested restrictive con- 
trols on power plant output, apparently in fear 
that the engine of a vehicle with a top speed of 
30 mph or less could be modified to exceed that 
speed, and therefore cause the vehicle to no 
longer comply with the Federal standards. This 
agency has not found that course of action to be 
practicable. The various ways to modify a ve- 
hicle after purchase cannot be anticipated or 
prevented at the manufacturer level. On the 
other hand, the great majority of consumers use 
their vehicles in the form in which they were 
purchased. The motor-driven cycle category it- 
self contains a limitation of 5 horsepower, which 
will be applicable to the special lighting modi- 
fications. In the NHTSA's judgment, modifica- 
tions by consumers and the consequent equipment 
requirements should continue to be regulated at 
the State level. 



PART 571; S 123— PRE 5 



Effective: October 14, 1974 



The fact tliat the jigency took no action to 
propose a reduction in existinji lieadlamp re- 
quirements for motor-driven cycles was criticized 
by several manufacturers as unduly restrictive 
because of the low speed and power output of 
their vehicles. No justitication has been shown 
for such a change. Motor-driven cycles therefore 
must have sufficient generating and/or battery 
capacity to meet the headlamp requirements. 

There was no substantive objection to the ac- 
tual proposals for omission of turn signals, re- 
duced stop lamp photometries, relief from brake 
fade requirements, inclusion of maximum allow- 
able stopping distances for low speeds, and rear 
brake control placement. Accordingly, the 
standards are being amended in the manner 
proposed. 

Standard No. 122 is also being amended to 
delete the final effectiveness test (S5.5) for those 
motor-driven cycles excused from the fade and 
recovery requirements. The purpose of the final 
effectiveness test is to check the stopping ability 
of the vehicle after the fade and recovery tests. 
Since this requirement has been eliminated for 
motor-driven cycles of low top-speed, the final 
eflfectiveness test is redundant, and an unneces- 



sary duplication of tlie second effectiveness test. 
No safety purpose is served by its retention. 
Language is also added to the fade and recovery 
and final effectiveness test procedures (S7.6, 
S7.7, and S7.8), making it clear that they do not 
apply to motor-driven cycles whose speed attain- 
able in 1 mile is .30 mph or less. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
Part 571 is amended .... 

Effective date: October 14, 1974. As the 
amendments allow new options for compliance, 
relieve restrictions, and impose no additional 
burdens on regulated persons, it is found for 
good cause shown that an effective date earlier 
than 180 days after issuance of the amendments 
is in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718, 
15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407 ; delegation of authority at 
49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on September 6, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 32914 
September 12, 1974 



PART 571; S 123— PRE 6 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 123 

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Motorcycle Controls and Displays 
[Docket No. 80-05; Notice 2] 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: The purpose of this notice is to amend 
Safety Standard No. 123, Motorcycle Controls and 
Displays, to allow use of "r/min" as an alternative 
to "R.p.m." to indicate revolutions per minutes to 
the tachometer. This action is taken pursuant to a 
grant of two petitions for rulemaking. A notice of pro- 
posed rulemaking was published on Arpil 10, 1980 
(45 FR 24515). The primary benefit of the amend- 
ment is that it will allow use of metric units for iden- 
tification that are widely used by other countries. 

EFFECTIVE DATE: September 20, 1983. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Japan 
Automobile Manufactuers Association, Inc. and the 
Motorcycle Industrj' Council, Inc. petitioned for 
rulemaking to amend Federal Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 123, Motorcycle Controls and 
Displays, to provide the option of using "r/min" as 
well as the existing "R.p.m." letters on the 
tachometer to indicate revolutions per minute. 

According to petitioners, such an amendment 
would allow metric units for identifications that are 
widely accepted internationally. Under the metric 
system the unit describing rotational frequency is 
"r/min", recognized by both the International Stand- 
ards Organization and the U.S. Society of Automo- 
tive Engineers. Such an amendment would not af- 
fect safety and would be in the interest of interna- 
tional standards harmonization. 

The agency granted the petitions and on April 10, 
1980, proposed alternative amendments (45 FR 
24515). The first, effective upon publication, would 
have allowed optional use of "R.p.m." or "r/min". 
The second would have allowed "r/min" immediate- 
ly upon publication" and required its exclusive use 
eventually. 



All comments to the notice of proposed rulemak- 
ing supported the first alternative, and the standard 
is being amended to allow use of either "R.p.m." or 
"r/min" as an acceptable means of identification of 
revolutions per minute. It should be understood that 
this requirement is inclusive of minute variations 
from the letters indicated, such as use of capital let- 
ters or omission of periods, and that such usage or 
omission will not be deemed failures to comply with 
Standard No. 123. Because the amendment imposes 
no additional burden on any persons and contributes 
to the international harmonization of vehicle stan- 
dards, it is hereby found for good cause shown that 
an effective date earlier than 180 days after issuance 
of this amendment is in the public interest. 

The agency's examination has shown that this 
rulemaking action is not a major regulation under 
E.xecutive Order 12291 "Improving (jovemment 
Regulations," or a significant regulation under the 
Department's regulatory policies and procedures, 
and that a regulatory impact analysis is not required. 
Further, the cost impacts will be so minimal that 
preparation of a full regulatory evaluation is not war- 
ranted. Amendment of the standard will impose no 
additional manufacturer requirements but will allow 
producers flexibility to adopt tachometers that are 
now precluded by the current requirements of Stan- 
dard No. 123. The cost savings resulting from tak- 
ing advantage of that flexibility would be 
insubstantial. 

The agency has also considered the impacts of this 
amendment in relation to the Regulatory Flexibili- 
ty Act. I certify that amending Standard No. 123 
would not have a significant economic effect on a 
substantial number of small entities. Accordingly, no 
initial regulatory flexibility analysis has been 
prepared. Based on available information, the agen- 
cy believes no manufacturers of motorcycles are 



PART 571; S 123-PRE 7 



small businesses as that term is defined for purposes Issued on September 14, 1983. 

of the Flexibility Act. Small organizations and /j 

governmental jurtsdictions which purchase fleets of ' 

motor vehicles would probably not be significantly 

affected. The difference in cost of vehicles equipped 

with cuiTent tachometei-s and those permitted by the 

amendment would be insubstantial at most. Diane K Steed 

In consideration of the foregoing, the letters Deputy Administrator 

"R.p.m." in Column 2 of Table 3 of 49 CFR 571.123, 

Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 123, are revised 48 FR 4281 9 

to read "R.p.m. or r/min". September 20, 1983 



(( 



PART 571; S 123-PRE 8 



i 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 123 

Motorcycle Controls and Displays 
[Docket No. 83-13; Notice 2] 



ACTION: Final rule 

SUMMARY: The purpose of this notice is to amend 
Safety Standard No. 123, Motorcycle Controls and 
Displays, to allow greater flexibility in mounting 
the manual fuel control shut-off valve. This action 
is taken pursuant to a grant of a petition for 
rulemaking and a notice of proposed rulemaking 
published on September 6, 1983 (48 FR 40286). Its 
primary benefit is that it will relieve a current 
design restriction which is demed no longer 
necessary for motor vehicle safety. 

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 8, 1984. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Table 1 of 
Standard No. 123 specifies that the manual fuel 
shut-off control have the following modes of opera- 
tion: "off, with the control forward, "on", with the 
control downward, and "reserve" (if provided), 
with the control upward. No requirements are 
specified for the location of the control. However, 
Standard No. 123 has generally been interpreted 
as requiring control rotation around a transverse 
axis. 

In March 1981 Bajaj Auto Ltd. asked NHTSA 
for an "exemption" from this requirement in order 
to mount its fuel shut-off control so that it could be 
rotated around a longitudinal axis. In establishing 
the original operational modes, NHTSA had justi- 
fied them by stating that in the event of a crash 
there was a greater likelihood that the control 
would be carried forward by inertia to the "off 
position, thereby shutting off the fuel. In Bajaj's 
opinion, this effect would be unlikely except in the 
most severe collisions because of the low weight of 
the operating control lever, and the tightness of 



the control valve necessary to guard against in- 
advertent closure of the control in normal opera- 
tion. After deliberation, and its own informal in- 
vestigation, the agency concurred with Bajaj's 
reasoning and decided to treat Bajaj's request as a 
petition for rulemaking. Bajaj was informed of this 
decision in 1982. 

The agency tentatively decided that motor vehi- 
cle safety through standardization of controls is 
best served in this instance by retaining the rela- 
tionships of the control positions to each other 
whUe allowing the manufacturer to place the con- 
trol so that it may operate in its required positions 
around either a longitudinal or transverse axis. It 
was proposed that when the control is rotated 
around a longitudinal axis, the "off position shall 
be "horizontal" with the other positions downward 
for "on" and upward for "reserve on". In the 
horizontal position, the control can be pointing 
either to the right or left. 

Comments were received from American Honda 
Motor Co., Japan Automobile Manufacturer's 
Association (JAMA), Kawasaki Motors Corp., 
USA, and BMW Bikers of Metropolitan Washing- 
ton. The manufacturers supported the proposal, 
and requested further amendments responsive to 
rotation about a vertical axis. BMW Bikers urged 
the agency to consider the potential hazards that 
might result were the control relocated so far in- 
board as to be difficult to reach and manipulate. 

More specifically, a request was made that Stan- 
dard No. 123 be amended to allow future designs of 
manual shut-off valves that would be rotational 
around a vertical axis. Kawasaki recommended 
that rotation be allowed around any axis. It was 
also recommended that the rotational axis be 
allowed to vary by plus or minus 30 degrees, as the 



PART 571; S 123-PRE 9 



exact axis of rotation (zero degrees) may be dif- 
ficult to achieve because of the shape of the fuel 
tank and other vehicle components. 

The agency has reviewed these requests and 
believes that they have merit as relief of design 
restrictions. However, the proposal did not ask for 
comments on the advisability of rotation around a 
vertical axis, or on a 30 degree tolerance. There- 
fore, the standard is being amended in the manner 
specified in the proposal. 

With respect to the concern expressed by BMW 
Bikers, it is true that mounting the control around 
the longitudinal axis might make it awkward to 
reach and difficult to operate, but the agency does 
not believe that any manufacturer will change its 
current design in a manner that would make it less 
appealing to the consumer. The new location does 
represent a convenient location for motorscooters 
such as are manufactured by the petitioner. 

NHTSA has considered this rule and has deter- 
mined that it is not major within the meaning of 
Executive Order 12291 "Federal Regulation" or 
significant under Department of Transportation 
regulatory policies and procedures, and that 
neither a regulatory impact analysis nor a full 
regulatory evaluation is required. The rule im- 
poses no additional requirements but permits 
manufacturers greater flexibility in locating the 
control concerned. 

NHTSA has analyzed this rule for the purposes 
of the National Environmental Policy Act. The 
rule will have no effect on the human environment 
since the weight and quantity of materials used in 
the manufacture of motorcycles is not changed. No 
impact on safety is anticipated. 

The agency has also considered the impacts of 
this rule in relation to the Regulatory Flexibility 
Act. I certify that this rule will not have a signifi- 
cant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities, and no initial regulatory flexibility 



analysis has been prepared. Manufacturers of 
motorcycles, those affected by the rule, are 
generally not small businesses within the meaning 
of the Regulatory Flexibility Act. Finally, small 
organizations and governmental jurisdictions will 
not be significantly affected since the price of new 
motorcycles will be minimally impacted. 

Because the amendment relieves a restriction, is 
optional in nature, and furthers international har- 
monization, it is hereby found for good cause 
shown that an effective date earlier than 180 days 
after issuance is in the public interest, and the 
amendment is effective 30 days after publication in 
the Federal Register. 

In consideration of the foregoing, the operation 
requirements for the manual fuel shut-off control 
(item 7) in Column 3 of Table 1 of 49 CFR 571.123, 
Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 123, are re- 
vised to read as follows: 

"on" — Control downward. 

"off " — Control forward (if control rotates 
around a transverse axis) or Horizontal — Left or 
Right (if control rotates around a longitudinal 
axis). 

"reserve on" — (if provided) Control upward. 

(Sees. 103, 119, Pub. L. 87-563, 80 Stat. 718 (15 
U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.50.) 

Issued on August 31, 1984. 



Diane K. Steed 
Administrator 

49 FR 35380 
September?, 1984 



PART 571; S 123-PRE 10 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 123 

Motorcycle Controls and Displays 
[Docket No. 83-14; Notice 2] 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: Standard No. 123. Motorcycle Con- 
trols and Displays, specifies requirements for the 
location, operation, identification and illumination 
of controls and displays in two- and three-wheeled 
motor vehicles. This notice amends Standard No. 
123 by adding symbols as an option to the words 
which are presently required to identify motorcy- 
cle controls and displays. This amendment brings 
the standard into harmony with latest documents 
promulgated by the International Standard 
Organization. The changes should reduce com- 
pliance costs by promoting international har- 
monization. This action results in part from a peti- 
tion for rulemaking submitted by BMW of North 
America. 

A notice of proposed rulemaking on this subject 
was published on September 6, 1983 (48 FR 40282). 

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 11. 1984. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Standard 
No. 123. Motorcycle Controls and Displays, speci- 
fies requirements for the location, operation, iden- 
tification and illumination of controls and displays 
in motorcycles. The purpose of the standard is to 
ensure the accessibility and visibility of controls 
and displays and to facilitate their quick and 
proper identification and selection by a driver in 
order to reduce the safety hazards caused by the 
diversion of the driver's attention from the driving 
task, and by mistakes in selecting controls. 

Among its requirements. Standard No. 123 spe- 
cifies the use of certain words for the identification 
of several controls and displays. The standard is 
silent as to the use of symbols in addition to or in 



place of words. BMW of North America petitioned 
for rulemaking to amend the standard so that sym- 
bols may be used. Its petition was granted on 
August 30, 1983, and a notice of proposed rule- 
making implementing the grant was published on 
September 6, 1983 (48 FR 40282). 

The symbols proposed were those developed by 
the International Standards Organization (ISO). 
Certain ISO symbols have also been adopted by 
the United Nations Economic Commission for 
Europe (ECE) and the European Economic Com- 
munity (EEC). 

Costs would be reduced by facilitating interna- 
tional harmonization. Manufacturers which pro- 
duce vehicles for sale in both this nation and 
abroad would not have to produce separate dash- 
boards or controls and displays to meet conflicting 
identification requirements. 

NHTSA proposed that Table 3 be amended by 
adding a new column containing ISO symbols for 
supplemental engine stop, manual choke, electric 
starter, headlamp upper-lower beam control, horn, 
turn signals, neutral indicator, upper beam in- 
dicator, and fuel tank shut-off valve. These sym- 
bols could be used in addition to, or in lieu of. the 
words presently required. A footnote was added to 
clarify that the framed area of certain symbols 
may be filled in. 

There are issues associated with the use of sym- 
bols for which NHTSA was especially interested in 
soliciting comments. 

The first of these issues was the number and 
type of symbols that can be used to greatest effect. 
The ISO is a nonregulatory body. The European 
regulatory body (ECE) has additional, and in some 
instances different, symbols. There are potential 
safety and cost savings advantages to reaching 



PART 571; S 123-PRE 11 



consensus on the most effective symbols. In 
NHTSA's opinion, symbols should identify only 
the most important controls and displays. The pro- 
posal listed symbols covering only 9 controls and 
displays included in Table 3; the ISO standard for 
motorcycles (ISO 6727) has 22. NHTSA solicited 
comments on the number of those symbols that 
should be required or permitted, with attention to 
the question whether a proliferation of symbols 
contributes to confusion rather than providing 
clarification. 

Another issue was whether, if the required 
words are used, a manufacturer should be allowed 
to supplement those words with symbols which it 
has developed on its own. Some of the ISO- 
approved symbols may have an unclear relation- 
ship to the function concerned, and in these in- 
stances manufacturers may have developed a 
more relevant symbol. 

A further issue was the permissibility of devia- 
tion from exact replication of a symbol, such as use 
of a light symbol with four rays rather than the 
five depicted. The agency proposed that the sym- 
bols specified shall be "substantially in the form" 
shown in the new table to cover minor errors that 
have an inconsequential relationship to motor ve- 
hicle safety. NHTSA was interested in comments 
on this issue as well. A final issue was whether all 
symbols, including those in Standard No. 101, 
should be placed in a separate regulation that is 
not a Federal motor vehicle safety standard. 

Comments on the notice were received from 
Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association 
(JAMA), Kawasaki Motors Corp. U.S.A., Yamaha 
Motor Corp. U.S.A., Chrysler Corp., General 
Motors Corp., Suzuki Motor Co. Ltd., and BMW 
Bikers of Washington. 

The use of ISO symbols was unanimously sup- 
ported, Kawasaki commenting that this is a step 
towards harmonization of American requirements 
with those of other nations. Several commenters 
suggested, however, that the proposed revision of 
Table 3 appeared redundant in requiring use of 
words to identify control operation (Column 4) if a 
symbol were also used. The agency agrees with 
this comment and the final rule allows several op- 
tions for control and control position function iden- 
tification: by only the symbol (Column 3), by 
wording (Column 2 and Column 4), or by both sym- 
bol and wording (Column 2, Column 3, and Column 
4). In addition, a manufacturer may provide sym- 
bols and words where none are shown in the Col- 



umns. Although expressed in rewritten form, 
previous specifications of paragraph S5.2.3 con- 
tinue to apply: permission to spell out control iden- 
tification abbreviations, placement of identifica- 
tion on or adjacent to the control, position, and ap- 
pearance of identification to the operator in an 
upright position. 

Kawasaki pointed out to the agency that most 
modern motorcycles do not rely on a "choke" 
device but incorporate an enrichening circuit in 
the carburator. It asked that amendments be made 
to Columns 1 and 2 to reflect that fact, allowing 
"Mixture Enrichment" in addition to "Manual 
Choke", and "Enrichener" as well as "Choke". 
While the agency believes that most operators will 
continue to use the word "choke" to describe the 
system that enriches the fuel-air mixture, the 
agency has decided to extend the terminology 
associated with this control to acknowledge the ex- 
istence of alternative technology to aid in cold 
starting. Table 3, Column 1 will therefore contain 
the equipment designation "Manual Choke or Mix- 
ture Enrichment" and Table 3, Column 2 will con- 
tain the control and display identification "Choke 
or Enrichener". 

NHTSA's request for comments on the issue of 
the number and types of symbols that could be us- 
ed to greatest effect was addressed only inferen- 
tially with the comment that the agency had not 
proposed use of all ISO symbols for motorcycles. 
NHTSA had also asked whether if the required 
words were used, a manufacturer should be al- 
lowed to supplement those words with symbols 
other than those of the ISO which may have an 
unclear relationship to the function concerned. 
Those who commented felt that only ISO symbols 
should be permitted, and some asked that the en- 
tire list be provided. The amendment that is the 
subject of this notice allows a manufacturer to ap- 
ply its own symbols for ignition, tachometer, and 
speedometer as none are specified for these dis- 
plays and controls in Column 3. It was brought to 
the agency's attention that the electric starter 
symbol may not be the one currently approved by 
the ISO. The agency has been able to substantiate 
that the symbol proposed (adopted by the ISO in 
1981 and also the symbol specified by ECE Regula- 
tion No. 60) is the current ISO symbol and the final 
rule thus adopts the symbol of the proposal. 

Manufacturers supported the concept of the per- 
missibility of minor deviations from exact replica- 
tion of the ISO symbols, which may be occasioned 



PART 571; S 123-PRE 12 



by space limitations on small vehicles such as 
motorcycles. Accordingly, the standard is 
amended as proposed, requiring only that a symbol 
be "substantially in the form" shown in Column 3. 

Finally, there was general agreement that sym- 
bols in Standard No. 123 and Standard No. 101, 
Controls and Displays, should be joined in a 
separate regulation that is not a Federal motor 
vehicle safety standard. The agency shall consider 
these comments in future rulemaking. 

The agency has assessed the economic and other 
impacts of these amendments and determined that 
the amendment is neither a major rule within the 
meaning of Executive Order 12291 nor a signifi- 
cant rule under the Department of Transporta- 
tion's regulatory policies and procedures. Further, 
the agency concludes that the economic and other 
consequences of these amendments are so minimal 
as not to require preparation of a full regulatory 
evaluation. The impact is minimal because the cost 
difference between using words and symbols is 
negligible and because use of symbols instead of 
words is optional. 

In consideration of the foregoing, the following 
amendments are made in §571.123 and Chapter V 
of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations: 

1. Section S5.2.3 is revised to read: 
§571.123 Standard No. 123; motorcycle controls 
and displays. 



S5.2.3 Control and display identification. If an 
item of equipment in Table 3, Column 1, is pro- 
vided, the item and its operational function shall 
be identified by: 

(a) A symbol substantially in the form shown in 
Column 3; or 

(b) Wording shown in both Column 2 and Col- 
umn 4; or 

(c) A symbol substantially in the form shown in 
Column 3 and wording shown in both Column 2 and 
Column 4. 

The abbreviations "M.P.H.", "r/min", "Hi", "Lo", 
"L", "R", and "Res" appearing in Column 2 and 
Column 4 may be spelled in full. Symbols and 
words may be provided for equipment items 
where none are shown in Column 2, Column 3, and 
Column 4. Any identification provided shall be 
placed on or adjacent to the control or display posi- 
tion, and. shall appear upright to the operator. 
* « * « • 

2. Table 3 is revised to read: 
Issued on August 31, 1984 



Diane K. Steed 
Administrator 

49 FR 35503 
September 10, 1984 



PART 571; S 123-PRE 13 



Table 3 
Motorcycle Control and Display Identification Requirements 



No. 


Column 1 


Column 2 


Column 3 


Column 4 


Equipment 


Control and Display 

Identification 

Word 


Control and Display 

Identification 

Symbol 


Identification at 
Appropriate Position 
of Control or Display 


1 


Ignition 


Ignition 




Off 


2 


Supplemental Engine 
Stop (OH, Run) 


Engine Stop 


n o 


Off, Run 


3 


Manual Choke Or 
f'lixture Enrichment 


Choke or 
Enrichener 


\ 




4 


Electric Starter 




0) 


Start' 


5 


Headlamp Upper- Lower 
Beam Control 


Lights 


ID' ID' 


Hi, Lo 


6 


Horn 


Horn 


kir 




7 


Turn Signal 


Turn 


0'i>: 


L, R 


8 


Speedometer 


M.P.H. 




M.P.H.* 


9 


Neutral Indicator 


Neutral 


N 




10 


Upper Beam Indicator 


High Beam 


ID" 




11 


Tachometer 


R.P.M. or 

r/min. 






12 


Fuel Tank Shuioff Valve 
(Off, On, Res.) 


Fuel 


•1U 


Off, On, Res. 



1 Required only if electric starter is separate from ignition switch. 

2 Framed areas may be filled. 

3 The pair of arrows is a single symbol. When the indicators for left and right turn operate independently however, the 

two arrows will be considered separate symbols and may be spaced accordingly. A 

* M.P.H. increase in a clockwise direction. Major graduations and numerals appear at 10 mph intervals, minor ^ 

graduations at the 5 mph intervals. (37 F.R. 17474-August 29, 1972. Effective: 9/1/74) 

PART 571; S 123-PRE 14 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 123 

Motorcycle Controls and Displays 

(Docket No. 70-26; Notice 3) 



51. Scope. This standard specifies require- 
ments for the location, operation, identification, 
and illumination of motorcycle controls and 
displays, and requirements for motorcycle stands 
and footrests. 

52. Purpose. The purpose of this standard is to 
minimize accidents caused by operator error in 
responding to the motoring environment, by stand- 
ardizing certain motorcycle controls and displays. 

53. Application. This standard applies to motor- 
cycles equipped with handlebars, except for motor- 
cycles that are designed, and sold exclusively, for 
use by law enforcement agencies. 

54. Definitions. "Clockwise" and "counter- 
clockwise" mean opposing directions of rotation 
around following axes, as applicable: 

(a) The operational axis of the ignition control, 
viewed from in front of the ignition lock opening; 

(b) The axis of the right handlebar on which the 
twist-grip throttle is located, viewed from the end 
of that handlebar; 

(c) The axis perpendicular to the center of the 
speedometer, viewed from the operator's normal 
eye position. 

55. Requirements. 

55.1 Each motorcycle shall be equipped with a 
supplemental engine stop control, located and 
operable as specified in Table I. 

55.2 Each motorcycle to which this standard ap- 
plies shall meet the following requirements: 

S5.2.1 Control location and operation. If any 
item of equipment listed in Table 1, Column 1, is 
provided, the control for such item shall be located 
as specified in Column 2, and operable as specified 
in Column 3. Each control located on a right 
handlebar shall be operable by the operator's right 
hand throughout its full range without removal of 
the operator's right hand from the throttle. Each 



control located on a left handlebar shall be 
operable by the operator's left hand throughout its 
full range without removal of the operator's left 
hand from the handgrip. If a motorcycle with an 
automatic clutch is equipped with a supplemental 
rear brake control, the control shall be located on 
the left handlebar. If a motorcycle is equipped with 
self-proportioning or anti-lock braking devices 
utilizing a single control for front and rear brakes, 
the control shall be located and operable in the 
same manner as a rear brake control. 

55.2.2 Display Illumination and operation. If an 
item of equipment listed in Table 2, Column 1, is 
provided, the display for such item shall be visible 
to a seated operator under daylight conditions, 
shall illuminate as specified in column 2, and shall 
operate as specified in Column 3. 

55.2.3 Control and display Identification. [If an 
item of equipment listed in Table 3, Column 1, is 
provided, the item and its operational function 
shall be identified by; 

(a) A symbol substantially in the form shown in 
Column 3; or 

(b) Wording shown in both Column 2 and Col- 
umn 4; or 

(c) A symbol substantially in the form shown in 
Column 3 and wording shown in both Column 2 
and Column 4. 

The abbreviations "M.P.H.", "r/min", "Hi", 
"Lo", "L'-', "R", and "Res" appearing in Column 
2 and Column 4 may be spelled in full. Symbols and 
words may be provided for equipment items where 
none are shown in Column 2, Column 3, and Col- 
umn 4. Any identification provided shall be placed 
on or adjacent to the control or display position, 
and shall appear upright to the operator. (49 F.R. 
35503-September 10, 1984. Effective: October 11, 
1984)1 

Control positions shall be identified as speci- 
fied in Column 3, to signify the function per- 



(Rav. 9/10f84) 



PART 571; S 123-1 



EKectlve: September 1, 1974 



formed at that setting. The abbreviations used in 
Columns 2 and 3 are minimum requirements and 
appropriate words may be spelled in full. Iden- 
tification shall appear to the operator in an upright 
position. 

Functional identification need not be provided 
for equipment items with no entry in Column 3. 



55.2.4 Stands. A stand shall fold rearward and 
upward if it contacts the ground when the motor- 
cycle is moving forward. 

55.2.5 Footrests. Footrests shall be provided for 
each designated seating position. Each footrest for 
a passenger other than an operator shall fold rear- 
ward and upward when not in use. 



Table 1.— Motorcycle Control Location and Operation Requirements 



Equipment Control 



Location 



Operation 



Column 1 

1. Manual clutch or integrated 
clutch and gear change 

2. Foot operated gear change 



3. Headlamp upper-lower beam 

4. Horn 

5. Turn signal lamps 

6. Ignition 

7. Manual fuel shutoff control 



8. Twist-grip throttle 

9. Supplemental engine stop 

10. Front wheel brake 

11. Rear wheel brakes 



Column 2 
Left handlebar 
Left foot control 



Left handlebar 



Left handlebar 
Handlebars 



Right handlebar 

Right handlebar 
Right handlebar 
Right foot control ' 
Left handlebar per- 
missible for motor- 
driven cycles. 



Column 3 
Squeeze to disengage clutch. 

An upward motion of the operator's toe shift transmission 
toward lower numerical gear ratios (commonly referred to 
as "higher gears"), and a downward motion toward higher 
numerical gear ratios (commonly referred to as "lower 
gears"). If three or more gears are provided it shall not be 
possible to shift from the highest gear directly to the lowest 
gear, or vice versa. 

Up for upper beam, down for lower beam. If combined with 
the headlight on-off switch, means shall be provided to pre- 
vent inadvertent actuation of the "off function. 

Push to activate. 

"Off— counterclockwise from other positions. 

["On"— Control downward. 

"Off— Control forward, (if control rotates around a trans- 
verse axis) or Horizontal— Left or Right (if control rotates 
around a longitudinal axis). 

"Reserve On"— (if provided) Control upward. (49 F.R. 
35380-September 7, 1984. Effective: October 8, 1984)1 

Self-closing to idle in a clockwise direction after release 
of hand. 

Squeeze to engage. 
Depress to engage. 



' See S5.2.1 for requirements for vehicles with a single control for front and rear brakes, and with a supplemental 
rear brake control. 

Table 2.— Motorcycle Display Illumination and Operation Requirements 



Display 



Illumination 



Operation 



Column 1 

1. Speedometer 

2. Neutral indication 



Column 2 Column S 

Yes The display is illuminated whenever the headlamp is 

activated. 
Green display lamp The display lamp illuminates when the gear selector 

is in neutral position. 



(Rev. 9/7/84) 



PART 571; S 123-2 



Table 3 
Motorcycle Control and Display Identification Requirements 



No 


Column 1 


Column 2 


IColumn 3 


Column 4 


Equipment 


Control and Display 

Identification 

Word 


Control and Display 

Identification 

Symbol 


Identification at 
Appropriate Position 
of Control or Display 


1 


Ignition 


Ignition 




Off 


2 


Supplemental Engine 
Stop (Off. Runl 


Engine Stop 


n o 


Off, Run 


3 


Manual Choke |or 
Mixture Enrichment] 


Choke [or 
Enrichenerl 


\ 




4 


Electric Starter 




(?) 


Start' 


5 


Headlamp Upper Lower 
Beam Control 


Lights 


ID ID' 


Hi, Lo 


6 


Horn 


Horn 


►o- 




7 


Turn Signal 


Turn 


oo: 


L, R 


8 


Speedometer 


MP.H. 




M.P.H," 


9 


Neutral Indicator 


Neutral 


N 




10 


Upper Beam Indicator 


High Beam 


ID 




11 


Tachometer 


R.P.M, 






12 


Fuel Tank Shutoff Valve 
|(Oft. On, Res )1 


Fuel 


• 


Off, On, Res.l 



' Requiied only If electric starter is separate from ignition switch. 

2 Framed areas may be filled. 

3 The pair of arrows is a single symbol. When the indicators for left and right turn operate independently however, the 
two arrows will be considered separate symbols and may be spaced accordingly. 

•^ M.P.H. increase in a clockwise direction. Major graduations and numerals appear at 10 mph intervals, minor 
graduations at the 5 mph intervals. (49 PR. 35380— September 7, 1984. Effective: October 8, 1984) 



(Rev. 9/7/84) 



PART 571; S 123-3-4 



Effective S«pt«mb*i 1, 1973 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 124 

Accelerator Control Systems 

(Docket No. 69-20; Notice 3) 



The purpose of this notice is to establish a 
new motor vehicle safety standard that specifies 
requirements for accelerator control systems of 
passenger cars, multi-purpose passenger vehicles, 
trucks and buses. 

A notice of proposed rulemaking on this sub- 
ject was published September 30, 1970 (35 F.R. 
15241). The majority of comments received 
supported the proposal. There were some objec- 
tions and questions, which have been considered 
in formulating the final rule. 

In the previous notice, the Administrator in- 
dicated the importance of this standard in re- 
ducing the number of accidents caused by 
runaway engines. Since 1966, sixty recall cam- 
paigns totalling over 2.9 million vehicles have 
involved this problem. Three percent of all 
complaints in the Administration's files have 
reported malfunctioning accelerator or carbure- 
tor systems. Because the ability of a driver to 
control his vehicle is directly related to the 
proper functioning of the accelerator control 
system, it is essential that this system perform 
as expected, especially when the driver removes 
the actuating force. Therefore, the standard 
sets requirements to ensure the reliability of 
accelerator control systems over a wide range of 
driving conditions. Each system must include 
two independent sources of energy (such as 
springs) which shall return the throttle to idle 
upon the removal of the actuating force. In the 
case of breakage or disconnection in the ac- 
celerator system, the throttle shall return to idle 
either at- the time of breakage or at the removal 
of the actuating force. 

The latter requirement differs from the NPRM, 
which mandated a return to idle only when the 
actuating force was removed. Industry com- 



ments raised valid objections to this requirement. 
In some cases, if a breakage occurred and the 
system had to keep operating until the driver 
took his foot off the pedal, a complicated system 
of sensors would have to be built into the throttle 
which would activate the redundant energy 
sources precisely at the time of actual removal. 
Such a device would be too expensive for its 
possible safety benefit, since the incidence of 
accidents from engine loss of power are minimal 
when compared with runaway overspeed statis- 
tics. Manufacturers, therefore, have been given 
the option to use either return-to-idle mode. 

Although many comments suggested modifi- 
cation of the temperature range, the ambient 
temperature levels in the NPRM are retained. 
A review of meteorological data indicates that 
these figures conform to possible driving condi- 
tions in various areas of the United States. 

There are four other proposed requirements 
in the NPRM that are not included in the final 
rule. These are the 300-pound force requirement, 
the coverage of automatic speed control systems, 
the freedom-of-movement requirement, and the 
coverage of motorcycles. 

Several commenters raised objections to the 
300-pound overforce, and some asked for a lesser 
force than 300 pounds. It was found on review 
vhat the safety benefits of an overforce test has 
not been demonstrated sufficiently and the re- 
quirement has been dropped from the rule. 

The rule does not contain requirements for 
automatic speed control devices. It was found 
that although nine recall campaigns involving 
61,176 vehicles have concerned these devices, no 
relationship to accelerator overspeed accidents 
could be established from automatic speed con- 
trols. Of the 540 multi-disciplinary accident 



PART 571; S 124— PRE 1 



MKtIv*: $«p»»mb«r 1, 1973 



reports that were studied in formulating the 
final rule, none mentioned the automatic system. 
The requirements of the NPRM reiterated SAE 
recommendations that are already used by manu- 
facturers. 

The "freedom-of-movement" paragraph raised 
the objections of subjectivity and difficulty of 
implementation. Enforcement through compli- 
ance testing would lead to controversy over the 
imprecise meaning of "necessary chafing." It 
appears that to comply with the final rule, the 
accelerator system will have to be free of exces- 
sive and unsafe rubbing and friction. 

The decision to eliminate motorcycles from the 
applicability of this standard is based on the 
fact that motorcycles are so different in design 
from the other vehicles covered that definitions 
stnd failure modes are dissimilar. Also, a safety 
standard specifically tailored for motorcycle con- 
trols (Docket 70-26) will be issued this year. 

This issue of the Federal Register contains a 
Notice of Proposed Rule-making to amend 
Standard No. 124 (37 F.R. 7108). The proposal 
is that the two independent sources of energy 
would return the throttle idle within one half 
second after the removal of the actuating force 
or a breakage or disconnection in the accelerator 
control system. 

This standard is directed at the hazard caused 
by a failure in the accelerator control system. 



Those engine overspeed incidenia caused by 
other failure modes such as broken or worn en- 
gine mounts are not addressed by this rulemak- 
ing action. The NHTSA is presently developing 
performance requirements for safety under other 
failure modes. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Part 671 of 
Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, is 
amended by adding a new § 671.124, Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Standard No. 124, as set forth 
below. 

Effective. Date: September 1, 1973. 

Because of the development work and prepara- 
tion for production that this standard will re- 
quire, it is found that an effective date later 
Ihan 1 year from the date of issuance is in the 
public interest. Accordingly, the standard is 
effective September 1, 1973. 

This rule is issued under the authority of 
Sections 103 and 119 of the National TrafSc and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407) 
and the delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.51. 

Issued on March 31, 1972. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 7097 
April 8, 1972 



PART 571 ; S 124— PRE 2 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 124 
Accelerator Control Systems 
(Deck«l N«. ««L.20;NoHc« 5) 



The purpose of thia notice is to respond to 
petitions for reconsideration of Motor Vehicle 
Safety Standard No. 124 (49 C.F.R. 571.124), 
and to amend the standard to specify time re- 
quirements for the return of a vehicle's throttle 
to the idle position. 

On April 8, 1972 (37 F.R. 7097), Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Standard No. 124 was published, 
establishing requirements for accelerator control 
systems, effective September 1, 1973. Simul- 
taneously, a notice was published (37 F.R. 7108) 
proposing that when the driver removes the 
actuating force from the accelerator control or 
in the event of a breakage or disconnection in 
the accelerator control system, the return to idle 
position shall occur within one-half second. 

I. Pursuant to 49 C.F.R. 553.35, petitions for 
reconsideration of the rule were filed by Alfa 
Romeo, American Automobile Association 
(AAA), American Motors Corporation, Chrysler 
Corporation, Diamond Reo Trucks, Incorporated, 
Ford Motor Company, General Motors Corpora- 
tion (GM), International Harvester Company, 
Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association 
(JAMA), Jeep Corporation, Jesse R. Hollins, 
Mack Trucks, Incorporated, MacMillan Engi- 
neering Lab, Motor Vehicle Manufacturers As- 
sociation of the United States, Incorporated, 
(MVMA) (formerly Automobile Manufacturers 
Association, Incorporated), and Rolls-Royce 
Motors Limited. 

Favorable consideration has been granted to 
some of these petitions, and accordingly, the 
standard is being amended in some minor re- 
spects. The Administrator has declined to grant 
requested relief from other requirements of the 
standard. 



GM and Ford requested that vehicles over 
10,000 pounds GVWR be exempted from the 
standard, while Mack and Diamond Reo re- 
quested an exemption for vehicles of 26,000 and 
25,000 pounds or more GVWR, respectively. 
Petitioners argued that since these vehicles are 
driven by professionally trained drivers, are 
equipped with engine governors, have a horse- 
power to weight ratio that does not mandate a 
fail-safe requirement, and have not been the sub- 
ject of a defect notification campaign, there is no 
need for the rule's applicability. 

The NHTSA denies petitioners' request. 
Available information shows that accidents re- 
sulting from throttle failure do not occur only 
among the less experienced drivers, nor are they 
diminished by the presence of engine governors 
or by changes in the horsepower to weight ratio. 
Further, these vehicles have been the subject of 
defect notification campaigns, and accident re- 
ports submitted to the Bureau of Motor Carrier 
Safety disclose that an average of two accidents 
occur per month in which the cause is attributed 
to "overspeed incidents", indicating the type of 
failure the standard is designed to eliminate. 

Additionally, GM stated that the standard's 
test requirements are not justified by the possible 
additional safety benefit that may accrue. They 
argued that the only method by which it could 
assure compliance is by immersion of the entire 
vehicle in a low temperature cell. GM stated 
that sufficient facilities to conduct such tests on 
all their vehicles are not available, and even if 
they were, the test burden is impracticable be- 
cause of the complications of determining where 
over the length of the vehicle the ambient tem- 
perature measurements should be taken. 



PART 671; S 124r-PRE 8 



Effactlve: Seplember 1, 1973 



The NHTSA does not view Standard No. 124 
as a qualification i^rocedure by which a manu- 
facturer can assure himself or his customers that 
the vehicle now has a fail-safe system. The rule 
is intended to provide a minimum performance 
requirement, and does not mandate that assur- 
ances of being in compliance must be made by 
immersing the total vehicle in a low temperature 
cell. Assurances of compliance may come from 
other procedures. 

Several petitioners provided data showing that 
it is a common practice in the .automobile in- 
dustry to include the "throttle lever" or "actuat- 
ing lever" as part of the carburetor. They ask 
that these devices be interpreted to be part of the 
fuel metering device so as to afford them greater 
freedom of design. 

The NHTSA agrees with this interpretation. 
The "throttle lever" or "actuating lever" as de- 
scribed by the petitioners is a component of the 
fuel metering device. 

Additionally, several petitioners requested that 
the definition of "idle position" be amended to 
take into consideration delay units or "dash pots" 
which are frequently used on idle settings to 
slow the return of the throttle during its last few 
degrees of rotation to prevent stalling and exces- 
sive exhaust emissions. In essence, petitioners 
request that the return to idle time be measured 
to the point at which the throttle first comes in 
contact with the delay unit or "dash pot." This 
request is in accordance with the intended mean- 
ing of the standard. For clarification, the 
NHTSA is amending the definition of "idle po- 
sition" to be the specific point of throttle closure 
at which the throttle first comes in contact with 
an engine idle speed control device. 

Mack and Alfa Romeo petitioned that "hand 
throttles" and throttle positioners be specifically 
excluded from the definition of "idle position". 
Petitioners stated that in the event such a device 
is used a return to the preset throttle position 
occurs upon release of the driver-operated ac- 
celerator control system. This request is granted. 
If a driver chooses to raise the lowest engine 
speed threshold by the use of a throttle position- 
ing device, the throttle should return to that new 
position within the same time requirements speci- 
fied in section S5.3. Accordingly, the NHTSA 



is amending the definition of "idle position" to 
provide for the use of throttle positioners. 

JAMA requested that the engine warm-up 
provisions for cold temperatures be clarified, so 
that it would be possible to conduct tests "after 
warming up the engine according to the manu- 
facturer's recommendation." Standard No. 124 
is silent as to engine warm-up, and states only 
"when the engine is ruiming" as a condition for 
the test. Although the advantages of following 
the manufacturer's warm-up procedures are rec- 
ognized, it is felt that in most instances the driv- 
ing public does not adhere to those recommenda- 
tions. Therefore, to afford the driving public as 
brpad a coverage of the rule as is possible, 
JAMA's petition is denied. 

AAA and Chrysler petitioned for an amend- 
ment of the ambient temperature range. AAA 
urged that since colder temjieratures are com- 
monplace in Alaska and that hotter temperatures 
are used by vehicle manufacturers to test fuel 
system control devices, a more severe temperature 
range should be established. Chrysler stated 
that the minus 40 degree figure exceeds automo- 
tive practice by 30 degrees and asked that a \ 
performance level of minus 10 degrees be estab- 
lished. 

In determining the temperature limits to be 
used, the NHTSA attempted to provide motor 
vehicle safety without establishing impracticable 
design goals. Weather data discloses that al- 
though temperatures of minus 40 degrees Fah- 
renheit are encountered in many parts of the 
United States, colder temperatures are unusual. 
For this reason, minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit 
was determined to be the lowest temperature 
consistent with the needs of motor vehicle safety. 
Conversely, vehicle operations in temperatures 
exceeding 125 degrees Fahrenheit are also un- 
usual. Accordingly, it was determined that tem- 
perature limits of minus 40 degrees to plus 125 
degrees Fahrenheit will allow for most climatic 
conditions encountered in the United States. 
The petitions are therefore denied. 

Several petitioners asked for an interpretation 
of the phrase "The system shall include at least 
two sources of energy" in section S5.1 and 
whether it includes energy sources attached to 
the fuel metering service. Petitioners stated ^ 



PART 571 ; S 124— PRE 4 



MmHv*i t*p«Mnb«r 1, I97S 



that a strict interpretation would cause excessive 
design restrictions. If a return spring attached 
to the fuel metering device is capable of return- 
ing the throttle to its idle position after the fail- 
ure of other energy sources, it meets the intent 
of the standard and should not be disallowed. 
Accordingly, paragraph S6.1 is amended by re- 
placing the phrase "The system shall include at 
least two sources of energy" with "There shall 
be at least two sources of energy". 

JAMA asked whether, if a system includes 
three or more springs, each spring must be inde- 
pendently capable of returning the throttle to 
the idle position. They argued that a system 
could still remain adequately fail-safe as long 
as the other springs operating together can meet 
the requirements. The intent of paragraph S5.1 
is to eliminate the driver's dependence on a 
single accelerator return spring. The NHTSA 
concurs with JAMA's comments and is amending 
paragraph S5.1 to make it clear that independent 
capability of return springs is not required if 
remaining energy sources are collectively capable 
of returning the throttle to the idle position. 

I The standard as issued required that the throt- 
tle return to the idle position "whenever any 
element of the accelerator control system becomes 
disconnected or broken." Several petitioners 
seek an interpretation of this wording. GM 
suggested that a disconnection or breakage within 
the driver-operated accelerator control system 
was the only failure mode addressed by the 
standard. Ford asked whether the requirement 
was intended to cover failures caused by bending, 
twisting, jamming, or introduction of foreign 
matter. The NHTSA's intent is to assure safety 
under conditions of a single failure due only to 
a severing or disconnection in the accelerator 
control system. To clarify this interpretation, 
the NHTSA is changing the word "breakage" 
to "severance" in paragraph Si, and the word 
"broken" to "severed" in the first sentence of 
paragraph S5.2. Further, the phrase "whenever 
any element of the accelerator control system" 
is changed to "whenever any one component of 
the accelerator control system" for purposes of 
oUriflcation. 
Ford and JAMA petitioned that the effective 

^ date of the standard be delayed one year. Peti- 



tioners stated that additional time was necessary 
to allow for the creation and confirmation of 
design changes and to resolve any conflicts with 
emission control requirements. 

The NHTSA considers the complexity of the 
requirements of standard No. 124 to be minimal 
and has granted relief on several issues effecting 
design lime, and therefore sees no justification, 
for delaying the effective date of the standard. 
The petitions are denied. 

II. On April 8, 1972 (37 F.R. 7108) a notice 
was published proposing that when the driver 
removes the actuating force from the accelerator 
control or in the event of a breakage or discon- 
nection in the accelerator control system, the re- 
turn to idle position shall occur within one-half 
second. Available information indicates that in 
most instances the time for driver reaction from 
the accelerator control pedal to the brake is ap- 
proximately one-half second, and this time was 
chosen for the proposal. In response to the 
notice, many commentors objected to the one-half 
second proposal and stated that it did not ade- 
quately take into consideration the viscous nature 
of lubricants in extremely cold temperatures and 
the impracticability of this time requirement for 
the very large systems in heavy trucks and buses. 
The NHTSA recognizes the validity of these ob- 
jections, and allowances have accordingly been 
made for extreme low temperature. An idle 
time of 8 seconds is established for any vehicle 
tested or conditioned in ambient air of degrees 
Fahrenheit or colder. 

Large systems, similar to those used on rear- 
engine buses, have sufficient mass and friction to 
preclude the possibility of compliance with the 
one-half second proposal, unless very high spring 
forces, which would require large changes in 
pedal forces, are used. Several commentators 
stated that teste for conformity with the pro- 
posed requirements show that compliance would 
be possible if the maximum time were extended 
to 2 seconds. The NHTSA finds these comments 
to have merit, and 2 seconds is established as the 
maximum return time for vehicles with a GVWK 
over 10,000 pounds. 

Many comments pertaining to passenger car 
systems stated that the one-half second proposed 
is too severe a requirement. One oommentor' 



PAST 671; S 124— PBB 6 



Eff«Nv«: S«pt«mb«r 1, 1973 

Stated that extra time will be required if one of 
the return energy sources fails. It was pointed 
out that precedent for an extra allowance can 
be found in the dual braking system requirement, 
which allows added distance for stopping when 
half the system has failed. The accelerator 
standard, however, does not deal with a mech- 
anism with the same redundancy as the braking 
system and it is felt that the maximum time 
selected should allow for the possibility of one 
energy souree failing. 

There are a large number of models and engine 
sizes in the passenger car industry, and a large 
number of variety of accelerator control systems 
are designed and built each year. One com- 
mentor suggested that "... a one second time 
limit would considerably increase design op- 
tions . . ." and "presently accepted pedal feel can 
be retained. . . ." Accordingly, one second has 
been decided upon as having the qualities of 
providing a reasonable maximum time for com- 
pliance testing of vehicles of 10,000 pounds or 
less GVVVK at temperaturee above 
Fahrenheit 



In response to questions raised by several pe- 
titioners, "ambient temperature is defined as the 
surrounding air temperature, at a distance such 
that it is not significantly affected by heat from 
the vehicle imder test. The definition contrasts 
the ambient temperature, intended to simulate a 
general outdoor temperature, from temperatuies 
imder the hood or otherwise in close proximity 
to the vehicle. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
571.124, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 124, 
is revised to read as set forth below. 

Effective date : September 1, 1973. 

This rule is issued under the authority of sec- 
tions 103 and 119 of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407) 
and the delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.51. 

Issued on September 20, 1972. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 20033 
September 23, 1972 



I 



PART 671; S 124:— PRE 6 



HkHv*: S«p4Mnb*r ), 1973 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 124 

Accelerator Control Systems 

(Decktt No. 69-20; NoNre 6) 



The purpose of this notice is to respond to 
petitions for nilemaking to amend and petitions 
for reconsideration of Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 124 (49 CFR 571.124). 

On September 23, 1972 (37 F.R. 20033), Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard 'So. 124 was published 
si^ecifyLng time requirements for the return of a 
vehicle's throttle to the idle position. Pursuant 
to 49 CFR 553.35, petitions for reconsideration 
were filed by Japan Automobile Manufacturers 
Association, Inc. (JAMA) and Volkswagen of 
America, Inc. Additionally, pursuant to 49 CFR 
553.31, a petition for rulemaking to amend the 
standard was filed by the Ford Motor Company. 

Favorable consideration has been granted to 
some of the requests and accordingly, the stand- 
ard is being amended in some minor respects. 
The Administrator has declined to grant re- 
quested relief from other requirements of the 
standard. 

Volkswagen requested that the test require- 
ments for cold temperatures be clarified, in order 
to determine whether it is possible to use supple- 
mentary starting dences and to "pump'" the ac- 
celerator control pedal during and after the 
presoak and prior to the test. The advantages 
of using supplementary devices and warmup pro- 
cedures are recognized, but in many instances, 
the driving public either does not adhere to the 
manufacturer's recommended warmup procedures 
or uses other procedures. The intent of the stand- 
ard is to afford the driving public as broad a 
coverage of the rule as is possible, by simulating 
as closely as possible actual conditions. Accord- 
ingly, for purposes of testing compliance the 
engine may be started by the use of any supple- 
mentary starting devices and procedures except 
those which would induce the vehicle into mo- 
tion by the application of an external force. 



Volkswagen also asked the XHTSA to define 
the speed at which the accelerator pedal is "to be 
released" to mark the beginning of the test 
determining the return of the throttle to idle 
lx)sition. The agency's intent is to provide pro- 
tection in the variety of situations that may be 
encountered on the road. The vehicle, therefore, 
must be capable of meeting the requirements no 
matter how rapidly or slowly the driver's foot 
is lifted from the pedal. The actuating force 
actually is not "removed'" from the pedal until 
the foot is no longer in contact with it, so the 
measured time period for throttle return does 
not begin until the instant when the foot leaves 
the pedal. 

Further, Volkswagen asked the XHTSA to de- 
fine a "running engine." Volkswagen stated 
that during cold testing an engine could start, 
nm for approximately 6 seconds, and then stall. 
Volkswagen theorized that it would be possible to 
have an accelerator system fail the test require- 
ments during this 6-second inter\-al, although the 
engine would be incapable of causing a safety 
problem. The phrase "engine running" defines 
a condition without which throttle return to idle 
position has no significance. The intent of the 
standard is to prevent any safety problems 
caused by faulty throttle return over a broad 
range of operating circumstances and tempera- 
ture conditions. The condition of a r unning en- 
gine, regardless of torque produced, is a clearly 
definable point at which a safety problem could 
begin to occur. Therefore, the vehicle must be 
capable of meeting the requirements whenever 
the engine is rotating without the application of 
any external force. 

JAMA requested that the time requirwnents 
for maximum return to idle position when tested 
in temperatures between and minus 40 degrees 



f 



PART 571; S 124— PRE 7 



Mccriv*: Saptambcr 1, 1973 



Fahrenheit be applied "only when there is no 
failure of the source of energy and no disconnec- 
tion or severance of components." JAMA stated 
that in order for a system to meet the time re- 
quirements of the rule during cold testing, the 
"required pedal effort would be increased to an 
extent that would not be acceptable to the or- 
dinary driver." In its earlier comments to Notice 
3, (37 F.R. 7097), JAMA stated that if each 
energy source was independently required to re- 
turn the throttle to idle within the specified time 
requirements, increased pedal forces would be 
necessary. In response to this comment and to 
allow a manufacturer design freedom, the stand- 
ard was amended by Notice 5, (37 F.R. 20033), 
to specify that independent capability of energy 
sources to return the throttle to idle position was 
not required. The amendment also gave an addi- 
tional time allowance for return to idle position 
for vehicles tested or conditioned in cold tem- 
peratures. Based on these factors and on the 
comments received from other manufacturers, this 
agency's position is that the standard provides 
enough latitude for a manufacturer to feasibly 
meet the pedal force requirements and the time re- 
quirements for return to idle, even if there is a 
failure of one source of energy or a severance or 
disconnection occurs. The petition is therefore 
denied. 

Ford pointed out that under the requirements 
section, S5.1 states that, "There shall be at least 
two sources of energy" and that this seemed at 
variance with the intent expressed in the pre- 
amble to Notice 5 that energy sources do not have 
to be contained in the accelerator control system. 
To further clarify the intent expressed in Notice 
5, the phrase in S.5 "The vehicle shall be equipped 



with a driver-operated accelerator control system 
that meets the following requirements" is changed 
to "The vehicle shall meet the following re- 
quirements . . . ." 

Ford also asked for a clarification of the word 
"failure" in S5.1. Ford stated that the word 
was ambiguous in that it would allow for ab- 
normal operating conditions outside the scope 
of the standard's intent to assure safety under 
conditions of a single failure due to a severance 
or disconnection in the system. To clarify the 
standard's intent, the phrase in S5.1 which states 
that, "In the event of failure of one source of 
energy the remaining source or sources shall be 
capable of returning the throttle" is changed to 
"In the event of failure of one source of energy 
by a single severance or disconnection, the throttle 
shall return . . . ." 

Further, in the first sentence of S5.2 the word 
"becomes" is changed to "is" and the phrase "at 
a single point" is added to the end of the sentence 
to clarify this meaning. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
571.124, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 124, 
is revised to read as set forth below. 

Effective date: September 1, 1973. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718, 16 
U.S.C. 1392, 1407 ; delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on January 24, 1973. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

38 F.R. 2980 
January 31, 1973 



PART 571; S 124— PRE 8 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 124 
ACCELERATOR CONTROL SYSTEMS 



(Docket No. 69-20; Notice 3) 



^ 



51. Scope. This standard establishes require- 
ments for the return of a vehicle's throttle to the 
idle position when the driver removes the ac- 
tuating force from the accelerator control, or in 
the event of a severance or disconnection in the 
accelerator control system. 

52. Purpose. The purpose of this standard is 
to reduce deaths and injuries resulting from 
engine overspeed caused by malfunctions in the 
accelerator control system. 

53. Application. This standard applies to 
passenger cars, multipurpose passenger vehicles, 
trucks, and buses. 

54. Definitions. 

S4.1 "Driver-operated accelerator control sys- 
tem" means all vehicle components, except the 
fuel metering device, that regulate engine speed 
in direct response to movement of the driver- 
operated control and that return the throttle to 
the idle position upon release of the actuating 
force. 

"Fuel metering device" means the carburetor, 
or in the case of certain engines, the fuel in- 
jector, fuel distributor, or fuel injection pump. 

"Throttle" means the component of the fuel 
metering device that connects to the driver- 
operated accelerator control system and that by 
input from the driver-operated accelerator con- 
trol system controls the engine speed. 

"Idle position" means the position of the 
throttle at which it first comes in contact with 
an engine idle speed control appropriate for 
existing conditions according to the manufac- 
turer's recommendations. These conditions in- 
clude, but are not limited to, engine speed 



adjustments for cold engine, air conditioning, 
and emission control, and the use of throttle 
setting devices. 

"Ambient temperature" means the surround- 
ing air temperature, at a distance such that it is 
not significantly affected by heat from the ve- 
hicle under test. 

S4.2 In the case of vehicles powered by elec- 
tric motors, the word "throttle" and "idle" refer 
to the motor speed controller and motor shut- 
down, respectively. 



S5. Requirements. The vehicle shall meet the 
following requirements when the engine is run- 
ning under any load condition, and at any am- 
bient temperature between minus 40° Fahrenheit 
and plus 125° Fahrenheit after 12 hours of con- 
ditioning at any temperature within that range. 

55.1 There shall be at least two sources of 
energy capable of returning the throttle to the 
idle position within the time limit specified by 
S5.3 from any accelerator position or speed when- 
ever the driver removes the opposing actuating 
force. In the event of failure of one source of 
energy by a single severance or disconnection, 
the throttle shall return to the idle position 
within the time limits specified by S5.3, from 
any accelerator position or speed whenever the 
driver removes the opposing actuating force. 

55.2 The throttle shall return to the idle po- 
sition from any accelerator position or any speed 
of which the engine is capable whenever any one 
component of the accelerator control system is 
disconnected or severed at a single point. The 



PART 571; S 124-1 



return to idle shall occur within the time limit 2 seconds for vehicles of more than 10,000 pounds 

specified by S5.3, measured either from the time GVWR. Maximum time to return to idle posi- 

of severance or disconnection or from the first tion shall be 3 seconds for any vehicle that is 

removal of the opposing actuating force by the exposed to ambient air at to minus 40 degrees 

(jriver. Fahrenheit during the test or for any portion of 

^ J J . 1 the 12-hour conditioning period. 
S5.3 Except as provided below, maximum 

time to return to idle position shall be 1 second 37 F.R. 7097 

for vehicles of 10,000 pounds or less GVWR, and April 8, 1972 



PART 571; S 124-2 



i 



EffMHmt Jonuaiy 1, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 125 
Warning Devices 



The purpose of this amendment to Part 571 
of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, is to 
add a new Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 
125 (49 CFR §571.125) that would establish 
shape, size, and performance requirements for 
warning devices that do not have self-contained 
energy sources. The devices are carried in motor 
vehicles and are erected to alert approaching 
motorists to the presence of a disabled vehicle. 

A notice of proposed rulemaking on this sub- 
ject was published on November 11, 1970 (36 
F.R. 17350). The comments received in response 
to the notice have been considered in this issu- 
ance of a final rule. 

As noted in the proposed rule, the standard 
will supplement the vehicular hazard warning 
signal lamps required by F.M.V.S.S. No. 108, 
Lamps, ReHective Devices, and Associated Equip- 
ment, in minimizing the likelihood of rear end 
collisions between oncoming traffic and disabled 
vehicles. 

The standard is issued as an equipment stand- 
ard and establishes requirements only for warn- 
ing devices which do not have self-contained 
energy sources. Because provision of warning 
devices in new vehicles is optional, the instruc- 
tions regarding the number of devices to be used 
are recommendations, rather than requirements, 
and the storage location requirement is deleted. 

The standard requires that the device be bi- 
directional, lowers the minimum length of the 
triangle legs, and increases the permissible devi- 
ation from a vertical plane for the triangle when 
the device is placed on the road. It reduces the 
required minimum candlepower of the red reflec- 
tive material and raises the luminance require- 
ment for the orange fluorescent material. It also 
adds definitions of "reflex reflective," deletes one 
of the two definitions of the colors "red" and 
"orange," and deletes one of the two reflectivity 



requirements. With respect to the conditioning 
requirements, the standard lowers the high tem- 
perature requirement. 

Several of the comments submitted by foreign 
motor vehicle manufacturers stated that the 
warning device should conform to the recom- 
mendations of international advisory groups. 
The Economic Commission of Europe (E.C.E.), 
a United Nations-sponsored council of which 
twenty-six nations, including the United States, 
are members, is in the process of developing 
specifications for warning triangles to be ratified 
by national governments. The NHTSA has 
adopted most of the proposed E.C.E. require- 
ments with the exception of the minimum 
candlepower requirement for wide angle posi- 
tioning of the device. The NHTSA has deter- 
mined that a lower minimum candlepower than 
that required by the E.C.E. provides adequate 
protection and is a more realistic reflection of 
the state of the art. 

Comments from the domestic automobile in- 
dustry objecting to mandatory provision of 
warning devices stated that available informa- 
tion does not justify the additional cost of sup- 
plying them in new vehicles. The NHTSA has 
concluded that it is necessary to collect further 
data regarding effectiveness of warning devices 
and frequ^cy of use by consumers so that more 
accurate cost-benefit analyses may be made. For 
these reasons, the provision of warning devices 
has been made optional by issuing an equipment 
standard. 

Numerous manufacturers of fusees submitted 
comments which described the merits of fusees 
and concluded that the proposed rule would pro- 
hibit the use of fusees. Neither the rule as issued 
nor the proposed rule applies to devices which 
have a self-contained energy source, such as 
fusees, flare pots, and electric lanterns. Thus 



PART 571: S 125— PRE 1 



Efhctlv*: January 1, 1974 



these devices may continue to be used as an 
alternative or a supplement to the device de- 
scribed in the standard. 

Numerous comments from private citizens and 
State officials expressed concern that the required 
triangular shape of the warning device would 
prohibit the triangular Slow Moving Vehicle 
emblem currently used on many motor vehicles. 
Other comments supported the use of the tri- 
angular device because the triangular shapes 
would be used for similar purposes, to alert 
oncoming traffic that a reduction of speed is 
necessary due to a vehicle ahead. The Admin- 
istration supports the dual use of the triangular 
symbol and it is intended that the warning de- 
vice and the Slow Moving Vehicle emblem be 
complementary. As discussed in the notice of 
proposed rulemaking, State laws regarding slow 
moving vehicle emblems would be preempted by 
the standard only to the extent that they forbid 
the use of the triangular warning device intended 
by the standard. 

Many comments recommended that the warn- 
ing device be bi-directional in order to eliminate 
the possibility of placing the warning device 
with the non-reflective side facing oncoming 
traffic. It was pointed out that the increased 
cost of a bi-directional device over a unidirec- 
tional device would be minimal relative to the 
safety benefits provided. The NHTSA agrees, 
and accordingly the standard as issued requires 
the device to be bi-directional. 

Some commenters felt that the motorist would 
subject himself to an additional safety hazard 
in placing the device approximately 100 feet be- 
hind the vehicle. Some suggested that the device 
be placed either on top of the vehicle or be cap- 
able of attaching to a window frame. While it 
is of course true that walking in a roadway can 
be hazardous, in the judgment of the NHTSA 
this risk is outweighed by the safety benefits of 
positioning the device at a distance behind the 
vehicle. Such positioning provides a greater 
distance over which oncoming traffic can recog- 
nize and respond to the warning and thus affords 
greater protection to the disabled vehicle. 

Figures 3 through 9 indicating recommended 
positioning of warning devices have been con- 
solidated into a single diagram indicating the 
suggested placement of the devices. 

PART 571; S 



The permissible deviation from a vertical 
plane for the triangle when the device is placed 
on the road has been increased from five degrees 
to ten degrees in response to comments from 
manufacturers. The NHTSA has determined 
that the change will not alter the effectiveness 
of the device. The required distance above the 
ground of the lower edge of the triangle has 
been increased from one-half to one inch to im- 
prove the effectiveness of the device when water 
or mud collects on the roadway. 

The minimum length of the legs of the tri- 
angle has been lowered from 18 to 17 inches, to 
correspond to the range of lengths permitted by 
the Bureau of Motor Carrier Safety. 

The minimum width of the red reflective ma- 
terial has been clarified at the request of two 
manufacturers of reflex reflectors to correspond 
to industry terminology. 

The definitions of the colors "red" and 
"orange" have been clarified in light of the com- 
ments, by the deletion of the definition in terms 
of nanometers. The NHTSA has concluded 
that definitions in terms of chromaticity coordi- 
nates and purity are sufficient. In order to i 
standardize the requirement with respect to cur- " 
rent color specification practice, the required 
chromaticity coordinates have been changed 
slightly. 

The reflectivity requirement has been clarified 
to state that the material must be reflex reflec- 
tive, and a definition of "reflex reflective" has 
been added to the standard. The reflectivity 
requirement in terms of candlepower per square 
inch has been found to be superfluous, and ac- 
cordingly has been deleted. 

The Economic Commission of Europe re- 
quested that the required total minimum candle- 
power per incident foot candle for an observa- 
tion angle of 0.2 degrees be lowered from 120 
candlepower fo correspond to the international 
specifications. The NHTSA has concluded that 
80 candlepowe; will provide sufficient protection 
and the minimum candlepower has been lowered 
accordingly. 

In order to standardize the requirement with 
respect to current photometric practice, the 
luminance requirement for orange fluorescent 
material in the warning device has been raised ^ 
from not less than 30 percent to not less than ^ 

125— PRE 2 



35 percent of that of a flat magnesium oxide 
surface. The luminance criterion, "when com- 
pared under the light from an overcast sky," has 
been changed to read "when subjected to a 150- 
watt high pressure xenon compact arc lamp." 

Many equipment manufacturers stated that 
the 200 degree Fahrenheit requirement for the 
high temperature conditioning is not justified by 
evidence showing that the device must withstand 
temperatures at that level when in use. This 
contention has been found to have merit, and 
the temperature requirement has been lowered 
to 150 degrees. 

Elective date: January 1, 1974. Because the 
standard is issued later than anticipated, the 
effective date has been extended from January 
1, 1972 to January 1, 1974. The NHTSA has 
concluded that this date will permit manufac- 
turers of warning devices which do not have 
self-contained energy sources and which do not 



MkHv*! January I, 1974 

meet the specifications of the standard to retool 
for manufacture of complying devices. It is 
therefore found, for good cause shown, that an 
effective date more than one year from the date 
of issuance is in the public interest. 

In consideration of the above, a new § 571.125, 
Standard No. 125, Warning Devices, is added to 
Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations. . . . 

This rule is issued imder the authority of 
sections 103, 112, and 119 of the National Traffic 
and Motor Vehicle Safety Act (15 U.S.C. 1392, 
1401, 1407) and the delegation of authority at 
49 CFR 1.51. 



Issued on March 1, 1972. 



Charles H. Hartman 
Acting Administrator 

37 F.R. 5038 
March 9, 1972 



PART 671; S 126— PRE 8-4; 



i 



EffKllv*: Januaiy 1, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 125 



Warning Devices 
(Docket 4-2; Notice 5) 



The purpose of this notice is to respond to peti- 
tions for reconsideration of Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 125, Warning Devices, in § 571.125 
of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations. The 
standard was issued on March 1, 1972 (37 F.R. 
5038). 

The Amerace-Esna Corporation suggested that 
the 98% purity requirement for the red reflex re- 
flective material be deleted since the trichromatic 
color coefficients provide sufficient definition of 
the red color. The NHTSA agrees, and further- 
more has determined that the purity requirement 
for the orange fluorescent material should be de- 
leted for the same reasons. Accordingly, 
S5.3.1(c) and S5.3.2(c) are deleted from the rule. 

Hawes Industries, Inc. requested that the stand- 
ard permit the use of a triangular warning de- 
vice designed to be secured on the roof of a motor 
vehicle. They stated that the roof location was 
more convenient to the consumer than the recom- 
mended positioning behind the car and afforded 
as much or more protection. As stated in the 
preamble to the standard, a number of comments 
advocating positioning of the device on the ve- 
hicle roof or side were received and reviewed by 
the NHTSA in the formulation of the final rule. 
The Administration determined that placement 
of the device behind the vehicle would provide 
maximum protection by affording a greater dis- 
tance for recognition and response by oncoming 
traffic. For this reason, it has recommended posi- 
tioning of the device 100 feet behind the vehicle 
and requires an illustration indicating this loca- 
tion to be provided in the instructions. The 
standard does not prohibit manufacture or sale of 
a device capable of being mounted on a vehicle 
roof, as long as it meets all the Standard 125 re- 
quirements, including the capability of being set 
up on the ground. 



The standard requires that an illustration de- 
picting recommended positioning of the device 
be included with the instructions for the device. 
The Administration is amending S5.1.5(c) to 
clarify its intent that the illustration provided be 
substantially identical to Figure 3. 

The standard as issued establishes separate 
width requirements for red reflex reflective ma- 
terial and orange fluorescent material affixed to 
the faces of the warning device. Rowland De- 
velopment Corp>oration stated that it manufac- 
tures a "dual purpose fluorescent orange-red 
reflective material," and requested that the sep- 
arate width requirements be suspended when such 
material is used. The request appears to have 
merit, but NHTSA has concluded that an evalua- 
tion of the requirements pertaining to the fluo- 
rescent orange material is necessary before it can 
respond to this request. A notice of proposed 
rulemaking containing proposed changes will be 
issued when the evaluation is completed. When 
the final revised requirements for the fluorescent 
material are established, a precise definition of the 
dual purpose material can be formulated. 

Prof. D. M. Finch of the University of Cali- 
fornia stated that in order to clarify the color re- 
quirements the respective sources of illumination 
for the measurement of the red and orange color 
should be specified. The NHTSA agrees that 
this should be done, and accordingly S5.3.1 has 
been modified to specify the use of a lamp with a 
tungsten filament operating at 2,854° K for the 
red measurement. The source of illumination for 
the measurement of the orange color will be spec- 
ified with the revision of the fluorescent material 
requirements referred to above. 

The word "tungsten" is inserted before the 
word "filament" in the rule, as a clarification of 
the test conditions for red color and reflectivity. 



PART 571; S 125— PRE 5 



MmHv*: Jonwoiy I, 1974 

In consideration of the foregoing, Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Standard No. 125, Warning Devices, 
49 CFR § 571.125, is amended. . . . 

Effective date: January 1, 1974. 

This notice is issued under the authority of sec- 
tions 103, 112, and 119 of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 



1407) and the delegation of authority at 49 CFR 
1.51. 
Issued on June 19, 1972. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 12323 
June 22, 1972 



PART 671; S 125— PRE 6 



Eff«(Kv«: January I, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDAAENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 125 



Warning Devices 
Docket No. 4-2; Notico 6) 



The purpose of this notice is to respond further 
to petitions for reconsideration and amendment 
of Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 125, 
Warning Devices, § 571.125 of Title 49, Code of 
Federal Regulations. The standard was issued 
on March 1, 1972, (37 F.R. 5038). On June 22, 
1972, a previous notice of amendments and recon- 
sideration of the standard was published (37 
F.R. 12323). 

With respect to the configuration of the device 
Rowland Development Corporation stated that 
it manufactures a dual purpose fluorescent orange 
and red reflective material and requested that the 
separate width requirements for red reflex re- 
flective material and orange fluorescent material 
affixed to the faces of the device be suspended 
when such material is used. The NHTSA has 
concluded that the use of such dual purpose ma- 
terial as an alternative to separate material is 
permissible if the material is capable of meeting 
the requii-ements of Standard 125. S5.1.1, S5.2.3, 
S5.5, and SG.2(a) are hereby modified accord- 
ingly, and the separate width requirements will 
not be applicable when dual purpose material is 
used. 

Tri-Lite interpreted the standard as permitting 
the use of a flag as part of a "combination signal 
dence" as long as the device did not violate 
S5.2.1(b), relating to obstruction of the reflective 
and fluorescent material. In a previous letter to 
Tri-Lite the XHTSA had stated that the stand- 
ard would be interpreted to allow such additions. 
(Docket entry X4-^-2-10, July 18, 1972.) Upon 
further consideration, the agency has detennined 
that permitting additions to the device will lessen 
its effectiveness by degrading the uniformity of 
its shape. Accordingly, the use of additional 
shapes or attachments will not be permitted, and 
a new S5.2.6 is added to that effect. 



A number of petitions regarding the orange 
fluorescent material were received. Personnel 
from the National Bureau of Standards sug- 
gested that the requirements for the color of the 
orange fluorescent material be amended so as not 
to penalize colors that have the same hue but are 
stronger than the present maximum y and mini- 
mum X values. The NHTSA agrees with the 
suggestion and S5.3.2 has been amended accord- 
ingly. 

Tri-Lite stated that the fluorescent material 
deteriorates over time and is therefore unreliable. 
It requested that the provision of orange fluores- 
cent material on the device be made optional. 
The NHTSA recognizes that deterioration of 
fluorescence is a possibility; however, it is felt 
that the requirement of an opaque container and 
the improving technology of fluorescent materials 
should offset the possible problem. It is antici- 
pated that the device will be used only infre- 
quently, in emergencies, by most drivers. The 
request of Tri-Lite is therefore denied. 

Rowland Corp. requested that the luminance 
requirement be expressed in terms relative to the 
amount of fluorescent material affixed to the de- 
vice rather than the percentage figure of mag- 
nesium oxide presently required. The agency 
position is that a minimum level of luminance is 
necessary for identifiability, but that a somewhat 
lower limit for luminance of the orange material 
could be suitable if more material is used. Ac- 
cordingly, S5.5 has been amended to lower the 
minimum relative luminance relative to mag- 
nesium oxide from 35% to 25%, and to require 
a minimum product of that relative luminance 
and width in inches of the device of 44. Dayglo 
Color Corp. requested that two sources of light 
for luminance test. Source C and Source D-65, 
be permitted in addition to the xenon arc lamp 



PART 571; S 125— PRE 7 



Elbcllv*: January 1, 1974. 



specified in the standard. Tiie NHTSA has con- 
cluded that tlie most consistent test results are 
provided when the material is diffusely irradiated 
with undispersed light from a high-pressure 
xenon arc lamp to simulate daytime conditions. 
As a general rule, alternative test procedures for 
a single property are inadvisable, and no suffi- 
cient justification for them has been shown here. 
Therefore the Dayglo request is denied. 

In light of evidence that differing relative 
luminance values are obtained from different pro- 
cedures used to measure it, a procedures para- 
graph (S6.3) for the luminance testing of the 
orange fluorescent material hag been added to 
the standard. The procedure is adapted from 
the publication "Colorimetry", of the Interna- 
tional Commission on Illumination (CIE Pub- 
lication No. 15, E-1.3.1, 1971). 

Two petitions dealt with the stability re- 
quirements. Rowland Development Corporation 
requested that the standard permit the manu- 
facture of a triangle device constructed of flexible 
material which is secured at the outer corners 
of the triangle and is otherwise free to flex with 
the wmd. Safety Triangles Company requested 
that the device be permitted to tilt to a position 
up to 30° from the vertical rather than the pres- 
ently allowed 10°. These requests were directed 
at permitting manufacturers to produce lighter 
and cheaper devices. TheNHTSA has concluded 
that if the triangle is permitted to flex in the 
wind or tilt to a position up to 30° from the 



vertical, the attitude of the triangle is altered so 
that the shape of the equilateral triangle is dis- 
torted, thus detracting from one of the goals of 
the standard. The present performance require- 
ments and the consequent cost factors have been 
found to be reasonable. These requests are ac- 
cordingly denied. 

With respect to reflectivity testing, Rowland 
stated that candlepower requirements for an ob- 
servation angle of 0.2° were superfluous and not 
related to true highway situations, and requested 
their deletion. The NHTSA has determined in 
the formulation of the standard that the speci- 
fied reflectivity requirements allow a maximum 
recognition and detection distance to oncoming 
traffic. Accordingy, the requirements for the 0.2° 
observation angle are retained 

In consideration of the foregoing. Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Standard No. 125, Warning Devices, 
49 CFR §571.125, is amended. . . . 

Effective date: January 1, 1974. 

(Sec. 103, 112, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 
718, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1407 ; delegation of au- 
thority at 49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on January 23, 1973. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

38 F.R. 2760 
January 30, 1973 



PART 571; S 125— PRE 8 



EffKllv*: Nov*mb*r 11, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 125 

Warning Devices 
(Docket No. 74-2; Notice 10) 



The purpose of this amendment to Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Standard No. 125 (49 CFR 571.125), 
Warning Devices, is to prescribe the color specifi- 
cations for the orange and red materials used in 
the warning devices authorized under the stand- 
ard. 

On April 6, 1973, the NHTSA issued a pro- 
posal on this subject (38 F.R. 8752). The com- 
ments from industry were generally in agreement 
with the method for testing the orange fluores- 
cent material, although several requested that 
light source C be allowed for testing of the orange 
fluorescent material. After consultation with 
testing laboratories and the National Bureau of 
Standards, NHTSA has concluded that for pur- 
poses of obtaining repeatable results and simulat- 
ing daylight conditions, source C does not pro- 
vide the necessary ultraviolet radiation. There- 
fore, the use of the xenon arc lamp has been 
incorporated into the standard and will be re- 
quired for testing of the orange color and lumi- 
nescence of the daylight fluorescent material. 

The majority of the commentcrs and the Na- 
tional Bureau of Standards agreed that the direct 
illumination method for testing of standard 
orange fluorescent material for both color and 
luminance should be continued, and the integrat- 
ing sphere method should be used for dual- 
purpose materials. The industry, including the 
testing laboratories, have had sufficient time to 
utilize this method and repeatable results have 
been obtained. 

The color definition equation for the orange 
fluorescent material has been broadened from 
x-f-y = 0.943 to x-fy=0.93. The majority of 



those commenting had no objection to broaden- 
ing the area of the orange fluorescent material, 
but one equipment manufacturer desired the red 
boundary to be extended from y = 0.35 to y=0.34. 
NHTSA concludes that to do so would place this 
boundary line too near the red area for proper 
differentiation between orange and red. Since 
orange is used as a daylight material, it should 
not be similar to the red material in color. 

As proposed, the three-digit system in the 
straight-line equations for the boundary of the 
orange and red colors has been converted to a 
two-digit system, as this degree of accuracy is 
sufficient for general testing purposes. 

The final amendment to the standard estab- 
lishes the type of light to be used for testing the 
orange material used in dual purpose material. 
Of particular importance in this test procedure 
is separating the red retroreflective and orange 
fluorescent material. The majority of the com- 
mentcrs and the National Bureau of Standards 
recommended that the xenon arc lamp be used, as 
it provides sufficient ultraviolet radiation to simu- 
late daylight conditions with overcast sky, if the 
unmodified spectrum illuminating the material is 
at an angle of incidence of 45° and the angle 
of observation is 90°. In this procedure, which 
is adopted, the material is illuminated diffusely 
by an integrating sphere. 

Because a number of amendments to Standard 
No. 125 have been issued, the standard is hereby 
reissued in its entirety. 

In light of the foregoing, 49 CFR §571.125, 
Standard No. 125, Warning Devices, is amended 
to read as set forth below. 



PART 571; S 125— PRE 9 



EflKtlv*: Nevemlxr II, 1974 

Effective date: Nov. 11, 1974. Issued on: Aug. 2, 1974. 

James B. Gregory 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563) 80 Stat. 718, Administrator 

15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407; delegation of authority at 39 F.R. 28636 

49 CFR 1.51.) August 9, 1974 



PART 571; S 125— PRE 10 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 125 
Warning Devices 



51. Scope. This standard establishes require- 
ments for devices, without self-contained energy 
sources, that are designed to be carried in motor 
vehicles and used to warn approaching traffic 
of the presence of a stopped vehicle, except for 
devices designed to be permanently affixed to the 
vehicle. 

52. Purpose. The purpose of this standard 
is to reduce deaths and injuries due to rear end 
collisions between moving traffic and disabled 
vehicles. 

53. Application. This standard applies to de- 
vices without self-contained energy sources, that 
are designed to be carried in motor vehicles and 
used to warn approaching traffic of the presence 
of a stopped vehicle, except for devices designed 
to be permanently affixed to the vehicle. 

S.4. Definitions. "Entrance angle" means the 
angle having as its sides the line through the 
center, and normal to the face, of the object to 
be tested, and the line from the center of the 
object to the center of the source of illumination 
(Figure 2). 

"Fluorescent" means the property of emitting 
visible light due to the absorption of radiation 
of a shorter wave-length which may be outside 
the visible spectrum. 

"Observation angle" means the angle having 
as its sides the line from the observation point 
to the center of the object to be tested and the 
line from the center of that object to the center 
of the source of illumination (Figure 2). 

"Reflex reflective" means reflective of light in 
directions close to the direction of incident light, 
over a wide range of variations in the direction 
of incident light. 



WARNING DEVICE 



0.25 TO 0.50 RADIUS 




RED REFLECTIVE 
MATERIAL 75 TO 1 75 



ORANGE FLUORESCENT 

MATERIAL 

1 25 TO 1.30 



DIMENSIONS OF WARNING DEVICE (Inches) 



Figure 1 

S5. Requirements. 
S5.1 Equipment. 

55.1.1 Reflex reflective material and fluores- 
cent material that meet the requirements of this 
standard shall be affixed to both faces of the 
warning device. Alternatively, a dual purpose 
orange fluorescent and red reflective material that 
meets the requirements of this standard (here- 
after referred to as "dual purpose material") 
may be affixed to both faces in place of the reflec- 
tive and fluorescent materials. 

55.1.2 Each warning device shall be protected 
from damage and deterioration— 

(a) By enclosure in an opaque protective re- 
usable container, except that two or three wam- 



PART 571; S 125-1 



ing devices intended to be sold for use as a set 
with a single vehicle" may be enclosed in a single 
container; or 

(b) By secure attachment to any light-tight, 
enclosed and easily accessible compartment of a 
new motor vehicle with which it is supplied by 
the vehicle manufacturer. 

55.1.3 The warning device shall be designed 
to be erected, and replaced in its container, with- 
out the use of tools. 

55.1.4 The warning device shall be perma- 
nently and legibly marked with: 

(a) Name of manufacturer; 

(b) Month and year of manufacture, which 
may be expressed numerically, as "6/72", and 

(c) The symbol DOT, or the statement that 
the warning device complies with all applicable 
Federal motor vehicle safety standards. 

55.1.5 Each warning device shall have in- 
structions for its erection and display. 

a) The instructions shall be either indelibly 
printed on the warning device or attached in 
such a manner that they cannot be easily removed. 

(b) Instructions for each warning device shall 
include a recommendation that the driver activate 
the vehicular hazard warning signal lamps before 
leaving the vehicle to erect the warning device. 

(c) Instructions shall include the illustration 
depicted in Figure 3 indicating recommended 
positioning. 

OBSERVATION POINT 
mi 



APPROXIMATELY 



DISABLED V=^=TT 



REFLECTED LIGHT 



OBSERVATION 
(DIVERGENCE) ANGLE 




-ENTRANCE (INCIDENCEI ANGLE 
PERPENDICULAR TO REFLECTIVE SURFACE 
REFLECTIVE SURFACE 



-100 FT. - 



RECOMMENDED WARNING DEVICE POSIT! 



REFLECTIVITY TEST DIAGRAM 
Figure 2 



S5.2 Configuration 

55.2.1 When the warning device is erected on 
level ground: 

(a) Part of the warning device shall form an 
equilateral triangle that stands in a plane not 
more than 10° from the vertical, with the lower 
edge of the base of the triangle horizontal and 
not less than 1 inch above the ground. 

(b) None of the required portion of the re- 
flective material and fluorescent material shall 
be obscured by any other part of the warning 
device except for any portion of the material 
over which it is necessary to provide fasteners, 
pivoting beads or other means to allow coUapsi- 
bility or support of the device. In any event, 
sufficient reflective and fluorescent material shall 
be used on the triangle to meet the requirements 
of S5.4 and S5.5. 

55.2.2 Each of the three sides of the tri- 
angular portion of the warning device shall not 
be less than 17 and not more than 22 inches long, 
and not less than 2 and not more than 3 inches 
wide (Figure 1). 

55.2.3 Each face of the triangular portion 
of the warning device shall have an outer border 
of red reflex reflective material of uniform width 
and not less than 0.75 and not more than 1.75 
inches wide, and an inner border of orange 
fluorescent material of uniform width and not 
less than 1.25 and not more than 1.30 inches wide 
(Figure 1). However, this requirement shall not 
apply if the dual purpose material is used. 

55.2.4 Each vertex of the triangular portion 
of the warning device shall have a radius of not 
less than 0.25 inch and not more than 0.50 inch. 

55.2.5 All edges shall be rounded or cham- 
fered, as necessary to reduce the possibility of 
cutting or harm to the user. 



PART 571; S 125-2 



S5.2.6 The device shall consist entirely of the 
triangular portion and attachments necessary 
for its support and enclosure, without additional 
visible shapes of attachments. 





































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S5.3 Color. 



55.3.1 The color of the red reflex reflective 
material on the warning device shall have the 
following characteristics, both before and after 
the warning device has been conditioned in ac- 
cordance with S6.1, when the source of illumina- 
tion is a lamp with a timgsten filament operating 
at 2856° Kelvin color temperature. Expressed 
in terms of the International Commission on 
Illumination (CIE) 1931 standard colorimetric 
observer system (CIE chromaticity diagram. 
Figure 4), the chromaticity coordinates of the 
red reflex reflective material shall lie within the 
region bounded by the spectrum locus and the 
lines on the diagram defined by the following 
equations: 

Boundary Equations 

Yellow y = 0.33 

White x-Ky = 0.98 

55.3.2 The color of the orange fluorescent 
material on the warning device shall have the 
following characteristics, both before and after 
the warning device has been conditioned in ac- 
cordance with S6.1, when the source of illumina- 



tion is a 150- watt high pressure xenon compact 
arc lamp. Expressed in terms of the Interna- 
tional Commission on Illumination (CIE) 1931 
standard colorimetric observer system, the chro- 
maticity coordinates of the orange fluorescent 
material shall lie within the region bounded by 
the spectrum locus and the lines on the diagram 
defined by the following equations: 

Boundary Equation 

Yellow y = 0.49x + 0.17 

White x-Hy = 0.93 

Red y = 0.35 

The 150-watt high pressure xenon compact arc 
lamp shall illuminate the sample using the un- 
modified spectrum at an angle of incidence of 45° 
and an angle of observation of 90°. If dual 
purpose material is being tested, it shall be illum- 
inated by a 150-watt high pressure xenon com- 
pact arc lamp, whose light is diffused by an 
integrating sphere. 

55.4 Reflectivity. When the red reflex reflec- 
tive material on the warning device is tested in 
accordance with S6.2, both before and after the 
warning device has been conditioned in accord- 
ance with S6.1, its total candlepower per incident 
foot candle shall be not less than the values 
specified in Table I for each of the listed entrance 
angles. 

55.5 Luminance. When the orange fluores- 
cent material on the warning device is tested in 
accordance Ayith S6.3, both before and after the 
warning device has been conditioned in accord- 
ance with S6.1, it shall have a minimum relative 
luminance of 25 percent of a flat magnesium 
oxide surface and a minimum product of that 
relative luminance and width in inches of 44. 

55.6 Stability. When the warning device is 
erected on a horizontal brushed concrete surface 
both with and against the brush marks and sub- 
jected to a horizontal wind of 40 miles per hour 
in any direction for 3 minutes— 

(a) No part of it shall slide more than 3 inches 
from its initial position; 

(b) Its triangular potion shall not tilt to a 
position that is more than 10° from the vertical; 
and 

(c) Its triangular position shall not turn 
through a horizontal angle of more than 10° in 
either direction from the initial position. 



PART 571; S 125-3 



Table 1. Total Minimum Candlepower Per Incident Foot Candle 
Entrance Angles - Degrees 



Observation 
Angles-Degrees 





10 
up 


10 
down 


20 
left 


20 
right 


30 
left 


30 
right 


0.2 


80 


80 


80 


40 


40 


8.0 


8.0 


1.5 


0.8 


0.8 


0.8 


0.4 


0.4 


0.08 


0.08 



S5.7 Durability. When the warning device is 
conditioned in accordance with S6.1, no part of 
the warning device shall become warped or sepa- 
rated from the rest of the warning device. 

S6. Test Procedures. 

56.1 Conditions. 

S6.1.1 Submit the warning device to the fol- 
lowing conditioning sequence, returning the device 
after each step in the sequence to ambient air at 
68° F. for at least 2 hours. 

(a) Minus 40° F. for 16 hours in a circulating 
air chamber using ambient air which would have 
not less than 30 percent and not more than 70 
percent relative humidity at 70° F.; 

(b) 150° F. for 16 hours in a circulating air 
oven using ambient air which would have not less 
than 30 percent and not more than 70 percent 
relative humidity at 70° F.; 

(c) 100° F. and 90 percent relative humidity 
for 16 hours; 

(d) Salt spray (fog) test in accordance with 
American Society of Testing and Materials 
Standard B-117, Standard Method of Salt Spray 
(fog) testing, August 1964, except that the test 
shall be for 4 hours rather than 40 hours; and 

(e) Immersion for 2 hours in water at a tem- 
perature of 100° F. 

58.2 Reflectivity Test. Test the red reflex 
reflective material as follows: 

(a) Unless dual purpose material is used, pre- 
vent the orange fluorescent material from affect- 
ing the photometric measurement of the reflec- 
tivity of the red reflex reflective material, either 
by separation or masking. 



(b) Use a lamp with a tungsten filament op- 
erating at 2856° Kelvin color temperature as the 
source of illumination. 

(c) Place the source of illumination 100 feet 
from the red reflex reflective material (Figure 2). 

(d) Place the observation point directly above 
the source of illumination (Figure 2). 

(e) Calculate the total candlepower per in- 
cident foot candle of the red reflex reflective 
material at each of the entrance and observation 
angles specified in Table 1. 

S6.3 Luminance Test. Test the orange fluores- 
cent material as follows: 

(a) Unless dual purpose material is used, pre- 
vent the red reflex reflective material from affect- 
ing the photometric measurement of the lumin- 
ance of the orange fluorescent material. 

(b) Using a 150-watt high pressure xenon com- 
pact arc lamp as the light source, illuminate the 
test sample at an angle of incidence of 45° and 
an angle of observation of 90°. If dual purpose 
material is being tested, illuminate the sample 
diffusely through an integrating sphere. 

(c) Measure the luminance of the material at 
a perpendicular viewing angle, with no ray of 
the viewing beam more than 5° from the per- 
pendicular to the specimen. 

(d) Repeat the procedure for a flat magnesium 
oxide surface, and compute the quotient (per- 
centage) of the luminance of the material relative 
to that of the magnesium oxide surface. 

37 F.R. 5038 
Marel) 9, 1972 



PART 571; S 125-4 



MMflmt ionwocy 1, IVTS 
(Cxcapl « Naiad In Kul«) 



PREAAWLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 126 
Truck-Camper Leading 

(Docket No. 71-7; NoHc* 2) 



This notice amends Part 571 of Title 49, Code 
of Federal Regulations, to add a new Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 126 (49 CFR 
571.126) that requires manufacturers of slide-in 
campers and of trucks that would accommodate 
them to provide information concerning proper 
loading and load distribution. A notice of pro- 
posed rulemaking on this subject was published 
On AprU 9, 1971 (36 F.R. 6837). 

The purpose of the new standard is to provide 
information that can be used to reduce overload- 
ing and improper load distribution in truck- 
camper combinations, and to prevent accidents 
resulting from the adverse effects of these con- 
ditions on vehicle handling and braking. Stand- 
ard No. 126 requires manufacturers of slide-in 
campers to permanently affix a label to a rear 
surface of each camper that includes the weight 
of the camper when it contains standard equip- 
ment, and water, bottled gas, and ice box with 
ice or refrigerator. The camper manufacturer 
is also required to provide, in an owner's manual 
or other document delivered with the camper, a 
picture showing the location of the longitudinal 
center of gravity of the camper when loaded and 
a picture showing a proper match of the slide-in 
camper on a typical truck. Standard No. 126 
also requires manufacturers of trucks to which a 
camper could be attached to provide, in an oper- 
ator's manual or other document delivered with 
the truck, a picture showing the manufacturer's 
recommended longitudinal center of gravity zone 
for the cargo weight rating, and one depicting 
the proper match of a truck and slide-in camper. 

Standard No. 126 differs from the proposal m 
several aspects. The standard as proposed would 
have applied to incomplete vehicles intended for 
completion as trucks, and to multipurpose pas- 
senger vehicles with a GVWR of 10,000 pounds 



or less. These categories have been excluded 
from the final rule, which applies to trucks that 
would accommodate slide-in campers. These 
generally are pick-up trucks. In excluding other 
proposed categories the NHTSA considers that 
the information the manufacturer of an incom- 
plete vehicle must furnish pursuant to 49 CFR 
Part 568, Vehicles Manufactured in Two or More 
Stages, should be sufficient to assist a final as- 
sembler in permanently installing a chassis- 
mount camper on a truck chassis, or in assembling 
a vehicle such as a motor home. 

The proposal would also have required that a 
label be permanently affixed to each cargo com- 
partment that would specify the maximum rec- 
ommended weight for a load placed in the 
compartment. Commenters argued persuasively 
that camper owners would disregard a series of 
weight capacity labels on all storage compart-, 
ments, and the proposal was not adopted. The 
final nile requires the certification label and the 
owner's manual to provide a figure denoting 
camper weight, which as noted previously in- 
cludes the weight of standard equipment, a re- 
frigerator, or ice box with ice, and maximum 
capacity of water and bottled gas. The cubic 
capacity of the refrigerator or weight of ice, the 
weight of bottled gas, and the gallons of water 
encompassed in the maximum weight figure will 
also be listed on the permanent label and in the 
owner's manual. The camper manufacturer may 
exclude any of these items from the label if the 
camper is not designed to accommodate them, 
provided that a notation to that effect appears in 
the owner's manual. The standard also requires 
a manufacturer to provide a listing of optional 
or additional equipment that the camper is de- 
signed to carry, and the respective weight of 
each if the unit weight exceeds 20 pounds. 



PART 671; S 126— PRE 1 



EfhcHv*: January I, 1973 
(Except at NelMl In RuU) 

The label will also state the month and year of 
manufacture, and a recommendation that the user 
consult the owner's manual or data sheet for the 
weight of optional and additional equipment. 
The label is to be mounted in a plainly visible 
location on a surface at the rear of the camper 
other than the roof, steps or bumper extension. 

The proposed reference point, or the distances 
of the camper center of gravity from the refer- 
ence point, have not been adopted for use on the 
exterior label. Manufacturers of campers gen- 
erally have had no experience with the relatively 
complex vertical center of gravity measurement 
techniques. Truck manufacturers pointed out a 
number of variables that would have to be con- 
sidered, and stated that the limiting envelope 
would not be rectangular as implied by the pro- 
posal. Other comments objected to the end of 
the truck's axle shaft as a reference point for 
specifying a recommended cargo center of grav- 
ity zone. Variations in the longitudinal center 
of gravity of the load are, however, known to 
have a direct relationship to a truck's gross axle 
loading, and can adversely affect the steering and 
stopping ability of the vehicle. The camper 
manufacturer will therefore be required to pro- 
vide in the owner's manual a picture showing the 
location of the camper's longitudinal center of 
gravity within 2 inches, under specified load con- 
ditions. A manufacturer can easily measure the 
longitudinal center of gravity of a slide-in 
camper by balancing it on a transverse horizontal 
rod. The camper owner's manual must also con- 
tain specific advice on proper choice of truck to 
which a camper may be mounted, and proper 
loading of the camper once it is attached. Truck 



manufacturers in turn are required to include in 
the operator's manual a picture showing the rec- 
ommended longitudinal center of gravity zone 
for the cargo weight rating and loading recom- 
mendations. 

In order to allow the relatively small camper 
manufacturers time to consider the recommenda- 
tions of truck manufacturers, and to modify 
camper designs if needed, a camper manufacturer 
need not provide center of gravity location in- 
formation until July 1, 1973. 

Effective date: January 1, 1973, with addi- 
tional requirements effective July 1, 1973. Be- 
cause compliance with the rule does not involve 
extensive leadtime, the Administrator finds for 
good cause shown that an effective date earlier 
than one hundred eighty days after issuance is 
in the public interest. 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR 
Part 571 is amended by adding § 671.126, Stand- 
ard No. 126, Truck-Camper Loading. . . . 

This notice is issued under the authority of 
Sections 103, 112, 114, and 119 of the National 
Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 
(16 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1403, and 1407) and the 
delegation of authority tram the Secretary of 
Transportation to the National Highway Trftffic 
Safety Administrator, 49 CFR 1.61. 

Issued on August 8, 1972. 

DouglM W. TomB 
Administntor 

37 F.R. 16497 
Au9Mt 15, 1972 



PABT 671; S 126— PRE 2 



Eff«cttv«i January 1, 1973 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 126 

Truck-Camper Loading 
(Docket No. 71-7; Notice 4) 



This notice responds to petitions for reconsid- 
eration of 49 CFR §571.126, Motor Vehicle 
Safety Standard No. 126, Track-Camper Load- 
ing. The portion of the regulation requiring 
information to be provided by camper manu- 
facturers is retained as a Federal motor vehicle 
safety standard, and a vehicle information num- 
ber is added to the list of information to be pro- 
vided. The portion of the rule applicable to 
truck manufacturers is reissued as a consumer 
information regulation by a separate notice (37 
F.R. 26607). 

Standard No. 126, establishing requirements 
for slide-in campers and trucks that would ac- 
commodate them, was published on August 15, 
1972 (37 F.R. 16497). Thereafter, pursuant to 
49 CFR § 553.35, petitions for reconsideration of 
the standard were filed by Chrysler Corporation 
(Chrysler), Ford Motor Company (Ford), 
General Motors Corporation (GM), Jeep Cor- 
poration (Jeep), Motor Vehicle Manufacturers 
Association of the United States, Inc. (MVMA), 
Recreational Vehicle Institute, Inc. (RVI), and 
Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. (Toyota). 

In res{>onse to information contained in several 
of these petitions the standard is being amended 
in certain respects. The A.dministrator has de- 
clined to grant requested relief from other re- 
quirements of the standard. 

1. Statutory Authority. Standard No. 126 as 
issued applied to slide-in campers and to trucks 
that would accommodate them. It required man- 
ufacturers of slide-in campers to attach to their 
products a label containing the name of the man- 
ufacturer, the month and year of manufacture, 
a certification of conformity, and infonrtation 
concerning the camper's maximum weight. The 
standard also required camper manufacturers to 



provide the same information and certain addi- 
tional items in a manual or other document to 
accompany each camper. A parallel requirement 
was adopted applicable to truck manufacturers; 
they were required to provide information in a 
manual or other document supplied with their 
products that would assist truck owners in choos- 
ing a prop)erly matched camper. 

Chrysler, Ford, GM, Jeep, and MVMA ques- 
tioned the authority to issue the requirements of 
49 CFR §571.126 as a Federal motor vehicle 
safety standard rather than in the form of a 
Consumer Information Regulation (49 CFR 
Part 575), alleging that Standard No. 126 is 
"neither a performance standard nor does it pro- 
vide any objective criteria for determining com- 
pliance." 

The NHTSA does not agree that it lacks au- 
thority to issue Standard No. 126 in the form 
in which it appeared. Actually, the regulation 
was issued under the combined authority of four 
sections of the Act: section 103 (the authority 
for the Federal motor vehicle safety standards), 
section 112 (the primary authority for technical 
information and data to be provided by a manu- 
facturer to NHTSA and the consumer), section 
114 (the authority for vehicle and equipment 
certification) and section 119 (the general rule- 
making authority). Many of the existing stand- 
ards contain information requirements, and it is 
the position of this agency that such provisions 
fully satisfy the statutory criteria as objective 
performance requirements. The question there- 
fore is in most respects the merely formal one of 
whether the rule is called a "safety standard" 
or a "consumer information regulation," and 
codified accordingly. 



PART 571; S 126— PRE 3 



EffKtIv*: Jmuaiy I, 1973 



On reconsideration of all aspects of the stand- 
ard, however, this agency has determined that 
there is an advantage to issuing the requirements 
for trucks in the form of a consumer informa- 
tion regulation. 49 CFR § 575.6(b) requires all 
Part 575 consumer information to be made avail- 
able to prospective purchasers in dealer show- 
rooms, and paragraph (c) of that section re- 
quires such information to be furnished directly 
to the NHTSA. Neither of these requirements 
applies to information furnished pursuant to 
Part 571 safety standards. Part 575 consumer 
information regulations are enforceable in sub- 
stantially the same manner and with the same 
sanctions as safety standards. The requirements 
for trucks in 49 CFR §571.126 are therefore 
reissued as a new consumer information regula- 
tion, 49 CFR § 575.103, by an action published 
in this issue, 37 F.R. 26607. 

2. Effective date. The requirement for pic- 
tures showing camper center of gravity and 
proper truck-camper match that camper manu- 
facturers were to provide as of July 1, 1973, is 
being deferred 2 months, and will not be required 
until September 1, 1973. RVI has petitioned for 
an extension of the effective date of these require- 
ments to January 1, 1974, on the basis that the 
extension "would give the relatively small 
camper manufacturers additional time to con- 
form camper design to the center of gravity 
envelopes developed by the truck manufacturers." 
The regulation, however, only requires manufac- 
turers to provide information, not to redesign 
their products. The NHTSA finds that RVI 
has shown insufficient justification to support its 
request, and the petition is denied. 

3. Definitions. RVI petitioned that its defini- 
tion of "camper" be adopted so that there would 
be no confusion within the recreational vehicle 
industry as to whether the standard applied to 
motor homes and pickup covers. RVI's petition 
was similar to the one it submitted for recon- 
sideration of Standard No. 205, Glazing Ma- 
terials. The NHTSA has not adopted the RVI 
definition, but it has defined the terms "camper" 
and "slide-in camper" so as to clarify these terms 
and differentiate them from "motor home" and 
"pickup cover," also defined in Standard No. 205. 
"Cargo weight rating" was defined as "the maxi- 
mum weight of cargo . . . that can safely be 



carried by a vehicle under normal operating 
conditions. . . ."' Ford objects that the definition 
is subjective and urges that the term be redefined 
as "the maximum weight of cargo . . . that the 
truck manufacturer specifies may be carried on 
the vehicle." The NHTSA concurs generally 
with Ford's views. The definition has been re- 
written to make clear that the rating, like GVWR 
and GAWR, is to be assigned at the discretion 
of the manufacturer. 

4. Information. Ford believes the reference 
to "total load" in paragraph S5. 1.2(c) is mis- 
leading "in that users may easily understand this 
to be the total load on the truck." It suggests 
substitution of the term "cargo load." Ford's 
point is well made, and the term is redesignated 
"total cargo l6ad" as a clarification. 

Toyota has asked that paragraph S5.1.2(e) 
be amended to substitute four inches for the re- 
quirement that camper manufacturers provide 
a picture showing the location of the center of 
gravity of the camper within an accuracy of two 
inches under the loaded condition. The petition 
is denied. The intent of the specification is to 
insure an accuracy within two inches, in either 
direction, in effect, a range of four inches. The 
NHTSA does not consider this tolerance to be 
overly demanding. 

Finally, RVI states that its members have had 
difficulty in interpreting Figure 2 and requests 
the NHTSA to more clearly indicate "that the 
terminology 'Mount at Aft End of Truck Cargo 
Area' means that the designated point in the 
figure signifies the point where the identified 
surface of the camper abuts the rearmost edge 
or surface of the cargo area of the truck, pre- 
sumably the tailgate in most configurations." To 
clarify its intent the NHTSA is changing the 
language in question to "point that contacts rear 
end of truck bed." 

5. Vehicle Identification Number (VIN.) The 
NHTSA proposed on August 15, 1972 (Docket 
No. 71-7; Notice 3, F.R. 16505) that slide-in 
campers be identified by a VIN, consisting of 
arabic numerals, roman letters, or both. The 
notice also proposed to require that the VIN of 
two campers manufactured by a manufacturer 
within a ten year period shall not be identical. 
No objections were raised to the proposal, and 
Standard No. 126 is amended to adopt the pro- 



PART 671; 8 126— PRE 4 



MkHv*: JoMMry 1, 1979 

posed requirements, reworded slightly effective This notice is issued under the authority of 

January 1, 1973. sections 103, 112, 114, and 119 of the National 

In consideration of the foregoing, 49 CFR Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 

§671.126, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. (15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1403, and 1407) and the 

126, is amended. . . . delegation of authority from the Secretary of 

Effective date: January 1, 1973, with addi- Transportation to the National Highway Traffic 

tional requirements effective September 1, 1973. Safety Administrator, 49 CFR 1.61. 

Because the amendment consists principally of ^ , ^ . .. „» 

^, • i i- ^ J Issued on: December 6, 1972. 

the reissue of existmg requirements, and com- ..-^~o." , 

pliance with the amendment requiring a VIN tv« i wr t 

does not involve extensive leadtime, the Admin- aj • • 

istrator finds for good cause shown that an effec- ™ ^ 

tive date eariler than 180 days after issuance is 37 F.R. 26605 

in the public interest. D«c«mb*r 14, 1972 



PART 671 ; S 126— PRE 6-6 



(fhcllva: hbniary 14, 1973 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 126 

Truck-Camper Loading 
(Dock«t No. 71-7; Notice 7) 



This notice responds to a petition for reconsid- 
eration of 49 CFR § 571.126, Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 126, Truck-camper loading, with an 
amendment allowing optional wording of a por- 
tion of the placard to be affixed to campers, and 
of other required information. The amendments 
are eflfective upon publication in the Federal Reg- 
itter. 

On August 15, 1972 Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 126 was originally published (37 
F.R. 16497). In response to petitions for recon- 
sideration the standard was republished on De- 
cember 14, 1972 (37 F.R. 26605) with amendments 
that included minor changes in the text of infor- 
mation required to be furnished to purchasers of 
slide-in campers. 

Paragraph S5.1.2(a) of Standard No. 126 re- 
quires each manufacturer of a slide-in camper 
to provide in a manual or other document deliv- 
ered with each camper "the statement and infor- 
mation provided on the certification label as 
specified in paragraph S5.1.1". Among this in- 
formation is the month and year that the camper 
was manufactured. The Trailer Coach Associa- 
tion has asked in a letter dated December 29, 
1972 that wording such as "see certification label 
for date of manufacture" be substituted for the 
month and year of manufacture, contending that 
"to require manufacturers to list the mont^ and 
year of manufacture in each vehicle owner's 
manual would be an imnecessary hardship in 
view of the production and shipping schedule 
which varies greatly from time to time during 
the year." 

The NHTSA believes that the request of TCA 
is reasonable, and is treating TCA's letter as a 
petition for reconsideration filed pursuant to 49 
CFR 553.35. However, since the information 



requirement became effective January 1, 1973, 
and because of the possibility that manufacturers 
now providing this data may wish to continue to 
do so, the manufacturer should have the option 
of including either the month and year of manu- 
facture or a reference to the certification label. 
The standard is being amended to provide this 
option. 

In the amendments published on December 14, 
1972 two minor changes were made in terminol- 
ogy. In Paragraph 85.1.2 (c) the phrase "total 
load", which appears twice, was changed to "total 
cargo load" as a clarification. Further clarifica- 
tion was provided in an amendment to Figure 2, 
Camper Center of Gravity Information where the 
legend "Mount at Aft End of Truck Cargo Area" 
was changed to "Point That Contacts Rear End 
of Truck Bed". In view of the amendments to 
§ 575.103 delaying the effective date 30 days until 
April 1, 1973, and permitting use of the earlier 
form until October 1, 1973 (Docket No. 71-7; 
Notice 6 (38 F.R. 4400)), camper manufactur- 
ers who have printed manuals with the old 
terminology should be afforded the same oppor- 
tunity as truck manufacturers to exhaust obsolete 
stocto of materials. Appropriate amendments are 
therefore made to Standard No. 126, including a 
30 day delay in the pictorial information that 
was to have been provided as of September 1, 
1973. 

In consideration of the foregoing 49 CFR 
§ 571.126 Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 126 
is amended .... 

Effective date : February 14, 1973. Because the 
amendments create no additional burden it is 
foimd for good cause that an effective date earlier 
than one hundred eighty days after issuance is 
in the public interest. 



PART 571 ; S 126— PRE 7 



MkHvsi HbnMry 14, 1*73 

(Sec. 103, 112, 114, and 119, Pub. L. 89-663, 
80 Stat. 718, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1403 and 1407 ; 
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on February 12, 1978. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

38 F.R. 4399 
February 14, 1973 



PAST 571; S 126— PRE 8 



EtfocMva: March 9, 1973 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 126 

Truck-Camper Loading 
(Docket No. 71-7; Notico 8) 



This notice correctB the amendment to 49 CFR 
§571.126, Standard No. 126, Truck-camper 
loading, published on February 14, 1973 (38 
F.R 4399). The amendment to paragraph 
S5.1.2(a) erroneously referred to "the informa- 
tion required by subparagraphs (c) and (d) of 
paragraph S5.1.1". The reference should have 
been to "subparagraphs (b) and (c)". 

Additionally, the opening statement of the 
preamble erroneously stated that the amendment 
allowed "optional wording of a portion of the 
"'icard to be affixed to campers, and of other 
required information". The amendment itself 
correctly allowed optional wording of informa- 



tion provided in the manual or other document 
delivered with the camper, not on the placard. 

Effective date: March 9, 1973. Because the 
amendment corrects an error, it is found for 
good cause shown that an immediate effective 
date is in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 112, 114 and 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 
80 Stat. 718, 15 U.S.C. 1392, 1401, 1403, and 
1407; delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on March 5, 1973. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

38 F.R. 6392 
March 9, 1973 



PART 571; S 126— PRE 9-10 



EfFeclive: April 27, 1978 



PREAMBLE TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 126 

Truck-Camper Loading 
(Docket No. 71-7; Notice 10) 



This notice amends Standard No. 126, Truck- 
Camper Loading, by removing the requirement 
tliat a camper's veliicle identification number 
(VIN) be printed in its owner's manual. Such 
a modification will reduce the cost of compliance 
with the standard, without adversely affectino; 
the level of safety prescribed. 
Effective Date: April 27, 1978. 
For Further Information Contact: 
Kevin Cavey, Crash Avoidance Division, 
OflBce of Veliicle Safety Standards, National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 400 
Seventh Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 
20590 (202^26-2716). 

Supplementary Information : On November 29, 
1973, the NHTSA issued a notice proposing to 
amend Standard No. 126, Truck-Camper Load- 
ing, to remove the requirement that the vehicle 
identification number (VIN) of each camper be 
printed in its owner's manual (38 FR 3294.5). 
The amendment, requested bj' the Recreation 
Vehicle Industry Association, was proposed to 
reduce the burdens and costs associated with com- 
pliance with the requirement. 

Comments were received from Ford, the 
Recreation Vehicle Industry Association, and the 
Reci'eational Vehicle Division of the Trailer 
Coach Association. The Vehicle Equipment 
Safety Commission did not submit comments. 

The three comments received supported the 
suggested modification. Some commenters as- 
serted tliat tlie recjuirement added little to vehicle 
safety while resulting in increased costs and the 



increased possibility of errors associated with 
inserting the incorrect VIN in an owner's manual. 
The NHTSA concurs with the commenters and 
concludes that the intent of the requirement can 
be achieved by permitting a manufacturer to 
state in the owner's manual that the VIN can 
be found by referring to the camper's certifica- 
tion label. Accordingly, Standard No. 126 is 
amended to make optional the provision of the 
VIN in a camper's owner's manual. If the VIN 
is not placed in the owner's manual, a reference 
must be made in the manual to the location of 
the VIN on the certification label. 

In consideration of the foregoing, the second 
sentence of paragraph S5.1.2 of Standard No. 
126, 49 CFR Part. 571.126 is amended. . . . 

Since this amendment relieves a restriction and 
imposes additional burden on any person, it is 
foimd for good cause, shown that an immediate 
effective date is in the public interest. 

The principal authors of tliis notice are Kevin 
Cavey of the Office of Vehicle Safety Standards 
and Roger Tilton of the Office of Chief Counsel. 

(Sees. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718. 
(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority 
at 49 CFR 1.50.) 



Issued on April 21, 1978. 



Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 

43 F.R. 17946 
April 27, 1978 



PART 571; S 126— PRE 11-12 



( 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 126 



Truck-Camper Loading 

(Docket No. 71-7; Notice 2) 



51. Scope. This standard requires manufac- 
turers of slide-in campers to affix a label to each 
camper that contains information relating to 
certification, identification, and proper loading, 
and to provide more detailed loading informa- 
tion in the owner's manual. 

52. Purpose. The purpose of this standard 
is to provide information that can be used to 
reduce overloading and improper load placement 
in truck-camper combinations, and unsafe truck- 
camper matching, in order to prevent accidents 
resulting from the adverse effects of these condi- 
tions on vehicle steering and braking. 

53. Application. This standard applies to 
slide-in campers. 

54. Definitions. 

"Camper" means a structure designed to be 
mounted in the cargo area of a truck, or attached 
to an incomplete vehicle with motive power, for 
the purpose of providing shelter for persons. 

"Cargo weight rating" means the value spec- 
ified by the manufacturer as the cargo-carrying 
capacity, in pounds, of a vehicle, exclusive of the 
weight of occupants in designated seating posi- 
tions. 

"Slide-in camper" means a camper having a 
roof, floor and sides, designed to be mounted on 
and removable from the cargo area of a truck 
by the user. 

55. Requirements. 

S5.1 Slide-in camper. 

S5.1.1 Lat>eis. Each slide-in camper shall have 
permanently affixed to it, in a manner that it 



cannot be removed without defacing or destroy- 
ing it, in a plainly visible location on an exterior 
rear surface other than the roof, steps, or bumper 
extension, a label containing the following infor- 
mation in the Enghsh language lettered in block 
capitals and numerals not less than %2-inch high, 
of a color contrasting with the background, in 
the order shown below and in the form illustrated 
in Figure 1. 



MFQ. BY: (CAMPER MANUFACTURER'S NAME) 

(MONTH AND YEAR OF MANUFACTURE) 

THIS CAMPER CONFORMS TO ALL APPLICABLE FEDERAL 

MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS IN EFFECT ON THE 

DATE OF MANUFACTURE SHOWN ABOVE. 



CAMPER WEIGHT IS . 



LBS. MAXIMUM 



WHEN IT CONTAINS STANDARD EQUIPMENT, 

QAL OF WATER, LBS. OF BOTTLED QAS, 

AND CUBIC FT. REFRIGERATOR (or ICE 



BOX wrtH 



LBS. OF ICE, as appllcabto). 



CONSULT OWNER'S MANUAL (or DATA SHEET a* ap|>llcabl«) 
FOR WEIGHTS OF ADDITIONAL OR OPTIONAL EQUIPMENT. 

(VEHICLE IDENTIFICATION NUMBER) 



Figure l. Label for Campers 

(a) Name of camper manufacturer. The full 
corporate or individual name of the actual as- 
sembler of the camper shall be spelled out, except 
that such abbreviations as "Co.," or "Inc.," and 
their foreign equivalents, and the first and mid- 
dle initials of individuals may be used. The 
name of the manufacturer shjiU be preceded by 
the words "Manufactured By" or "Mfd. By". 

(b) Month and year of manufacture. It may 
be spelled out (e.g., "June 1973"), or expressed 
in numerals {e.g., "6/73). 

(c) The statement: "This camper conforms to 
all applicable Federal Motor Vehicle Safety 



PART 571; S 126-1 



Standards in effect on the date of manufacture 
shown above." The expression "U.S." or 
"U.S.A." may be inserted before the word 
"Federal." 

(d) The following statement completed as ap- 
propriate: "CAMPER WEIGHT IS 



LBS. MAXIMUM WHEN IT CONTAINS 

STANDARD EQUIPMENT, GAL. 

OF WATER, LBS. OF BOTTLED 



GAS, AND 



CUBIC FT. REFRIG- 



ERATOR (or ICE BOX WITH 



LBS. 



OF ICE, as applicable). CONSULT OWN- 
ER'S MANUAL (or DATA SHEET as ap- 
plicable) FOR WEIGHTS OF ADDITIONAL 
OR OPTIONAL EQUIPMENT." 

"Gal. of water" refers to the volume of water 
necessary to fill the camper's fresh water tanks to 
capacity. "Lbs. of bottled gas" refers to the 
weight of gas necessary to fill the camper's 
bottled gas tanks to capacity. The statement 
regarding a "Refrigerator" or "Icebox" refers to 
the capacity of the refrigerator with which the 
vehicle is equipped or the weight of the ice with 
which the icebox may be filled. Any of these 
items may be omitted from the statement, if the 
corresponding accessories are not included with 
the camper, provided that the omission is noted 
in the camper owner's manual as required in 
paragraph S5.1.2(a). 

(e) Vehicle Identification Number. Each 
slide-in camper shall have a number assigned by 
its manufacturer for identification purposes con- 
sisting of arable numerals, roman letters, or both. 
No two slide-in campers manufactured by the 
same manufacturer within any 10-year period 
shall have the same Vehicle Identification Num- 
ber. 

S5.1^ Owner's manual. Each slide-in camper 
manufacturer shall provide with each camper a 
manual or other document containing the infor- 
mation specified in S5.L2(a) through S5.L2(d). 
The information in S5.L2(e) and S5.L2(f) shall 
also be provided with each camper manufactured 
on or after October 1, 1973. 



(a) The statement and information provided 
on the certification label as specified in paragraph 
S5.1.1. Instead of the information required by 
subparagraphs (b), (c), and (e) of paragraph 
S5.1.1, a manufacturer may use the statements, 
"See camper certification label (located on 
camper's rear exterior surface) for month and 
year of manufacture and for the Vehicle Iden- 
tification Number" and "This camper conforms 
to all applicable Federal Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standards in effect on the date of manufacture." 

(b) A list of other additional or optional 
equipment that the camper is designed to carry, 
and the maximum weight of each if its weight 
is more than 20 lbs. when installed. 

(c) The statement: "To estimate the total 
cargo load that will be placed on a truck, add the 
weight of all passengers in the camper, the weight 
of supplies, tools, and all other cargo, the weight 
of installed additional or optional camper equip- 
ment, and the manufacturer's camper weight 
figure. Select a truck that has a cargo weight 
rating that is equal to or greater than the total 
cargo load of the camper, and whose manufacturer 
recommends a cargo center of gravity zone that 
will contain the camper's center of gravity when 
it is installed." Until October 1, 1973, the phrase 
"total load" may be used instead of "total cargo 
load." 

(d) The statements: "When loading this 
camper store heavy gear first, keeping it on or 
close to the camper floor. Place heavy things far 
enough forward to keep the loaded camper's 
center of gravity within the zone recommended 
by the truck manufacturer. Store only light ob- 
jects on high shelves. Distribute weight to ob- 
tain even side-to-side balance of the loaded 
vehicle. Secure loose items to prevent weight 
shifts that could affect the balance of your ve- 
hicle. When the truck-camper is loaded, drive 
to a scale and weigh on the front and on the rear 
wheels separately to determine axle loads. The 
load on an axle should not exceed its gross axle 
weight rating (GAWR). The total of the axle 
loads should not exceed the gross vehicle weight 
rating (GVWR). These weight ratings are 
given on the vehicle certification label that is 
located on the left side of the vehicle, normally 
the dash panel, hinge pillar, door latch post, or 
door edge next to the driver on trucks manu- 



PART 571; S 126-2 



factured on or after January 1, 1972. If weight 
ratings are exceeded, move or remove items to 
bring all weights below the ratings." 

(e) A picture showing the location of the 
longitudinal center of gravity of the camper 
within an accuracy of 2 inches under the loaded 
condition specified in paragraph S5. 1.1(d), in the 
manner illustrated in Figure 2. Until October 1, 
1973 the phrase "Mount at Aft End of Truck 
Cargo Area" may be used in Figure 2 instead of 
"Point That Contacts Rear End of Truck Bed" 



(f) A picture showing the proper match of a 
truck and slide-in camper in the form illustrated 
in Figure 3. 



^ MANUFACTURER'S NAME 




JPOL 



FIGURE 3 IXAtmLt G 



FIGURE 2 CAMPER CENTER OF GRAVITY INFORMATION 



37 F.R. 16497 
August 15, 1972 



PART 571; S 126-3 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 127 

Speedometers and Odometers; Controls and Displays 
(Docket No. 76-06; Notice 12 and Docket No. 1-18; Notice 22) 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: This notice revokes Standard No. 
127, Sp( idometers and Odometers. This action is 
based on the agency's conclusion that such a 
standard is unlikely to yield any significant safety 
benefits. Revocation of the standard will result in 
cost savings for manufacturers and consumers. 

DATES: The revocation is effective on March 25, 
1982. Petitions for reconsideration must be 
received by March 22, 1982. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On October 

22, 1981 (46 F.R. 51788), the agency proposed 
I revoking Standard No. 127, Speedometers and 
Odometers (49 CFR 571.127). After evaluating all 
of the comments submitted on the proposal, the 
agency has decided to revoke the standard. 
Significant comments to the docket are addressed 
below. 

Preemption 

General Motors and Renault raised the issue of 
what effect the revocation of Standard No. 127 
would have on the ability of States to adopt their 
own safety laws on speedometers and odometers. 
GM requested the agency to declare that 
speedometers and odometers not be subject to 
regulation by the States because the agency has 
determined that only Federal regulation of the 
subject is appropriate. 

The legislative history of the National Traffic 
and Motor Vehicle Safety Act shows that one goal 
of the Act is to estabish a uniform national safety 
program that applies to all vehicles before they 
are first sold to consumers. Congress directed 
that the agency establish and maintain Federal 
safety standards on significant safety problems. 



The Senate Report on the Act stated that the 
agency is to issue safety standards for those 
"vehicle characteristics that have a significant 
bearing on safety" (S. Rep. No. 1301, 89th Cong., 
2d Sess. 6 (1966)). 

In the case of Standard No. 127, the agency 
recognizes that there is a nexus between safety 
and having a speedometer and odometer. Based 
on available data, however, the agency has 
determined that the current requirements are 
not yielding and cannot be expected to yield 
significant safety benefits. 

In revoking this standard, NHTSA intends that 
other levels of government be preempted from 
establishing simUar requirements. The agency 
believes that regulation of speedometers and 
odometers is not appropriate at this time at any 
level based on the absence of data indicating 
regulatory methodologies exist which would in 
fact yield significant safety benefits. Contrary 
regulatory decisions at other levels of government 
would negate the agency's exercise of discretion 
and undermine the Congressional goal of uniform 
national standards. 

Further, refraining from regulation will 
facilitate experimentation by the manufacturers 
in providing more effective ways of improving 
speedometer and odometer performance and thus 
possibly providing significant safety benefits. 
Manufacturers indicated in their comments that 
they voluntarily intend to continue meeting many 
of the speedometer requirements. They also 
indicated that they would continue to provide 
anti-tampering odometer features that they 
voluntarily adopted prior to implementation of 
the standard. During this rulemaking, some 
manufacturers, such as GM, have indicated that 
they will continue their odometer development 
programs. GM said it may install additional 



^ 



PART 571; S127-PRE 1 



cost-effective anti-tampering features. In 
addition, the technology of odometers is rapidly 
advancing as manufacturers beg^n developing 
electronic odometers. 

Because the agency continues to recognize the 
safety nexus in the area of speedometer and 
odometer regulation. NHTSA will continue to 
monitor manufacturer development programs 
and the effectiveness of anti-tampering features 
voluntarily adopted by manufacturers. If 
speedometer and odometer features are developed 
that provide a significant safety benefit, the 
agency will consider whether a Federal safety 
standard would be appropriate and necessary 
under the Safety Act. Exercise the agency's 
authority in this fashion will allow the market 
place to function freely to develop new, more 
effective designs. 

Speedometer Requirements 

Most of the commenters supported the 
agency's proposal to delete the speedometer 
requirements of the standard because of their 
apparent lack of significant safety benefits. Those 
requirements provided that each speedometer be 
graduated in miles per hour and kilometers per 
hour, have the numeral "55" highlighted on the 
miles per hour scale and indicate a maximum 
speed on the scale of not more than 85 mph or 140 
km/h. 

All of the vehicle manufacturers commenting 
on the proposal indicated that they would 
voluntarily continue to provide some of the 
features formerly required by the standard. 
American Motors, Chrysler, Ford, General 
Motors, Mack, Renault, Subaru, and Volvo White 
Truck Corporation said they would maintain a 
maximum scale reading of 85 mph or less. Honda 
said it would modify its speedometers to show the 
maximum speed capabilities of its vehicles. Many 
of the vehicle manufacturers, such as Ford, 
General Motors and Honda, said they also would 
continue to provide speedometers graduated in 
both miles and kilometers per hour. 

American Motors, Ford, Mack, Renault, Subaru, 
and Volvo White said they would also continue to 
highlight the "55" mph position on the 
speedometer scale. General Motors said it would 
continue to highlight "55" on its speedometers 
with analog scales; however, it may not continue 
to include the numeral "55" on all speedometer 



scales. Honda said it would drop the highlighting. 
Chrysler and Volkswagen did not indicate what | 
action they would take on highlighting the 55 mile 
per hour position. 

Subaru supported the retention of the 
requirement to limit the maximum speed shown 
on the speedometer scale to 85 miies per hour, 
arguing that it would help minimize the 
temptation for young drivers to drive at 
excessive speeds. Similar arguments were raised 
by the Center for Auto Safety (CFAS). 

Subaru also supported retaining the requirement 
that the numeral "55" be highlighted on the 
speedometer scale, arguing that it reminded 
drivers of the national speed limit. Again, similar 
arguments were raised by CFAS. Private 
individuals submitting comments on the 
maximum speed, dual scale calibrations and 
highlighting issues split equally between those 
supporting the revocation and those opposing it. 

The agency has concluded that the limitation 
on the maximum speed shown on the speedometer 
scale is unnecessary. The limitation was, at best, 
only a psychological deterrent. Consumers are 
voluntarily placing far more effective limits on 
maximum speed by the shift to vehicles with four 
cyclinder engines. In addition, most manufacturers ^ 
limited the maximum speed shown on their \ 
speedometer scales before the standard went into 
effect and have indicated that they will continue 
to do so in the absence of a Federal standard. 

The highlighting of the numeral "55" was 
intended to provide an easily visible reminder as 
to whether the national speed limit was being 
exceeded. The agency does not have any data, nor 
was any provided in the comments, indicating 
that the reminder has been effective. 

The requirement that the speedometer scale be 
calibrated in kilometers and miles per hour no 
longer serves a safety purpose since the Federal 
Highway Administration has dropped its plans to 
add metric values to roadside signs. 

Odometer Requirements 

Most of the commenters favored the revocation 
of the odometer requirements. Those requirements 
specified that, as of September 1, 1982, odometers 
must indicate when they have advanced or have 
been advanced beyond a reading of either 89,999 
or 99,000 miles or kilometers. In addition, the 
odometer must have been designed so as to either 



PART571;S127-PRE2 



prevent reversal or provide an indication that 
they have been reversed. Finally, replacement 
odometers would have to differentiated from 
original equipment odometers so that new 
replacement odometers with low distance 
readings cannot be substituted for original 
equipment odometers with high mileage readings. 

Vehicle manufacturers unanimously supported 
revocation of the odometer requirements. Most of 
the comments from individual citizens favored 
retaining the odometer requirements. However, 
the principal reason mentioned for supporting the 
requirement was to prevent consumer fraud rather 
than to promote safety. The State of Wisconsin 
and the CFAS also opposed the revocation. 

Wisconsin and CFAS argued that the mileage 
of the vehicle is an important indication of its safe 
operating condition. CFAS said that, for example, 
if an odometer reads 2,000 miles, instead of the 
actual mileage of 30,000, a consumer will not 
check the brake lining on the vehicle. Wisconsin 
argued that many used vehicles are maintained 
with minimal costs and may not be given the 
check-up needed to detect impending or existing 
vehicle equipment failures. CFAS also repeated 
the agency's rationale for originally adopting the 
odometer standard by arguing that an altered 
odometer might cause a purchaser to fail to check 
his or her vehicle adequately, forego preventive 
maintenance or be unwilling to make necessary 
repairs. 

Wisconsin also noted that in the statement of 
purpose (section 401) for the odometer disclosure 
provisions of the Motor Vehicle Information and 
Cost Savings Act, Congress said that an accurate 
odometer can assist a purchaser in determining a 
vehicle's safety. 

The purpose of the Cost Savings Act is to 
provide purchasers with legal remedies to pursue 
against persons who tamper with odometers. The 
Act neither authorizes the issuance of equipment 
standards to accomplish that purpose nor does it 
govern the issuance of safety standards. 

The agency can issue and maintain a standard 
only under the National Traffic and Motor 
Vehicle Safety Act and only if it can demonstrate 
that the standard meets the need for motor 
vehicle safety by yielding significant safety 
benefits. As already noted, the legislative history 
of the Act shows that the agency is to concentrate 
on standards addressing significant safety 



problems. The agency has never disputed that 
mileage is a factor that may influence some 
drivers to take preventive maintenance 
measures. The primary issue is whether other 
factors, such as vehicle appearance and 
performance, play a more important role in 
influencing drivers regarding vehicle systems 
that have a direct relationship to safety. 

The Tri-Level Study of the Causes of 
Accidents, discussed in the notice proposing to 
revoke the standard, indicates that of all the 
vehicle-related causes of accidents, there were 
four predominant categories of problems. Those 
categories are (1) brake system problems, (2) tire 
and wheel problems, (3) steering system problems, 
and (4) conjmunication system problems (problems 
with lights, signals, glazed surfaces, etc.) All of 
those categories involve components which must 
be periodically replaced or serviced regardless of 
mileage. Deterioration in the performance, such 
as brakes pulling to one side, or in appearance, 
such as low tire tread depth, are readily apparent 
to the driver and should do more to alert the 
driver to potential safety-related problems than 
does the mileage of the vehicle. Thus, the findings 
of the Tri-Level study support the agency's 
conclusion that the role of mileage and thus the 
odometer in alerting drivers to potential safety 
problems is apparently not crucial, while the role 
of appearance and performance is significant. 

Effects of Revocation 

The agency has evaluated the economic and 
other effects of this final rule and determined 
that the rule is neither major as defined by 
Executive Order 12291 nor significant as defined 
by the Department of Transportation's regulatory 
policies and procedures. A final regulatory 
evaluation of the effects of the final rule has been 
prepared and placed in the public docket. Copies 
of the regulatory evaluation are available in the 
Docket Section at the address given at the 
beginning of this notice. 

Effects on Speedometers 

Revocation of Standard No. 127's requirements 
for speedometers will have little, if any, effect on 
safety. As the comments submitted by the vehicle 
manufacturers demonstrated, vehicles had 
speedometers long before the standard went into 
effect and will continue to have them even after 



PART 571; S127- PRE 3 



the standard has been revoked. In addition, 
manufacturers indicated that they will voluntarily 
continue to equip their speedometers with most 
of the features formerly required by the 
standard. 

The potential safety effect of the standard's 
speedometer requirement for highlighting the 
numeral "55" is unquantifiable. The requirement 
for calibration of the speedometer scale in mph 
and km/h is no longer necessary since the Federal 
Highway Administration has dropped its proposal 
to add metric distances on roadside highway 
signs. 

The agency's 1976 regulatory evaluation on 
Standard No. 127 projected that the requirement 
that the limitation on the maximum speed shown 
on the speedometer scale would be five percent 
effective in reducing accidents involving young 
drivers. The projected effectiveness was based 
on the assumption that the 85 mph maximum 
speed indication would be a psychological 
deterrent to high speed driving. However, the 
agency has no data indicating that the speedometer 
scale limitation is effective to any extent in 
reducing the tendency to drive too fast and in 
reducing the resultant accidents and injuries. 
Also, the commenters provided no data indicating 
that the limitation had any actual effect. 

The agency expects little or no economic effect 
from the revocation of the speedometer 
requirements on consumers, vehicle manufacturers 
or speedometer manufacturers. As mentioned 
previously, vehicle manufacturers intend to 
retain most of the features previously installed in 
response to the standard. The costs of those 
features are minimal. 

Effects on Odometers 

As discussed above, revocation of the anti- 
tampering requirements for odometers should 
have little effect on vehicle safety. Revocation of 
the odometer requirement should produce a small 
consumer saving resulting from the use of less 
expensive odometers. All of the vehicle 
manufacturers indicated that they would not 
install odometers meeting the full anti-tampering 
requirements in the absence of a standard. 
Manufacturers, such as Chrysler, Ford, and 
General Motors, indicated that they would 
continue to provide odometers equipped with 
anti-tampering equipment that the manufacturers 



voluntarily installed prior to the standard. In 
addition, manufacturers have indicated that they 
will continue their odometer development 
programs. General Motors, for example, said it 
will consider equipping its vehicles with 
additional anti-tampering features if cost-effective 
methods are developed. 

The agency is concerned that based upon its 
review of the facts and record, the actual positive 
benefits (i.e., the prevention or inhibition of 
actual odometer tampering as a result of the 
relatively slight but expensive changes which 
would be required by the rule) would be minimal. 
Because of the uncertainties regarding the 
effectiveness of the odometer requirements in 
preventing tampering, the agency is unable to 
estimate the extent to which the odometer 
provisions would prevent tampering and thus 
decrease the amount of any economic injury 
suffered by consumers. 

On the other hand, revocation of the odometer 
requirements could result in more tampering 
than might otherwise have occurred with respect 
to odometers of used vehicles built after 
September 1, 1982. The amount of any potential 
increase will, however, be reduced by any further 
development and voluntary installation of new 
anti-tampering features by vehicle manufacturers. ■ 
Increased tampering which does occur would 
cause an increase in the amount of economic 
injury to consumers as a result of their overpaying 
for used vehicles with lowered odometer 
readings. Such economic harm, however, if any, is 
unrelated to the agency's safety mission and can 
be redressed in other forums as well. NHTSA is 
separately exploring alternative methods of 
addressing the problem of odometer tampering. 

Revocation of the odometer requirements wUl 
provide economic benefits both for vehicle 
manufacturers, in a savings of capital 
expenditures necessary to comply with the 
provisions and in variable cost savings, and for all 
consumers purchasing such cars. The potential 
consumer cost savings are estimated to be 
approximately $12,000,000 annually. 

Standard No. 101 

Revocation of Standard No. 127 necessitates a 
minor amendment to Standard No. 101, Controls 
and Displays. Standard No. 101 requires 
speedometers to be identified by the words 



PART 571:8127 -PRE 4 



"MPH and Km/h." Since speedometers are no 
longer required to be graduated in miles and 
kilometers per hour, the agency is modifying the 
requirement of Standard No. 101. Speedometers 
must be identified by the abbreviation "MPH" 
unless the speedometer is graduated in both 
miles per hour and kilometers per hour, in which 
case the identification phrase will be "MPH and 
Km/h." GM noted that the commonly accepted 
abbreviation for kilometer per hour is "km/h" 
rather than "Km/h." Because the difference 
between a capital or lower case "k" is insignificant, 
the agency will allow the use of either version. 

Regulatory Flexibility Act 

In accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility 
Act, the agency has evaluated the effects of this 
action on small entities. Based on that evaluation, 
the Administrator certifies that the revocation of 
Standard No. 127 will not have a significant effect 
on a substantial number of small entities. 
Accordingly, no regulatory flexibility analysis 
has been prepared. 

Few, if any, of the speedometer or odometer 
manufacturers are small businesses as defined in 
the Regulatory Flexibility Act. Small 
organizations and governmental jurisdictions 
which purchase fleets of motor vehicles would 
probably not be significantly affected by the 
revocation of the standard. As already discussed, 
the speedometer provisions have little safety 
value and impose little cost. Since these entities 
typically buy new vehicles, they are not subject 
to the problems of odometer tampering. 

National Environmental Policy Act 

The agency has also analyzed this action for the 
purposes of the National Environmental Policy 
Act. The agency has determined that revocation 
of the standard will not have any significant 
effect on the human environment. 

Effective Date 

The agency proposed that the revocation 
become effective upon publication of the final rule 
in the Federal Register. Ford and Volkswagen 
both urged that agency to publish a final rule 
before the end of January to avoid the unnecessary 
expenditure of funds. Ford said that if the rule is 
not revoked before then, it will have to spend 



additional capital funds at a rate of $25,000 per 
week. Volkswagen did not provide a specific 
estimate of its expenditures. 

Volvo White objected to the revocation 
becoming effective on publication. It said that 
most of its vehicles are manufactured in two or 
more stages and must be accompanied by a 
chassis cab certification label and incomplete 
vehicle document that is presented to the final 
stage manufacturer. Volvo White said that if the 
standard is revoked on the date of publication of 
the final rule, some of its vehicle will have pre- 
printed certification labels and documents which 
would incorrectly certify that the vehicles are in 
compliance with Standard No. 127. 

Volvo White requested the agency either to 
retain a portion of the current standard by 
requiring speedometers to have dual calibrations 
and display a maximum speed of 85 miles per 
hour; or permit manufacturers to certify to 
non-existent safety standards; or revoke the 
standard effective on September 1, 1982. 

As previously discussed, the agency has decided 
not to retain any of the speedometer requirements 
because of their limited safety benefits. Setting a 
September 1, 1982, effective date could result in 
manufacturers' unnecessarily spending funds to 
continue complying with the speedometer 
requirements which the agency has found have 
limited safety benefits. Allowing manufacturers 
to certify to non-existent standards is not 
appropriate, since purchasers would interpret 
the manufacturer's certification to mean that the 
vehicle actually complied with the standard even 
though it is no longer in effect. 

To account for the problems faced by 
manufacturers of two-stage vehicles and to avoid 
the unnecessary expenditure of funds by 
manufacturers, the agency has decided to make 
the revocation effective in 35 days. This will allow 
two-stage manufacturers to make the changes to 
their certification labels and incomplete vehicle 
documents to delete the certification to Standard 
No. 127; the cost of those changes should be 
minor. The agency therefore finds, for good cause 
shown, that an early effective date for the 
revocation of the standard is in the public 
interest since it will avoid the unnecesary 
expenditure by manufacturers on requirements 
that have no significant safety benefits. 



^ 



PART 571; S127-PRE 5 



PART 571 — FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE 'if the speedometer is graduated in mUes per hour and in 

SAFETY STANDARDS kilometers per hour, the identifying words or abbreviation g 

shall be "MPH and km/h" in any combination of upper or lower I 

In consideration of the foregoing, the following "^^^ '*"*"' 
amendments are made in Part 571 of Title 49 of 
the Code of Federal Regulations: ^'^"^^ °" January 6. 1982. 

§571.127 [Removed] 

1. Section 571.127 is removed. 

§517.101-80 [Amended] 

2. In Table 2 of 571.101-80. the identifying Raymond A. Peck. Jr. 
word or abbreviation for the speedometer display Administrator 

(row 8. column 3) is revised to read: "MPH*." 

3. A footnote 6 is added to Table 2 of §571.101-80 47 F.R. 7250 

to read: February 18, 1982 



PART 571:8127 -PRE 6 



"MPH and Km/h." Since speedometers are no 
longer required to be graduated in miles and 
kilometers per hour, the agency is modifying the 
requirement of Standard No. 101. Speedometers 
must be identified by the abbreviation "MPH" 
unless the speedometer is graduated in both 
miles per hour and kilometers per hour, in which 
case the identification phrase will be "MPH and 
Km/h." GM noted that the commonly accepted 
abbreviation for kilometer per hour is "km/h" 
rather than "Km/h." Because the difference 
between a capital or lower case "k" is insignificant, 
the agency will allow the use of either version. 

Regulatory Flexibility Act 

In accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility 
Act, the agency has evaluated the effects of this 
action on small entities. Based on that evaluation, 
the Administrator certifies that the revocation of 
Standard No. 127 will not have a significant effect 
on a substantial number of small entities. 
Accordingly, no regulatory flexibility analysis 
has been prepared. 

Few, if any, of the speedometer or odometer 
manufacturers are small businesses as defined in 
the Regulatory Flexibility Act. Small 
organizations and governmental jurisdictions 
which purchase fleets of motor vehicles would 
probably not be significantly affected by the 
revocation of the standard. As already discussed, 
the speedometer provisions have little safety 
value and impose little cost. Since these entities 
typically buy new vehicles, they are not subject 
to the problems of odometer tampering. 

National Environmental Policy Act 

The agency has also analyzed this action for the 
purposes of the National Environmental Policy 
Act. The agency has determined that revocation 
of the standard will not have any significant 
effect on the human environment. 

Effective Date 

The agency proposed that the revocation 
become effective upon publication of the final rule 
in the Federal Register. Ford and Volkswagen 
both urged that agency to publish a final rule 
before the end of January to avoid the unnecessary 
expenditure of funds. Ford said that if the rule is 
not revoked before then, it will have to spend 



additional capital funds at a rate of $25,000 per 
week. Volkswagen did not provide a specific 
estimate of its expenditures. 

Volvo White objected to the revocation 
becoming effective on publication. It said that 
most of its vehicles are manufactured in two or 
more stages and must be accompanied by a 
chassis cab certification label and incomplete 
vehicle document that is presented to the final 
stage manufacturer. Volvo White said that if the 
standard is revoked on the date of publication of 
the final rule, some of its vehicle will have pre- 
printed certification labels and documents which 
would incorrectly certify that the vehicles are in 
compliance with Standard No. 127. 

Volvo White requested the agency either to 
retain a portion of the current standard by 
requiring speedometers to have dual calibrations 
and display a maximum speed of 85 miles per 
hour; or permit manufacturers to certify to 
non-existent safety standards; or revoke the 
standard effective on September 1, 1982. 

As previously discussed, the agency has decided 
not to retain any of the speedometer requirements 
because of their limited safety benefits. Setting a 
September 1, 1982, effective date could result in 
manufacturers' unnecessarily spending funds to 
continue complying with the speedometer 
requirements which the agency has found have 
limited safety benefits. Allowing manufacturers 
to certify to non-existent standards is not 
appropriate, since purchasers would interpret 
the manufacturer's certification to mean that the 
vehicle actually complied with the standard even 
though it is no longer in effect. 

To account for the problems faced by 
manufacturers of two-stage vehicles and to avoid 
the unnecessary expenditure of funds by 
manufacturers, the agency has decided to make 
the revocation effective in 35 days. This will allow 
two-stage manufacturers to make the changes to 
their certification labels and incomplete vehicle 
documents to delete the certification to Standard 
No. 127; the cost of those changes should be 
minor. The agency therefore finds, for good cause 
shown, that an early effective date for the 
revocation of the standard is in the public 
interest since it will avoid the unnecesary 
expenditure by manufacturers on requirements 
that have no significant safety benefits. 



PART 571:8127 -PRE 5 



PART 571— FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE "If the speedometer is graduated in miles per hour and in 

SAFETY STANDARDS kilometers per hour, the identifying words or abbreviation 

shall be "MPH and km/h" in any combination of upper or lower 

In consideration of the foregoing, the following 

amendments are made in Part 571 of Title 49 of t j t e inon 

^Lz-ij i^T^j ir. li- Issued on January 6, 1982. 
the Code of Federal Regulations: 

§571.127 [Removed] 

1. Section 571.127 is removed. — 

§517.101-80 [Amended] 

2. In Table 2 of 571.101-80, the identifying Raymond A. Peck, Jr. 
word or abbreviation for the speedometer display Administrator 

(row 8, column 3) is revised to read: "MPH*." 

3. A footnote 6 is added to Table 2 of §571.101-80 47 F.R. 7250 

to read: February 18, 1982 



PART571;S127-PRE6 



f«K«lv*: January 1, IMS 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO.201 

Occupant Protection In Interior Impact — Passenger Cars 

(Docket No. 19) 



Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 201, issued 
January 31, 1967, and published in the Federal 
Register, February 3, 1967 (32 F.R. 2413), speci- 
fies requirements for instrument panels, seat 
backs, protrusions, sun visors, and armrests to 
afford impact protection for occupants of passen- 
ger cars manufactured after January 1, 1968. 

Parties adversely affected by the Standard 
were permitted to petition for reconsideration 
on or before March 6, 1967, pursuant to 23 CFR 
215.17. By order dated March 29, 1967, the 
Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Trans- 
portation consolidated the 27 petitions related 
to Standard No. 201 and ordered that a hearing 
on reconsiderations be held. 

On April 21, 1967, the Federal Highway Ad- 
ministration issued an order directing that a 
rule-making hearing be held pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 
553 (formerly sec. 4 of the Administrative Pro- 
cedure Act (60 Stat. 238, 5 U.S.C. 1003). The 
hearing was held May 22 and 23, 1967, at Detroit, 
Mich., and May 24 and 25, 1967, at Washington, 
D.C. On June 22, 1967, the presiding officer 
submitted his Report of Recommended Findings 
to the Federal Highway Administration. 

On June 8 and 9, 1967, and July 6 and 7, 1967, 
meetings were held by the National Highway 
Safety Bureau with domestic and foreign auto 
industry engineers in which detailed engineering 
discussions of all problems of compliance with 
the Standard were held. 

After review of the evidence presented at the 
hearings ordered by the Federal Highway Ad- 
ministration, the report of the presiding oflScer, 



and the Bureau's analysis of the engineering 
meetings with the industry, I have determined 
that Standard 201 issued January 31, 1967, should 
be superseded by a new Standard that specifies 
initial requirements to afford impact protection 
for occupants, and that certain related definitions 
should be amended accordingly. 

Good cause is shown that an effective date 
earlier than 180 days after issuance is in the 
public interest and notice and public procedure 
hereon are unnecessary since these amendments 
relieve restrictions and impose no additional 
burden on any person. 

In consideration of the foregoing. Part 371, 
Initial Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, 
is amended by superseding § 371.21, Motor Ve- 
hicle Safety Standard No. 201 (32 F.R. 2413), 
with a new Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 
201 .. . and by amending § 371.3(b). . . . 

These amendments are made under the author- 
ity of sections 103 and 119 of the National Traffic 
and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (15 U.S.C. 
1392, 1407) and the delegation of authority of 
March 31, 1967 (32 F.R. 5606), as amended 
April 6, 1967 (32 F.R. 6495), and becomes effec- 
tive January 1, 1968. 

Issued in Washington, D.C, on August 11, 
1967. 

Lowell K. Bridwell, 

Federal Highway Administrator 

32 F.R. 11776 
August 16, 1967 



PART 571 ; S 201— PRE 1-2 



^ 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENTS TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS 

NO. 201 

Occupant Protection in Interior Impact 
(Docket No. 78-116; Notice 2) 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: This notice amends Federal Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 to 
extend their applicability to light trucks, buses and 
multipurpose passenger vehicles (MPV's). The 
notice is issued in response to the rising death and 
injury toll involving these vehicles and to petitions 
by the Center for Auto Safety and the Insurance 
Institute for Highway Safety requesting that these 
standards be extended to those vehicles. Applying 
these standards to light trucks, buses and MPV's 
will reduce occupant deaths and injuries in those 
vehicles by requiring the use of energy absorbing 
material on such interior components as the instru- 
ment panel and seat backs (Standard No. 201), by 
limiting the amount of force that can be exerted on 
the driver's chest by the steering wheel in frontal 
crashes (Standard No. 203), and by limiting the 
rearward movement of the steering assembly in 
frontal crashes (Standard No. 204). 

EFFECTIVE DATE: The effective date for the 
extension of applicability of Standards Nos. 201, 
203 and 204 is September 1, 1981. 

ADDRESS: Petitions for reconsideration should 
refer to the docket number and be submitted to: 
Docket Section, Room 5108, National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, 
S.W., Washington, D.C. 20590. 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 

Mr. William Smith, Office of Vehicle Safety 
Standards, National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, 400 Seventh Street, S.W., 
Washington, D.C. 20590 (202-426-2242) 



SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This notice 
amends Standard No. 201, Occupant Protection in 
Interior ImpcLct, and Standard No. 203, Impact 
Protection for the Driver From the Steering 
Control System, to extend the applicability of those 
standards to trucks, buses and multipurpose 
passenger vehicles (MPV's) with a gross vehicle 
weight rating (GVWR) of 10,000 pounds or less. 
This notice also amends Standard No. 204, 
Steering Control Rearward Displacement, to 
extend its applicability to trucks, buses and MPV's 
with an unloaded vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or 
less, instead of all trucks, buses and MPV's with a 
GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less, as originally 
proposed in the agency's November 9, 1978, notice 
of proposed rulemaking (43 FR 52264). As explained 
below, the agency is initially limiting the extended 
applicability of Standard No. 204 while it studies 
methods for dealing with final-stage manufacturer 
certification difficulties. Similar possible problems 
with Standard No. 212-76, Windshield Mounting, 
and Standard No. 219-75, Windshield Zone Intru- 
sion, led the agency to propose changes in the 
testing procedures for those standards (44 FR 
45426). 

For the purposes of Standard No. 204, the agency 
has determined that these problems would not be 
encountered in applying the standard to vehicles 
with an unloaded vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or 
less and testing them at their unloaded vehicle 
weight. Approximately 75 percent of the current 
sales of light trucks, buses and MPV's with a 
GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less have an unloaded 
vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or less. 

This final rule was preceded by a notice propos- 
ing the extension of the applicability of Standards 



PART 571; S 201-PRE-3 



Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in November 1978 (43 FR 
52264). Private citizens, safety organizations, 
manufacturers and a manufacturer trade associa- 
tion submitted comments on the proposal. NHTSA 
has considered all of those comments and the most 
significant ones are discussed below. 

Safety Need 

Citing the need to reduce the number of deaths 
and injuries in light trucks, buses and MPV's, the 
American Automobile Association, the Center for 
Auto Safety, the Insurance Institute for Highway 
Safety and State Farm Insurance Companies 
supported application of the standards to those 
vehicles. 

Although it did not object to extending the 
applicability of Standard Nos. 201, 203 and 204 to 
light trucks, buses and MPV's, General Motors 
argued that manufacturers should be given a 
longer lead time to comply with the standards 
because of the lack of urgent safety need. GM said 
that allowing a longer leadtime was desirable to 
ensure compliance, "without costly accelerated 
[design] programs." Using data from the agency's 
"Explanation of Rulemaking," GM said that light 
trucks, buses and MPV's have a fatality rate of 
22.4 fatalities per billion miles, compared with a 
rate of 25.3 fatalities per billion miles for 
passenger cars. The data GM used covers fatalities 
during 1977 in all model year vehicles. A new 
analysis done by NHTSA of 1977 fatalities, 
reported by the agency's Fatal Accident Reporting 
System, shows that although older model year 
light trucks, buses and MPV's may have had a 
lower fatality rate than passenger cars, beginning 
with the 1973 model year, the combined fatality 
rate for light trucks, buses and MPV's began 
surpassing that of passenger cars. The analysis 
shows that recent model year passenger cars have 
a considerably lower fatality rate than light trucks, 
buses and MPV's. (A copy of that analysis has been 
placed in the docket.) 

In addition to being higher than the combined 
fatality rate for all sizes of passenger cars, the 
combined fatality rate of light trucks, buses and 
MPV's is far higher than the rate for full-size 
passenger cars, Full-size cars are typically the 
safest of cars and many of them are comparable in 
size and weight to light trucks, buses and MPV's. 
In theory, occupants of larger and heavier vehicles, 
such as trucks, buses and MPV's, should experience 



less harmful crash forces, and thus presumably incur 
fewer or less severe injuries, than occupants of 
smaller lighter vehicles. Volkswagen has previously 
objected to a comparison of full-size passenger 
fatality rates with those for vans, arrguing that 
vans are comparable in weight to intermediate, not 
full-size passenger cars. Although the unloaded 
weight of vans and intermediate-size passenger 
cars may be comparable, vans have a higher gross 
vehicle weight rating which means that those 
vehicles can, in actual use, be loaded with substan- 
tially more weight than intermediate and even full- 
size passenger cars. 

Volkswagen also questioned the safety need for 
the proposed reulmaking because of the voluntary 
compliance by VW and some other companies with 
the standards. Although the voluntary effort by 
some companies is commendable, most manufac- 
turers do not comply with all of the standards in all 
of their vehicles. Some of the manufacturers who 
have taken steps to comply with the standard 
presumably were in part motiwated by prior 
NHTSA rulemaking notices proposing to apply 
Standards Nos. 201,203 and 204 to light trucks, 
buses and MPV's (35 FR 14936, 14936 and 16805). 
In the absence of a regulation, there is no 
assurance that non-complying manufacturers will 
produce complying vehicles and that manfacturers 
producing currently complying vehicles will 
continue to comply. Manufacturers who currently 
comply should experience only minor economic 
impacts, such as conducting certification tests as a 
result of compelling other manufacturers to 
comply. 

Effectiveness 

The Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association 
(MVMA) questioned the potential effectiveness of 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. MVMA argue 
that a study done bySherman and Huelke of light 
truck and van accidents found that the standards 
would have little effect in those vehicles. However, 
a NHTSA analysis of the crashes reviewed by 
Sherman and Huelke found that a number of the 
crashes clearly edmonstrated the benefits of equip- 
ping light trucks and vans with energy absorbing 
instrument panels and steering columns and devices 
to limit the rearward displacement of the steering 
column. For example, Sherman and Huelke studied 
a 15-20 mph head-on crash of a 1976 Chevrolet 



PART 571; S 201-PRE-4 



pickup truck intx) a tree. The Chevrolet was equipped 
with a padded instrument panel, and energy- 
absorbing steering column and a device to limit the 
rearward displacement of the steering column. They 
reported, "the results of this case show that both of 
the major energy absorbing components appeared to 
have completely activated, both by the vehicle crash 
and driver impact, providing maximum benefit to the 
driver. Had this vehicle been one of the other vehicle 
cases discussed in this section, we feel that the in- 
juries sustained by the driver would have been much 
more severe." 

NHTSA believes further that the Sherman and 
Huelke study provides information indicating that 
there is a need for even more improvements in 
light trucks and vans, such as providing energy- 
absorbing padding for the lower instrument panel. 
The agency is studying the question of making 
appropriate changes in the performance 
requirements of the standards to require more pro- 
tection. However, NHTSA considers it important 
not to delay extending the current benefits of 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 while it reviews 
possible changes to the standards. 

MVMA also argued that a comparison of the 
injury experience of passenger car steering 
assemblies with the experience of steering 
assemblies in light trucks and vans shows that 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 "would provide little 
benefit" in those vehicles. Using data from the 
agency's original analysis of the injury experience 
of passenger cars produced before and after 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 took effect, MVMA 
said that the primary benefit of the standards is to 
reduce moderate instead of severe-to-fatal injuries. 
It pointed out that 65.6 percent of the steering 
assembly related injuries in pre-standard cars were 
minor, 22.7 percent were moderate and 11.9 per- 
cent were severe-to-fatal. In post-standard, cars 
78.8 percent of the steering assembly related 
injuries were minor, 10.2 percent were moderate 
and 11.0 were severe-to-fatal. Thus, in post- 
standard cars, many previously moderate injuries 
were only minor injuries. Using data from a 
Calspan study of light truck and van injuries, 
MVMA said that 83.5 percent of the steering 
column related injuries in those vehicles are minor, 
4.1 percent are moderate and 12.4 percent are 
severe-to-fatal. MVMA said that the Calspan data 



indicate that there is "little room" for a passenger 
ca.r-type of injury experience change from moderate 
to minor injuries in light trucks and vans. 

However, the Calspan data cited by MVMA are 
not comparable with the NHTSA data and prob- 
ably underestimate the percentage of moderate 
and severe-to-fatal steering assembly related 
injuries in light trucks and vans. The Calspan data 
include injuries from all types of impacts (front, 
rear and side). The NHTSA data, on the other 
hand, cover only frontal crashes, the type of 
crashes which are most likely to cause severe-to- 
fatal steering assembly related injuries. Thus, the 
percentage of moderate and severe-to-fatal 
injuries found in the NHTSA data should be 
greater. In addition, an updated NHTSA analysis 
of passenger car injury experience, discussed 
below, shows that Standards Nos. 203 and 204 are 
effective in reducing both moderate and severe-to- 
fatal injuries. Further, even if the actual light 
truck and van injury distribution were the same as 
found by Calspan, Standards Nos. 203 and 204 
would be effective in reducing the number of 
severe-to-fatal injuries. 

Several manufacturers and the MVMA objected to 
the agency's use of passenger car data to estimate 
the potential effectiveness of the three standards in 
light trucks, buses and MPV's. They argued that the 
agency should instead have conducted a study com- 
paring the accident experience of light trucks, buses 
and MPV's that currently comply with the standards 
with the experience of those that do not comply. As 
explained below, NHTSA concludes that such a study 
is impractical and that the agency's original and 
updated analyses of passenger car effectiveness data 
are valid and support application of the standards to 
light trucks, buses and MPV's. 

The primary difficulty in conducting a study of 
current light trucks, buses and MPV's is that there 
is no conclusive information identifying which 
vehicles are currently in compliance with the 
standard, since no manufacturer is required to 
certify compliance. For example, International 
Harvester (IH) requested NHTSA to conduct a 
study of currently complying light trucks, buses 
and MPV's, saying that its Scout models were 
designed to comply with the f)erformance re- 
quirements of Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. 
However, IH said that if the NHTSA applies the 



PART 571; S 201-PRE-5 



requirements of Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. 
However, IH said that if the NHTSA applies the 
standards to light trucks, buses and MPV's, it will 
have to retest the Scout, which "could conceivably 
require some additional redesigning for compliance 
assurance." NHTSA belives that the analysis the 
agency conducted of pre- and post-1968 passenger 
car injury experience, where it was known that 
passenger cars manufactured on or after January 1, 
1968, had to comply with Standards Nos. 201, 203 
and 204, provides a sound basis for estimating the 
potential effectiveness of the standards in other 
types of vehicles. 

Using information recently made available from 
the agency's National Crash Severity Study, 
NHTSA has again compared injuries sustained by 
occupants of cars manufactured before Standards 
Nos. 201, 203 and 204 went into effect with injuries 
sustained by occupants of cars manufactured after 
the standards went into effect. As with the 
agency's first analysis, cited in the November 9, 
1978, notice for this rulemaking, the new analysis 
examined injuries caused by components covered 
by Standard No. 201, such as instrument panels, 
seat backs, arm rests and sun visors. The analysis 
found that Standard No. 201 reduced severe to 
fatal occupant injuries (i.e., injuries with an 
abbreviated injury scale ranking of 3 or more) by 
approximately 38 percent. The analysis also found 
that the probability of an occupant injured in a 
crash being injured by a component covered by 
Standard No. 201 was 25.7 percent. Thus, 
multiplying the probability of injury (i.e., 25.7 
percent) by the effectiveness of the standard in 
reducing serious and fatal injuries (i.e., 38 percent) 
the analysis estimated that the overall reduction in 
severe to fatal injuries attributable to Standard 
No. 201 is 9.3 percent. 

A similar comparison was made for occupant 
injuries in cars manufactured before and after 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 went into effect. The 
comparison examined two sets of driver injuries 
that occurred in frontal crashes. One set consisted 
of injuries that could be specifically attributed to 
contact with the steering assembly; the other set 
consisted of neck, chest and abdominal injuries sus- 
tained by drivers in frontal crashes, the types of 
steering assembly-related injuries the standards 
are designed to reduce. The comparison found that 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 reduced severe to 
fatal injuries by an average of 20.9 percent. The 



probability of an injured driver receiving an injury 
attributable to the steering assembly was an 
average of 19.4 percent. The analysis estimated 
that Standards Nos. 203 and 204 produced an 
overall average reduction of 3.7 percent in severe 
to fatal driver injuries. 
Loading Requirements 

At present. Standard No. 204 does not specify 
the loading requirements for vehicles in the 30 mph 
fixed barrier crash test required by the standard. 
In conducting Standard No. 204 compliance tests 
for passenger cars, the agency has loaded 
passenger cars to their unloaded vehicle weight 
(i.e., the weight of the vehicle with all the fluid, 
such as gas, oil and water, necessary for its opera- 
tion but without any occupants or cargo). This is 
the least severe loading condition used in the 
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards that 
involve crash testing. This notice makes a technical 
amendment to Standard No. 204 to incorporate the 
agency long-standing loading practices. Those 
practices were publicly announced in the 
compliance test procedures publicly released by the 
agency when Standard No. 204 first went into 
effect in 1968. Passenger car certification informa- 
tion provided by manufacturers to NHTSA shows 
that they have consistently used unloaded vehicle 
weight as the loading condition in their testing. In 
some instances, manufacturers have voluntarily 
used more severe loading conditions in their 
certification testing. 
Commercial Vehicles 

Several final stage manufacturers and United 
Parcel Service requested the agency to exempt 
vehicles used in commercial applications from the 
standards. A similar exemption has previously 
been sought by the Truck Body and Equipment 
Association (TBEA) for Standard No. 212-76, 
Windshield Mounting, and Standard 219-75, 
Windshield Zone Intrusion. As with the TBEA 
request, NHTSA concludes that such an exemption 
should not be adopted since it is not in the interest 
of safety and is based on vehicle use instead of 
vehicle type. Such an exemption would mean that 
standards would be applied on the basis of the 
commercial or private use of the vehicle and not 
upon the safety needs of a particular vehicle type. 
Since the safety needs of similar vehicles usually 
are similar, it would be inappropriate to treat one 
set of vehicles differently merely because they are 
used commercially. 



PART 571; S 201-PRE-6 



The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety 
Act contemplates the application of the standards 
based on vehicle type instead of vehicle use. Basing 
a standard on vehicle use would present this agency 
with difficult enforcement problems. It would also 
place a manufacturer in the difficult position of 
having to assess in advance the potential future 
use of the vehicle it produces. In addition, basing 
standards application on vehicle use does not 
recognize that a vehicle may have two or more uses 
during its lifetime. 

For all these reasons, the agency concludes that 
applying standards based on vehicle use would not 
be appropriate. 

Walk-In Vans 

GM, MVMA and several final-stage manufac- 
turers requested the agency to exempt walk-in 
vans (i.e., the "step-van" city delivery type of vehicle 
that permits a person to enter the vehicle without 
stooping) from Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. 
In the case of Standard No. 201, they argued that 
this type of vehicle frequently has none of the com- 
ponents covered by the standard, such as arm 
rests, sun visors and instrument panels to the right 
of the steering assembly. However, those vehicles 
do have an instrument panel in front of the driver 
and some walk-in vans do have a front passenger 
seat and an instrument panel in front of that seat 
which may be struck by an occupant during a 
crash. Applying Standard No. 201 to those vehicles 
will require the instrument panel to be padded to 
cushion occupant impacts. Based on the proven 
effectiveness of Standard No. 201 in passenger 
cars, the agency is extending the performance 
requirements of the standard to include walk-in 
vans and MPV's. 

The manufacturers argued that walk-in vans 
should be exempt from Standards Nos. 203 and 
204 also. They said that the driver steering 
assembly configuration found in walk-in vans 
makes it improbable that compliance with the 
standard will reduce drivers' injuries. They noted 
that the steering column is mounted in those 
vehicles at an angle of 55-60 degrees, compared to 
the mounting angle of 30 degrees found in conven- 
tional trucks, and the columns in walk-in vans 
move upward rather than rearward in a crash. The 
manufacturers also argued that these vehicles are 
generally used in urban areas, where there is more 



slow speed traffic than in rural areas. They pointed 
out that because of these factors, the agency has 
previously exempted walk-in vans from Standards 
Nos. 212-76, Windshield Retention, and 219-75, 
Windshields Zone Intrusion. The agency agrees 
that current energy absorbing steering column 
designs probably would provide little, if any, pro- 
tection in walk-in vans because of their uniques 
driver/ steering column configuration, and thus is 
exempting walk-in vans for the present. 

Belts in Forward Control Vehicles 

Although they did not object to requiring lap- 
shoulder belts in forward control vehicles as pro- 
posed in the agency's November 9, 1978 notice, 
several manufacturers and the MVMA objected to 
what they interpreted as a conflict between the 
agency's proposal and the ciu-rent requirements of 
Standard No. 208, Occupant Crash Protection. 
They argued that the agency's proposal not only 
would require lap and shoulder belts in forward 
control vehicles, but would also require such belts 
in open-body vehicles, convertibles and walk-in 
vans, which currently only have to have lap belts. 
The agency's proposal was directed only toward 
forward control vehicles and was meant to 
supersede the current requirements for those 
vehicles set in Standard No. 208. For organiza- 
tional simplicity, the agency is making a technical 
amendment to Standard No. 208 so that all belt 
requirements are centralized in that standard. The 
amendment only adopts the proposed change to 
the forward control vehicle belt requirements. It 
does not change the current belt requirements for 
open-body vehicles, convertibles and walk-in vans. 

MVMA requested the agency to require lap and 
shoulder belts in forward control vehicles for only 
one model year. MVMA did not provide any 
justification for that request. NHTSA believes that 
the important protection of lap and shoulder belts 
should be available to all forward control vehicles 
manufactured on or after September 1, 1981, and 
declines to adopt the MVMA request. 

Upgrading of Standard 

In their comments, the Center for Auto Safety 
and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety 
renewed their requests that the agency set new 
performance requirements for Standard No. 203 to 
provide additional protection in angular impacts. 
The agency has conducted some preliminary 
testing to determine what additional requirements 



PART 571; S 201-PRE-7 



may be appropriate to increase protection in 
angular impacts. In additional, the agency's 
National Center for 'Statistics and Analysis has 
recently begun a special study to collect accident 
data on 1973 and later model vehicles to gather 
additional information on the effectiveness of 
energy. absorbing steering assemblies in angular 
and other crashes. Based on that data, NHTSA 
will make a determination of what further changes 
are needed in the standard. 

The American Automobile Association asked the 
agency to delay application of Standard No. 203 
until upgraded performance requirements are 
developed. However, because the agency does not 
want to delay providing the occupants of light 
trucks, buses and MPV's with the safety benefits 
of Standard No. 203, the agency is extending the 
standards to those vehicles while it continues to 
consider the feasibility of additional performance 
requirements. 

NHTSA is also considering possible additional 
requirements for Standard No. 201. The agency 
has scheduled a meeting for December 11, 1979, so 
that the public can present its views and ideas on 
ways of improving protection for children invilved 
in vehicle collisions. In the September 4, 1979, 
notice announcing the meeting, the agency 
specifically asked for comments on possible 
improvements to the interior padding of vehicles to 
provide additional protection for children (44 FR 
51623). 

Heavy Trwcks 

In the November 9, 1978 notice, NHTSA 
announced that it was evaluating whether to 
extend the apphcability of Standards Nos. 201, 203 
and 204 to heavy trucks (i.e., trucks with a GVWR 
of more than 10,000 pounds) and solicited 
commens on appropriate performance 
requirements for those vehicles. In their com- 
ments, the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Associa- 
tion, Freightliner and International Harvester all 
opposed an extension of the standards to trucks 
with a GVWR greater than 10,000 pounds, arguing 
that there is no data showing a safety need for 
applying the standards to those vehicles. They also 
argued that because of the size and weight of heavy 
trucks, occupants in these vehicles do not 
experience the same energy transfers in a crash 
than passenger car occupants experience and thus 
theoretically should incur fewer or less severe 



injuries. At the agency's recent meeting on heavy 
truck safety, several participants provided in- 
formation on the need for greater crash protection 
for drivers of heavy trucks. NHTSA is currently 
analyzing that information to determine what 
additional heavy truck reguylatory action may be 
needed. 
Miscellaneous Comments 

MVMA pointed out that Standard No. 201 
currently requires two sun visors in a vehicle and 
requested that a second visor not be required if 
there is no front passenger seat. NHTSA agrees 
that such a change is appropriate and has made the 
necessary amendment to the standard. 

Jeep Corp. objected to the application of 
Standard No. 201 to open-body MPV's, arguing 
that for Jeep to locate padding in the expected 
head impact area it would have to raise its padding 
or lower its seat, both of which it claimed would 
interfere with the driver's forward visibility. 
Jeep's comment apprars to reflect a misunder- 
standing of Standard No. 201. The performance 
requirements of the standard only apply to areas of 
the instrument panel that are within the head 
impact area of each designated seating position. 
(The head impact area is the portion of the 
vehicle's interior that can be contacted by a head- 
form representing an occupant's head.) "Thus, if a / 
portion of Jeep's vehicle instrument panel is not ' 
within the head impact area, it does not have to 
comply. For protions of the panel that are within 
the head impact area, Jeep can make structural 
changes to the instrument panel to meet Standard 
No. 201 without adding additional padding. 
Therefore, Jeep's requested exemption for all 
open-body vehicles is denied. 

One final stage manufactuere, Boyertown Auto 
Body Works, asked NHTSA whether its driver 
side instrument panel was within the exceptions to 
Standard No. 201 and, if not, sought to have its in- 
strument panel constured to be a console assembly, 
which is exempt from the standard. Such an inter- 
pretation is not acceptable since Boyertown clearly 
labels the area in question as an instrument panel 
in its engineering drawings. However, according 
to the engineering drawing provided by Boyer- 
town, the limited section on teh instrument panel 
of concern to Boyertown is within the area 
exempted by S3. 1.1(d) of the standard. That 
section provides that the area of the interior 
immediately forward of the steering column is 
exempt from the standard. 



PART 571; S 201-PRE-8 



Costs and Leadtime 

NHTSA has considered the economic and other 
impacts of this final rule and determined that they 
are not significant within the meaning of 
Executive Order 12044 and the Department of 
Transportation's policies and procedures for 
implementing that order. The agency's assessment 
of the benefits and economic consequences of this 
proposal are contained in a regulatory evaluation 
which has been places in the public docket. As 
explained previously, copies of the regulatory 
evaluation can be obtained by writing NHTSA's 
docket section at the address given in the begin- 
ning of this final rule. 

As previously detailed in this notice, the agency 
has examined the effectiveness of Standards Nos. 
201, 203 and 204 in passenger cars and concluded 
that those standards have brought about a substan- 
tial reduction in overall injuries occurring to the 
passengers in those vehicles. Because they share 
the same driving environment as occupants in 
passenger cars, occupants in light trucks, buses 
and MPV's face a similar risk of injury posed by 
hazardous instrument panels and rigid steering 
columns. Based on its evaluation of the effec- 
tiveness of Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in 
passenger cars, the agency has concluded that 
applying those standards to Hght trucks, buses and 
MPV's can result in a reduction of 120 to 240 
fatalities and 4,400 to 8,900 serious injuries per 
year when all those vehicles comply with the 
standards. 

The agency's cost estimate for meeting 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in light trucks, 
buses and MPV's take into account that many 
manufacturers have equipped some of their 
vehicles with components designed to meet the 
performance requirements of the standards. Those 
components may need little or no redesigning to 
fully comply with the standards. For example, 
American Motors, Chrysler, Ford, General 
Motors, International Harvester and Volkswagen 
commented that some, if not all, of their vehicles 
currently have components designed to comply 
with the standards or they will install such com- 
ponents in some of their vehicles by the 1981 model 
year. 

Only two manufacturers, Nissan and Ford, pro- 
vided any information about the costs associated 
with complying with the standards. Nissan said 



that the cost associated with complying with all 
three standards was $30. Ford estimated the cost 
for compliance with Standard No. 201 as $10 per 
vehicle; based on preliminary design assumptions. 
Ford put the cost of complying wnth Standards 
Nos. 203 and 204 in its van-type trucks, buses and 
MPV's at $120 per vehicle. 

To provide the agency with additional informa- 
tion about the estimated costs of complying with 
the three standards, NHTSA contracted with the 
John Z. DeLorean Corp. to evaluate current 
vehicles and determine what changes would be 
needed to bring the vehicles into compliance. Bases 
on its review of current foreign and domestic light 
trucks, buses and MPV's, DeLorean concluded 
that the total cost of compliance with the three 
standards would add a sales weighted average of 
$16 to the retail price of those vehicles. The 
DeLorean study reported that the vehicles requir- 
ing the most changes to meet Standards Nos. 201, 
203 and 204 were van-type trucks, buses and 
MPV's made by GM and Ford. DeLorean 
estimated that GM and Ford van-types vehicles 
would require a $27 increase in consumer price to 
comply with Standards Nos. 203 and 204 and a 
price increase ranging between $6 and $15 to 
comply with Standard No. 201. The agency 
believes that the substantial difference between 
DeLorean's and Ford's estimate of the cost of 
compliance with Standards Nos. 203 and 204 may 
be due to Ford's overestimate of the anticipated 
changes needed in the vehicles based on its 
preliminary design asssumptions. 

The agency's November 1978 notice proposed an 
effective date of September 1, 1980, for Standard 
No. 201 for all vehicles and for Standards Nos. 203 
and 204 for nonforward control vehicles. An effec- 
tive date of September 1, 1981, was proposed for 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 for forward control 
vehicles to allow manufacturers additional time to 
make the necessary changes in those vehicles. In 
their comments on Standard 201, Chrysler and 
Ford said they could meet the standard in all their 
vehicles by the proposed effective date. Nissan, 
Toyo Kogyo and International Harvester (IH) 
requested from 18 to 24 months leadtime. General 
Motors requested 2V2 years' leadtime and 
American Motors requested 3 years. As a part of 
its NHTSA-funded study of the costs of complying 
with the standard, the DeLorean Corp. also 
examined the leadtime necessary to comply with 



PART 571; S 201-PRE-9 



the standard, the DeLorean Corp. also examined 
the leadtime necessary to comply with the stan- 
dards. For Standard No. 201, the DeLorean study 
concluded that only one year was needed for all 
vehicles except van-type trucks, buses and MPV's 
manufactured by Chrysler and GM, which needed 
two years. 

For Standards Nos. 203 and 204, Chrysler said 
that all its vehicles, except its incomplete forward 
control van-type vehicles, can comply by 
September 1, 1980. Chrysler did not provide an 
estimate of leadtime needed for its incomplete 
forward control vans. Nissan, Toyo Kogo and IH 
requested from 18 to 24 months leadtime. Ford 
said its 1980 model year F-series trucks and 
Bronco models would comply with the standards 
and the Courier truck chassis cab imported by Ford 
would comply by September 1, 1981. Ford 
requested until September 1, 1982, for its van-type 
trucks, buses and MPV's. General Motors 
requested 2V2 years for all its vehicles and 
American Motors requested three years. 

The DeLorean study concluded that 18-24 
months of leadtime was needed for all models, 
except those made by Ford, which would require 
three years. DeLorean made its estimate of lead- 



time for Ford based on an assumption that Ford 
would need extra steering assembly tooling 
facilities. However, since Ford plans to introduce 
complying components on its 1980 model F series 
trucks and Bronco models, Ford has apparently 
developed the needed tooling capacity. 

Based on its analysis of the DeLorean study and 
of the industry's comments, NHTSA concludes 
that setting an effective date of September 1, 
1981, will allow sufficient time for all manufac- 
turers to comply with the standards. This action 
provides an additional year for all light trucks, 
buses and MPV's to meet Standard No. 201 and for 
nonforward control vehicles to meet Standard No. 
201 and for nonforward control vehicles to meet 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204. 

The principal authors of this notice are William 
Smith, Office of Vehicle Safety Standards, and 
Stephen Oesch, Office of Chief Counsel. 

Issued on November 20, 1979. 

Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 

44 F.R. 68470 
November 29, 1979 



PART 571; S 201-PRE-lO 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 201 

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Standard 
No. 201, Occupant Protection in Interior Impact 



[Docket No. 82-12; Notice 2] 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: Standard No. 201, Occupant 
Protection in Interior Impact, sets requirements 
for instrument panels, interior compartment 
doors, seat backs, sun visors, and arm rests to 
lessen injuries to persons thrown against them in 
crashes. At the request of Blue Bird Body Co., the 
agency proposed excluding school buses from the 
standard since they have to meet the 
requirements of Standard No. 222, School Bus 
Passenger Seating and Occupant Protection. The 
agency agrees that the seat back requirements of 
the two standards overlap and therefore has 
decided to exclude school buses from the seat 
back requirements of Standard No. 201. The 
other requirements of Standard No. 201 do not 
overlap with Standard No. 222 and therefore they 
will continue to apply to school buses. 

DATE: The final rule is effective December 22, 
1982. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On June 10, 
1982 (47 F.R. 25169) the agency proposed an 
amendment to Standard No. 201, Occupant 
Protection in Interior Impact, that would exclude 
school buses from the seat back requirements of 
the standard. The agency issued the proposal in 
response to a request from Blue Bird Body Co., a 
school bus manufacturer. Blue Bird argued that 
since school buses have to comply with Standard 
No. 222, School Bus Occupant Seating and Crash 
Protection, whose requirements cover the same 
aspects of performance, they should not have to 
comply with Standard No. 201. 



The only comment received by the agency 
supported adoption of the proposal. Because the 
agency has determined that compliance with the 
requirements of Standard No. 222 provides 
adequate protection, the agency has decided to 
adopt the proposal to exclude school buses from 
complying with the redundant seat back 
requirements of Standard No. 201. 

Additional 201 Requirements 

In addition to the requirements for seat backs. 
Standard No. 201 sets performance requirements 
for instrument panels, interior compartment 
doors, sun visors and arm rests to prevent or 
reduce injuries to persons thrown against them in 
crashes. Since Standard No. 222 does not contain 
any performance requirements for those specific 
items, it is not appropriate to exempt school 
buses complying with Standard No. 222 from 
those requirements of Standard No. 201. 

Future Rulemaking 

The one commenter to the docket, Mr. Edward 
deR. Cayia, proposed a change to the test 
procedures to Standard No. 201 and Standard No. 
222. He pointed out that the two standards use 
different test devices in the head impact test of 
the standards. Standard No. 201 uses a 15-pound, 
6.5 inch diameter headform. Standard No. 222 
uses a headform that has two joined hemispheres 
with a total weight of 11.5 pounds; the one sphere 
has a diameter of 6.5 inches and the second, which 
is centered and protrudes from the first, has a 
2-inch diameter. Mr. Cayia said that the Standard 



PART 571: S 201-PRE 11 



No. 222 headform is a more accurate evaluate the headforms to determine which 

representation of the human facial structure. would be the most appropriate and, based on that 

The agency agrees that it would be desirable to evaluation, will decide what rulemaking action is 

have a uniform headform for the head impact necessary, 

tests of the two standards. The agency intends to Issued on November 15, 1982. 



Raymond A. Peck, Jr. 
Administrator 
47 F.R. 52450 
November 22, 1982 



PART 571; S 201-PRE 12 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 201 
Occupant Protection in Interior Impact— Passenger Cars 



51. Purpose and scope. This standard 
specifies requirements to afford impact protection 
for occupants. 

52. Application. This standard applies to 
passenger cars and to multipurpose passenger 
vehicles, trucks and buses with a GVWR of 10,000 
pounds or less. 

53. Requirements for passenger cars and for 
trucks, buses and multipurpose passenger vehicles 
with a GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less manufactured 
on or after September 1, 1981. 

S3.1 Instrument panels. Except as provided in 
S3. 1 . 1 , when that area of the instrument panel that 
is within the head impact area is impacted in accor- 
dance with S3.1.2 by a 15 pound, 6.5 inch diameter 
head form at a relative velocity of 15 miles per 
hour, the deceleration of the head form shall not 
exceed 80g continuously for more than 3 
milliseconds. 

53.1.1 The requirements of S3.1 do not apply 
to- 

(a) Console assemblies; 

(b) Areas less than 5 inches inboard from the 
juncture of the instrument panel attachment to the 
body side inner structure; 

(c) Areas closer to the windshield juncture than 
those statically contactable by the head form with 
the windshield in place; 

(d) Areas outboard of any point of tangency on 
the instrument panel of a 6.5 inch diameter head 
form tangent to and inboard of a vertical 
longitudinal plane tangent to the inboard edge of 
the steering wheel; or 

(e) Areas below any point at which a vertical line 
is tangent to the rearmost surface of the panel. 

53.1.2 Demonstration procedures. Tests shall 
be performed as described in Society of 
Automotive Engineers Recommended Practice 
J921, "Instrument Panel Laboratory Impact Test 
Procedure," June 1965, using the specified in- 
strumentation or instrumentation that meets the 



performance requirements specified in Society of 
Automotive Engineers Recommended Practice 
J977, "Instrumentation for Laboratory Impact 
Tests," November 1966, except that— 

(a) The origin of the line tangent to the instru- 
ment panel surface shall be a point on a transverse 
horizontal line through a point 5 inches horizontally 
forward of the seating reference point of the front 
outboard passenger designated seating position, 
displaced vertically an amount equal to the rise 
which results from a 5 inch forward adjustment of 
the seat or 0.75 inches; and 

(b) Direction of impact shall be either— 

(1) In a vertical plane parallel to the vehicle 
longitudinal axis; or 

(2) In a plane normal to the surface at the 
point of contact. 

S3.2 Seat Backs. Except as provided in 
S3.2.1, when that area of the seat back that is 
within the head impact area is impacted in accor- 
dance with S3. 2. 2 by a 15 pound, 6.5 inch diameter 
head form at a relative velocity of 15 mOes per 
hour, the deceleration of the head form shall not 
exceed 80g continuously for more than 3 
milliseconds. 

53.2.1 (The requirements of S3.2 Ho not apply 
to seats installed in school buses whic jomply viath 
the requirements of Standard No. 222, "School 
Bus Passenger Seating and Occupant Protection" 
(49 CFR 571.222) or to rearmost, side-facing, back- 
to-back, folding auxiliary jump, and temporary 
seats. (47 F.R. 52450 November 22, 1982. Effec- 
tive: December 22, 1982)] 

53.2.2 Demonstration procedures. Tests shall 
be performed as described in Society of 
Automotive Engineers Recommended Practice 
J921, "Instrument Panel Laborai.in Impact Test 
Procedure," June 1965, using 'he specified 
instrumentation or instrumentation that meets the 
performance requirements specified in Society of 



PART 571; S 201-1 



Automotive Engineers Recommended Practice 
J977, "Instrumentation for Laboratory Impact 
Tests," November 1966, except that— 

(a) The origin of the line tangent to the upper- 
most seat back frame component shall be a point 
on a transverse horizontal line through the seating 
reference point of the right rear designated 
seating position, with adjustable forward seats in 
their rearmost design driving position and 
reclinable forward seat backs in their nominal 
design driving position; 

(b) The direction of impact shall be either— 

(1) In a vertical plane parallel to the vehicle 
longitudinal axis; or 

(2) In a plane normal to the surface at the 
point of contact; 

(c) For seats without head restraints installed, 
tests shall be performed for each individual split or 
bucket seats back at points within 4.0 inches left 
and right of its centerline, and for each bench seat 
back between points 4.0 inches outboard of the 
centerline of each outboard designated seating 
position; 

(d) For seats having head restraints installed, 
each test shall be conducted with the head 
restraint in place at its lowest adjusted position, at 
a point on the head restraint centerline; and 

(e) For a seat that is installed in more than one 
body style, tests conducted at the fore and aft 
extremes identified by application of subparagraph 
(a) shall be deemed to have demonstrated all 
intermediate conditions. 

S3.3 Interior compartment doors. Each interior 
compartment door assembly located in an instru- 
ment panel, console assembly, seat back, or side 
panel adjacent to a designated seating position 
shall remain closed when tested in accordance with 
either S3.31(a) and S3.3.1(b) or S3.3.1(a) and 
S3. 3. 1(c). Additionally, any interior compartment 
door located in an instrument panel or seat back 
shall remain closed when the instrument panel or 
seat back is tested in accordance with S3.1 and 
S3. 2. All interior compartment door assemblies 
with a locking device must be tested with the 
locking device in an unlocked position. 

S3.3.1 Demonstration procedures. 

(a) Subject the interior compartment door latch 
system to an inertia load of lOg in a horizontal 
transverse direction and an inertia load of lOg in a 
vertical direction in accordance with the procedure 



described in section 5 of SAE Recommended 
Pactice J839b, "Passenger Car Side Door Latch 
Systems," May 1965, or an approved equivalent. 

(b) Impact the vehicle f)erpendicularly into a fixed 
collision barrier at a forward longitudinal velocity of 
30 miles per hour. 

(c) Subject the interior compartment door latch 
system to a horizontal inertia load of 30g in a 
longitudinal direction in accordance with the pro- 
cedure described in section 5 of SAE Recommended 
Practice J839b, "Passenger Car Side Door Latch 
Systems," May 1965 or an approved equivalent. 

53.4 Sun visors. 

53.4.1 A sun visor that is constructed of or 
covered with energy-absorbing material shall be 
provided for each front outboard designated 
seating position. 

53.4.2 Each sun visor mounting shall present 
no rigid material edge radius of less than 0.125 
inch that is statically contactable by a spherical 6.5 
inch diameter head form. 

53.5 Armrests. 

53.5.1 General. Each installed armrest shall 
conform to at least one of the following: 

(a) It shall be constructed with energyabsorbing 
material and shall deflect or collapse laterally at 
least 2 inches without permitting contact with any 
underlying rigid material. 

(b) It shall be constructed with energy-absorbing 
material that deflects or collapses to within 1.25 
inches of a rigid test panel surface without f)ermit- 
ting contact with any rigid material. Any rigid 
material between 0.5 and 1.25 inches from the panel 
surface shall have a minimum vertical height of no^ 
less than 1 inch. 

(c) Along not less than 2 continuous inches of its 
length, the armrest shall, when measured vertically 
in side elevation, provide at least 2 inches of 
coverage within the pelvic impact area. 

53.5.2 Folding armrests. Each armrest that 
folds into the seat back or between two seat backs 
shall either— 

(a) Meet the requirement of S3. 5.1; or 

(b) Be constructed of or covered with energy- 
absorbing material. 



33 F.R. 15794 
October 25, 1968 



PART 571; S 201-2 



MtacHvci JoiHMiy 1, 1V*V 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 202 
Hcod RMtraint»— Pqsttngtr Cora 
(Dock«t No. 8) 



A proposal to amend §871.21 of Part 871, 
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, by 
adding a new standard, Head Restraints — Pas- 
senger Cars; was published in the Federal Reg- 
ister on December 28, 1967 (32 F.R. 20865). 

Interested persons have been afforded an op- 
portunity to participat« in the making of the 
amendment. 

Several comments requested that the use of a 
50th percentile adult male manikin be permitted 
in demonstrating compliance with the Standard. 
The Administration feels that a 50th percentile 
manikin is not representative of a large enough 
percentage of the public, but recognizes that cer- 
tain modifications to a 50th percentile manikin 
may result in a suitable test device. Therefore, 
the Standard has been modified to permit use 
of an approved equivalent test device. 

A comment from an equipment manufacturer 
and an equipment manufacturers' association as- 
serted that the Standard should not require that 
motor vehicle manufacturers provide head re- 
straints at the time of vehicle manufacture, but 
that each customer should be free to equip his 
vehicle with head restraints of his own choice, 
maintaining that the installation of head re- 
straints is a relatively simple matter and that 
there appears to be virtually no technological 
advantage in requiring factory installation. The 
Administration has determined that safety dic- 
tates that head restraints be provided on all 
passenger cars manufactured on or after January 
1, 1969, and that a head restraint standard that 
merely specified performance requirements for 
head restraint equipment would not insure that 
all passenger cars would be so equipped, and 
would not, therefore, meet the need for safety. 
Furthermore, the Administration has determined 
that the performance of a head restraint is de- 



pendent upon the strength of the structure of 
the seat to which it is attached, as well as the 
compatibility of the head restraint with its 
anchorage to the seat structure. 

Some of the comments expressed concern that 
the proposed Standard would exclude the use of 
head restraints that are integral with the seat 
bilck. The Administration did not intend to 
imply that "add-on" head restraint devices are 
the only available means of providing appro- 
priate levels of protection. Such protection may 
be achieved by the use of a restraint system that 
is integral with the seat back. 

Some comments noted that when testing head 
restraints that are adjustable to a height of more 
than 27.6 inches above the seating reference point, 
the load would not be applied to the appropriate 
portion of the head restraint. To provide the 
necessary flexibility, the Standard has been modi- 
fied to specify that the point of load application 
and the point of width measurement be deter- 
mined relative to the top of the head restraint 
rather than the seating reference point. 

Some comments stated that the 8g perform- 
ance requirement would be incomplete without 
the inclusion of a time duration requirement. 
The Administration has concluded that a mini- 
mum time duration of 80 milliseconds is appro- 
priate and the Standard has been so modified. 

Some comments requested that the location of 
the head restraint relative to the torso line be 
measured without a load being applied to the 
head restraint. The Administration feels that 
this measurement would be unrealistic and, 
therefore, the Standard requires that the meas- 
urement be taken during the application of the 
132-pound initial load. 

Many comments requested a more precise de- 
scription of the method to be used in locating 



PABT 671; S 20a-PRE 1 



/^ 



MkHv*: JoniMry 1, 1969 



the test device's reference line and torso refer- 
ence line. Therefore,, the Standard has been 
modified to provide the necessary clarification. 

Some comments claimed that lead time would 
be a problem; however, the Administration be- 
lieves that the need to protect the public from 
neck injury outweighs the possible lead time 
problems. 

Several comments requested clarification of the 
term "approved representation of a human ar- 
ticulated neck structure." "Approved" is defined 
in § 371.3(b) as "approved by the Secretary." 
The Secretary would approve the neck structure 
of a test device if it could be demonstrated by 
technical test data that the arli^lation of the 
neck structure represented that of a human neck. 
Approval could only be given to a structure 
sufficiently described in performance parameters 
to ensure reliable and reproducible test data. 



In consideration of the foregoing, § 371.21 of 
Part 371, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Stand- 
ards, is amended by adding Standard No. 202 . . . 
Effective January 1, 1969. 

(Sees. 103 and 119 of the National Traffic and 
Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966; 15 U.S.C. 
1392, 1407; and the delegation of authority of 
Mar. 31, 1967, 32 F.R. 5606; as amended Apr. 6, 
1967, 32 F.R. 6495; July 27, 1967, 32 F.R. 11276; 
Oct. 11, 1967, 32 F.R. 14277; Nov. 8, 1967, 32 
F.R. 15710, and Feb. 8, 1968) 

Issued in Washington, D.C., on February 12, 
1968. 

Lowell K. Bridwell, 

Federal Highway Administrator 

33 F.R. 2945 
February 14, 1968 



PART 571; S 202— PRE 2 



EffMtlv*: January 1, 1««« 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 202 
Head Restraints — Passenger Girs 
(Docket No. 8) 



Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 202, issued 
February 12, 1968, and published in the Federal 
Register February 14, 1968 (33 F.R. 2945), speci- 
fies requirements for head restraints to reduce 
the frequency and severity of neck injury in 
rear-end and other collisions to occupants of 
passenger cars manufactured after January I, 
1969. 

Pursuant to 23 CFR 216.35 (32 F.R. 15818), 
interested persons could petition the Federal 
Highway Administrator for reconsideration on 
or before March 15, 1968. 

Several petitioners questioned the 80 milli- 
second duration requirement of the 8g dynamic 
test on the grounds that it imposes a more severe 
load on the seat back than is required in Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 207, Anchorage of 
Seats — Passenger Cars. The Administrator has 
determined that the demonstration procedure 
should be revised to incorporate a half-sine wave 
■cceleration pulse shape with an amplitude of 8g 
and a base (duration) of 80 milliseconds. This 
revised loading is closer to actual crash condi- 
tions, and is more consistent with existing seat 
strength requirements. The demonstration pro- 
cedure has been revised to include the half-sine 
wave pulse shape. 

Several petitioners questioned the method for 
establishing the displaced torso line for the static 
test on the grounds that it did not take into 
account the compression of the seat back cushion 
by the torso under load. The Administrator has 
determined that the Standard should be revised 
to take into account seat back cushion compres- 
sion in establishing the displaced torso line, and 
the demonstration procedure has been revised 
accordingly. 



One petitioner questioned the procedure out- 
lined for establishing the dummy reference line 
for the dynamic t&st. The procedure made use 
of the torso line of the 95th percentile dummy 
or test device and there is no commonly accepted 
definition of this torso line. The Administrator 
has revised the procedure for establishing dummy 
torso reference lines to make use of the SAE 
two-dimensional manikin, with its torso line 
established in accordance with SAE Aerospace- - 
Automotive Drawing Standards. 

One petitioner questioned the requirement that 
a spherical head form be used to apply the static 
load because tests have shown that this head 
form tends to slip under the foundation structure 
of the head restraint, thus showing an unrealistic 
loss of load. The Administrator has revised the 
demonstration procedure to include a cylindrical 
head form as an alternative. 

One petitioner requested that the static load 
requirement of 200 pounds for head restraints 
adjusted to a height of 27.5 inches be changed 
to an equivalent moment about the seating refer- 
ence point. This would permit the manufacturer 
who has a head restraint which adjusts higher 
than 27.5 inches to subject his head restraint to 
less than a 200 pound static load. This petition 
is denied. The Administrator has determined 
that the 200 pound static load should remain in 
the Standard to ensure that all head restraints 
sustain this load to meet the needs of safety. 

Since this amendment provides clarification, 
relieves a restriction, and imposes no additional 
burden, notice and public procedure are unnec- 
essary. 

In consideration of the foregoing, § 371.21 of 
Part 371, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 
No. 202, which becomes eflfective January 1, 1969, 



PART 671; S 202— PRE 3 



MkHv*: January 1, 1969 

is amended by revising sections 5.1 and 5.2 (re- Issued in Washington, D.C., on April 11, 1968. 

lating to the demonstration procedures). . . . 

(Sees. 103, 119, National Traffic and Motor Lowell K. Bridwell, 

Safety Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 1892, 1407) ; Federal Highway Administrator 
delegation of authority of March 31, 1967 (32 

F.R. 5606), as amended April 11, 1968 (33 F.R. 33 F.t. 5793 

5803)) April 16, 19M 



PABT 671; S 908— PRE 4 



IffMtIv*: January 1, !•«« 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 202 
Head Restraints — Passenger Cars 
(Docket No. 8) 



Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 202 (33 
F.R. 2945), as amended (33 F.R. 5793), specifies 
requirements for head restraints to reduce the 
frequency and severity of neck injury in rear- 
end and other collisions to occupants of passenger 
cars manufactured after January 1, 1969. 

Paragraph S4(b)(2) of the Standard provides 
that a head restraint qualifying under the static 
procedure shall have a lateral width of 10 inches 
for use with bench-type seats and 6.75 inches for 
use with individual type seats when measured 
2.5 inches belo^v the top of the head restraint. 

One manufacturer has petitioned the Admin- 
istrator for reconsideration of the method by 
which the lateral width of the head restraint is 
to be measured. The petitioner requests that the 
Standard be revised to permit the width to be 
measured either 2.5 inches below the top of the 
head restraint of 25 inches above the seating 
reference point. 

Measurement of width 2.5 inches below the top 
of the head restraint may present possible diffi- 
culties for manufacturers of vehicles with head 
restraints which are integrated into the seat back. 
These manufacturers may elect to exceed the 
minimum required height of 27.5 inches to ac- 
commodate tall occupants and tapper the top por- 
tion of the head restraint to provide minimum 
visibility restriction. In this case, the head re- 
straint, when measured 2.5 inches below the top, 
might meet the minimum width requirement. 

The Administrator has determined that the 
procedure for measuring head restraint lateral 
width should be revised since it is in the public 
interest to encourage the additional protection 
offered by seat backs higher than the minimum 
height requirement of this Standard. Accord- 
ingly, the Standard is being amended to permit 



measurement of head restraint width either 2.5 
inches below the top of the head restraint or 25 
inches above the seating reference point. 

Paragraph S5.1(c) of the Standard provides 
that the magnitude of the acceleration curve for 
the dynamic test shall not be less than that of a 
half-sine wave having tl^e amplitude of 8g and 
a duration of 80 milliseconds not more than 20% 
above the half -sine wave. 

One manufacturer has requested an interpre- 
tation of the term "not more than 20% above the 
half-sine wave." 

It is necessary that a test tolerance be allowed 
because of equipment variances. However, the 
tolerance must be properly limited to prevent 
very severe accelerations which might fail the 
seat back without properly testing the head re- 
straint. The intent of the "20%" limitation was 
to establish a half-sine wave upper limit curve 
having an amplitude of 9.6g and a duration of 
96 milliseconds. 

Accordingly, the Standard is being amended 
to require that the magnitude of the acceleration 
curve be not more than that of a half-sine wave 
curve having an amplitude of 9.6g and a duration 
of 96 milliseconds. In addition, the equation for 
the lower limit curve is being deleted since it 
imposes an unnecessary restriction on the lateral 
location of the curve. By removing the equation, 
the limit curves can then be moved laterally with 
respect to each other to allow for normal test 
variances. 

Since these amendments provide clarification 
and an alternate means of compliance, relieve 
restrictions, and impose no additional burden, 1 
find that for good cause shown notice and public 
procedure are unnecessary, and that an effective 



PART 571; S 202— PRE 5 



MkMvci January I, I9«* 

date for these amendments of less than 180 days lations of the Office of the Secretary of Trans- 
is in the public interest, portation (49 CFR 1.4(c)). 

In consideration of the foregoing, Section j^^^ j^ Washington, D.C., on October 8, 

371.21 of Part 371, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety ^g^ 
Standard No. 202, as amended, is further amended 
effective January 1, 1969 t ii ir t* "/i ii 

These amendments are made under the author- i^ , , ^.^"<*''"j' . . 

ity of Sections 103 and 119 of the National Traffic ^^''"'^ Highway Admmistrator 

and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 

1392, 1407) and the delegation of authoriry'con- 33 F.t. 15065 

tained in Section 1.4(c) of Part 1 of the Regu- Ortober 9, 19M 



PART 571; S 202— PRE 6 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 202 
Head Restraints— Passenger Cars 



51. Purpose and Scope. This standard speci- 
fies requirements for head restraints to reduce 
the frequency and severity of neck injury in 
rear-end and other collisions. 

52. Application. This standard applies to pas- 
senger cars. 

53. Definitions. "Head restraint" means a de- 
vice that limits rearward angular displacement 
of the occupant's head relative to his torso line. 

54. Requirements. A head restraint that con- 
forms to either (a) or (b) shall be provided at 
each outboard front designated seating position— 

(a) It shall, when tested in accordance with 
S5.1, during a forward acceleration of at least 
8g on the seat supporting structure, limit rear- 
ward angular displacement of the head refer- 
ence line to 45° from the torso reference line; or 

(b) It shall, when adjusted to its fuUy ex- 
tended design position, conform to each of the 
following— 

(1) When measured parallel to torso line, 
the top of the head restraint shall not be less 
than 27.5 inches above the seating reference 
point; 

(2) When measured either 2.5 inches be- 
low the top of the head restraint, or 25 inches 
above the seating reference point, the lateral 
width of the head restraint shall be not less 
than— 

(i) 10 inches for use with bench-type seats; 
and 

(ii) 6.75 inches for use with individual 
seats; 

(3) When tested in accordance with S5.2, 
the rearmost portion of the head form shall not 
be displaced to more than 4 inches perpendicu- 
larly rearward of the displaced entended torso 
reference line during the application of the 
load specified in S5.2(c); and 



(4) When tested in accordance with S5.2, 
the head restraint shall withstand an increas- 
ing load until one of the following occurs— 
(i) Failure of the seat or seat back; or 
(ii) Application of a load of 200 pounds. 

S5. Demonstration Procedures. 

S5.1 Compliance with S.4(a) shall be demon- 
strated in accordance with the following with 
the head restraint in its fully extended design 
position: 

(a) On the exterior profile of the head and 
torso of a dummy having the weight and seated 
height of a 95th percentile adult male with an 
approved representation of a human, articulated 
neck structure, or an approved equivalent test 
device, establish reference lines by the following 
method: 

(1) Position the dummy's back on a hori- 
zontal flat surface with the lumbar joint in a 
straight line. 

(2) Rotate the head of the dummy rear- 
ward until the back of the head contacts the 
same horizontal surface in (1). 

(3) Position the SAE J-826 two-dimen- 
sional manikin's back against the flat surface 
in (1), alongside the dummy vdth the h-point 
of the manikin aligned with the h-point of the 
dummy. 

(4) Establish the torso line of the manikin 
as defined in SAE Aerospace-Automotive 
Drawing Standards, Sec. 2.3.6, P. El.Ol, 
September 1963. 

(5) Establish the dummy torso reference 
line by superimposing the torso line of the 
manikin on the torso of the dummy. 

(6) Establish the head reference line by ex- 
tending the dummy torso reference line onto 
the head. 



PART 571; S 202-1 



(b) At each designated seating position having 
a head restraint, place the dummy, snugly re- 
strained by a Type 1 seat belt, in the manufac- 
turer's recommended design seated position. 

(c) During a forward accleration applied 
to the structure supporting the seat as described 
below, measure the maximum rearward angular 
displacement between the dummy torso reference 
line and the head reference line. When graph- 
ically depicted, the magnitude of the acceleration 
curve shall not be less than that of a half-sine 
wave having the amplitude of 8g and a duration 
of 80 milliseconds and not more than that of a 
half-sine wave curve having an amplitude of 
9.6g and a duration of 96 milliseconds. 

S5.2 Compliance with § 4.(b) shall be dem- 
onstrated in accordance with the following with 
the head restraint in its fully extended design 
position: 

(a) Place a test device, having the back pan 
dimensions and torso line, (centerline of the 
head room probe in full back position) of the 



three dimensional SAE J-826 manikin, at the 
manufacturer's recommended design seated po- 
sition. 

(b) Establish the displaced torso reference 
line by applying a rearward moment of 3300 in. 
lb. about the seating reference point to the seat 
back through the test device back pan located 
in (a). 

(c) After removing the back pan, using a 6.5 
inch diameter spherical head form or a cylindri- 
cal head form having a 6.5 inch diameter in 
plain view and a 6-inch height in profile view, 
apply, perpendicular to the displaced torso refer- 
ence line, a rearward initial load 2.5 inches below 
the top of the head restraint that will produce 
a 3300 in. lb. moment about the seating reference 
point. ■ 

(d) Gradually increase this initial load to 
200 lbs. or until the seat or seat back fails, 
whichever occurs first. 

33 F.R. 15065 
October 9, 1968 



PART 571; S 202-2 



EffwHm: May 27, 1975 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 203 
Impact Protection from the Steering Control System 
(Docket No. 74-33; Notice 2) 



This notice amends Standard No. 203, Impact 
protection from the steering control system, 49 
CFR § 571.203, to exclude from its requirements 
some passenger cars which meet (he frontal bar- 
rier crash requirements of Standard No. 208, 
Occupant crash protection, 49 CFR §571.208. 

The NHTSA proposed this exclusion of ve- 
hicles from the requirements of Standard No. 
203 at the request of General Motors, to permit 
development of an air cushion restraint system 
at the driver's position as a means of meeting 
the frontal barrier crash protection requirements 
(S5.1) of Standard No. 208 (39 F.R. 34062, Sep- 
tember 23, 1974). General Motors sought the 
exclusion because its modification to the steering 
control system to incorporate the air cushion sys- 
tem and accept higher loads exerted during a 
crash makes conformity of the column with 
Standard No. 203 difficult and sometimes impos- 
srible. 

Comments were received from General Motors 
Corporation and Volvo of America Corporation, 
in supfwrt of the proposal. Renault, Inc., 
Peugeot, Inc., and Mercedes-Benz of North 
America, Inc., supported the proposal and sug- 
gested that the exception be extended to passive 
straint systems that incorporate seat belts. These 
comments argue that the use of passive belts will 
be high and that the protection offered by Stand- 
ard No. 203 would in nearly all cases be redun- 
dant to that of Standard No. 208. 

As a general matter, the NHTSA has main- 
tained that the redundant occupant crash protec- 
tion offered by standards (e.g.. Standard No. 212, 
Windshield retention) is justified for those sit- 
uations where the primary occupant crash pro- 
tection system fails, or multiple collisions occur. 



Redundant protection is particularly justified in 
the case of passive seat belts because of the 
greater likelihood that seat belt protection will 
be rendered inoperative by an occupant than will 
crash-deployed protection. 

In this case, the NHTSA has made the limited 
determination that the redundant protection of- 
fered by Standard No. 203 is not justified where 
it directly interferes with development of a more 
advanced, convenient, and effective restraint sys- 
tem. In contrast, it is ob\'ious that passive sys- 
tems which utilize belt assemblies do not require 
modifications of steering control systems and 
there is, therefore, no reason to sacrifice the re- 
dundant protection. These petitions to expand 
the scope of the proposed exception are accord- 
ingly denied. 

American Motors Corporation has suggested 
that an exception not be granted in this case 
until future requirements of Standard No. 208 
are established, and that General Motors' devel- 
opmental work be undertaken on the basis of a 
temporary exemption under 49 CFR Part 555. 
This approach has not been adopted by the 
NHTSA. In light of the financial commitments 
that might be involved, this agency has con- 
cluded that General Motors is entitled to the 
assurance that their developments on advanced 
Standard No. 208 systems will not be barred by 
Standard No. 203 in the future. 

In consideration of the foregoing, paragraph 
S3 (application) in Standard No. 203 (49 CFR 
§ 571.203) is amended 

Effective date: [30 days following date of 
publication of the amendment in the Federal 
Register]. Because this amendment relieves a 
restriction, it is found for good cause shown that 



PART 571; S 203— PRE 1 



Effective: May 27, 1975 

an effective date sooner than 180 days from tlie Issued on April 17, 1975. 

date of its publication in the Federal Register 

is in the public interest. James B. Gregory 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 Administrator 

(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407); delegation of authority 40 F.R. 17992 

at 49 CFR 1.51.) April 24, 1975 



PART 571; S 203— PRE 2 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENTS TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS 

NO. 203 

Impact Protection for the Driver From the Steering Control System 
(Docket No. 78-116; Notice 2) 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: This notice amends Federal Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 to 
extend their applicability to light trucks, buses and 
multipurpose passenger vehicles (MPV's). The 
notice is issued in response to the rising death and 
injury toll involving these vehicles and to petitions 
by the Center for Auto Safety and the Insurance 
Institute for Highway Safety requesting that these 
standards be extended to those vehicles. Applying 
these standards to light trucks, buses and MPV's 
will reduce occupant deaths and injuries in those 
vehicles by requiring the use of energy absorbing 
material on such interior components as the instru- 
ment panel and seat backs (Standard No. 201), by 
limiting the amount of force that can be exerted on 
the driver's chest by the steering wheel in frontal 
crashes (Standard No. 203), and by limiting the 
rearward movement of the steering assembly in 
frontal crashes (Standard No. 204). 

EFFECTIVE DATE: The effective date for the 
extension of applicability of Standards Nos. 201, 
203 and 204 is September 1, 1981. 

ADDRESS: Petitions for reconsideration should 
refer to the docket number and be submitted to: 
Docket Section, Room 5108, National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, 
S.W., Washington, D.C. 20590. 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 

Mr. William Smith, Office of Vehicle Safety 
Standards, National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, 400 Seventh Street, S.W., 
Washington, D.C. 20590 (202-426-2242) 



SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This notice 
amends Standard No. 201, Occupant Protection in 
Interior Impact, and Standard No. 203, Impact 
Protection for the Driver From the Steering 
Control System, to extend the applicability of those 
standards to trucks, buses and multipurpose 
passenger vehicles (MPV's) with a gross vehicle 
weight rating (GVWR) of 10,000 pounds or less. 
This notice also amends Standard No. 204, 
Steering Control Rearward Displacement, to 
extend its applicabOity to trucks, buses and MPV's 
with an unloaded vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or 
less, instead of all trucks, buses and MPV's with a 
GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less, as originally 
proposed in the agency's November 9, 1978, notice 
of proposed rulemaking (43 FR 52264). As explained 
below, the agency is initially limiting the extended 
applicability of Standard No. 204 while it studies 
methods for dealing with final-stage manufacturer 
certification difficulties. Similar possible problems 
with Standard No. 212-76, Windshield Mounting, 
and Standard No. 219-75, Windshield Zone Intru- 
sion, led the agency to propose changes in the 
testing procedures for those standards (44 FR 
45426). 

For the purposes of Standard No. 204, the agency 
has determined that these problems would not be 
encountered in applying the standard to vehicles 
with an unloaded vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or 
less and testing them at their unloaded vehicle 
weight. Approximately 75 percent of the current 
sales of light trucks, buses and MPV's with a 
GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less have an unloaded 
vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or less. 

This final rule was preceded by a notice propos- 
ing the extension of the applicability of Standards 



PART 571; S 203-PRE-3 



Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in November 1978 (43 FR 
52264). Private citizens, safety organizations, 
manufacturers and a manufacturer trade associa- 
tion submitted comments on the proposal. NHTSA 
has considered all of those comments and the most 
significant ones are discussed below. 

Safety Need 

Citing the need to reduce the number of deaths 
and injuries in light trucks, buses and MPV's, the 
American Automobile Association, the Center for 
Auto Safety, the Insurance Institute for Highway 
Safety and State Farm Insurance Companies 
supported application of the standards to those 
vehicles. 

Although it did not object to extending the 
applicability of Standard Nos. 201, 203 and 204 to 
light trucks, buses and MPV's, General Motors 
argued that manufacturers should be given a 
longer lead time to comply with the standards 
because of the lack of urgent safety need. GM said 
that allowing a longer leadtime was desirable to 
ensure compliance, "without costly accelerated 
[design] programs." Using data from the agency's 
"Explanation of Rulemaking," GM said that light 
trucks, buses and MPV's have a fatality rate of 
22.4 fatalities per billion miles, compared with a 
rate of 25.3 fatalities per billion miles for 
passenger cars. The data GM used covers fatalities 
during 1977 in all model year vehicles. A new 
analysis done by NHTSA of 1977 fatalities, 
reported by the agency's Fatal Accident Reporting 
System, shows that although older model year 
light trucks, buses and MPV's may have had a 
lower fatality rate than passenger cars, beginning 
with the 1973 model year, the combined fatality 
rate for light trucks, buses and MPV's began 
surpassing that of passenger cars. The analysis 
shows that recent model year passenger cars have 
a considerably lower fatality rate than light trucks, 
buses and MPV's. (A copy of that analysis has been 
placed in the docket.) 

In addition to being higher than the combined 
fatality rate for all sizes of passenger cars, the 
combined fatality rate of light trucks, buses and 
MPV's is far higher than the rate for full-size 
passenger cars. Full-size cars are typically the 
safest of cars and many of them are comparable in 
size and weight to light trucks, buses and MPV's. 
In theory, occupants of larger and heavier vehicles, 
such as trucks, buses and MPV's, should experience 



less harmful crash forces, and thus presumably incur 
fewer or less severe injuries, than occupants of 
smaller lighter vehicles. Volkswagen has previously 
objected to a comparison of full-size passenger 
fatality rates with those for vans, arrguing that 
vans are comparable in weight to intermediate, not 
full-size passenger cars. Although the unloaded 
weight of vans and intermediate-size passenger 
cars may be comparable, vans have a higher gross 
vehicle weight rating which means that those 
vehicles can, in actual use, be loaded with substan- 
tially more weight than intermediate and even full- 
size passenger cars. 

Volkswagen also questioned the safety need for 
the proposed reulmaking because of the voluntary 
compliance by VW and some other companies with 
the standards. Although the voluntary effort by 
some companies is commendable, most manufac- 
turers do not comply with all of the standards in all 
of their vehicles. Some of the manufacturers who 
have taken steps to comply with the standard 
presumably were in part motiwated by prior 
NHTSA rulemaking notices proposing to apply 
Standards Nos. 201,203 and 204 to light trucks, 
buses and MPV's (35 FR 14936, 14936 and 16805). 
In the absence of a regulation, there is no 
assurance that non-complying manufacturers will / 
produce complying vehicles and that manfacturers ' 
producing currently complying vehicles will 
continue to comply. Manufacturers who currently 
comply should experience only minor economic 
impacts, such as conducting certification tests as a 
result of compelling other manufacturers to 
comply. 

Effectiveness 

The Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association 
(MVMA) questioned the potential effectiveness of 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. MVMA argue 
that a study done bySherman and Huelke of light 
truck and van accidents found that the standards 
would have little effect in those vehicles. However, 
a NHTSA analysis of the crashes reviewed by 
Sherman and Huelke found that a number of the 
crashes clearly edmonstrated the benefits of equip- 
ping light trucks and vans with energy absorbing 
instrument panels and steering columns and devices 
to limit the rearward displacement of the steering 
column. For example, Sherman and Huelke studied 
a 15-20 mph head-on crash of a 1976 Chevrolet 



PART 571; S 203-PRE-4 



pickup truck into a tree. The Chevrolet was equipped 
with a padded instrument panel, and energy- 
absorbing steering column and a device to limit the 
rearward displacement of the steering column. They 
reported, "the results of this case show that both of 
the major energy absorbing components appeared to 
have completely activated, both by the vehicle crash 
and driver impact, providing maximum benefit to the 
driver. Had this vehicle been one of the other vehicle 
cases discussed in this section, we feel that the in- 
juries sustained by the driver would have been much 
more severe." 

NHTSA believes further that the Sherman and 
Huelke study provides information indicating that 
there is a need for even more improvements in 
light trucks and vans, such as providing energy- 
absorbing padding for the lower instrument panel. 
The agency is studying the question of making 
appropriate changes in the performance 
requirements of the standards to require more pro- 
tection. However, NHTSA considers it important 
not to delay extending the current benefits of 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 while it reviews 
possible changes to the standards. 

MVMA also argued that a comparison of the 
injury experience of passenger car steering 
assemblies with the experience of steering 
assemblies in light trucks and vans shows that 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 "would provide little 
benefit" in those vehicles. Using data from the 
agency's original analysis of the injury experience 
of passenger cars produced before and after 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 took effect, MVMA 
said that the primary benefit of the standards is to 
reduce moderate instead of severe-to-fatal injuries. 
It pointed out that 65.6 percent of the steering 
assembly related injuries in pre-standard cars were 
minor, 22.7 percent were moderate and 11.9 per- 
cent were severe-to-fatal. In post-standard, cars 
78.8 percent of the steering assembly related 
injuries were minor, 10.2 percent were moderate 
and 11.0 were severe-to-fatal. Thus, in post- 
standard cars, many previously moderate injuries 
were only minor injuries. Using data from a 
Calspan study of light truck and van injuries, 
MVMA said that 83.5 percent of the steering 
column related injuries in those vehicles are minor, 
4.1 percent are moderate and 12.4 percent are 
severe-to-fatal. MVMA said that the Calspan data 



indicate that there is "little room" for a passenger 
car-type of injury experience change from moderate 
to minor injuries in light trucks and vans. 

However, the Calspan data cited by MVMA are 
not comparable with the NHTSA data and prob- 
ably underestimate the percentage of moderate 
and severe-to-fatal steering assembly related 
injuries in light trucks and vans. The Calspan data 
include injuries from all types of impacts (front, 
rear and side). The NHTSA data, on the other 
hand, cover only frontal crashes, the type of 
crashes which are most likely to cause severe-to- 
fatal steering assembly related injuries. Thus, the 
percentage of moderate and severe-to-fatal 
injuries found in the NHTSA data should be 
greater. In addition, an updated NHTSA analysis 
of passenger car injury experience, discussed 
below, shows that Standards Nos. 203 and 204 are 
effective in reducing both moderate and severe-to- 
fatal injuries. Further, even if the actual light 
truck and van injury distribution were the same as 
found by Calspan, Standards Nos. 203 and 204 
would be effective in reducing the number of 
severe-to-fatal injuries. 

Several manufacturers and the MVMA objected to 
the agency's use of passenger car data to estimate 
the potential effectiveness of the thr^ standards in 
light trucks, buses and MPV's. They ij-gued that the 
agency should instead have conducted a study com- 
paring the accident experience of light trucks, buses 
and MPV's that currently comply with the standards 
with the experience of those that do not comply. As 
explained below, NHTSA concludes that such a study 
is impractical and that the agency's original and 
updated analyses of passenger car effectiveness data 
are valid and support application of the standards to 
light trucks, buses and MPV's. 

The primary difficulty in conducting a study of 
current light trucks, buses and MPV's is that there 
is no conclusive information identifying which 
vehicles are currently in compliance with the 
standard, since no manufacturer is required to 
certify compliance. For example. International 
Harvester (IH) requested NHTSA to conduct a 
study of currently complying light trucks, buses 
and MPV's, saying that its Scout models were 
designed to comply with the performance re- 
quirements of Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. 
However, IH said that if the NHTSA applies the 



PART 571; S 203-PRE-5 



standards to light trucks, buses and MPV's, it will 
have to retest the Scout, which "could conceivably 
require some additional redesigning for compliance 
assurance." NHTSA belives that the analysis the 
agency conducted of pre- and post-1968 passenger 
car injury experience, where it was known that 
passenger cars manufactured on or after January 1, 
1968, had to comply with Standards Nos. 201, 203 
and 204, provides a sound basis for estimating the 
potential effectiveness of the standards in other 
types of vehicles. 

Using information recently made available from 
the agency's National Crash Severity Study, 
NHTSA has again compared injuries sustained by 
occupants of cars manufactured before Standards 
Nos. 201, 203 and 204 went into effect with injuries 
sustained by occupants of cars manufactured after 
the standards went into effect. As with the 
agency's first analysis, cited in the November 9, 
1978, notice for this rulemaking, the new analysis 
examined injuries caused by components covered 
by Standard No. 201, such as instrument panels, 
seat backs, arm rests and sun visors. The analysis 
found that Standard No. 201 reduced severe to 
fatal occupant injuries (i.e., injuries with an 
abbreviated injury scale ranking of 3 or more) by 
approximately 38 percent. The analysis also found 
that the probability of an occupant injured in a 
crash being injured by a component covered by 
Standard No. 201 was 25.7 percent. Thus, 
multiplying the probability of injury (i.e., 25.7 
percent) by the effectiveness of the standard in 
reducing serious and fatal injuries (i.e., 38 percent) 
the analysis estimated that the overall reduction in 
severe to fatal injuries attributable to Standard 
No. 201 is 9.3 percent. 

A similar comparison was made for occupant 
injuries in cars manufactured before and after 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 went into effect. The 
comparison examined two sets of driver injuries 
that occurred in frontal crashes. One set consisted 
of injuries that could be specifically attributed to 
contact with the steering assembly; the other set 
consisted of neck, chest and abdominal injuries sus- 
tained by drivers in frontal crashes, the types of 
steering assembly-related injuries the standards 
are designed to reduce. The comparison found that 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 reduced severe to 
fatal injuries by an average of 20.9 percent. The 



probability of an injured driver receiving an injury 
attributable to the steering assembly was an 
average of 19.4 percent. The analysis estimated 
that Standards Nos. 203 and 204 produced an 
overall average reduction of 3.7 percent in severe 
to fatal driver injuries. 

Loading Requirements 

At present, Standared No. 204 does not specify 
the loading requirements for vehicles in the 30 mph 
fixed barrier crash test required by the standard. 
In conducting Standard No. 204 compliance tests 
for passenger cars, the agency has loaded 
passenger cars to their unloaded vehicle weight 
(i.e., the weight of the vehicle with all the fluid, 
such as gas, oil and water, necessary for its opera- 
tion but without any occupants or cargo). This is 
the least severe loading condition used in the 
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards that 
involve crash testing. This notice makes a technical 
amendment to Standard No. 204 to incorporate the 
agency long-standing loading practices. Those 
practices were publicly announced in the 
compliance test procedures publicly released by the 
agency when Standard No. 204 first went into 
effect in 1968. Passenger car certification informa- 
tion provided by manufacturers to NHTSA shows 
that they have consistently used unloaded vehicle ^ 
weight as the loading condition in their testing. In 
some instances, manufacturers have voluntarily 
used more severe loading conditions in their 
certification testing. 

Commerical Vehicles 

Several final stage manufacturers and United 
Parcel Service requested the agency to exempt 
vehicles used in commercial applications from the 
standards. A similar exemption has previously 
been sought by the Truck Body and Equipment 
Association (TBEA) for Standard No. 212-76, 
Windshield Mounting, and Standard 219-75, 
Windshield Zone Intrusion. As with the TBEA 
request, NHTSA concludes that such an exemption 
should not be adopted since it is not in the interest 
of safety and is based on vehicle use instead of 
vehicle type. Such an exemption would mean that 
standards would be applied on the basis of the 
commercial or private use of the vehicle and not 
upon the safety needs of a particular vehicle type. 
Since the safety needs of similar vehicles usually 
are similar, it would be inappropriate to treat one 
set of vehicles differently merely because they are 
used commercially. 



PART 571; S 203-PRE-6 



i 



The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety 
Act contemplates the application of the standards 
based on vehicle type instead of vehicle use. Basing 
a standard on vehicle use would present this agency 
with difficult enforcement problems. It would also 
place a manufacturer in the difficult position of 
having to assess in advance the potential future 
use of the vehicle it produces. In addition, basing 
standards application on vehicle use does not 
recognize that a vehicle may have two or more uses 
during its lifetime. 

For all these reasons, the agency concludes that 
applying standards based on vehicle use would not 
be appropriate. 

Walk-In Vans 

GM, MVMA and several final-stage manufac- 
turers requested the agency to exempt walk-in 
vans (i.e., the "step-van" city delivery type of vehicle 
that permits a person to enter the vehicle without 
stooping) from Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. 
In the case of Standard No. 201, they argued that 
this type of vehicle frequently has none of the com- 
ponents covered by the standard, such as arm 
rests, sun visors and instrument panels to the right 
of the steering assembly. However, those vehicles 
do have an instrument panel in front of the driver 
and some walk-in vans do have a front passenger 
seat and an instrument panel in front of that seat 
which may be struck by an occupant during a 
crash. Applying Standard No. 201 to those vehicles 
will require the instrument panel to be padded to 
cushion occupant impacts. Based on the proven 
effectiveness of Standard No. 201 in passenger 
cars, the agency is extending the performance 
requirements of the standard to include walk-in 
vans and MPV's. 

The manufacturers argued that walk-in vans 
should be exempt from Standards Nos. 203 and 
204 also. They said that the driver steering 
assembly configuration found in walk-in vans 
makes it improbable that compliance with the 
standard will reduce drivers' injuries. They noted 
that the steering column is mounted in those 
vehicles at an angle of 55-60 degrees, compared to 
the mounting angle of 30 degrees found in conven- 
tional trucks, and the columns in walk-in vans 
move upward rather than rearward in a crash. The 
manufacturers also argued that these vehicles are 
generally used in urban areas, where there is more 



slow speed traffic than in rural areas. They pointed 
out that because of these factors, the agency has 
previously exempted walk-in vans from Standards 
Nos. 212-76, Windshield Retention, and 219-75, 
Wiyidshields Zone Intrusion. The agency agrees 
that current energy absorbing steering column 
designs probably would provide little, if any, pro- 
tection in walk-in vans because of their uniques 
driver/ steering column configuration, and thus is 
exempting walk-in vans for the present. 

Belts in Forward Control Vehicles 

Although they did not object to requiring lap- 
shoulder belts in forward control vehicles as pro- 
posed in the agency's November 9, 1978 notice, 
several manufacturers and the MVMA objected to 
what they interpreted as a conflict between the 
agency's proposal and the current requirements of 
Standard No. 208, Occupant Crash Protection. 
They argued that the agency's proposal not only 
would require lap and shoulder belts in forward 
control vehicles, but would also require such belts 
in open-body vehicles, convertibles and walk-in 
vans, which currently only have to have lap belts. 
The agency's proposal was directed only toward 
forward control vehicles and was meant to 
supersede the current requirements for those 
vehicles set in Standard No. 208. For organiza- 
tional simplicity, the agency is making a technical 
amendment to Standard No. 208 so that all belt 
requirements are centralized in that standard. The 
amendment only adopts the proposed change to 
the forward control vehicle belt requirements. It 
does not change the current belt requirements for 
open-body vehicles, convertibles and walk-in vans. 

MVMA requested the agency to require lap and 
shoulder belts in forward control vehicles for only 
one model year. MVMA did not provide any 
justification for that request. NHTSA believes that 
the important protection of lap and shoulder belts 
should be available to all forward control vehicles 
manufactured on or after September 1, 1981, and 
declines to adopt the MVMA request. 

Upgrading of Standard 

In their comments, the Center for Auto Safety 
and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety 
renewed their requests that the agency set new 
performance requirements for Standard No. 203 to 
provide additional protection in angular impacts. 
The agency has conducted some preliminary 
testing to determine what additional requirements 



PART 571; S 203-PRE-7 



may be appropriate to increase protection in 
angular impacts. In addition, the agency's 
National Center for Statistics and Analysis has 
recently begun a special study to collect accident 
data on 1973 and later model vehicles to gather 
additional information on the effectiveness of 
energy absorbing steering assemblies in angular 
and other crashes. Based on that data, NHTSA 
will make a determination of what further changes 
are needed in the standard. 

The American Automobile Association asked the 
agency to delay application of Standard No. 203 
until upgraded performance requirements are 
developed. However, because the agency does not 
want to delay providing the occupants of light 
trucks, buses and MPV's with the safety benefits 
of Standard No. 203, the agency is extending the 
standards to those vehicles while it continues to 
consider the feasibility of additional performance 
requirements. 

NHTSA is also considering possible additional 
requirements for Standard No. 201. The agency 
has scheduled a meeting for December 11, 1979, so 
that the public can present its views and ideas on 
ways of improving protection for children involved 
in vehicle collisions. In the September 4, 1979, 
notice announcing the meeting, the agency 
specifically asked for comments on possible 
improvements to the interior padding of vehicles to 
provide additional protection for children (44 FR 
51623). 

Heavy Trucks 

In the November 9, 1978 notice, NHTSA 
announced that it was evaluating whether to 
extend the applicability of Standards Nos. 201, 203 
and 204 to heavy trucks (i.e., trucks with a GVWR 
of more than 10,000 pounds) and solicited 
comments on appropriate performance 
requirements for those vehicles. In their com- 
ments, the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Associa- 
tion, Freightliner and International Harvester all 
opposed an extension of the standards to trucks 
with a GVWR greater than 10,000 pounds, arguing 
that there is no data showing a safety need for 
applying the standards to those vehicles. They also 
argued that because of the size and weight of heavy 
trucks, occupants in these vehicles do not 
experience the same energy transfers in a crash 
than passenger car occupants experience and thus 
theoretically should incur fewer or less severe 



injuries. At the agency's recent meeting on heavy 
truck safety, several participants provided in- 
formation on the need for greater crash protection 
for drivers of heavy trucks. NHTSA is currently 
analyzing that information to determine what 
additional heavy truck regulatory action may be 
needed. 
Miscellaneous Comments 

MVMA pointed out that Standard No. 201 
currently requires two sun visors in a vehicle and 
requested that a second visor not be required if 
there is no front passenger seat. NHTSA agrees 
that such a change is appropriate and has made the 
necessary amendment to the standard. 

Jeep Corp. objected to the application of 
Standard No. 201 to open-body MPV's, arguing 
that for Jeep to locate padding in the expected 
head impact area it would have to raise its padding 
or lower its seat, both of which it claimed would 
interfere with the driver's forward visibility. 
Jeep's comment appears to reflect a misunder- 
standing of Standard No. 201. The performance 
requirements of the standard only apply to areas of 
the instrument panel that are within the head 
impact area of each designated seating position. 
(The head impact area is the portion of the 
vehicle's interior that can be contacted by a head- > 
form representing an occupant's head.) Thus, if a i 
portion of Jeep's vehicle instrument panel is not 
within the head impact area, it does not have to 
comply. For portions of the panel that are within 
the head impact area, Jeep can make structural 
changes to the instrument panel to meet Standard 
No. 201 without adding additional padding. 
Therefore, Jeep's requested exemption for all 
open-body vehicles is denied. 

One final stage manufacturer, Boyertown Auto 
Body Works, asked NHTSA whether its driver 
side instrument panel was within the exeptions to 
Standard No. 201 and, if not, sought to have its in- 
strument panel construed to be a console assembly, 
which is exempt from the standard. Such an inter- 
pretation is not acceptable since Boyertown clearly 
labels the area in question as an instrument panel 
in its engineering drawings. However, according 
to the engineering drawing provided by Boyer- 
town, the limited section on the instrument panel 
of concern to Boyertown is within the area 
exempted by S3. 1.1(d) of the standard. That 
section provides that the area of the interior 
immediately forward of the steering column is 
exempt from the standard. 



PART 571; S 203-PRE-8 



Costs and Leadtime 

NHTSA has considered the economic and other 
impacts of this final rule and determined that they 
are not significant within the meaning of 
Executive Order 12044 and the Department of 
Transportation's policies and procedures for 
implementing that order. The agency's assessment 
of the benefits and economic consequences of this 
proposal are contained in a regulatory evaluation 
which has been places in the public docket. As 
explained previously, copies of the regulatory 
evaluation can be obtained by writing NHTSA's 
docket section at the address given in the begin- 
ning of this final rule. 

As previously detailed in this notice, the agency 
has examined the effectiveness of Standards Nos. 
201, 203 and 204 in passenger cars and concluded 
that those standards have brought about a substan- 
tial reduction in overall injuries occurring to the 
passengers in those vehicles. Because they share 
the same driving environment as occupants in 
passenger cars, occupants in light trucks, buses 
and MPV's face a similar risk of injury posed by 
hazardous instrument panels and rigid steering 
columns. Based on its evaluation of the effec- 
tiveness of Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in 
passenger cars, the agency has concluded that 
applying those standards to light trucks, buses and 
MPV's can result in a reduction of 120 to 240 
fatalities and 4,400 to 8,900 serious injuries per 
year when all those vehicles comply with the 
standards. 

The agency's cost estimate for meeting 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in light trucks, 
buses and MPV's take into account that many 
manufacturers have equipped some of their 
vehicles with components designed to meet the 
performance requirements of the standards. Those 
components may need little or no redesigning to 
fully comply with the standards. For example, 
American Motors, Chrysler, Ford, General 
Motors, International Harvester and Volkswagen 
commented that some, if not all, of their vehicles 
currently have components designed to comply 
with the standards or they will install such com- 
ponents in some of their vehicles by the 1981 model 
year. 

Only two manufacturers, Nissan and Ford, pro- 
vided any information about the costs associated 
with complying with the standards. Nissan said 



that the cost associated with complying with all 
three standards was $30. Ford estimated the cost 
for compliance with Standard No. 201 as $10 per 
vehicle; based on preliminary design assumptions. 
Ford put the cost of complying with Standards 
Nos. 203 and 204 in its van-type trucks, buses and 
MPV's at $120 per vehicle. 

To provide the agency with additional informa- 
tion about the estimated costs of complying with 
the three standards, NHTSA contracted with the 
John Z. DeLorean Corp. to evaluate current 
vehicles and determine what changes would be 
needed to bring the vehicles into compliance. Bases 
on its review of current foreign and domestic light 
trucks, buses and MPV's, DeLorean concluded 
that the total cost of compliance with the three 
standards would add a sales weighted average of 
$16 to the retaO price of those vehicles. The 
DeLorean study reported that the vehicles requir- 
ing the most changes to meet Standards Nos. 201, 
203 and 204 were van-type trucks, buses and 
MPV's made by GM and Ford. DeLorean 
estimated that GM and Ford van-types vehicles 
would require a $27 increase in consumer price to 
comply with Standards Nos. 203 and 204 and a 
price increase ranging between $6 and $15 to 
comply with Standard No. 201. The agency 
believes that the substantial difference between 
DeLorean's and Ford's estimate of the cost of 
compliance with Standards Nos. 203 and 204 may 
be due to Ford's overestimate of the anticipated 
changes needed in the vehicles based on its 
preliminary design asssumptions. 

The agency's November 1978 notice proposed an 
effective date of September 1, 1980, for Standard 
No. 201 for all vehicles and for Standards Nos. 203 
and 204 for nonforward control vehicles. An effec- 
tive date of September 1, 1981, was proposed for 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 for forward control 
vehicles to allow manufacturers additional time to 
make the necessary changes in those vehicles. In 
their comments on Standard 201, Chrysler and 
Ford said they could meet the standard in all their 
vehicles by the proposed effective date. Nissan, 
Toyo Kogyo and International Harvester (IH) 
requested from 18 to 24 months leadtime. General 
Motors requested 2V2 years' leadtime and 
American Motors requested 3 years. As a part of 
its NHTSA-funded study of the costs of complying 
with the standard, the DeLorean Corp. also 
examined the leadtime necessary to comply with 



PART 571; S 203-PRE-9 



the standard. For Standard No. 201, the DeLorean 
study concluded that only one year was needed for 
all vehicles except van-type trucks, buses and 
MPV's manufactured by Chrysler and GM, which 
needed two years. 

For Standards Nos. 203 and 204, Chrysler said 
that all its vehicles, except its incomplete forward 
control van-type vehicles, can comply by 
September 1, 1980. Chrysler did not provide an 
estimate of leadtime needed for its incomplete 
forward control vans. Nissan, Toyo Kogyo and IH 
requested from 18 to 24 months leadtime. Ford 
said its 1980 model year F-series trucks and 
Bronco models would comply with the standards 
and the Courier truck chassis cab imported by Ford 
would comply by September 1, 1981. Ford 
requested until September 1, 1982, for its van-type 
trucks, buses and MPV's. General Motors 
requested 2V2 years for all its vehicles and 
American Motors requested three years. 

The DeLorean study concluded that 18-24 
months of leadtime was needed for all models, 
except those made by Ford, which would require 
three years. DeLorean made its estimate of lead- 
time for Ford based on an assumption that Ford 



would need extra steering assembly tooling 
facilities. However, since Ford plans to introduce 
complying components on its 1980 model F series 
trucks and Bronco models, Ford has apparently 
developed the needed tooling capacity. 

Based on its analysis of the DeLorean study and 
of the industry's comments, NHTSA concludes 
that setting an effective date of September 1, 
1981, will allow sufficient time for all manufac- 
turers to comply with the standards. This action 
provides an additional year for all light trucks, 
buses and MPV's to meet Standard No. 201 and for 
nonforward control vehicles to meet Standards 
Nos. 203 and 204. 

The principal authors of this notice are William 
Smith, Office of Vehicle Safety Standards, and 
Stephen Oesch, Office of Chief Counsel. 

Issued on November 12, 1979. 



Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 



44 F.R. 68470 
November 29, 1979 



I 



PART 571; S 203-PRE-lO 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 203 

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; 
Impact Protection for the Driver from the Steering Control Systems 

[Docket No. 81-10; Notice 2] 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: This notice amends Standard No. 
203, Impact Protection for the Driver from the 
Steering Control System, to modify the current 
limitation on the amount of force imposed on the 
steering column during the compliance test which 
simulates a crash. The standard will now allow 
the force measured on the steering column to 
exceed 2,500 pounds for a cumulative duration of 
not more than 3 milliseconds. The agency has 
concluded that this amendment will not pose an 
unreasonable risk to safety. 

EFFECTIVE DATE: This amendment is effective 
December 2, 1982. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In response 
to a petition for rulemaking from General Motors 
(GM), NHTSA issued a notice in October 1981 (49 
F.R. 48260) that proposed an amendment to 
Standard No. 203, Impact Protection for the 
Driver from the Steering Control System (46 
CFR 571.203). The notice proposed modifying the 
current 2,500 pound limitation on the amount of 
force imposed on the steering column. The force 
is measured during an impact test in which a hard 
rubber block simulating the human torso strikes 
the steering column at 15 miles per hour. 

GM sought the change because a mechanical 
interference between several parts in its tilting 
and telescoping steering wheel cause the force 
measured in the Standard No. 203 impact test to 
momentarily increase above 2,500 pounds. The 
mechanical interference only occurs when the 
steering wheel is fully telescoped and tilted down 



15 degrees. GM requested and the agency 
proposed to prohibit forces above 2,500 pounds 
only if they cumulatively exceeded 3 milliseconds 
in duration. 

To support its request, GM presented data 
from three sled tests simulating 30 mile-per-hour 
frontal barrier crashes in which an unrestrained 
Part 572 anthropomorphic test dummy struck the 
steering column. The GM tests showed that the 
momentary increase in force levels measured on 
the steering column do not cause a corresponding 
increase in the resultant acceleration in the test 
dummy's chest. (Resultant acceleration is the 
criterion used in Standard No. 208, Occupant 
Crash Protection, as a means of determining 
whether forces are potentially harmful.) 

This notice amends Standard No. 203 to adopt 
the proposed change. Significant comments 
submitted to the docket are addressed below. 

Five commenters, American Motors, Chrysler, 
Ford, General Motors, and Volkswagen, 
supported adoption of the proposed amendment. 
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety 
(IIHS) and the Center for Auto Safety (CFAS) 
filed comments opposing the amendment. 

IIHS argued that the GM test data considered 
by the agency do not demonstrate that the short 
duration force levels permitted by the 
amendment will not pose an unreasonable risk of 
injury to the driver. IIHS objected that GM had 
not discussed the relationship between the 30 
mile-per-hour impact tests the automaker 
conducted with instrumented Part 572 test 
dummies and the 15 mile-per-hour impact tests 
GM conducted with the body block in accordance 
with the requirements of Standard No. 203. IIHS 



PART 571: S203-PRE 11 



said that it is difficult to make a straightforward 
comparison between the two tests because one 
involves use of a full-size test dummy 
representing a 50th percentile male while the 
other uses a simple hard rubber block 
representing only the upper torso and head of a 
human. In addition, IIHS stated that the 
force/deflection characteristics of the test dummy 
and the torso block are significantly different. 

The agency believes that of the two tests, the 
30 mile-per-hour sled test conducted by GM is 
more representative of an actual vehicle crash. In 
GM's sled test, the unrestrained test dummy was 
placed on a vehicle seat behind the steering 
column as in an actual vehicle. In the simplified 1.5 
mile-per-hour test of Standard No. 203, the torso 
block is accelerated toward the column, usually 
by a pendulum, and then released to strike the 
column. 

Equally important, the anthropomorphic test 
dummy specified in Part 572 of the agency's 
regulations is more representative of a human 
than the torso block used in Standard No. 203. 
The simplified torso block was developed before 
human-like test dummies were available. The 
area representing the chest of the torso block is 
significantly harder and stiffer than a human 
chest. As a result of that hardness and stiffness, 
an impact with that surface is more likely to 
produce the sudden, short increases in 
acceleration than is a more flexible surface 
designed to be similar to the human chest. The 
chest of the Part 572 anthropomorphic test 
dummy is based on testing done with cadavers 
and human volunteers and thus is more 
representative of the actual human chest. Thus, 
the agency believes that the GM testing is a 
better measure of the forces that would be 
imposed on a driver's chest in an actual crash. As 
explained more fully below, the agency is 
considering changes to Standard No. 203 that 
would improve its test procedures and 
requirements. 

IIHS's second objection was that GM had not 
demonstrated that the Part 572 dummy and the 
injury criteria used in GM's testing are suitable 
for assessing whether the forces generated in the 
testing are likely to be injurious. IIHS said that 
the Part 572 dummy was designed specifically 
with the air bag in mind, which distributes forces 
over a large area to reduce injuries, and was not 



designed to be sensitive to the effects of large 
concentrated loads. IIHS and CFAS both 
emphasized that concentrated forces are known 
injury producers. 

The Part 572 test dummy was designed to be 
used in the automatic restraint system testing of 
Standard No. 208, Occupant Crash Protection. 
During and after its development, the test 
dummy has been used extensively to measure 
loads generated by automatic and conventional 
belt systems as well as air bag systems. The 
injury criterion used in the GM testing is the 
same as the chest injury criterion adopted in 
Standard No. 208. At present, the Part 572 test 
dummy and the Standard No. 208 chest injury 
criterion are the only generally recognized and 
accepted measures of potential injury to the 
chest. The data from the GM testing, using 
available test dummies, show that the resultant 
acceleration measured in the chest were within 
the limits set by the agency in Standard No. 208. 
Thus, the agency concludes that based on 
available data, the short duration forces 
experienced in the Standard No. 203 impact test 
do not pose an unreasonable risk of injury. 

Future Rulemaking 

Several commenters requested the agency to 
make several technical and other amendments to 
the standard. GM requested the agency to amend 
the standard to adopt the updated version of the 
Society of Automotive Engineers recommended 
practice currently incorporated in Standard No. 
203. Volkswagen recommended that the agency 
consider, for reasons of international 
harmonization, modifying the standard to adopt 
the alternative head impact test procedure 
contained in the European regulation on steering 
columns, Economic Commission for Europe 
Regulation 12. 

IIHS and CFAS both criticized the agency for 
not upgrading the performance requirements of 
the standard and urged the agency to do so 
quickly. IIHS devoted a substantial portion of its 
submission to changes in the test procedures and 
requirements for the standard. Ford said that, 
before making any changes to the standard, the 
agency should determine whether any changes 
would compromise the field performance of 
current steering systems. 



PART 571; S203-PRE 12 



As mentioned in the notice of proposed 
rulemaking for this rule, the agency actively is 
considering possible improvements to Standard 
No. 203. The agency agrees, as Ford pointed out, 
that steering columns meeting Standard No. 203 
have been proven to be injury reducers. 
However, the agency's technical report 
(Publication No. DOT HS 805-705) evaluating 
Standard No. 203 and Standard No. 204. Steering 
Column Rearward Displacement, also suggested 
areas for improving the standards. The agency 
will consider CFAS's, GM's, IIHS's. and 
Volkswagen's suggested changes during the 
process of evaluating possible changes to the 
standard. 

At present, a number of research projects are 
being conducted for the agency on energy- 
absorbing steering columns. For example. 



Calspan is conducting a special study (contract 
DTNH22-80-C-07450) of data gathered during the 
National Crash Severity Study. The study is 
identifying conditions leading to both more and 
less successful operation of energy-absorbing 
steering columns, determining the relationship of 
energy-absorbing column compression and column 
intrusion to injury severity and comparing 
performance between specific energy-absorbing 
column designs. The agency is also working with 
Minicars, Inc., to conduct static and dynamic 
testing of steering columns to rate their 
protective capability. Based on the Calspan, 
Minicar and other research, the agency will make 
a determination of what, if any, changes to 
propose to the standard. 
Issued on October 5, 1982. 



Raymond A. Peck, Jr. 
Administrator 
47 F.R. 47840 
October 28, 1982 



PART 571; S203-PRE 13-14 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 203 

Impact Protection for the Driver from the Steering Control System— Passenger Cars 

(Docket Nos. 2 and 3; Notice 1) 



51. Purpose and scope. This standard 
specifies requirements for steering control 
systems that will minimize chest, neck, and facial 
injuries to the driver as a result of impact. 

52. Application. This standard applies to 
passenger cars and to multipurpose passenger 
vehicles, trucks and buses with a GVWR of 10,000 
pounds or less. However, it does not apply to 
vehicles that conform to the frontal barrier crash 
requirements (S5.1) of Standard No. 208 (49 CFR 
571.208) by means of other than seat belt 
assemblies. It also does not apply to walk-in vans. 

53. Definitions. "Steering control system" 
means the basic steering mechanism and its 
associated trim hardware, including any portion of 
a steering column assembly that provides energy 
absorption upon impact. 

54. Requirements. Each passenger car and 
each multipurpose passenger vehicle, truck and 
bus with a GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less 
manufactured on or after September 1, 1981, shall 
meet the requirements of S5.1 and S5.2. 

S4.1 Except as provided in S4.2, when the 
steering control system is impacted by a body block 
in accordance with Society of Automotive 
Engineers Recommended Practice J944, "Steer- 
ing Wheel Assembly Laboratory Test Procedure," 
December 1965 or an approved equivalent, at a 
relative velocity of 15 miles per hour, the impact 
force developed on the chest of the body block 
transmitted to the steering control system shall 
not exceed 2,500 pounds. 



54.2 A Type 2 seat belt assembly that conforms 
to Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 209 shall be 
installed for the driver of any vehicle with forward 
control configuration that does not meet the 
requirements of S4.1. 

54.3 The steering control system shall be so 
constructed that no components or attachments, 
including horn actuating mechanisms and trim 
hardware, can catch the driver's clothing or 
jewelry during normal driving maneuvers. 

S5. Impact protection requirements. 

55.1 [When the steering control system is 
impacted in accordance with Society of Automotive 
Engineers Recommended Practice J944, "Steering 
Wheel Assembly Laboratory Test Procedure," 
December 1965, or an approved equivalent, at a 
relative velocity of 15 miles per hour, the impact 
force developed on the chest of the body block 
transmitted to the steering control system shall not 
exceed 2,500 pounds, except for intervals whose 
cumulative duration is not more than 3 milliseconds. 
(47 F.R. 47840-October 22, 1982. Effective: 
December 2, 1982)1 

55.2 The steering control system shall be so 
constructed that no components or attachments, 
including horn actuating mechanisms and trim 
hardware, can catch the driver's clothing or 
jewelry during normal driving maneuvers. 

Interpretation 

The term "Jewelry" in paragraph S4.3 refers to 
watches, rings, and bracelets without loosely 
attached or dangling members. 

32 F.R. 2414 
February 3, 1967 



PART 571; S 203-1-2 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENTS TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS 

NO. 204 

Steering Control Rearward Displacement 
(Docket No. 78-116; Notice 2) 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: This notice amends Federal Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 to 
extend their applicability to light trucks, buses and 
multipurpose passenger vehicles (MPV's). The 
notice is issued in response to the rising death and 
injury toll involving these vehicles and to petitions 
by the Center for Auto Safety and the Insurance 
Institute for Highway Safety requesting that these 
standards be extended to those vehicles. Applying 
these standards to light trucks, buses and MPV's 
will reduce occupant deaths and injuries in those 
vehicles by requiring the use of energy absorbing 
material on such interior components as the instru- 
ment panel and seat backs (Standard No. 201), by 
limiting the amount of force that can be exerted on 
the driver's chest by the steering wheel in frontal 
crashes (Standard No. 203), and by limiting the 
rearward movement of the steering assembly in 
frontal crashes (Standard No. 204). 

EFFECTIVE DATE: The effective date for the 
extension of applicability of Standards Nos. 201, 
203 and 204 is September 1, 1981. 

ADDRESS: Petitions for reconsideration should 
refer to the docket number and be submitted to: 
Docket Section, Room 5108, National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, 
S.W., Washington, D.C. 20590. 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 

Mr. William Smith, Office of Vehicle Safety 
Standards, National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, 400 Seventh Street, S.W., 
Washington, D.C. 20590 (202-426-2242) 



SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This notice 
amends Standard No. 201, Occupant Protection in 
Interior Impact, and Standard No. 203, Impact 
Protection for the Driver From the Steering 
Control System, to extend the applicability of those 
standards to trucks, buses and multipurpose 
passenger vehicles (MPV's) with a gross vehicle 
weight rating (GVWR) of 10,000 pounds or less. 
This notice also amends Standard No. 204, 
Steering Control Rearward Displacement, to 
extend its applicability to trucks, buses and MPV's 
with an unloaded vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or 
less, instead of all trucks, buses and MPV's with a 
GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less, as originally 
proposed in the agency's November 9, 1978, notice 
of proposed rulemaking (43 FR 52264). As explained 
below, the agency is initially limiting the extended 
applicability of Standard No. 204 while it studies 
methods for dealing with final-stage manufacturer 
certification difficulties. Similar possible problems 
with Standard No. 212-76, Windshield Mounting, 
and Standard No. 219-75, Windshield Zone Intru- 
sion, led the agency to propose changes in the 
testing procedures for those standards (44 FR 
45426). 

For the purposes of Standard No. 204, the agency 
has determined that these problems would not be 
encountered in applying the standard to vehicles 
with an unloaded vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or 
less and testing them at their unloaded vehicle 
weight. Approximately 75 percent of the current 
sales of light trucks, buses and MPV's with a 
GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less have an unloaded 
vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or less. 

This final rule was preceded by a notice propos- 
ing the extension of the applicability of Standards 



PART 571; S 204-PRE-l 



Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in November 1978 (43 FR 
52264). Private citizens, safety organizations, 
manufacturers and a manufacturer trade associa- 
tion submitted comments on the proposal. NHTSA 
has considered all of those comments and the most 
significant ones are discussed below. 

Safety Need 

Citing the need to reduce the number of deaths 
and injuries in light trucks, buses and MPV's, the 
American Automobile Association, the Center for 
Auto Safety, the Insurance Institute for Highway 
Safety and State Farm Insurance Companies 
supported application of the standards to those 
vehicles. 

Although it did not object to extending the 
applicability of Standard Nos. 201, 203 and 204 to 
light trucks, buses and MPV's, General Motors 
argued that manufacturers should be given a 
longer lead time to comply with the standards 
because of the lack of urgent safety need. GM said 
that allowing a longer leadtime was desirable to 
ensure compliance, "without costly accelerated 
[design] programs." Using data from the agency's 
"Explanation of Rulemaking," GM said that light 
trucks, buses and MPV's have a fatality rate of 
22.4 fatalities per billion miles, compared with a 
rate of 25.3 fatahties per billion mOes for 
passenger cars. The data GM used covers fatalities 
during 1977 in all model year vehicles. A new 
analysis done by NHTSA of 1977 fatalities, 
reported by the agency's Fatal Accident Reporting 
System, shows that although older model year 
light trucks, buses and MPV's may have had a 
lower fatality rate than passenger cars, beginning 
with the 19'73 model year, the combined fatality 
rate for light trucks, buses and MPV's began 
surpassing that of passenger cars. The analysis 
shows that recent model year passenger cars have 
a considerably lower fatality rate than light trucks, 
buses and MPV's. (A copy of that analysis has been 
placed in the docket.) 

In addition to being higher than the combined 
fatality rate for all sizes of passenger cars, the 
combined fatality rate of light trucks, buses and 
MPV's is far higher than the rate for full-size 
passenger cars, Full-size cars are typically the 
safest of cars and many of them are comparable in 
size and weight to light trucks, buses and MPV's. 
In theory, occupants of larger and heavier vehicles, 
such as trucks, buses and MPV's, should experience 



less harmful crash forces, and thus presumably incur 
fewer or less severe injuries, than occupants of 
smaller lighter vehicles. Volkswagen has previously 
objected to a comparison of full-size passenger 
fatality rates with those for vans, arrguing that 
vans are comparable in weight to intermediate, not 
full-size passenger cars. Although the unloaded 
weight of vans and intermediate-size passenger 
cars may be comparable, vans have a higher gross 
vehicle weight rating which means that those 
vehicles can, in actual use, be loaded with substan- 
tially more weight than intermediate and even full- 
size passenger cars. 

Volkswagen also questioned the safety need for 
the proposed reulmaking because of the voluntary 
compliance by VW and some other companies with 
the standards. Although the voluntary effort by 
some companies is commendable, most manufac- 
turers do not comply with all of the standards in all 
of then- vehicles. Some of the manufacturers who 
have taken steps to comply with the standard 
presumably were in part motiwated by prior 
NHTSA rulemaking notices proposing to apply 
Standards Nos. 201,203 and 204 to light trucks, 
buses and MPV's (35 FR 14936, 14936 and 16805). 
In the absence of a regulation, there is no 
assurance that non-complying manufacturers will 
produce complying vehicles and that manfacturers 
producing currently complying vehicles will 
continue to comply. Manufacturers who currently 
comply should experience only minor economic 
impacts, such as conducting certification tests as a 
result of compelling other manufacturers to 
comply. 

Effectiveness 

The Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association 
(MVMA) questioned the potential effectiveness of 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. MVMA argue 
that a study done bySherman and Huelke of light 
truck and van accidents found that the standards 
would have little effect in those vehicles. However, 
a NHTSA analysis of the crashes reviewed by 
Sherman and Huelke found that a number of the 
crashes clearly edmonstrated the benefits of equip- 
ping light trucks and vans with energy absorbing 
instrument panels and steering columns and devices 
to limit the rearward displacement of the steering 
column. For example, Sherman and Huelke studied 
a 15-20 mph head-on crash of a 1976 Chevrolet 



PART 571; S 204-PRE-2 



pickup truck into a tree. The Chevrolet was equipped 
with a padded instrument panel, and energy- 
absorbing steering column and a device to limit the 
rearward displacement of the steering column. They 
reported, "the results of this case show that both of 
the major energy absorbing components appeared to 
have completely activated, both by the vehicle crash 
and driver impact, providing maximum benefit to the 
driver. Had this vehicle been one of the other vehicle 
cases discussed in this section, we feel that the in- 
juries sustained by the driver would have been much 
more severe." 

NHTSA believes further that the Sherman and 
Huelke study provides information indicating that 
there is a need for even more improvements in 
light trucks and vans, such as providing energy- 
absorbing padding for the lower instrument panel. 
The agency is studying the question of making 
appropriate changes in the performance 
requirements of the standards to require more pro- 
tection. However, NHTSA considers it important 
not to delay extending the current benefits of 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 while it reviews 
possible changes to the standards. 

MVMA also argued that a comparison of the 
injury experience of passenger car steering 
assemblies with the experience of steering 
assemblies in light trucks and vans shows that 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 "would provide little 
benefit" in those vehicles. Using data from the 
agency's original analysis of the injury experience 
of passenger cars produced before and after 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 took effect, MVMA 
said that the primary benefit of the standards is to 
reduce moderate instead of severe-to-fatal injuries. 
It pointed out that 65.6 percent of the steering 
assembly related injuries in pre-standard cars were 
minor, 22.7 percent were moderate and 11.9 per- 
cent were severe-to-fatal. In post-standard, cars 
78.8 percent of the steering assembly related 
injuries were minor, 10.2 percent were moderate 
and 11.0 were severe-to-fatal. Thus, in post- 
standard cars, many previously moderate injuries 
were only minor injuries. Using data from a 
Calspan study of light truck and van injuries, 
MVMA said that 83.5 percent of the steering 
column related injuries in those vehicles are minor, 
4.1 percent are moderate and 12.4 percent are 
severe-to-fatal. MVMA said that the Calspan data 



indicate that there is "little room" for a passenger 
car-type of injury experience change from moderate 
to minor injuries in light trucks and vans. 

However, the Calspan data cited by MVMA are 
not comparable with the NHTSA data and prob- 
ably underestimate the percentage of moderate 
and severe-to-fatal steering assembly related 
injuries in light trucks and vans. The Calspan data 
include injuries from all types of impacts (front, 
rear and side). The NHTSA data, on the other 
hand, cover only frontal crashes, the type of 
crashes which are most likely to cause severe-to- 
fatal steering assembly related injuries. Thus, the 
percentage of moderate and severe-to-fatal 
injuries found in the NHTSA data should be 
greater. In addition, an updated NHTSA analysis 
of passenger car injury experience, discussed 
below, shows that Standards Nos. 203 and 204 are 
effective in reducing both moderate and severe-to- 
fatal injuries. Further, even if the actual light 
truck and van injury distribution were the same as 
found by Calspan, Standards Nos. 203 and 204 
would be effective in reducing the number of 
severe-to-fatal injuries. 

Several manufacturers and the MVMA objected to 
the agency's use of passenger car data to estimate 
the potential effectiveness of the three standards in 
light trucks, buses and MPV's. They argued that the 
agency should instead have conducted a study com- 
paring the accident experience of light trucks, buses 
and MPV's that currently comply wath the standards 
with the experience of those that do not comply. As 
explained below, NHTSA concludes that such a study 
is impractical and that the agency's original and 
updated analyses of passenger car effectiveness data 
are valid and support application of the standards to 
light trucks, buses and MPV's. 

The primary difficulty in conducting a study of 
current light trucks, buses and MPV's is that there 
is no conclusive information identifying which 
vehicles are currently in compliance with the 
standard, since no manufacturer is required to 
certify compliance. For example, International 
Harvester (IH) requested NHTSA to conduct a 
study of currently complying light trucks, buses 
and MPV's, saying that its Scout models were 
designed to comply with the performance re- 
quirements of Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. 
However, IH said that if the NHTSA applies the 



PART 571; S 204-PRE-3 



standards to light trucks, buses and MPV's, it will 
have to retest the Scout, which "could conceivably 
require some additional redesigning for compliance 
assurance." NHTSA belives that the analysis the 
agency conducted of pre- and post- 1968 passenger 
car injury experience, where it was known that 
passenger cars manufactured on or after January 1, 
1968, had to comply with Standards Nos. 201, 203 
and 204, provides a sound basis for estimating the 
potential effectiveness of the standards in other 
types of vehicles. 

Using information recently made available from 
the agency's National Crash Severity Study, 
NHTSA has again compared injuries sustained by 
occupants of cars manufactured before Standards 
Nos. 201, 203 and 204 went into effect with injuries 
sustained by occupants of cars manufactured after 
the standards went into effect. As with the 
agency's first analysis, cited in the November 9, 
1978, notice for this rulemaking, the new analysis 
examined injuries caused by components covered 
by Standard No. 201, such as instrument panels, 
seat backs, arm rests and sun visors. The analysis 
found that Standard No. 201 reduced severe to 
fatal occupant injuries (i.e., injuries with an 
abbreviated injury scale ranking of 3 or more) by 
approximately 38 percent. The analysis also found 
that the probability of an occupant injured in a 
crash being injured by a component covered by 
Standard No. 201 was 25.7 percent. Thus, 
multiplying the probability of injury (i.e., 25.7 
percent) by the effectiveness of the standard in 
reducing serious and fatal injuries (i.e., 38 percent) 
the analysis estimated that the overall reduction in 
severe to fatal injuries attributable to Standard 
No. 201 is 9.3 percent. 

A similar comparison was made for occupant 
injuries in cars manufactured before and after 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 went into effect. The 
comparison examined two sets of driver injuries 
that occurred in frontal crashes. One set consisted 
of injuries that could be specifically attributed to 
contact with the steering assembly; the other set 
consisted of neck, chest and abdominal injuries sus- 
tained by drivers in frontal crashes, the types of 
steering assembly-related injuries the standards 
are designed to reduce. The comparison found that 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 reduced severe to 
fatal injuries by an average of 20.9 percent. The 



probability of an injured driver receiving an injury 
attributable to the steering assembly was an 
average of 19.4 percent. The analysis estimated 
that Standards Nos. 203 and 204 produced an 
overall average reduction of 3.7 percent in severe 
to fatal driver injuries. 

Loading Requirements 

At present, Standared No. 204 does not specify 
the loading requirements for vehicles in the 30 mph 
fixed barrier crash test required by the standard. 
In conducting Standard No. 204 compliance tests 
for passenger cars, the agency has loaded 
passenger cars to their unloaded vehicle weight 
(i.e., the weight of the vehicle with all the fluid, 
such as gas, oil and water, necessary for its opera- 
tion but without any occupants or cargo). This is 
the least severe loading condition used in the 
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards that 
involve crash testing. This notice makes a technical 
amendment to Standard No. 204 to incorporate the 
agency long-standing loading practices. Those 
practices were publicly announced in the 
compliance test procedures publicly released by the 
agency when Standard No. 204 first went into 
effect in 1968. Passenger car certification informa- 
tion provided by manufacturers to NHTSA shows 
that they have consistently used unloaded vehicle 
weight as the loading condition in their testing. In 
some instances, manufacturers have voluntarily 
used more severe loading conditions in their 
certification testing. 

Commerical Vehi<;les 

Several final stage manufacturers and United 
Parcel Service requested the agency to exempt 
vehicles used in commercial applications from the 
standards. A similar exemption has previously 
been sought by the Truck Body and Equipment 
Association (TBEA) for Standard No. 212-76, 
Windshield Mounting, and Standard 219-75, 
Windshield Zone Intrusion. As with the TBEA 
request, NHTSA concludes that such an exemption 
should not be adopted since it is not in the interest 
of safety and is based on vehicle use instead of 
vehicle type. Such an exemption would mean that 
standards would be applied on the basis of the 
commercial or private use of the vehicle and not 
upon the safety needs of a particular vehicle type. 
Since the safety needs of similar vehicles usually 
are similar, it would be inappropriate to treat one 
set of vehicles differently merely because they are 
used commercially. 



PART 571; S 204-PRE-4 



The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety 
Act contemplates the application of the standards 
based on vehicle type instead of vehicle use. Basing 
a standard on vehicle use would present this agency 
with difficult enforcement problems. It would also 
place a manufacturer in the difficult position of 
having to assess in advance the potential future 
use of the vehicle it produces. In addition, basing 
standards application on vehicle use does not 
recognize that a vehicle may have two or more uses 
during its lifetime. 

For all these reasons, the agency concludes that 
applying standards based on vehicle use would not 
be appropriate. 

Walk-In Vans 

GM, MVMA and several final-stage manufac- 
turers requested the agency to exempt walk-in 
vans (i.e., the "step-van" city delivery type of vehicle 
that permits a person to enter the vehicle without 
stooping) from Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204. 
In the case of Standard No. 201, they argued that 
this type of vehicle frequently has none of the com- 
ponents covered by the standard, such as arm 
rests, sun visors and instrument panels to the right 
of the steering assembly. However, those vehicles 
do have an instrument panel in front of the driver 
and some walk -in vans do have a front passenger 
seat and an instrument panel in front of that seat 
which may be struck by an occupant during a 
crash. Applying Standard No. 201 to those vehicles 
will require the instrument panel to be padded to 
cushion occupant impacts. Based on the proven 
effectiveness of Standard No. 201 in passenger 
cars, the agency is extending the performance 
requirements of the standard to include walk-in 
vans and MPV's. 

The manufacturers argued that walk-in vans 
should be exempt from Standards Nos. 203 and 
204 also. They said that the driver steering 
assembly configuration found in walk-in vans 
mjikes it improbable that compliance with the 
standard will reduce drivers' injuries. They noted 
that the steering column is mounted in those 
vehicles at an angle of 55-60 degrees, compared to 
the mounting angle of 30 degrees found in conven- 
tional trucks, and the columns in walk-in vans 
move upward rather than rearward in a crash. The 
manufacturers also argued that these vehicles are 
generally used in urban areas, where there is more 



slow speed traffic than in rural areas. They pointed 
out that because of these factors, the agency has 
previously exempted walk-in vans from Standards 
Nos. 212-76, Windshield Retention, and 219-75, 
Windshields Zone Intrusion. The agency agrees 
that current energy absorbing steering column 
designs probably would provide little, if any, pro- 
tection in walk-in vans because of their uniques 
driver/ steering column configuration, and thus is 
exempting walk-in vans for the present. 

Belts in Forward Control Vehicles 

Although they did not object to requiring lap- 
shoulder belts in forward control vehicles as pro- 
posed in the agency's November 9, 1978 notice, 
several manufacturers and the MVMA objected to 
what they interpreted as a <;onflict between the 
agency's proposal and the current requirements of 
Standard No. 208, Occupant Crash Protection. 
They argued that the agency's proposal not only 
would require lap and shoulder belts in forward 
control vehicles, but would also require such belts 
in open-body vehicles, convertibles and walk-in 
vans, which currently only have to have lap belts. 
The agency's proposal was directed only toward 
forward control vehicles and was meant to 
supersede the current requirements for those 
vehicles set in Standard No. 208. For organiza- 
tional simplicity, the agency is making a technical 
amendment to Standard No. 208 so that all belt 
requirements are centralized in that standard. The 
amendment only adopts the proposed change to 
the forward control vehicle belt requirements. It 
does not change the current belt requirements for 
open-body vehicles, convertibles and walk-in vans. 

MVMA requested the agency to require lap and 
shoulder belts in forward control vehicles for only 
one model year. MVMA did not provide any 
justification for that request. NHTSA believes that 
the important protection of lap and shoulder belts 
should be available to all forward control vehicles 
manufactured on or after September 1, 1981, and 
declines to adopt the MVMA request. 

Upgrading of Standard 

In their comments, the Center for Auto Safety 
and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety 
renewed their requests that the agency set new 
performance requirements for Standard No. 203 to 
provide additional protection in angular impacts. 
The agency has conducted some preliminary 
testing to determine what additional requirements 



PART 571; S 204-PRE-5 



may be appropriate to increase protection in 
angular impacts. In addition, the agency's 
National Center for Statistics and Analysis has 
recently begun a special study to collect accident 
data on 1973 and later model vehicles to gather 
additional information on the effectiveness of 
energy absorbing steering assemblies in angular 
and other crashes. Based on that data, NHTSA 
will make a determination of what further changes 
are needed in the standard. 

The American Automobile Association asked the 
agency to delay application of Standard No. 203 
until upgraded performance requirements are 
developed. However, because the agency does not 
want to delay providing the occupants of light 
trucks, buses and MPV's with the safety benefits 
of Standard No. 203, the agency is extending the 
standards to those vehicles while it continues to 
consider the feasibility of additional performance 
requirements. 

NHTSA is also considering possible additional 
requirements for Standard No. 201. The agency 
has scheduled a meeting for December 11, 1979, so 
that the public can present its views and ideas on 
ways of improving protection for children involved 
in vehicle collisions. In the September 4, 1979, 
notice announcing the meeting, the agency 
specifically asked for comments on possible 
improvements to the interior padding of vehicles to 
provide additional protection for children (44 FR 
51623). 

Heavy Trucks 

In the November 9, 1978 notice, NHTSA 
announced that it was evaluating whether to 
extend the applicability of Standards Nos. 201, 203 
and 204 to heavy trucks (i.e., trucks with a GVWR 
of more than 10,000 pounds) and solicited 
comments on appropriate performance 
requirements for those vehicles. In their com- 
ments, the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Associa- 
tion, Freightliner and International Harvester all 
opposed an extension of the standards to trucks 
with a GVWR greater than 10,000 pounds, arguing 
that there is no data showing a safety need for 
applying the standards to those vehicles. They also 
argued that because of the size and weight of heavy 
trucks, occupants in these vehicles do not 
experience the same energy transfers in a crash 
than passenger car occupants experience and thus 
theoretically should incur fewer or less severe 



injuries. At the agency's recent meeting on heavy 
truck safety, several participants provided in- 
formation on the need for greater crash protection 
for drivers of heavy trucks. NHTSA is currently 
analyzing that information to determine what 
additional heavy truck regulatory action may be 
needed. 
Miscellaneotcs Comments 

MVMA pointed out that Standard No. 201 
currently requires two sun visors in a vehicle and 
requested that a second visor not be required if 
there is no front passenger seat. NHTSA agrees 
that such a change is appropriate and has made the 
necessary amendment to the standard. 

Jeep Corp. objected to the application of 
Standard No. 201 to open-body MPV's, arguing 
that for Jeep to locate padding in the expected 
head impact area it would have to raise its padding 
or lower its seat, both of which it claimed would 
interfere with the driver's forward visibility. 
Jeep's comment appears to reflect a misunder- 
standing of Standard No. 201. The performance 
requirements of the standard only apply to areas of 
the instrument panel that are within the head 
impact area of each designated seating position. 
(The head impact area is the portion of the 
vehicle's interior that can be contacted by a head- 
form representing an occupant's head.) 'Thus, if a 
portion of Jeep's vehicle instrument panel is not 
within the head impact area, it does not have to 
comply. For portions of the panel that are within 
the head impact area, Jeep can make structural 
changes to the instrument panel to meet Standard 
No. 201 without adding additional padding. 
Therefore, Jeep's requested exemption for all 
open-body vehicles is denied. 

One final stage manufacturer, Boyertown Auto 
Body Works, asked NHTSA whether its driver 
side instrument panel was within the exeptions to 
Standard No. 201 and, if not, sought to have its in- 
strument panel construed to be a console assembly, 
which is exempt from the standard. Such an inter- 
pretation is not acceptable since Boyertown clearly 
labels the area in question as an instrument panel 
in its engineering drawings. However, according 
to the engineering drawing provided by Boyer- 
town, the limited section on the instrument panel 
of concern to Boyertown is within the area 
exempted by S3. 1.1(d) of the standard. That 
section provides that the area of the interior 
immediately forward of the steering column is 
exempt from the standard. 



PART 571; S 204-PRE-6 



Costs and Leadtime 

NHTSA has considered the economic and other 
impacts of this final rule and determined that they 
are not significant within the meaning of 
Executive Order 12044 and the Department of 
Transportation's policies and procedures for 
implementing that order. The agency's assessment 
of the benefits and economic consequences of this 
proposal are contained in a regulatory evaluation 
which has been places in the public docket. As 
explained previously, copies of the regulatory 
evaluation can be obtained by writing NHTSA's 
docket section at the address given in the begin- 
ning of this final rule. 

As previously detailed in this notice, the agency 
has examined the effectiveness of Standards Nos. 
201, 203 and 204 in passenger cars and concluded 
that those standards have brought about a substan- 
tial reduction in overall injuries occurring to the 
passengers in those vehicles. Because they share 
the same driving environment as occupants in 
passenger cars, occupants in light trucks, buses 
and MPV's face a similar risk of injury posed by 
hazardous instrument panels and rigid steering 
columns. Based on its evaluation of the effec- 
tiveness of Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in 
passenger cars, the agency has concluded that 
applying those standards to light trucks, buses and 
MPV's can result in a reduction of 120 to 240 
fatalities and 4,400 to 8,900 serious injuries per 
year when all those vehicles comply with the 
standards. 

The agency's cost estimate for meeting 
Standards Nos. 201, 203 and 204 in light trucks, 
buses and MPV's take into account that many 
manufacturers have equipped some of their 
vehicles with components designed to meet the 
performance requirements of the standards. Those 
components may need little or no redesigning to 
fully comply with the standards. For example, 
American Motors, Chrysler, Ford, General 
Motors, International Harvester and Volkswagen 
commented that some, if not all, of their vehicles 
currently have components designed to comply 
with the standards or they wOl install such com- 
ponents in some of their vehicles by the 1981 model 
year. 

Only two manufacturers, Nissan and Ford, pro- 
vided any information about the costs associated 
with complying with the standards. Nissan said 



that the cost associated with complying with all 
three standards was $30. Ford estimated the cost 
for compliance with Standard No. 201 as $10 per 
vehicle; based on preliminary design assumptions, 
Ford put the cost of complying with Standards 
Nos. 203 and 204 in its van-type trucks, buses and 
MPV's at $120 per vehicle. 

To provide the agency with additional informa- 
tion about the estimated costs of complying with 
the three standards, NHTSA contracted with the 
John Z. DeLorean Corp. to evaluate current 
vehicles and determine what changes would be 
needed to bring the vehicles into compliance. Bases 
on its review of current foreign and domestic light 
trucks, buses and MPV's, DeLorean concluded 
that the total cost of compliance with the three 
standards would add a sales weighted average of 
$16 to the retail price of those vehicles. The 
DeLorean study reported that the vehicles requir- 
ing the most changes to meet Standards Nos. 201, 
203 and 204 were van-type trucks, buses and 
MPV's made by GM and Ford. DeLorean 
estimated that GM and Ford van-types vehicles 
would require a $27 increase in consumer price to 
comply with Standards Nos. 203 and 204 and a 
price increase ranging between $6 and $15 to 
comply with Standard No. 201. The agency 
believes that the substantial difference between 
DeLorean's and Ford's estimate of the cost of 
compliance with Standards Nos. 203 and 204 may 
be due to Ford's overestimate of the anticipated 
changes needed in the vehicles based on its 
preliminary design asssumptions. 

The agency's November 1978 notice proposed an 
effective date of September 1, 1980, for Standard 
No. 201 for all vehicles and for Standards Nos. 203 
and 204 for nonforward control vehicles. An effec- 
tive date of September 1, 1981, was proposed for 
Standards Nos. 203 and 204 for forward control 
vehicles to allow manufacturers additional time to 
make the necessary changes in those vehicles. In 
their comments on Standard 201, Chrysler and 
Ford said they could meet the standard in all their 
vehicles by the proposed effective date. Nissan, 
Toyo Kogyo and International Harvester (IH) 
requested from 18 to 24 months leadtime. General 
Motors requested 2V2 years' leadtime and 
American Motors requested 3 years. As a part of 
its NHTSA-funded study of the costs of complying 
with the standard, the DeLorean Corp. also 
examined the leadtime necessary to comply with 



PART 571; S 204-PRE-7 



the standard. For Standard No. 201, the DeLorean 
study concluded that only one year was needed for 
all vehicles except van-type trucks, buses and 
MPV's manufactured by Chrysler and GM, which 
needed two years. 

For Standards Nos. 203 and 204, Chrysler said 
that all its vehicles, except its incomplete forward 
control van-type vehicles, can comply by 
September 1, 1980. Chrysler did not provide an 
estimate of leadtime needed for its incomplete 
forward control vans. Nissan, Toyo Kogyo and IH 
requested from 18 to 24 months leadtime. Ford 
said its 1980 model year F-series trucks and 
Bronco models would comply with the standards 
and the Courier truck chassis cab imported by Ford 
would comply by September 1, 1981. Ford 
requested until September 1, 1982, for its van-type 
trucks, buses and MPV's. General Motors 
requested 2V2 years for all its vehicles and 
American Motors requested three years. 

The DeLorean study concluded that 18-24 
months of leadtime was needed for all models, 
except those made by Ford, which would require 
three years. DeLorean made its estimate of lead- 
time for Ford based on an assumption that Ford 



would need extra steering assembly tooling 
facilities. However, since Ford plans to introduce 
complying components on its 1980 model F series 
trucks and Bronco models, Ford has apparently 
developed the needed tooling capacity. 

Based on its analysis of the DeLorean study and 
of the industry's comments, NHTSA concludes 
that setting an effective date of September 1, 
1981, will allow sufficient time for all manufac- 
turers to comply with the standards. This action 
provides an additional year for all light trucks, 
buses and MPV's to meet Standard No. 201 and for 
nonforward control vehicles to meet Standards 
Nos. 203 and 204. 

The principal authors of this notice are William 
Smith, Office of Vehicle Safety Standards, and 
Stephen Oesch, Office of Chief Counsel. 

Issued on November 12, 1979. 



Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 



44 F.R. 68470 
November 29, 1979 



PART 571; S 204-PRE-8 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD 

NO. 204 

Steering Control Rearward Displacement— Passenger Cars 
(Docket No. 3) 



ACTION: Final rule; correction. 

SUMMARY: On November 29, 1979, NHTSA 
published in the Federal Register a final rule 
extending the applicability of Standard No. 204, 
Steering Control Rearward Dispkwement, to light 
trucks, buses and multipurpose passenger vehicles 
with an unloaded vehicle weight of 4,000 pounds or 
less (44 FR 68470). In amendment number 5 on 
page 68475 describing the changes made to Stand- 
ard No. 204, the notice said that a new section S6 
was added to the standard. However, the notice 
did not provide the text for a new section S6. The 
reference to a new section 86 is an error. No such 
section was to be added to Standard No. 204. The 
purpose of this correction is to make clear that the 
only changes to Standard No. 204 are the amend- 
ments to sections S2 and S4 and the addition of a 



new section S5. All of those changes are fully 
described on page 68475 of the November 29, 1979, 
Federal Register notice. 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 

Mr. William Smith, Office of Vehicle Safety 
Standards, National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, 400 Seventh Street, S.W., 
Washington, D.C. 20590 (202-426-2242) 
Issued on January 28, 1980. 



Michael M. Finkelstein 
Associate Administrator 
for Rulemaking 

45 F.R. 7551 
February 4, 1980 



PART 571; S 204-PRE 9-10 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 204 

Steering Control Rearward Displacement— Passenger Cars 

Multipurpose Passenger Vehicles, Trucks and Buses 

(Docket No. 3) 



51. Purpose and scope. This standard specifies 
requirements limiting the rearward displacement 
of the steering control into the passenger compart- 
ment to reduce the likelihood of chest, neck, or 
head injury. 

52. Application. This standard applies to 
passenger cars and to multipurpose passenger 
vehicles, trucks and buses with a GVWR of 10,000 
pounds or less. However, it does not apply to walk- 
in vans. 

53. Definitions. 

"Steering column" means a structural housing 
that surrounds a steering shaft. 

"Steering shaft" means a component that 
transmits steering torque from the steering wheel 
to the steering gear. 

54. Requirements. Each passenger car and 
each multipurpose passenger vehicle, truck and 
bus with an unloaded weight of 4,000 pounds or 
less manufactured on or after September 1, 1981, 
shall meet the requirements of S5.1. 

55. Rearward displacement requirements. 



S5.1 The upper end of the steering column and 
shaft shall not be displaced horizontally rearward 
parallel to the longitudinal axis of the vehicle 
relative to an undisturbed point on the vehicle 
more than 5 inches, determined by dynamic 
measurement, when the vehicle, loaded to its 
unloaded vehicle weight, is impacted perpen- 
dicularly into a fixed collision barrier at a forward 
longitudinal velocity of 30 miles per hour. 

interpretations 

(1) When conducting the barrier collision test, a 
driver dummy may be used without measuring the 
impact force developed on the chest. 

(2) In the event that the vehicle impacts the 
barrier at a velocity not less than 30 miles per hour 
nor more than 33 miles per hour, the displacement 
of the steering column may be corrected to 30 
miles per hour by means of the following formula: 

D, V,2 

32 F.R. 2414 
February 3, 1967 



(Rev. 11/29/79) 



PART 571; S 204-1-2 



■ffvcnvsi y^plMiwM iVf ■▼vw 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHIQE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 205 

Glcoing Material*— PasMng«r Cart, Multipurpose Vehicles, Motorcycles, Trucks, and 

Buses 

(Docket No. 9) 



Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 205 (82 
F.R 2414) as amended (32 F.R. 10072) specifies 
requirements for glazing materials for use in 
passenger cars, multipurpose passenger vehicles, 
motorcycles, trucks, and buses. 

As a result of inquiries seeking clarification of 
the applicability of the Federal motor vehicle 
safety standards to campers, a ruling was pub- 
lished in the Federal Register on March 26, 1968 
(FHWA Ruling 68-1) (33 F.R. 5020) which 
specified that the glazing standard is applicable 
to slide-in campers because they are items of 
motor vehicle equipment for use in motor ve- 
hicles and to chassis- mount campers. 

The glazing standard requires that glazing 
materials "conform to the United States of 
America Standards Institute 'American Standard 
Safety Code for Safety Glazing Materials for 
Glazing Motor Vehicles Operating on Land 
Highways,' ASA Standard Z26.1— 1966." As a 
result, windshields and forward facing windows 
are required to be ASl laminated glass. 

The Federal Highway Administration has re- 
ceived petitions for rule making requesting that 
forward facing windows on campers be allowed 
to use AS2 or AS3 laminated glass which is able 
to meet the Z26. 1-1966 penetration resistance test. 
No. 26, required of ASl tyi>e glass. The requests 
point out that ASl type glass which is presently 
required for forward facing windows in campers 
is unduly expensive and unnecessary for camp- 
ers because ASl type glass must meet stringent 
optical tests. The petitioners argue that forward 
facing windows on campers should not have to 
meet these stringent optical tests because the 
windows are not used for driver visibility. 

The Administrator has determined that grant- 
ing the petitions would not reduce the protection 



afforded the public by the standard. Accord- 
ingly the glazing standard is being amended to 
allow AS2 or AS3 laminated glass in forward 
facing windows of campers if the glass is able 
to meet the penetration resistance test. The 
amendment will require that forward facing 
windows in campers conform to ASl type lami- 
nated safety glass ; or AS2 type laminated safety 
glass that meets Test 26 of Z26.1-1966; or ASS 
type laminated safety glass that meets the re- 
quirements of Test 26 of Z26.1-1966. The latter 
two glazing materials wiU be identified by the 
characters AS2-26 and AS3-26 respectively. 

The Federal Highway Administration has re- 
ceived a petition for rule making requesting that 
Standard No. 205 be amended so that paragraph 
S3.2 Edges be changed to provide that exposed 
edges must meet the Society of Automotive Engi- 
neers Recommended Practice J673a, Automotive 
Glazing, August 1967, instead of the SAE Rec- 
ommended Practice J673, Automotive Glazing, 
June 1960. The petition also requests that the 
words "except that the minimum edge radius 
dimension shall not be less than the nominal 
thickness of the glazing material" be deleted 
because this requirement is already included in 
the SAE Recommended Practice J678a. These 
requests would allow minor imperfections in 
edging that would not diminish the safety bene- 
fits derived from the requirements but would 
allow normal manufacturing tolerances. These 
requests are granted and Standard No. 205 is 
being amended accordingly. 

The Administrator has received a petition 
concerning certification requirements for prime 
manufacturers of glazing materials; prime glaz- 
ing material manufacturers being those who fab- 
ricate, laminate or temper glazing materials. 



PART 671; S 20fr-PEE 1 



M*<Mv«: Saplmnbw 19, 196* 



The Petitioner states that he has encountered 
practical problems ii) the use of certification 
labels because: (a) glass stored for appreciable 
lengths of time, covered by the label, may 
"weather" in a different manner from the re- 
maining areas of the glass (b) labels on indi- 
vidual lights of glass can produce pressure points 
due to local area loading and may result in 
breakage during shipment and storage, and (c) 
certification labels can become separated from 
the material prior to delivery from consigned 
stock distributors to non-stocking distributors. 

The Petitioner points out that Standard No. 
205 requires marking of safety glazing materials 
in accordance with paragraph 6 of the United 
States ^f America Standards Institute (USASI) 
Standard Z26.1-1966. The Petitioner requests 
that the permanent marking on the glazing ma- 
terial required by Standard No. 205, with the 
addition of the symbol "DOT", be allowed as an 
alternative method of certification required under 
Section 114 of the National Traffic and Motor 
Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (15 USC 1401). This 
petition is granted provided that the symbol 
"DOT" and an approved two digit manufac- 
turer's code number is included in the permanent 
marking. Any prime glazing material manu- 
facturer may apply for an approved two digit 



manufacturer's code number assignment to the 
Director, National Highway Safety Bureau, 
Washington, D.C. 20591. 

Since these amendments relieve restrictions, 
provide alternative means of compliance and 
create no additional burden the Administrator 
finds, for good cause shown, that it is in the 
public interest to make them effective upon date 
of issuance. 

In consideration of the foregoing, Section 
371.21 of Part 371, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 205 (32 F.R. 2414) as amended 
(32 F.R. 10072) is amended. . . . 

These amendments are made under the author- 
ity of Sections 103 and 119 of the National Traffic 
and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (16 USC 
1392, 1407) and the delegation of authority con- 
tained in section 1.4(c) of Part I of the Regu- 
lations of the Office of the Secretary (49 CFB 
1.4(c)). 

Issued in Washiiigton, D.C, on September 18, 
1968. 

John R. Jamieson, Deputy 
Federal Highway Administrator 

33 F.R. 14162 
SsptsmlMr 19, 19M 



PART 671; S 206— PRE 2 



MmcHv#i Mofch if iTvV 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 205 

Gicoing Mat*rials 
(Dockat No. 23; NoKc* 2) 



Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 206 speci- 
fies requirements for glazing materials for u.se 
in passenger cars, multipurpose passenger ve- 
hicles, motorcycles, trucks, and buses. 

As a result of inquiries seeking clarification 
of the applicability of the Federal motor vehicle 
safety standards to campers, a ruling was pub- 
lished in the Federal Regitter on March 26, 1968 
(33 F.R. 5020), which specified that the glazing 
standard (No. 205) is applicable to slide-in camp- 
ers because they are items of motor vehicle 
equipment for use in motor vehicles. 

Standard No. 205 requires, among other things, 
that glazing materials "conform to the United 
States of America Standards Institute 'American 
Standard Safety Code of Safety Glazing Ma- 
terials for Glazing Motor Vehicles Operating on 
Land Highways,' ASA Standard Z26.1-1966" 
(hereafter Z26.1-1966). 

By order published in the Federal Register on 
September 19, 1968 (33 F.R. 14162), section S3.2 
of the Standard was amended to allow the use 
of AS2 or AS3 laminated glass in forward facing 
windows of campers provided such glass met the 
requirements of Test 26 of Z26. 1-1966. On the 
assumption that Z26.1-1966, as incorporated in 
Standard No. 205, required the use of ASl type 
laminated glass in forward facing windows of 
campers, the Administrator found that this 
amendment relieved restrictions, provided alter- 
nate means of compliance and created no addi- 
tional burdens. Accordingly, the amendment 
was made effective immediately. 

Thereafter, petitions for reconsideration wei-e 
filed on the grounds, among others, that properly 
interpreted Z26.1-1966 permitted the use of ASl, 
AS2, AS3, AS4, and.AS5 glazing material in 
forward facing camper windows and that, there- 



fore, the September amendment did not relax an 
existing requirement but in fact imposed addi- 
tional lestrictions upon manufacturers by limit- 
ing the types of glazing materials allowable for 
use in such windows. Consequently, it is urged 
that notice of that amendment should have been 
given and interested puties afforded an oppor- 
tunity to comment. 

The Administrator recognizes that, prior to 
the issuance of the September amendment, 
Standard No. 205 as initially promulgated could 
have been reasonably interpreted as allowing the 
use of ASl, AS2, AS8, AS4, and AS5 glazing 
materials in the forward facing windows of 
campers, that many manufacturers could have 
reasonably acted in reliance upon such a reading, 
that a great deal of confusion concerning the 
requirements has and continues to exist and that, 
in fact, comments focusing directly upon the 
proper glazing materials required in forward 
facing windows of campers have not been spe- 
cifically solicited by the Administration. In the 
light of all of these circumstances it is consid- 
ered appropriate to revoke section S3.2 — "Ma- 
terials for use in forward facing windows of 
campers" of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 205, as amended (33 F.R. 14162), 
as well as any interpretation that would have 
required the use of ASl glass only in forward 
facing camper windows. The net effect of this 
action is to permit, subject to further rulemaking 
action,' the use of glazing materials that p^i- 
tioners represent are presently being used, i.e., 
ASl, AS2, AS3, AS4, and AS5 glazing materials 
referred to in Z26.1-1966. 

Since this amendment relieves restrictions and 
creates no additional burden the Administrator 
finds good cause is shown that an effective date 
earlier than 180 days after issuance in the 



PART 671; S 206— PRE 8 



MmH**> Maidi 1, I9«9 

public interest and the amendment is made ef- 
fective upon date of issuance. 

In consideration of the foregoing, § 371.21 of 
Part 371, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 
No. 205 as amended (33 F.R 14162) is amended 
by revoking S3.2 — "Materials for use in forward 
facing windows of campers". 

(Sees. 103, 119, National Traffic and Motor 
Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 1892, 
1407) ; delegation of authority contained in 



§ 1.4(c) of Part 1 of the regulations of the Office 
of the Secretary (49 CFR 1.4(c) ) 
Issued : February 27, 1969. 

John R. Jamieson, Deputy 
Federal Highway Administrator 

'See notice of propoaed rule makliiK pabUabed at 
34 F.R. 3899, which propoaes gUslnc reqalrementa (or 
forward facing windows of campera. 

34 F.R. 3«8t 

March 1, 1969 



PAST 671; S 205— PBE 4 



MMllvai AfM I, 1*7* 

iBCMpff flt nvtofl M ln# BMW 
Mnwadi J«m 14, 1*71 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 205 

Glazing Materials 
(Docket No. 71-1; Notico 3) 



The purpose of this notice is to amend Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 205, "Glazing Ma- 
terials," to permit the use of certain plastic ma- 
terials in motor vehicles in addition to those 
presently allowed ; to modify the certification and 
labeling requirements; and to modify the test for 
the chemical resistance of plastic materials. It 
also clarifies the applicability of the standard to 
motor vehicle equipment, and the provisions of 
the standard dealing with readily removable 
windows. 

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 
205 was initially published February 3, 1967 (32 
F.R 2414), and amended July 8, 1967 (32 F.R. 
10072), September 19, 1968 (33 F.R. 14162), and 
March 1, 1969 (34 F.R. 3688). On January 9, 
1971, a notice of proposed rulemaking (Docket 
71-1, Notice 1) was published based upon peti- 
tions for rulemaking received from the Eastman 
Chemical Products, Inc., and the California 
Highway Patrol. The former requested that the 
standard be amended to allow the use of butyrate 
plastic materials, tmd the latter requested changes 
in the requirements of the standard dealing with 
the marking of glazing materials. This amend- 
ment responds to both of these petitions and also 
modifies the stand&rd as a result of independent 
agency action. 

Standard No. 205 is applicable to "glazing ma- 
terials for use in passenger cars, multipurpose 
passenger vehicles, trucks, buses and motorcycles." 
It is also applicable, under FHWA Ruling 68-1 
(33 F.R. 5020, March 26, 1968), to glazing for use 
in slide-in and chassis-mount campers. This 
amendment to Standard No. 205 incorporates the 
substance of FHWA Ruling 68-1 into the appli- 
cability section of the standard and specifies, in 
accordance with the notice of March 1, 1969 
(Docket 23; Notice 2, 34 F.R. 3688) the glazing 



materials that are permitted to be used in the«e 
equipment items. 

The notice of January 9, 1971, proposed to re- 
vise the incorporation by reference of American 
Standards Association Test (ASA) Z26.1-1966 to 
include supplement Z26.1a-1969, March 7, 1969, 
and to reflect the change in the name of the Amer- 
ican Standards Association to the American Na- 
tional Standards Institute. No objections were 
raised in the conmients to these proposals, and 
they are incorporated into the standard by this 
amendment. 

The notice proposed to modify the chemical re- 
sistance tests incorporated into the standard 
(Tests 19 and 20), by deleting carbon tetrachlo- 
ride as a testing agent and by adding trichlor- 
ethylene. The testa are designed to test the 
resistance of plastic materials to chemicals that 
are commonly used to clean them. By this notice, 
carbon tetrachloride is deleted from the list of 
materials. As indicated in the notice of proposed 
rulemaking, the deletion is commensurate with 
the ban imposed by the Food and Drug Admin- 
istration on this substance because of its high 
toxicity. At the same time, the NHTSA has de- 
cided not to include either trichlorethylene or 
freon in the list of testing agents. The comments 
have indicated that these substances are not com- 
monly used as cleaning agents, and accordingly 
they are not used for test purposes. 

The major revision proposed by the notice, 
based upon a petition for rulemaking from the 
Eastman Chemical Products Co., Inc., was to al- 
low additional plastic materials to be used in 
motor vehicles. The petitioner claimed that the 
requested materials would meet any test to which 
other plastic materials are subjected, except for 
resistance to undiluted denatured alcohol (For- 



PART 671; S 205— PRE 6 



MkHv*: April I, 1973 
(Exrapt « nelad In Hm Iwtol 
biMind: Jun* 14, 1972 

mula SD 30), where a slight tackiness would oc- 
cur. Rather than merely exempt these plastics 
from the alcohol resistance requirement, the no- 
tice suggested that they still be subjected to the 
same chemicals as other plastics, but that if 
structural integrity were maintained, a loss of 
transparency would be allowed. The notice for 
the same reason proposed not to subject these 
materials to the abrasion and weathering tests 
applied to other plastics. Instead, the proposal 
would have required labels to be affixed to the 
material specifying cleaning agents and instruc- 
tions that would minimize loss of transparency, 
and would have restricted them to locations in 
motor vehicles where loss of transparency would 
not affect driver visibility. 

Based upon information received during the 
rulemaking process, the NHTSA has determined 
that the materials in question exhibit character- 
istics which make them satisfactory from the 
standpoint of safety for use in certain motor 
vehicle applications. Many comments, however, 
opposed the approach taken by NHTSA in the 
proposed rule, and as a result the proposed re- 
quirements have been changed. The standard as 
now amended will provide that these materials 
not be required to show resistance to tmdiluted 
denatured alcohol if (1) they show resistance to 
the other chemicals presently specified as testing 
agents, (2) they can meet the other tests to which 
other plastic materials are subjected, and (3) they 
are used in only limited locations in the motor 
vehicle. In addition, they must be labeled, as 
proposed, with instructions regarding cleaning 
that will minimize a loss of transparency. 

Some comments also objected to certain loca- 
tions where the additional plastic materials would 
have been allowed to be used: specifically, aux- 
iliary wind deflectors and folding doors. The 
comments suggested that transparency is an im- 
portant characteristic for glazing used in these 
locations, and that materials not resistant to For- 
mula SD 30 alcohol should not be used in them. 
The NHTSA has determined that these comments 
have merit, and has not permitted these materials 
to be used in the two locations. 

The notice of proposed rulemaking would have 
required all interior mirrors, both rearview and 
vanity-type, to be constructed of glazing ma- 



terials that meet the requirements of ANS Z26. 
As a result of comments received, the NHTSA 
has determined that the requirements should not 
be applied to interior mirrors. With regard to 
rearview mirrors, many are today constructed of 
annealed glass of a wedge shape, in the form of 
day /night mirrors. The comments have indicated 
that materials allowed to be used pursuant to 
ANS Z26 do not make satisfactory day/night 
mirrors. As these mirrors have clear safety ad- 
vantages when used in night driving conditions, 
the NHTSA has determined that their elim- 
ination would not be in the best interests of 
safety. With reference to other vehicle interior 
mirrors, while the use of safety glazing in them 
is preferable, there is presently a lack of data 
which shows a compelling need for changing cur- 
rent industry practices. This is especially im- 
portant where, as here, much of the equipment 
involved is not peculiarly adapted to motor ve- 
hicle usage. One particular type of mirror, a 
sun-visor mirror, falls within the purview of 
Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 201, "Oc- 
cupant Protection in Interior Impact," and will ( 
be dealt with as part of that standard. 

The notice of proposed rulemaking prescribed 
a scheme for the marking and certification of 
glazing materials which would have required 
prime glazing manufacturers to certify glazing 
materials by applying to the glazing material the 
symbol DOT and an appropriate code mark, to- 
gether with the marking required by section 6 
of ANS Z26. The proposal would have also 
required these markings to be in a specified 
format and in a specific location of the completed 
glazing. Other than primary manufacturers 
would have been required to certify the material 
by affixing the mark of the primary manufacturer. 

As amended Standard No. 205 will require 
prime manufacturers to certify glazing material, 
as proposed, by adding to the markings required 
by section 6 of ANS Z26 the symbol DOT and 
a code mark obtained on application to the 
NHTSA. Those who as manufacturers or dis- 
tributors cut glazing for use in motor vehicles 
from larger sheets are required to certify con- 
formity to the standard in any way they choose, /i 
as long as the method chosen is consistent with " 
Section 114 of the National Traffic and Motor 



PART 671; S 206— PRE 6 



Vehicle Safety Act. One such method would be 
to affix a label to the completed piece of glazing 
containing a statement to the effect that the ma- 
terial conforms to Standard No. 205. The pro- 
posed requirement that such manufacturers label 
the material with the marking of the prime manu- 
facturer has been deleted, as is the projxjsed re- 
quirement that would have required the markings 
to appear in a specified order, or in specific loca- 
tions on the glazing material. 

An ii'sue arose during the period that this 
rulemaking was under consideration concerning 
the use of plastics in side windows of buses, 
(leneral Motors has requested an interpretation 
of Standard No. 205 that would include within 
the definition of "readily-removable windows" 
emergency escape windows which can be pushed 
out, except for one side which is hinged to the 
window frame, without the use of any special 
tools. The NHTSA has concluded that the term 
"readily removable windows" includes windows 
of this design, and in this amendment so clarifies 
Standard No. 205. 

Effective dates: The addition of glazing ma- 
terials to those already allowed imposes no addi- 
tional burdens on any person, and relieves 
restrictions on the types of glazing materials 



IffMMv*: April I. 1*73 

(txc«pt OS not»d In Iti* Kul«) 

t»lituMl: Jum 14, 1973 

which can be used. That part of the amendment 
pertaining to the addition of these materials, 
paragraphs S5.1.1.2, S5.1.1.3, andS5.1.2, is effec- 
tive upon publication of this notice in the Federal 
Register. Similarly, both the deletion of the test 
for chemical resistance of plastics to carbon tet- 
rachloride in paragraph S5.1.1.1, and the clarifica- 
tion of "readily-removable windows" in S5.1.1.4 
relieve restrictions, and the effective date of those 
amendments is the date of publication of this 
notice. The other amendments to the standard 
are effective April 1, 1973. 

In light of the above, Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 205, appearing at 49 CFR section 
571.205, is revised. . . . 

This notice is issued pursuant to the authority 
of sections 103, 114, and 119 of the National Traf- 
fic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act (15 U.S.C. 1392, 
1403, 1407) and the delegation of authority at 
49 CFR 1.51. 



Issued on June 14 ,1972. 



Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 12237 
June 21, 1972 



PART 571; S 205— PRE 7-8 



EffocHv*: April 1, 1973 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 205 

Glazing Materials 
(Docket 71-1; Notice 4) 



This notice responds to jjetitions for reconsid 
eration of an amendment published June 21, 
1972 (37 F.R. 12237), to Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 205, "Glazing Materials" (49 CFK 
§571.205). Petitions were received from the 
Recreational Vehicle Institute (RVI) and the 
California Highway Patrol. To the extent that 
this notice does not grant the requests of the 
petitioners, they are hereby denied. 

In the amendment of Jime 21, the NHTSA 
changed the application section of the standard, 
based on FHAVA Ruling 6&-1 (33 F.R. 5020, 
March 26, 1968) to expressly include glazing for 
use in all campers, and defined campers to include 
both slide-in or "pickup" campers (including a 
related item, pickup covers) and chassis-mount 
campers (campers mounted directly onto truck 
chassis). The 1968 ruling held that Standard 
No. 205 applied to glazing for use in slide-in 
campers, and that glazing for use in chassis- 
mount campers came within the standard when 
the camper was ultimately attached to a chassis, 
as the standard applied expressly to the glazing 
of the completed vehicle, a multipurpose pas- 
senger vehicle. The petitioner objects to this 
amendment on the basis that the recreational 
vehicle industry has distinguished between the 
two camper types, and has considered the lattei 
a motor home (a multipurpose passenger vehicle 
imder Standard No. 205), and the former an 
item of motor vehicle equipment. It requests 
in its petition that this earlier distinction l>e 
retained in the standard. 

The NHTSA has determined that the petition 
of RVI in this regard should be granted, and the 
applicability section of the standard is amended 
to refer specifically both to glazing for use in 
"slide- in campers", as that term is defined in 



Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 126, Truck- 
Camper Loading, (49 CFR 571.126), and to glaz- 
ing for use in pickup covers. Chassis-mount 
camjiers are included in a newly defined category 
of multipurpose passenger vehicle, "motor home", 
and glazing for use in them is subject to the 
standard insofar as they are incorporated into 
completed vehicles. 

The RVI petition also requested that the re- 
quirements of the standard for glazing for use 
in . multipurpose passenger vehicles ( including 
chassis-mount campers and other motor homes) 
be clarified, suggesting that the requirements be 
made identical to those for passenger car glaz- 
ing, with an exception in the case of motor homes 
for locations other than windshields, and win- 
dows directly to the right and left of the driver. 
It further requested that forward-facing win- 
dows of motor homes be considered to be "open- 
ings in the roof" under ANS Z.26. The NHTSA 
has previously, as a matter of interpretation, 
taken the position that fs embodied in this amend- 
ment, that for the purposes of Standard No. 205 
glazing for use in multipurpose passenger ve- 
hicles is subject to the requirements for glazing 
for use in trucks. This is based on the definition 
of multipurpose passenger vehicle in section 
571.3: "A motor vehicle with motive power, ex- 
cept a trailer, designed to carry 10 persons or 
less, which is constructed either on a truck chassii* 
or with special features for occasional off-road 
operation". The agency has decided to adhere 
to this position. 

An exception is hereby adopted for motor 
home windows other than windshields, forward- 
facing windows, and windows directly to the 
right and left of the driver. Manufacturers may 
use in these other locations any type of glazing 



i 



PART 571; S 205— PRE 9 



EffKHva: April I, 1973 



allowed by the standard to be used in motor 
vehicles. This is the position previously adopted 
for slide-in campers, which have a purpose and 
use similar to motor homes. The effect of this 
provision is to allow the use in motor homes, 
except for windshields, forward- facing windows, 
and windows to the immediate right and left of 
the driver, of any item authorized for use in 
motor ^-chicles by Standard No. 205. AVind- 
shields and windows to the immediate right and 
left of the driver must conform to the require- 
ments applicable to trucks for those locations. 
Forward- facing windows may be manufactured 
of any item autliorized for use by tlie Standard 
except item 6 (AS 6), item 7 (AS 7), and item 
13 (AS 13) flexible plastics. 

The California Highway Patrol has ijetitioned 
for reconsideration of that part of the amend- 
ment which seemed to delete a requirement that 
persons who cut glazing material must place on 
the cut material the prime manufacturer's mark- 
ing. Section 6 of ANS Z26 requires sections of 
glazing cut from pieces bearing the markings 
required by that section to be identically marked. 
The June 21 notice did not delete this provision. 
It deleted that part of the proposed requirements 
specifying that persons who cut glazing materials 
include the DOT symbol and the prime manu- 
facturer's code number. The language of the 
preamble (p. 12238, col. 3) was intended to re- 
flect only that fact. This amendment clarifiesj 
those requirements to make it clear that persons 
who cut glazing must include the markings re- 



quired by section 6 of ANS Z26 on each cut " 
piece. The amendment also provides that the 
|)rime manufacturer's DOT symbol and code 
number are to be affixed only to glazing items 
made by the prime manufacturer as components 
for siJecific vehicles, and not on sheets to be cut 
into comiMjnents by other persons. 

The marking provisions are further amended 
to specify that the new items of glazing material 
authorized by the amendment of June 21 be 
identified for purposes of marking by the marks 
"AS 12" and "AS 13". The use of these marks 
does not indicate approval by the American 
National Standards Institute, but is specified for 
the puri)ose of consistency with existing mark- 
ing requirements. 

In light of the above, Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 205, Glazing Materials, appearing 
at 49 CFR § 571.205, is amended 

Kffective date: The effective date of April 1, 
1973, is retained. 

This notice is issued under the authority of 
Section 103, 114, and 119 of the National Traffic 
and Motor Vehicle Safety Act (15 U.S.C. 1392, ^ 
1403, 1407) and the delegation of authority at |^ 
49 CFR 1.51. 

Issued o- November 8, 1972. 

Douglas W. Toms 
Administrator 

37 F.R. 24035 
November 11, 1972 



PART 571; S 206— PRE 10 



Effactlva: Dacsmbsr 5, 1977 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 205 

Glazing Materials 
(Docket No. 71-1; Notice 06) 



This notice amends Safety Standard No. 205, 
Glazing Materials, to permit the use of rigid 
plastic glazing in all doors and windows of buses, 
other than in windshields or in windows to the 
immediate right or left of the driver. 
Effective Date: December 5, 1977. 
For Further Information Contact: 
Hugh Oates 

National Highway Traffic Administration 
Washington, D.C. 20590 
(202-426-9511) 

Supplementarj- Information : This amendment 
of Safety Standards No. 205 (49 CFR 571.205) 
is based on a proposal issued December 30, 1976 
(41 FR 56837), in response to a petition for 
rulemaking from General Motors Corporation. 
Standard No. 205 currently permits plastic glaz- 
ing materials to be used in buses only in standee 
windows and in readily removable windows of 
buses having a G^^VR of more than 10,000 
pounds. This amendment expands the permis- 
sible locations for plastic glazing in buses of all 
sizes to include all doors and windows, other 
than windshields or windows to the immediate 
right or left of the driver. 

As noted in the preamble to the proposal, use 
of plastics in bus side windows should reduce 
the safety hazards and maintenance costs re- 
sulting from the deliberate breakage of bus win- 
dows, since plastic glazing is more difficult to 
break than regular glass. Further, Safety Stand- 
ard No. 217, Bus Window Retention and Release, 
(49 CFR 571.217) now provides for emergency 
occupant egress in buses. One of the reasons 
for the original prohibition against plastic glaz- 
ing was the fact it would he difficult to break 
in emegency situations. Since the issuance of 



Standard No. 217, the prohibition is no longer 
necessary. 

Comments to the proposal preceding this 
amendment were submitted by Ford Motor Com- 
pany, the Flxible Company, and the Department 
of California Highway Patrol. All three com- 
menters supported the proposed changes. Cali- 
fornia noted the experimental use of plastic 
glazing in side windows of buses by the Southern 
California Rapid Transit District. That experi- 
ment showed that plastic glazing is superior to 
glass with regard to resistance to breakage. 
Further, California noted that the abrasion- 
resistance coating on the plastic glazing used 
in the experiment was sufficient to reduce scratch- 
ing by wasli-rack brushes to an acceptable level, 
during normal cleaning of the buses. 

The proposal specified the use of plastic glaz- 
ing in all doors and windows, other than wind- 
shields and windows to the immediate right or 
left of the driver, of buses having a GVWR of 
more than 10,000 pounds. Ford Motor Company 
recommended that the proposed changes be made 
applicable to all buses, regardless of gross ve- 
hicle weight rating. The NHTSA has deter- 
mined that Ford's comment has merit since small 
buses are also now provided with means of emer- 
gency egress (Standard No. 217) and since 
multipurpose passenger vehicles and trucks are 
currently pemiitted to have plastic glazing in 
windows to the rear of the driver. The basic 
distinction between a small bus under 10,000 
pounds G^^VR and a van multipurpose passen- 
ger vehicle or van truck is the number of 
designated seating positions. Thus, the safety 
considerations for these vehicles are generally 
the same. The proposal is, therefore, made final 
Ln a form that includes all buses. 



PART 571; S 205— PRE 11 



Effccliva: December 5, 1977 



The Flxible Company suppoi'ted the proposed 
clianges and also reconunended that the standard 
lie amended to peniiit the use of Item 4 and Item 
5 plastic glazing in front of "destination and 
route nunil)ering signs" on buses and in front of 
interior displays such as route maps or advertise- 
ments. Since these changes were not proposed, 
the NHTSA will consider them in future rule- 
making actions. 

This amendment should have only a minimal 
economic and environmental impact, since it re- 
lieves a restriction and since the increased use 
of plastics that may result will have a negligible 
effect upon the environment. 

(Because this amendment relieves a restriction 
and does not create additional obligations for 



any person, it is found that an immediate effec- 
tive date is in the public interest.) 

In consideration of the foregoing, Federal 
Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 205, Glaz- 
ing Materials (49 CFR 571.205), is amended as 
follows . . . 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718 
(15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407) ; delegation of authority 
at 49 CFR 1.50.) 

Issued on November 28, 1977. 

Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 

42 F.R. 61465 
December 5, 1977 



PART 571; S 205— PRE 12 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 

FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 205 

Glazing Materials 
(Docket No. 71 -1; Notice No. 8) 



ACTION: Final rule (interpretive amendment). 

SUMMARY: In response to a petition for rulemak- 
ing, this notice amends Safety Standard No. 205, 
Glazing Materials, to clarify that Item 5 rigid 
plastics can be used in all the vehicle locations 
that are specified in the standard for Item 12 
rigid plastics, and that Item 7 flexible plastics can 
be used in all the vehicle locations that are 
specified in the standard for Item 13 flexible 
plastics. Glazing materials that comply with Item 
5 and Item 7 test requirements, by definition, also 
comply with the less stringent Item 12 and 13 test 
requirements, respectively. Currently, however, 
the standard inadvertently prohibits the use of 
Items 5 and 7 glazing materials in some of the 
locations in which the Items 12 and 13 materials 
may be used. The purpose of this amendment is to 
modify the standard to remove that inconsist- 
ency. 

DATES: Effective date (upon publication), July 14, 
1980. 

ADDRESSES: Any petition for reconsideration 
should refer to the docket number and notice 
number specified in this notice and be submitted 
to Docket Section, Room 5108, National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh 
Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20590. 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 

Mr. Edward Jettner, Office of Vehicle Safety 
Standards, National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, 400 Seventh Street, S.W., 
Washington. D.C. 20590 (202-426-2264) 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Safety Stand- 
ard No. 205, Glazing Materials (49 CFR 571.205), 
specifies performance requirements for vehicle 



glazing as well as the locations in which par- 
ticular types of glazing may be used. The stand- 
ard incorporates by reference the American Na- 
tional Standard "Safety Code for Glazing 
Materials for Glazing Motor Vehicles Operating 
on Land Highways," Z26.1-1966 (hereinafter 
ANS Z26). The ANS Z26 standard defines the 
various types of glazing in terms of performance 
tests with which a particular "Item" must com- 
ply. There are currently 13 Items or types of glaz- 
ing specified in the standard. 

Safety Standard No. 205 was amended in 1972 
to allow two additional types of glazing for use in 
specified vehicle locations not required for driv- 
ing visibility (37 FR 12237, June 21, 1972). The 
first new glazing type was rigid plastic described 
as "Item 12", and the second was flexible plastic 
described as "Item 13". The test requirements 
specified for Item 12 are identical to the test re- 
quirements for Item 5 rigid plastics, and the test 
requirements for Item 13 are identical to the test 
requirements for Item 7 flexible plastics, except 
that neither Item 12 nor 13 is required to meet 
the test for resistance to undiluted denatured 
alcohol (Formula SD No. 30). Therefore, the per- 
formance requirements of the standard are more 
stringent for Items 5 and 7 than for Items 12 and 
13, respectively, because of the one additional 
test with which the former must comply. 

When Items 12 and 13 were added to the stand- 
ard, several locations in which the types could be 
used were specified which were not included for 
Items 5 and 7. Thus, the standard specifies that 
Item 12 plastics may be used as motorcycle wind- 
screens, but there is no such specification for 
Item 5 plastics. Similarly, the standard allows 
Item 13 plastics to be used in standee windows in 
buses, interior partitions, and in openings in the 
roof, but does not specify these locations for Item 
7 plastics. 



^ 



PART 571; S205-PRE 13 



Since Item 5 and 7 glazing materials must meet 
more stringent requirements, they should be al- 
lowed in all vehicle locations in which Items 12 
and 13 may be used. Last year, the Rohm and 
Haas Company petitioned the agency to amend 
Safety Standard No. 205 to remove this incon- 
sistency. This notice responds to that petition. 

The agency agrees that the standard is cur- 
rently inconsistent with regard to the locations in 
which the various types of rigid and flexible 
plastics may be used. When Items 12 and 13 were 
added to the standard, the agency inadvertently 
failed to expand the list of permitted locations for 
Items 5 and 7 so that the list would include all of 
the locations specified for Items 12 and 13. (The 
agency wishes to point out that there are several 
locations specified for Items 5 and 7 in which 
Items 12 and 13 may not be used. This is appro- 
priate since the performance requirements for 
Items 5 and 7 are more stringent.) 

The agency has determined that the change re- 
quested by the petitioner can be accomplished by 
interpretive amendment and that opportunity for 
public comment is not required. Items 5 and 7 
glazing also qualify as Items 12 and 13, respec- 
tively, because an item of glazing is only defined 
in the standard in terms of the test requirements 
it can meet. Since Items 5 and 7 glazing comply 
with all the test requirements specified for Items 
12 and 13, manufacturers would be permitted to 
mark a particular piece of glazing as Item 12 or 13 
and to use the glazing in the locations specified 
for those Items, even though that piece of glazing 
could also pass the additional test requirement 
for the higher-grade plastics. Items 5 or 7. There 
is nothing in the standard which requires a 
specific piece of glazing to be labeled with the 
highest performance Item number with which it 
can qualify, although for practical purposes this is 
generally done. In other words. Items 12 and 13 
glazing are lower performance forms of Items 5 
and 7 glazing. Therefore, Items 5 and 7 can be 
used wherever Items 12 and 13 may be used in 
the vehicle. This notice amends Standard No. 205 



to clarify this point by making the necessary addi- 
tions to the list of locations currently specified for 
Items 5 and 7. 

Since this amendment removes a current incon- 
sistency in the standard, the agency has deter- 
mined that an immediate effective date is in the 
public interest. 

The agency has determined that this amend- 
ment does not qualify as a significant regulation 
under Executive Order 12044 and the Departmen- 
tal directives implementing that Order. Since the 
amendment only clarifies existing requirements, 
there should be negligible cost or environmental 
impacts resulting from this modification. There- 
fore, no regulatory evaluation has been prepared. 

The engineer and lawyer primarily responsible 
for the development of this amendment are Ed- 
ward Jettner and Hugh Oates, respectively. 

In consideration of the foregoing, Safety Stand- 
ard No. 205, 49 CFR 571.205, is amended as set 
forth below. 

1. Paragraph S5.1.1.2 is amended by adding a 
new subparagraph "(m)" to read: 

"(m) for Item 5 safety glazing only: Motorcycle 
windscreens below the intersection of a horizon- 
tal plane 15 inches vertically above the lowest 
seating position." 

2. Paragraph S5. 1.1.3 is amended by adding the 
following phrase and new subparagraphs "(1), (m) 
and (n)" after existing subparagraph (k), to read: 

"For Item 7 safety glazing only: 
(1) Standee windows in buses. 
(m) Interior partitions, 
(n) Openings in the roof." 

Issued on July 1, 1980. 



Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 

45 FR 47150 
July 14, 1980 



PART 571; S205-PRE 14 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 



205 



Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, 
Glazing Materials and Rearview Mirrors 

(Docket No. 71-1; Notice 8, 
Docket No. 79-19; Notice 2) 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: This notice amends Safety 
Standard No. 205, Glazing Materials, to 
delete the abrasion resistance requirements 
specified for Items 3, 5, 9, and 12 glazing. The 
purpose of the abrasion requirements is to 
ensure that glazing will resist scratching that 
can distort the driver's view and thus reduce 
visibility. The glazing Items specified above, 
however, can be used in vehicles only in 
window locations that are not necessary for 
driving visibility. These locations include sun 
roofs and side windows to the rear of the 
driver in trucks, multipurpose passenger 
vehicles (MPV's), and buses. Since the 
standard currently does not require glazing 
in window locations such as these to be 
transparent, there is no real need for Items 3, 
5, 9, and 12 to pass the abrasion tests. Thus, 
this notice deletes the abrasion requirements 
for these types of glazing. 

The agency has decided, however, not to 
adopt another proposed amendment to 
Standard No. 205, or a related change in 
Standard No. Ill, Rearview Mirrors. These 
amendments would have made the rear-most 
windows of trucks, MPV's, and buses having 
GVWR's of 10,000 pounds or less requisite for 
driving visibility. The proposal would have 
also required the manufacturers of such 
vehicles to install inside rearview mirrors. 

DATES: The amendment is effective on 
August 31, 1981. 



ADDRESSES: Petitions for reconsideration 
should refer to the docket and notice numbers 
and be submitted to: Docket Section, Room 
5109, National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, 400 Seventh Street, S.W., 
Washington, D.C. 20590. (Docket hours: 7:45 
a.m. to 4:15 p.m.) 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On 

September 27, 1979, NHTSA published a 
notice of proposed rulemaking (44 F.R. 55610) 
regarding Standard No. 205, Glazing 
Materials (49 CFR 571.205). That notice 
proposed to amend the standard to delete the 
abrasion requirements for Items 3, 5, 9, and 
12 glazing. The notice also proposed to amend 
the standard to clarify that the rear windows 
of trucks, multipurpose passenger vehicles 
(MPV's), and buses having gross vehicle 
weight ratings (GVWR's) of 10,000 pounds or 
less are considered requisite for driving 
visibility. This would have required that 
glazing materials used in the rear windows of 
these vehicles have a luminous transmittance 
of at least 70 percent. On December 31, 1979, 
in a related'^ action, the agency published a 
notice of proposed rulemaking (44 F.R. 77224) 
regarding Standard No. Ill, Rearview 
Mirrors. That proposal would have amended 
Standard No. Ill to require that light trucks 
and vans having rear windows be equipped 
with an inside rearview mirror. The purpose 
of the two proposals was to improve 
rearward visibility for the drivers of those 
vehicles. 



PART 571; S 205-PRE 15 



Consumers, vehicle manufacturers, trade 
associations, equipment manufacturers, and 
others submitted comments in response to the 
notices. The final rule is based on a thorough 
evaluation of the data obtained in NHTSA 
research, data and views submitted in the 
comments and data obtained from other 
pertinent documents and reports. The major 
comments are discussed below, along with 
the agency's final decision on each proposal. 

The Abrasion Requirements 

Standard No. 205 specifies performance 
requirements for glazing materials to be used 
in motor vehicles and motor vehicle equipment, 
and also specifies the vehicle locations in 
which various types of glazing may be used. 
The standard incorporates by reference the 
American National Standard "Safety Code 
for Safety Glazing Materials for Glazing 
Motor Vehicles Operating on Land Highways," 
Z26. 1-1966 (ANS Z26). The abrasion 
resistance requirements of Standard No. 205 
are set forth in ANS Z26 in terms of 
performance tests that the various "Items" of 
glazing must pass. (There are 13 "Items" or 
types of glazing for which requirements are 
specified in the standard.) Items 3 and 9 glass 
glazing materials are required to pass 
Abrasion Test No. 18, which allows no more 
than two (2) percent light scatter or haze 
when the glazing is abraded for 1,000 cycles. 
Items 5 and 12, which are rigid plastic glazing 
materials, must pass Abrasion Test No. 17 
(less than 15 percent light scatter or haze 
when abraded for 100 cycles). The purpose of 
the abrasion tests is to assure that glazing 
re§ists scratching which can distort the 
driver's view and thus reduce visibility. 
Visibility through the Items of glazing in 
question, however, is not required, as the 
glazing can only be used in locations not 
necessary for driving visibility. Since the 
abrasion requirements test for a quality that 
is not relevant to Items 3, 5, 9, and 12 glazing, 
NHTSA proposed that they be deleted for 
these types of glazing material. 

Several comments were submitted on this 
proposal, and virtually all were in favor of its 
adoption. Chrysler and Ford noted that the 



abrasion tests are not relevant to Items 3, 5, 9 
and 12 glazing since such Items cannot be 
used in locations requisite for driving 
visibility. GM stated that deletion of these 
tests for the Items in question would resolve 
some of the inconsistencies in the standard. 
One such inconsistency noted by GM is the 
fact that the current standard allows rigid 
plastics, which are required to pass a less 
stringent abrasion test than glass glazing 
materials, to be used in locations in which 
glass in combination with treated coatings 
would not be allowed. Rohm and Haas 
Company noted in their comments, however, 
that this proposal may permit materials to be 
used which will not be as durable and 
functional as currently used materials and 
thus will present a poor appearance. 

The agency has decided to adopt the 
proposed amendment. As emphasized by 
Ford and Chrysler in their comments, there 
is no compelling safety need for retaining the 
abrasion requirements for these four glazing 
Items since the standard prohibits their use 
in vehicle locations that are requisite for 
driving visibility. The abrasion requirements 
for these Items do serve as additional tests of 
glazing strength and durability. However, . 
there are other more direct tests of these ' 
characteristics (such as the Impact Tests 
Nos. 8-14 of ANS Z26) that are applicable to 
these Items and that will ensure that the 
glazing remains in safe condition throughout 
its useful life. Considering that totally opaque 
glazing is permitted by the standard, there is 
no justification for imposing the abrasion 
requirements on these Items. Deletion of the 
abrasion requirements should result in cost 
savings for some vehicles, because less 
expensive types of glazing would qualify for 
installation. Manufacturers would be able to 
use plastic glazing that is more resilient and 
thus may reduce the possibility of occupant 
ejection in a crash. In light of these 
considerations, the agency has decided to 
delete the abrasion tests for Items 3, 5, 9, and 
12 glazing. 

Rear Window Visibility 

The September 27, 1979 notice also 
proposed to amend Standard No. 205 to 



PART 571; S 205-PRE 16 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 209 

Seat Belt Assemblies in Passenger Cars, Multipurpose Passenger Vehicles, Trucks and Buses 

(Docket No. 69-23; Notice No. 3) 



Reconsideration and Amendment 

The purpose of this notice is to respond to 
petitions filed pursuant to § 553.35 of Title 49, 
Code of Federal Regulations, requesting recon- 
sideration of various amendments to Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 209, Seat Belt 
Assemblies, that were published March 10, 1971 
(36 F.R. 4607). The petitions are granted in 
part and denied in part. Requests not expressly 
discussed in this notice should be considered 
denied. 

1. One of the results of the March 10 amend- 
ments was that as of September 1, 1971, the 
standard would have become a vehicle standard 
as well as an equipment standard, i.e., vehicles 
manufactured after the effective date would have 
had to have equipment conforming to the new 
requirements. The amendments relating to emer- 
gency-locking retractors are such, however, that 
with normal production tolerances it would be 
difficult to manufacture retractors that conform 
to the currently applicable requirements so that 
they would also conform to the post-September 1 
requirements, and vice-versa. This creates an 
awkward situation, in which retractors supplied 
to vehicle manufacturers for use on September 1 
would have to be made on September 1 and not 
before. 

The vehicle aspect of the standard is therefore 
being deleted, and the date on which the 
amended requirements become mandatory is post- 
poned to January 1, 1972, to coincide with the 
effective date of the new Standard No. 208. To 
allow for efficient changeover, manufacturers are 
permitted to manufacture belts to either the cur- 
rent or the amended requirements between 
September 1, 1971, and January 1, 1972. 

2. AVith respect to the technical amendments 
to the attachment hardware requirements in 



S4.1(f), American Safety Equipment Corpora- 
tion requested that the reference to Standard 
No. 210 be omitted, so that anchorage nuts, plates, 
and washers would not have to be supplied if 
the vehicle has an anchorage that does not re- 
quire them. The request has been found reason- 
able, and the standard is amended accordingly. 

3. The National Highway Traffic Safety Ad- 
ministration has also evaluated requests by the 
American Safety Equipment Corporation con- 
cerning the range of occupants that a belt must 
adjust to fit, the test buckle release force test 
procedure, and the buckle crush resistance test 
procedure. The amended adjustment require- 
ments (S4. 1(g)(1) and (2)) specify more ex- 
actly the range of occupants that was intended 
by the original standard. The importance of 
having installed belts of proper length for the 
normal range of occupants outweighs, in the 
agency's judgment, the effort involved in ascer- 
taining vehicle dimensions. The adjustment re- 
quirements are therefore not changed. With 
respect to the buckle test procedures, the peti- 
tioner's requests relating to the clarity of the 
buckle release procedure and to the need for an 
explanatory diagram to accompany the crush test 
are also denied. Although the buckle release 
test no longer refers to a method for testing lever 
action buckles, the method was little more than 
a suggestion and maj- in some cases have con- 
flicted with the intent of the procedure that the 
force shall be applied so as to produce maximum 
releasing effect. The diagram requested to show 
the buckle crush procedure is not regarded as 
essential to understanding the procedure and has 
not been adopted. 

4. Although no petition was received directly 
relating to the subject, the Swedish Trade Com- 
mission, on behalf of the Swedish manufactur- 



PART .571; S 209— PRE 7 



EffscHva: January 1, 1972 
(Exc*p> as nol*d In the Rula) 

ers, has expressed uncertainty as to how the 
crush test is to be applied to seat belt assemblies 
that have a buckle mounted on a rigid or semi- 
rigid bracket between the front seats. As de- 
scribed by the Commission, one design would 
tend to bend downwards under the pressure of 
the test device long before the required force of 
400 pounds could be reached. In this case, the 
buckle will have to be supjwrted from beneath, 
just as the conventional lap belt has to have some 
rigid backing in order to reach the 400-pound 
level. It is anticipated tliat if additional ques- 
tions are raised concerning the method of force 
application to specific buckles, such questions can 
be answered through administrative interpreta- 
tion. 

5. Several petitions questioned the need to 
test a vehicle-sensitive emergency-locking re- 
tractor by accelerating it "in three directions 
normal to each other with its central axis 
oriented horizontally". The pendulum device 
used in most \'ehicle-sensitive retractors can sense 
lateral accelerations and sense the tilt of the 
vehicle, but it cannot readily sense upward or 
downward accelerations of the type required by 
the three-direction test when the retractor is 
oriented horizontally. It was suggested by 
Volvo that a retractor that locks when tilted to 
35° in any direction should be exempt from the 
acceleration requirement. Volkswagen recom- 
mended accelerating the retractor in the hori- 
zontal plane in two directions normal to each 
other. On reconsideration, the National High- 
way Traffic Safety Administration has concluded 
that it is appropriate to relieve such a retractor 
from the vertical acceleration requirement when 
it is oriented horizontally and to establish an 
alternative to the requirement that it lock when 
accelerated in directions out of the horizontal 
plane, but that accelerations within the hori- 
zontal plane should continue to be required. 

Accordingly, S5.2(j) is amended to require a 
vehicle-sensitive retractor to be accelerated in the 
horizontal plane in two directions normal to 
each other. During these accelerations, the re- 
tractor will be oriented at the angle in which it 
is installed in the vehicle. In addition, the re- 
tractor must either lock when accelerated in 
orientations out of the horizontal as prescribed 
in the March 10 rule or lock by gravity when 



tilted in any direction to any angle greater than 
45°. 

6. One petitioner questioned the correctness of 
requiring webbing-sensitive retractors to be ac- 
celerated in the direction of webbing retraction, 
rather than in the direction of webbing with- 
drawal. The usage is necessary because under 
the test procedures of S5.2(j) it is the retractor, 
and not the webbing, that is accelerated. The 
acceleration must be in the direction that will 
reel the webbing out of the retractor — i.e., the 
direction in which the webbing moves when re- 
tracting. 

7. An additional question on retractor ac- 
celeration levels concerns the distance which a 
belt must be withdrawn in determining compli- 
ance with the requirement that the retractor shall 
not lock at 0.3g or less (S4.3(j) (ii)). The 
Hamill Manufacturing Company has requested 
an amendment to S4.3(j)(ii) to provide that the 
retractor shall not lock before the webbing ex- 
tends a short distance at an acceleration of 0.3g. 
The National Highway Traffic Safety Adminis- 
tration recognizes that many retractors may be I 
velocity-sensiti\e to some degree as well as 
acceleration-sensitive. Although a retractor that 
locks at too low a velocity would be an incon- 
venience, the NHTSA recognizes that an occu- 
pant does not ordinarily accelerate the belt after 

an initial pull and that the usual velocity in- 
volved in withdrawing the belt is low. On re- 
consideration, the NHTSA has therefore decided 
to amend S4.3(j)(ii) to provide that the re- 
tractor shall not lock before the webbing extends 
2 inches at 0.3g. 

8. Several petitioners pointed out that the re- 
quirements for retractor force specified in 
S4.3(j)(iii) and (iv) were not appropriate for 
systems in which a single length of webbing is 
used to provide both lap and shoulder restraint. 
In a typical installation of this sort, the webbing 
passes from a floor-mounted retractor up to a 
fitting on the B-pillar, then down across the 
shoulder to a slip joint on the buckle connector, 
and from there back across the lap to an out- 
board floor attachment. Although such a system 
may provide satisfactory restraint, it cannot 
simultaneously exceed a retractive force of 1.5 
pounds on the lap belt and have a retractive 



PART 571 ; S 209— PRE 8 



force on the shoulder belt of between 0.45 and 
1.1 pounds, and it would therefore fail to con- 
form to the standard as published March 10. 

Upon reconsideration, the National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration has decided to 
amend S4.3(j) by establishing retraction forces 
for 3-point systems that employ a single length 
of webbing. A new subsection (v) is added that 
requires such a system to have a retraction force 
falling within the range 0.45 pounds-1.50 pounds, 
and (iii) and (iv) are amended so that they do 
not apply to retractors in such systems. This 
range was suggested by Volkswagen, Volvo, and 
Klippan, and is considered to be a reasonable 
compromise between the need to provide com- 
plete retraction of the belt when not in use and 



EffKtiva: January 1, 1973 
lExupl a< neltd In Ih* Rule) 

the need to limit the force so that it will not be 
uncomfortable to occupants. 

Effective date: January 1, 1972, except that 
seat belt assemblies manufactured on or after 
September 1, 1971 and before January 1, 1972, 
may conform either to the current requirements 
of Standard No. 209 in 49 CFR 571.21 or to the 
requirements of Standard No. 209 as amended 
by this notice and the notice of March 10, 1971 
(36F.R. 4607). 

Issued on August 26, 1971. 

Charles H. Hartman 
Acting Administrator 

36 F.R. 17430 
August 31, 1971 



PART 571; S 209— PRE 9-10 



lffM«v«: AusutI 2a, 1973 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 209 

Seat Belt Assemblies 



(Docket No. 73-16; Notice 2) 



The purpose of this notice is to amend certain 
requirements of Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 
No. 209 (49 CFR 571.209), Seat belt assemblies, 
relating to the width of belt webbing and to the 
performance of seat belt retractors. The amend- 
ments were proposed in a notice published June 
20, 1973 (38 FR 16084). 

In the June 20 notice, the agency proposed to 
allow the width of those portions of a combina- 
tion lap and shoulder belt that do not touch the 
occupant to be less than the 1.8 inches formerly 
required by the standard. The Chrysler Cor- 
poration, in its comment, suggested that nar- 
rower webbing should also be permitted for the 
type of lap belt that is used by itself. The 
agency agrees that a lap belt in combination with 
a shoulder belt (known as Type 2 assembly) is 
indistinguishable from an independent lap belt 
(Type 1 assembly), as far as the width of its 
webbing is concerned, and is therefore amending 
the standard to permit narrower webbing for 
non-contact portions of Type 1 belts as well as 
Type 2 belts. 

Chrysler also requested narrower webbing for 
non-contact portions of children's harnesses 
(Type 3 assemblies). In view of the close-fit- 
ting design of Type 3 assemblies, the agency has 
not found a benefit to be gained from the use 
of narrower webbing in the few areas of non- 
contact. The Type 3 requirements are not being 
amended at this time. The American Safety 
Equipment Corporation requested that the con- 
tactability of the webbing with occupants be 
determined with a range of occupants. The 
agency remains persuaded that the use of a 95th 
percentile adult male occupant will be sufficient 
to insure that the narrower webbing will not 
touch any occupant who uses the seat. The 



agency therefore declines to adopt American 
Safety's suggestion. 

The proposed amendment of the emergency- 
locking retractor requirements of S4.3 drew sev- 
eral comments, not all of them relating to the 
parts of S4.3 that were proposed to be changed. 
Mercedes Benz requested revision of the require- 
ment of S4.3(j)(2) that the retractor must not 
lock before the webbing extends 2 inches under 
an acceleration of 0.3g or less. The 0.3g require- 
ment had been carried over without change from 
the previous version of S4.3 and was thought to 
be a reasonable means of preventing retractors 
from being inconveniently sensitive. The 
NHTSA does not find sufficient cause at this 
time to alter its conclusion concerning the most 
appropriate minimum level and is therefore re- 
taining the minimum level of 0.3g. 

A second issue raised by Mercedes Benz con- 
cerns the treatment under section S4.3(j) of a 
retractor having both vehicle sensitive and 
webbing sensitive features. It has been the 
NHTSA's position that with respect to the maxi- 
mum permissible locking level, a dual-action re- 
tractor would conform if it met either of the 
applicable requirements. Thus, a dual-action 
retractor whose webbing-sensitive mechanism 
locks within 1 inch at an acceleration of 0.7g 
will conform, even though its vehicle-sensitive 
mechanism is not capable of locking at its re- 
quired level. With respect to the minimum 
locking level, however, different considerations 
apply. The agency's intent in providing a mini- 
mum level below which the retractor must not 
lock is to enhance the convenience of the system. 
The webbing-sensitive mechanism that locks be- 
low 0.3g would be no less inconvenient if coupled 
with a vehicle sensitive mechanism than it would 



PART 571; S 209— PRE 11 



Eff*ctlv«: August 28, 1973 



be if used by itself. The agency has there- 
fore concluded that a dual-action retractor may 
conform to the maximum locking acceleration 
level of 0.7g (S4.3(j)(l)) with either mech- 
anism, but that it must conform to both mini- 
mum locking level requirements (S4.3(j)(2) 
and (3)). 

The tilt angle of 17° proposed as the minimum 
locking level for vehicle sensitive retractors was 
stated by several comments to be too high. Al- 
though there was general agreement as to the 
advisability of using a tilt test rather than an 
acceleration test, lower tilt angles were suggested, 
ranging downward to 11°. After considering 
the comments, the NHTSA has concluded that 
a moderate downward revision to 15° will pre- 
vent retractor lockup in normal road operation 
and has adopted that angle in S4.3(j)(3). The 
suggestion by Ford and American Motors that 
the "retractor drum's central axis" may be diffi- 
cult to determine in complicated mechanisms 
has been found to have merit and the require- 
ment as adopted refers to the orientation at 
which the retractor is installed in the vehicle. 

The proposed revisions to the minimum re- 
traction force requirements for retractors at- 
tached to upper torso restraints encountered 
several objections, the principal one being that 
no one was certain about the meaning of the 
proposed requirement that the retractor should 
"retract the webbing fully." The quoted lan- 
guage had been proposed in response to a peti- 
tion by General Motors requesting amendment of 
the requirement that the retractor exert a re- 
tractive force of not less than 0.45 pound. The 
GM petition had requested a force of 0.2 pound, 
but the agency's initial intent, as reflected in the 
notice, was to grant a potentially greater relief 
by deleting reference to a specific minimum 
force. It appears from the confusion in the com- 
ments that a contrary result might be produced 
in some cases, and the agency has fherefore con- 
cluded that a simple reduction in the force level 
to the level requested by GM is the least com- 
plicated and most readily enforceable means of 
lowering th6 minimum force level. The sugges- 
tion by Ford, that the ability to retract is im- 
plicit in the definition of retractor and that no 



minimum force level is required, has some merit, 
but the agency prefers to retain a measurable 
minimum level. 

There were several questions of interpretation 
concerning the point at which the retraction 
force is to be measured. The test procedures 
of S5.2 provide that the webbing is to be fully 
extended, passing over any hardware or other 
material specified for use with the webbing, and 
that it is then to be retracted and the retraction 
force measured as the lowest force within plus 
or minus 2 inches of 75 percent extension. The 
procedure is intended to measure the ability of 
the retractor to retract the webbing as installed 
in the vehicle, and the point of measurement 
most consistent with this intent is the most dis- 
tant point of the webbing from the retractor. 
The NHTSA intends to conduct its measure- 
ments in this fashion. 

The proposed amendment to S5.2 that would 
amend the test procedures to reflect the limita- 
tion of the 0.3g acceleration level to webbing- 
sensitive retractors was not objected to and is 
adopted as proposed. 

In consideration of the foregoing, S4.2(a), 
S4.3(j), and S5.2(j) of Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 209, 49 CFR §571.209, are 
amended. . . . 

Effective date: August 28, 1973. The NHTSA 
finds it desirable to allow manufacturers to pro- 
duce seat belt assemblies under the requirements 
as hereby amended (which generally are relaxed 
relative to previous requirements) prior to the 
effective date of the next phase of Standard No. 
208 (49 CFR 571.208). It is therefore found for 
good cause shown that an immediate effective 
date is in the public interest. 

(Sec. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718, 15 
U.S.C. 1392, 1407; delegation of authority at 49 
CFR 1.51.) 

Issued on August 23, 1973. 

James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

38 F.R. 22958 
August 28, 1973 



PART 571; S 209— PRE 12 



Effective: Jonuary 24, 1974 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 209 

Seat Belt Assemblies 
(Docket No. 73-16; Notice 4) 



This notice amends Standard No. 209, Seat 
belt assemblies, 49 CFR 571.209, to reduce the 
minimum retraction force required of emergency- 
locking retractors attached to lap belts from 1.5 
pounds to 0.6 pounds. This amendment to S4.3 
(j) (4) responds to a rulemaking petition submit- 
ted by Toyo Kogyo. 

A notice of proposed rulemaking published 
October 2, 1973 (38 F.R. 27303), proposed the 
modification because the 1.5-pound force could 
prove excessive for occupant comfort, and ex- 
perience with the 0.6-pound level in automatic- 
locking retractors has been satisfactory. Their 
performance at 0.6 pounds does not support an 
assertion in one comment to the docket that 
degradation of the retractor elements over time 
would result in almost total loss of retractive 
force. All other comments to the docket were 
favorable. 



In consideration of the foregoing, S4.3(]')(4) 
of Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 209, Seat 
belt assemblies, 49 CFR 571.209, is amended 

Effective date: January 24, 1974. Because the 
amendment relaxes a requirement and creates no 
additional burden, it is found for good cause 
shown that an effective date earlier than one 
hundred eighty days after issuance is in the 
public interest. 

(Sees. 103, 119, Pub. L. 89-563, 80 Stat. 718, 
15 U.S.C. 1392, 1407; delegation of authority at 
49 CFR 1.51.) 



Issued on January 18, 1974. 



James B. Gregory 
Administrator 

39 F.R. 2771 
January 24, 1974 



PART 571; S 209— PRE 13-14 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY 

STANDARD NO. 209 

Seat Belt Assemblies 
(Docket No. 74-9; Notice 7) 



ACTION: Final rule; response to petitions for 
reconsideration. 

SUMMARY: This notice responds to five petitions 
for reconsideration and petitions for rulemaking 
concerning Standard No. 213, Child Restraint 
Systems. In response to the petitions, the agency is 
changing the labeling requirements to permit the 
use of alternative language, modifying the 
minimum radius of curvature requirement for 
restraint system surfaces and extending the effec- 
tive date of the standard from June 1, 1980, to 
January 1, 1981. In addition, several typographical 
errors are corrected in Standard No. 209, Seat Belt 
Assemblies. 

DATES: The amendments are effective on May 1, 
1980. The effective date of the standard is changed 
from June 1, 1980, to January 1, 1981. 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. 

Vladislav Radovich, Office of Vehicle Standards, 
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 
400 Seventh Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 
20590 (202-426-2264). 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On December 
13, 1979 (44 F.R. 72131) NHTSA pubUshed in the 
Federal Register a final rule establishing Standard 
No. 213, Child Restraint Systems, and making cer- 
tain amendments to Standard No. 209, Seat Belt 
Assemblies and Anchorages. Subsequently, peti- 
tions for reconsideration were timely filed with the 
agency by Cosco, General Motors, Juvenile Prod- 
ucts Manufacturers Association (JPMA), and 
Strolee. Subsequent to the time for filing petitions 
for reconsideration, Strolee also filed a petition for 
rulemaking to amend the standard. After evaluat- 



ing the petitions, the agency has decided to modify, 
as fully explained below, some of the requirements 
of Standard No. 213. All other requests for 
modifications are denied. The agency is also cor- 
recting several minor typographical errors in the 
text of Standard No. 209. 

Labeling 

Standard No. 213 requires manufacturers to 
place a permanently mounted label on the restraint 
to encourage its proper use. General Motors (GM) 
petitioned for reconsideration of three of the label- 
ing requirements. 

Section S5. 5.2(f) of the standard requires each 
child restraint to be labeled with the size and 
weight ranges of children capable of using the 
restraint. In its petition, GM said that the require- 
ment could "unnecessarily preclude some children 
from using the restraint or suggest use by children 
too large for the restraint." GM also commented 
that some infant restraints are intended to be used 
from birth and thus the lower size and weight 
limitation serves no purpose. 

In addition, GM said that stating the upper size 
limit for infant restraints in terms of seated height 
rather than in standing height is a more appro- 
priate way to set size limitations for infants. For 
example, GM said that an infant with a short torso 
and long legs might be precluded from using the 
restraint if the limitation is stated in terms of 
standing height, while an infant with short lego 
and a torso too long for the restraint would be in- 
appropriately included among ones who could sup- 
posedly use the restraint. GM requested that infant 
restraints be allowed to be labeled with an optional 
statement limiting use by upper weight and seated 
height. 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 15 



NHTSA agrees that specifying a lower weight 
and size limit is unnecessary for an infant carrier 
designed to be used from birth and has amended 
the standard accordingly. The agency has decided 
not to adopt GM's proposal to state the upper size 
limit in seating rather than standing height. The 
purpose of the label is to provide important in- 
structions and warnings in as simple and 
understandable terms as possible. Standing height, 
rather than seating height, is a measurement 
parents are familiar with and which is commonly 
measured during pediatric examinations. As GM 
pointed out, it is possible to establish a limit based 
on standing height which would exclude any infant 
whose seating height is too high to properly use the 
restraint. Therefore, the agency will continue to 
require the upper size limit to be stated in terms of 
standing height. 

GM also requested that manufacturers be al- 
lowed to establish a lower usage limit for restraints 
used for older children based on the child's ability 
to sit upright rather than on his or her size and 
weight. GM said the lower limit "is not as depend- 
ent upon the child's size as it is on the child's ability 
to hold its head up (sit upright) by itself. This im- 
portant capability is achieved at a wide range of 
child sizes." NH'TSA agrees that the type of label 
GM proposes can clearly inform parents on which 
children can safely use a restraint and therefore 
will permit use of such a label. 

Section S5.5.2(g) of the standard requires the 
use of the word "Warning" preceding the state- 
ment that failure to follow the manufactxu-er's 
instructions can lead to injury to a child. GM 
requested that the word "Caution" be permitted as 
an alternative to "Warning." GM said that since 
1975 it has used caution in its labels and owners' 
and service manuals as a lead or signal word where 
the message conveys instructions to prevent possi- 
ble personal injury. GM said that the words caution 
and warning are generally accepted as synonymous. 

The agency believes that the word "Warning," 
when used in its ordinary dictionary sense, is a 
stronger term that conveys a greater sense of 
danger than the word "Caution" and thus will em- 
phasize the importance of following the specified 
instructions. Therefore, the agency will continue 
to require the use of the word "Warning." 

Section S5.5.2(k) of the standard requires 
restraints to be labeled that they are to be used in a 



rear-facing position when used with an infant. GM 
said that while the requirement is appropriate for 
so-called convertible child restraints (restraints 
that can be used by infants in a rear-facing position 
and by children in a forward-facing position), it is 
potentially misleading when used with a restraint 
designed exclusively for infants. GM said the cur- 
rent label might imply that the restraints can be 
used in forward-facing positions with children. GM 
recommended that restraints designed only for in- 
fants be permitted to have the statement, "Place 
this infant restraint in a rear-facing position when 
using it in the vehicle." The agency's purpose for 
establishing the labeling requirement was to 
preclude the apparent widespread misuse of 
restraints designed for infants in a forward-facing 
rather than rear-facing position. Since GM's 
recommended label will accomplish that goal, the 
agency is amending the standard to permit its use. 

Radius of Curvature 

Section S5. 2. 2. 1(c) of the standard requires sur- 
faces designed to restrain the forward movement of 
a child's torso to be flat or convex with a radius of 
curvature of the underlying structure of not less 
than 3 inches. Ford Motor Co. objected to the 3-inch 
limitation on radius of curvature arguing that 
measuring the radius of curvature of the underlying 
structure would eliminate designs that have not pro- 
duced serious injiuies in actual crashes. Ford said 
the shield of its "Tot-Guard has a radius of curvature 
from 2.2 to 2.3 inches and it had no evidence of 
serious injury being caused by the shield when the 
restraint has been properly used. 

The purpose of the radius of curvature require- 
ment was to prohibit the use of surfaces that might 
concentrate impact forces on vulnerable portions 
of a child's body. It was not the agency's intent to 
prohibit existing designs, such as the Tot-Guard, 
which have not produced injuries in actual crashes. 
Since a 2-inch radius of curvature should therefore 
not produce injury the agency has decided to 
change the radius of curvature requirement from 3 
to 2 inches. 

Although the standard sets a minimum radius of 
curvature for surfaces designed to restrain the for- 
ward movement of a child, it does not set a 
minimum surface area for that surface. Prototypes 
of new restraints shown to the agency by some 
manufacturers indicate that they are voluntarily 
incorporating sufficient surface areas in their 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 16 



designs. The agency encourages all manufacturers 
to use surface areas at least equivalent to those of 
the designs used by today's better restraints. 

Occupant Excursion 

Section S5. 1.3.1 of the standard sets a limit on 
the amount of knee excursion experienced by the 
test dummy during the simulated crash tests. It 
specifies that "at the time of maximum knee 
forward excursion the forward rotation of the 
dummy's torso from the dimimy's initial seating 
configuration shall be at least 15° measured in the 
saggital plane along the line connecting the 
shoulder and hip pivot points." 

Ford Motor Co. objected to the requirements 
that the dummy's torso rotate at least 15 degrees. 
Ford said that it is impossible to measure the 15 
degree angle on restraints such as the Tot-Guard 
since the test dimimy "folds around the shield in 
such a manner that there is no 'line' from the 
shoulder to the hip point." In addition, restraints, 
such as the Tot-Guard, that enclose the lower torso 
of the child can conceal the test dummy hip pivot 
point. 

The agency established Ted the knee excursion 
and torso rotation requirements to prevent 
manufacturers from controlling the amount of test 
dummy head excursion by allowing the test dummy 
to submarine excessively during a crash (i.e., 
allowing the test dummy to slide too far downward 
underneath the lap belt and forward, legs first). A 
review of the agency's testing of child restraints 
shows that current designs that comply with the 
knee excursion limit do not allow submarining. 
Since the knee excursion limit apparently will pro- 
vide sufficient protection to prevent submarining, 
the agency has decided to drop the torso rotation 
requirement. If future testing discloses any prob- 
lems with submarining, the agency will act to 
establish a new torso rotation requirement as an 
additional safeguard. 

Head Impact Protection 

Section S5.2.3 requires that each child restraint 
designed for use by children under 20 poimds have 
energy-absorbing material covering "each system 
surface which is contactable by the dummy hea.d." 
Strolee petitioned the agency to amend this re- 
quirement because it would prohibit the use of 
unpadded grommets in the child restraint. Strolee 
explained that some "manufacturers use grom- 



mets to support the fabric portions of a car seat 
where the shoulder belt and lap belt penetrate the 
upholstery. These grommets retain the fabric in 
place and give needed support where the strap 
comes through to the front of the unit." Because of 
the use of the grommets in positioning the energy- 
absorbing padding and belts, the agency does not 
want to prohibit their use. However, to ensure that 
use of the grommets will not compromise the head 
impact protection for the child, the agency will 
only allow grommets or other structures that com- 
ply with the protrusion limitations specified in sec- 
tion S5.2.4. That section prohibits protrusions that 
are more than % of an inch high and have a radius 
of less than V* inch. Because this amendment 
makes a minor change in the standard to relieve a 
restriction, prior notice and a comment period are 
deemed unnecessary. 

Belt Requirements 

Strolee petitioned the agency to amend the re- 
quirement that all of the belts used in the child 
restraint system must be IV2 inches in width. 
Strolee said that straps used in some restraints to 
position the upper torso restraints have " 'snaps' 
so that the parent may release this positioning belt 
conveniently." Strolee argued that such straps 
should be exempt from the belt width requirement 
since "the snap would release far before any loads 
could be experienced." 

The agency still believes that any belt that comes 
into contact with the child should be of a minimum 
width so as not to concentrate forces on a limited 
area of the child. This requirement would reduce 
the possibility of injury in instances where the snap 
on a positioning strap failed to open. Strolee's peti- 
tion is therefore denied. 

Strolee has also raised a question about the inter- 
pretation of section S5.4.3.3 on belt systems. 
Strolee asked whether the section requires a 
manufacturer to provide both upper torso belts, a 
lap belt and a crotch strap or whether a manufac- 
turer can use a "hybrid" system which uses upper 
torso belts, a shield, in place of a lap belt, and a 
crotch strap. The agency's intent was to allow the 
use of hybrid systems. The agency established the 
minimum radius of curvature requirements of sec- 
tion S5.2.2.1(c) to ensure that any shield used in 
place of a lap or other belt would not concentrate 
forces on a limited area of the child's body. 
NHTSA has amended section S5.4.3.3 to clarify 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 17 



the agency's intent. Because this is an inter- 
pretative amendment, which imposes no new 
restrictions, prior notice and a comment period are 
deemed unnecessary. • 

Height Requirements 

Strolee asked the agency to reconsider the re- 
quirements for seat back surface heights set in sec- 
tion S5.2.1.1. Strolee argued that the higher seat 
back required by the standard would restrict the 
driver's rear vision when the child restraint is 
placed in the rear seat. 

The final rule established a new seat back height 
requirement for restraints recommended for use 
by children that weigh more than 40 pounds. To 
provide sufficient protection for those children's 
heads, the agency required the seat back height to 
be 22 inches. The agency explained that the 22-inch 
requirement was based on anthropometric data 
showing that the seating height of children 
weighing 40 or more pounds can exceed 23 inches. 
The agency still believes that 22-inch requirement 
is necessary for the protection of the largest child 
for which the restraint is recommended. NHTSA 
notes that child restraints can be designed to ac- 
commodate the higher seat backs without allowing 
the overall height of the child restraint to unduly 
hinder the driver's vision. 

Padding 

In its petition, JPMA claimed that the standard 
"calls for the application of outdated specifica- 
tions" for determining the performance of child 
restraint padding in a 25-percent compression- 
deflection test. A review of the most recent edition 
of the American Society for Testing and Materials 
(ASTM) handbook shows that the compression- 
deflection test in two of the three ASTM standards 
referenced by the agency has not changed. The 
third standard (ASTM D1565) referenced by the 
agency has been replaced. However, the replace- 
ment standard does not contain a 25 percent 
compression-deflection test. Therefore, the agency 
will continue to use the three ASTM standards 
referenced in the December 1979 final rule. 

Effective Date 

Cosco, Strolee, and the Juvenile Products 
Manufacturers Association (JPMA) petitioned the 



agency for an extension of the June 1, 1980, effec- 
tive date. They requested that the effective date be i 
changed to at least January 1, 1981, and Strolee ' 
requested a delay until March 1, 1981. They argued 
that the June 1, 1980, effective date does not allow 
manufacturers sufficient time to develop, test and 
tool new child restraints. 

Testing done for the agency has shown that 
many of the better child restraint systems cur- 
rently on the market can meet the injury criteria 
and occupant excursion limitation set by the stand- 
ard. Some of those seats would need changes in 
their labeling, removal of arm rests and new belt 
buckles and padding to meet the standard. Such 
relatively minor changes can be made in the time 
available before the June 1, 1980, effective date. 

Several manufacturers have informed the agency 
that they are designing new restraints to meet the 
standard. Based on prototypes of those restraints 
shown to the agency, NHTSA believes that these 
new restraints may be more convenient to use, less 
susceptible to misuse and provide a higher overall 
level of protection than current restraints. Based 
on leadtime information provided by individual 
manufactxirers and the JPMA, the agency con- 
cludes that extending the standard from June 1, M 
1980, to January 1, 1981, will provide sufficient " 
leadtime. Providing a year's leadtime is in agree- 
ment with the leadtime estimates provided by the 
manufacturers as to the time necessary for design 
and testing, tooling and buckle redesign. 

Compatibliity With Vehicie Beits 

On December 12, 1979, NHTSA held a public 
meeting on child transportation safety. At that 
meeting, several participants commented about 
the difficulty, and in some cases the impossibility, 
of securing some child restraint systems with a 
vehicle lap belt because the belt will not go around 
the restraint. Testing done by the agency during 
the development of the recently proposed comfort 
and convenience rulemaking also confirms that 
problem. The agency reminds child restraint 
manufacturers that Standard No. 213, Child 
Restraint Systems, requires all child restraints to 
be capable of being restrained by a vehicle lap belt. 

Corrections 

In the final rule published on Standard No. 209, 
Seat Belt Assemblies, there were a number of 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 18 



typographical errors, such as listing the lower menters. The standards have therefore been 

chest circumference of the 5 percentile female as amended to include that requirement. 

36.6 inches rather than the correct figure of 26,6 The principal authors of this notice are Vladislav 

inches. Those errors have been corrected. Radovich, Office of Vehicle Safety Standards, and 

In addition, the final rules for Standards No. 209 Stephen Oesch, Office of Chief Counsel, 

and No. 213 inadvertently did not include a re- Issued on April 23, 1980. 

quirement on belt resistance to buckle abrasion. Joan Claybrook 

The notice of proposed rulemaking for both stand- Administratvr 

ards included the belt buckle abrasion require- 45 F.R. 29045 

ments, which were not opposed by any of the com- May 1, 1980 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 19-20 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY 

STANDARD NO. 209 

Seat Belt Assemblies 
(Docket No. 80-12; Notice 2) 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: This notice amends Safety Standard 
No. 209, Seat Belt Assemblies, to exempt seat belts 
installed in conjunction with automatic restraint 
systems from the belt elongation requirements of 
the standard. This amendment is based on a peti- 
tion for rulemaking submitted by Mercedes-Benz 
of North America and follows the publication of a 
proposal. The amendment permits manufacturers 
to install belt systems incorporating load-limiting 
devices which are intended to make further reduc- 
tions in head and upper torso injuries during an ac- 
cident. Some load-limiting belt systems utilize web- 
bing that elongates more than is currently allowed 
by Standard No. 209. This amendment would per- 
mit this and other type systems to exceed the max- 
imum elongation allowed by the standard. 



DATES: 

1981. 



This amendment is effective January 12, 



ADDRESSES: Any petition for reconsideration 
should refer to the docket number and notice 
number and be submitted to: National Highway 
Traffic Ssifety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, 
S.W., Washington, D.C. 20590. 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. 

William Smith, Office of Vehicle Safety Standards, 
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 
Washington, D.C. 20590 (202-426-2264). 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Safety Stand- 
ard No. 209, Seat Belt Assmiblies (49 CFR 
571.209), specifies performance requirements for 
seat belts to be used in motor vehicles. One of these 
performance requirements specifies the maximum 



amoimt that the webbing of a belt assembly is per- 
mitted to extend or elongate when subjected to 
certain specified forces (paragraph S4.2(c)). 
Mercedes-Benz of North America petitioned 
NHTSA to exempt seat belt assemblies installed in 
passenger cars in conjunction with air cushion 
restraint systems from the webbing elongation 
requirements of the standard. The agency granted 
that petition and issued a notice of proposed 
rulemaking to amend the standard on August 4, 
1980 (45 F.R. 51626). 

Mercedes is considering the use of a belt system 
that incorporates a load-limiting device. A load- 
limiter is a seat belt assembly component or 
feature that controls tension on the seat belt and 
modulates or limits the force loads that are im- 
parted to a restrained vehicle occupant by the belt 
assembly during a crash. Load-limiting devices are 
intended to reduce head and upper torso injuries 
through increased energy management. A load- 
limiter can be a separate component of the seat 
belt system, such as a torsion bar that allows the 
retractor to reel out additional webbing when a 
certain designed force level is reached. The load- 
limiter can also be a feature of the webbing itself, 
such as webbing that will elongate to certain 
designed lengths when subjected to particular 
force levels. Mercedes is interested in using the lat- 
ter type load-limiting system. However, the web- 
bing in the Mercedes belt system would elongate 
beyond the limits that are currently specified in 
Standard No. 209. Mercedes' petition stated that 
this type belt system should be allowed in vehicles 
equipped with air cushion restraints since the two 
systems used in conjunction with one another can 
be designed to achieve the maximum reduction in 
head injuries and upper-torso injuries. 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 21 



Although safety belts protect occupants from 
life-threatening impacts with the vehicle interior, 
the forces necessarily generated by the belts upon 
occupants during a crash can result in upper torso 
injury. As noted in the notice of proposed rulemak- 
ing, data available to the agency indicate that load- 
limiting belts can reduce these injuries, as well as 
working in combination with an automatic 
restraint system to provide protection for impacts 
with the vehicle interior. The proposal specified 
that both Type 1 (lap belts) and Type 2 (combina- 
tion lap and shoulder belts) manual belts having 
load-limiting devices and used in conjunction with 
automatic restraints would be exempted from the 
elongation requirements. Additionally, the pro- 
posal specified that such belts would have to be 
labeled to clarify that they are intended for use 
only in vehicles equipped with automatic restraint 
systems. 

The proposal limited the use of load-limiting 
belts to vehicles equipped with automatic 
restraints since there are currently no dynamic 
performance requirements or injury criteria for 
manual belt systems used alone. There are no re- 
quirements to ensure that a load-limiting belt 
system would protect vehicle occupants from im- 
pacting the steering wheel, instrument panel and 
windshield, which would be very likely if the belts 
elongated beyond the limits specified in Standard 
No. 209. Therefore, the elongation requirements 
are necessary to ensure that manual belts used as 
the sole restraint system will adequately restrain 
vehicle occupants. 

Nine comments were submitted in response to 
the August 4 proposal, all supporting the exemp- 
tion for load-limiting belts. Vehicle manufacturers 
stated that the proposed exemption from the 
elongation requirements would allow design flex- 
ibility and lead to improved occupant restraint 
systems. 

American Motors Corporation (AMC) stated that 
the exemption for load-limiting belts should only 
apply to Type 2 manual belts. The company argued 
that the only available data relates to the ability of 
Type 2 load-limiting belts to reduce certain head 
and upper-torso injuries. AMC stated that torso in- 
jury is not a function of lap belt loads and that no 
similar correlation has been made between lap belt 
loads and pelvic fractures. Therefore, the company 
believes that the exemption from the elongation re- 



quirements for Type 1 belts should be postponed 
until specific injury patterns can be correlated with 
lap belt loads. 

The agency proposed allowing the exemption for 
both Type 1 and Type 2 belts in order to give 
manufacturers broader design latitude to use load- 
limiting features on all belt systems used in con- 
junction with automatic restraints. AMC is correct 
in its statement that more data are available 
regarding the correlation between Type 2 belts and 
upper-torso injury than is available regarding load- 
limiting features on Type 1 belts. However, com- 
ments received from Rolls-Royce Motors stated 
that the company has tested manual Type 1 belts 
incorporating load-limiting features and found that 
better results are obtained under the injury criteria 
of Safety Standard No. 208 (49 CFR 571.208) than 
with Type 1 belts which must comply with the 
elongation requirements. In light of this informa- 
tion, and the fact that load-limiting Type 1 belts 
would only be allowed in conjunction with auto- 
matic restraint systems complying with the injury 
criteria of Standard No. 208, the agency has de- 
cided to include Type 1 belts in the exemption. This 
will allow manufacturers to develop innovative 
designs to maximize the protection provided by its 
automatic restraint systems. If future data in- 
dicate a problem with Type 1 belts that incorporate 
load-limiting features, the exemption from the 
elongation requirements can be reconsidered by 
the agency. 

The August 4, 1980, notice proposed to add a 
new definition to Standard No. 209 to define "load- 
limiter," and limited the exemption from the 
elongation requirements to belts incorporating 
load-limiters and installed in conjunction with 
automatic restraints. Volvo of America Corpora- 
tion commented that the definition of "load- 
limiter" is very broad and could be interpreted to 
include all existing belt webbing. Volvo stated that 
the exemption should, therefore, apply to any Type 
1 or 2 belt installed in conjunction with an 
automatic restraint, and not be limited to load- 
limiting belts. 

While the agency understands Volvo's point that 
the proposed language may be extremely detailed, 
we believe the language is necessary to clarify the 
exemption and to avoid confusion for belt manufac- 
turers. Safety Standard No. 209 is an equipment 
standard rather than a vehicle standard, and each 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 22 



seat belt assembly must be certified by the belt 
manufacturer. The proposed language was intended 
to create a clear distinction between belts comply- 
ing with elongation requirements of Safety Stand- 
ard No. 209 and those that incorporate load- 
limiting features that preclude compliance with the 
elongation requirements. The proposed language 
explained which belt systems must be labeled as 
being for use only in vehicles equipped with 
automatic restraints. The agency believes this 
language, including the definition of "load- 
limiter," is necessary at the current time to clarify 
the requirements for those persons or manufac- 
turers who may not be totally familiar with the 
requirements of Safety Standard No. 209. Other- 
wise, it would not be clear from the standard why 
certain belts are exempted from the elongation re- 
quirements of the standard. 

In another comment related to this same subject, 
General Motors Corporation pointed out that the 
proposed labeling requirement for load-limiting 
belts could apply to all Type 1 and 2 belts incor- 
porating load-limiting features even if aU current 
209 requirements are met. General Motors stated 
that load-limiting belt systems that can, never- 
theless, comply with the elongation requirements 
of the standard should not be limited in their ap- 
plication to vehicles equipped with automatic 
restraint systems. The agency agrees with this 
argument, and the language is changed in this 
amendment accordingly. 

General Motors also questioned the need to re- 
quire any label at all on load-limiting belts. The 
proposal specified that such belts would have to be 
permanently marked or labeled to indicate the 
assembly may only be installed in vehicles in con- 
junction with an automatic restraint system. 
General Motors argued that a label is not 
necessary to control the installation of load- 
limiting belts in the proper vehicles. Seat belt 
manufacturers must currently provide appropriate 
installation instructions for its equipment. General 
Motors contends that this requirement, coupled 
with the fact that replacement belts are generally 
ordered and installed by a repair facility, will en- 
sure that load-limiting belts are only installed in 
vehicles equipped with automatic restraints. The 
agency does not agree with this position. As stated 
earlier, the agency believes that care must be 
taken to distinguish load-limiting belt systems 
from other systems. If there is a label on the belt 



itself, a person making the installation will be 
aware that the belt should only be installed in con- 
junction with automatic restraints. This should be 
made obvious to the person making the installation 
without reference to the installation instructions. 
Further, none of the other commenters objected to 
the proposed labeling requirement. American 
Motors Corporation specifically stated that a label 
is necessary. 

General Motors is correct in its statement that 
this warning will also be provided in the installa- 
tion instructions provided by the belt manufac- 
turer. Paragraphs S4.1(l) of Safety Standard No. 
209 provides, in part, that the installation instruc- 
tion sheet provided by the belt manufacturer shall 
state whether the assembly is for universal in- 
stallation or for installation only in specifically 
stated motor vehicles. Therefore, belt manufac- 
turers will be required to specify in the installation 
instructions that load-limiting belts are only to be 
installed in combination with automatic restraint 
systems. The agency believes that at the current 
time these duplicative warnings, in the instruction 
sheet and on a belt label, are a necessary precau- 
tion to ensure that load-limiting belts are only in- 
staUed in the proper vehicles. After a majority of 
vehicles on the road are equipped with automatic 
restraints, such labeling may no longer be 
necessary. 

Volvo of America Corporation commented that 
some upper limit on belt elongation may be re- 
quired for Type 1 manual belts incorporating load- 
limiting features, although no such limit was 
specified in the proposal. Volvo pointed out that 
Type 1 belts installed in conjunction with air 
cushion restraints will also provide roll-over pro- 
tection for vehicle occupants. The company is con- 
cerned that if no upper limit on elongation is 
specified, such belts may not provide the intended 
protection in roll-over accidents. 

While the agency agrees that this is a legitimate 
concern, it does not believe it is necessary to 
specify such an upper limit at the current time. It is 
not likely that manufacturers will design load- 
limiting belt systems that will elongate appreciably 
beyond the limits specified in Standard No. 209. 
Presumably, load-limiting belts will be designed to 
provide actual restraint in conjunction with the 
automatic restraint system, if the vehicle is to com- 
ply with the injury criteria of Safety Standard No. 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 23 



208. If a load-limiting belt design elongates to the 
extent that it would provide no protection in roll- 
over accidents, it would also not provide any pro- 
tection in frontal crashes. Therefore, it is not likely 
that manufacturers would permit such extensive 
elongation in their systems. Moreover, the forces 
generated in frontal crashes are more severe than 
those that occur in roll-over accidents, so the 
elongation that would occur even with load- 
limiting systems would not be as great in roll-over 
accidents as in frontal accidents. The agency 
believes that manufacturers should be given broad 
latitude in the development of load-limiting belt 
systems to be used in vehicles equipped with 
automatic restraints. In light of these considera- 
tions, no upper limit on belt elongation is specified 
in this amendment. Manufacturers should be 
cognizant of the point made by Volvo, however, 
during the development of their systems. 

The comments of Renault USA included general 
questions regarding automatic seat belts and the 
relationship between Safety Standard No. 208 and 
Safety Standard No. 209. Some confusion ap- 
parently exists regarding paragraph S4.5.3.4 of 
Safety Standard No. 208 and agency interpreta- 
tions regarding that paragraph. The agency has 
stated in the past that only automatic belts that are 
installed to meet the frontal crash protection 
requirements of S5.1 of Standard No. 208 are ex- 
empted from the requirements of Standard No. 

209. Yet, the agency has also stated that those por- 
tions of Standard No. 209 relating to retractors 
are applicable to all automatic belts. Renault finds 
these statements inconsistent. 

Paragraph S4.5.3.4 of Standard No. 208 is a 
general provision which exempts certain automatic 
belts, those meeting the injury criteria of the 
standard, from the requirements of Standard No. 
209. However, paragraph S4. 5.3.3(a) of Standard 
No. 208 specifically provides that automatic belts 
shall conform to S7.1 of Standard No. 208, and 
that paragraph relates to the performance require- 
ments for belt retractors specified in Standard No. 
209. It is for this reason that the agency has stated 
that all automatic belts must comply with the 
retractor requirements, notwithstanding the 
general exemption specified in S4. 5.3.4. 

Renault contends that paragraph S4.5.3.4 is also 
inconsistent by its own terms since, Renault 
states, an automatic belt system must always com- 
ply with the injury criteria of S5.1 of Standard No. 
208. This incorrect Paragraph S4.5.3 of Safety 
Standard No. 208 specifies that an automatic belt 



may be used to meet the crash protection require- 
ments of any option under S4 and in place of any 
seat belt assembly otherwise required by that op- 
tion. Therefore, prior to the effective date of the 
automatic restraint requirements of the standard, 
automatic belts could be used to satisfy the third 
option of section S4— the seat belt option. 
Automatic belts installed under the third option 
would not be required to comply with the injury 
criteria of S5.1, since the injury criteria is only 
specified as a requirement under option 1 and op- 
tion 2. Manufacturers are permitted, however, to 
install automatic belts in satisfaction of either op- 
tion 1 or option 2 and to certify to the injury 
criteria, if they desire. In summary, automatic 
belts installed in passenger cars in compliance with 
the injury criteria of Safety Standard No. 208 are 
only required to comply with the provisions of 
Safety Standard No. 209 relating to retractors. 
They are not required to comply with any other 
provision in Standard No. 209. Automatic belts in- 
stalled in passenger cars that are not certified as 
being in compliance with the injury criteria of 
Standard No. 208, i.e., those installed under the 
third option of the standard, are required to com- 
ply with all provisions of Standard No. 209. Manual 
seat belts having load-hmiters, installed in vehicles 
in conjunction with automatic restraints meeting 
the injury criteria of Standard No. 208, are re- 
quired to comply with all provisions of Standard 
No. 209 except the elongation requirements (by 
this amendment). 

The agency has determined that this amendment 
is not a significant regulation under Executive 
Order 12221, "Improving Grovemment Regula- 
tions," and the Departmental guidelines im- 
plementing that Order. Therefore, a regulatory 
analysis is not required. The exemption specified in 
this amendment provides manufacturers with 
broader design alternatives and should have little 
if any economic or environmental impact. Conse- 
quently, the agency has also determined that a 
regulatory evaluation is not required. 

The engineer and lawyer primarily responsible 
for the development of this rule are William Smith 
and Hugh Oates, respectively. 

Issued on January 5, 1981. 

Joan Claybrook 
Administrator 
46 F.R. 2618 
January 12, 1981 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 24 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 209 

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; 
Seat Belt Assemblies 

[Docl(et No. 82-15; Notice 2] 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: The purpose of this notice is to amend 
Safety Standard No. 209, Seat Belt Assemblies, 
which incorporates by reference a number of recom- 
mended practices and test procedures developed by 
voluntary standards organizations. This amend- 
ment updates those references by incorporating the 
most recent version of the recommended practices 
and procedures. This amendment is intended to 
keep the standard in pace with the technological 
changes and improvements in the industry. 

DATE: This amendment is effective July 30, 1983. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Federal Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard No. 209, Seat Belt 
Assemblies (49 CFR 571.209), specifies perfor- 
mance requirements for seat belts used in 
passenger cars, trucks, buses and multipurpose 
passenger vehicles (both as original and after- 
market equipment). Several of the performance re- 
quirements of the standard incorporate recom- 
mended practices developed by voluntary stan- 
dards organizations and associations. In addition, 
the standard specifies that certain, long- 
established industry test procedures be used in 
determining whether the seat belts meet those per- 
formance requirements. Because of the lengthy and 
technical nature of the recommended practices and 
test procedures, the standard incorporates those 
specifications by reference rather than setting out 
full texts in Standard No. 209. 

Since Standard No. 209 was first issued, along 
with the incorporated material, some of the 
referenced practices and procedures have been 



modified in some respects by the standards 
organizations, because of technological changes 
and advancements. In light of these modifications, 
the agency conducted a review of all the materials 
incorporated by reference within Standard No. 209 
to determine which materials needed to be changed 
so that their most recent version is incorporated 
in the standard. That review led to the issuance 
of a proposal to amend the standard to update all 
materials incorporated by reference (47 FR 31712, 
July 22, 1982). Interested persons should consult 
that notice of proposed rulemaking which sets out 
in detail the specific sections of the standard that 
include incorporated material, along with the pro- 
posed updated version of that material. As noted 
in the proposal, the incorporated material was 
developed by such voluntary standards associa- 
tions as the American Association of Textile 
Chemists and Colorists (AATCC), the American 
Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and the 
Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). 

Nine comments were submitted to the agency in 
response to the notice of proposed rulemaking, all 
of which supported the proposed update of 
materials incorporated by reference in the stan- 
dard. There were only a few recommended changes 
in the proposed revisions. 

In addition to incorporating the new ASTM cor- 
rosion resistance test procedure (paragraph S5.2(a) 
of the standard), the agency proposed a minor 
change in the procedure. The ASTM procedure 
specifies that the seat belt hardware is to be 
"suitably cleaned" prior to testing. To clarify the 
extent of cleaning necessary, the agency proposed 
to specify that any temporary coating placed on the 
seat belt hardware shall be removed prior to 



PART 571; S209-PRE 25 



testing. The purpose of the proposed change was 
to prevent the use of a coating material on the 
hardware during the corrosion resistance test that 
would aid the hardware in meeting the require- 
ment, but which would not be found on the hard- 
ware when it is in actual vehicle use. Coatings 
which are applied permanently to the hardware 
would not have to be removed. The language pro- 
posed was as follows: 
"Any surface coating or material not intended for 
permanent retention on the metal parts during 
service life shall be removed prior to preparation 
of the test specimen for testing." 
Both Ford Motor Company and the Motor Vehi- 
cle Manufacturers Association requested changes 
in this language. Ford argued that the phrases "in- 
tended for permanent retention" and "during ser- 
vice life" are unduly restrictive because some anti- 
corrosion coatings £u-e applied to component parts 
to inhibit their corrosion during shipment to 
assembly plants and are intended to remain on 
those parts after assembly of the vehicle and its 
delivery to the first retail purchaser. Ford noted 
that such oil coatings may, however, disappear 
(e.g., dry up) during the service life of the vehicle. 
(MVMA's concern appeared to be identical to 
Ford's.) 

The agency proposed to clarify the cleaning in- 
structions in the corrosion test procedure because 
a testing laboratory brought a potential problem 
to the agency's attention. The laboratory reported 
that certain seat belt components had been 
delivered to it for corrosion testing which had been 
coated with wax. Obviously, such a coating would 
preclude a true testing of the components' corro- 
sion resistance and the coating would not likely be 
present throughout the service life of the vehicle 
(and might in fact be removed during vehicle 
assembly). While the agency understands the point 
raised by Ford and MVMA (that oil coatings are 
intended to remain on the components upon 
delivery), as Ford pointed out, these coatings will 
likely dry up during the service life of the vehicle. 
Therefore, it is the agency's opinion that wax, oil 
or other coatings that are not permanent should 
be removed prior to testing since they can skew the 
test results and misrepresent the corrosion 
resistance of component parts during actual vehi- 
cle use. Consequently, the proposed language is be- 
ing maintained in this amendment. It should be 
noted, however, that this test requirement is in no 
way intended to preclude manufactui-ers from plac- 



ing any coatings, either temporary or permanent, 
on their seat belt assembly components. 

Section S5.1(e) of Standard No. 209 specifies the 
test procedures for measuring the resistance to 
light of seat belt assemblies. In May 1980, the 
agency proposed to alter the test apparatus used 
for these requirements in light of new dacron 
materials being used in belt assemblies (45 FR 
29102). As a part of that action, the agency pro- 
posed to update the one ASTM recommended prac- 
tice (E42-64) already incorporated in the standard 
and to add a reference to another ASTM practice 
(G24-66). The proposal preceding this amendment 
noted that the agency is awaiting the completion 
of additional testing before taking final action on 
the May 1980 proposal and that, if an amendment 
were adopted, the agency would incorporate the 
most recent version of both the ASTM recom- 
mended practices. 

Volkswagen of America pointed out that ASTM 
G24-66 is not the most recent version of that stan- 
dard and cited instead G24-73. The Motor Vehicle 
Manufacturers Association stated that its member 
companies had not yet had a chance to evaluate 
the new ASTM procedures and indicated that they 
could involve significant changes. Both com- 
menters requested that a new proposal be issued 
before a final amendment involving the resistance 
to light requirements is issued. The agency realizes 
that the new ASTM procedures may involve 
substantial changes in the test procedm-es and does 
intend to issue an additional proposal prior to up- 
dating that aspect of the Standard No. 209 test pro- 
cedures (pending completion of additional testing, 
as noted in the notice of proposed rulemaking). 

Two commenters, American Motors Corporation 
and Ms. Patricia Hill, pointed out a discrepancy 
between the Occupant Weight and Dimension 
Charts referenced in S4.1(gX3) of Standard No. 209 
and in S7.1.3 of Standard No. 208, Occupant Crash 
Protection (49 CFR 571.208). The hip breadth (sit- 
ting) for the 95th percentile adult male is listed as 

16.4 inches in the former and as 16.5 inches in the 
latter. To remove this discrepancy, this notice 
amends the chart in Standard No. 209 to agree 
with the chart in Standard No. 208 (i.e., to read 

16.5 inches). (Originally, the chai't in Standard No. 
208 also listed the hip breadth as 16.4 inches. This 
was amended January 8, 1981, to be consistent 
with the dimensions of the Part 572 test dummy 
(46 FR 2064)). 

The American Seat Belt Council noted that a 



PART 571; S209-PRE 26 



more recent version of AATCC Test Method 30 
(30-81), Resistance to Microorganisms, has been 
issued than was noted in the proposal (which 
referenced 30-79). The agency has reviewed this 
latest version and determined that the only dif- 
ference between 30-79 and 30-81 is the optional ad- 
dition of glucose to the test culture used in Test HI. 
The agency agrees with this option and therefore 
is incorporating AATCC Method 30-81 in this 
amendment. 

The notice of proposed rulemaking preceding this 
amendment also solicited comments, information 
and data from the public concerning any current 
requirements of Standard No. 209 which possibly 
impose a regulatory burden and have a negligible 
or inconsequential impact on safety. The agency 
solicited this information as part of its regulatory 
review of all existing regulations. All comments to 
the proposal included suggested changes or revi- 
sions to reduce burdens, clarify requirements or to 
harmonize Standard No. 209 with European stan- 
dards. These comments are currently being re- 
viewed by the agency under its Regulatory Reform 
program and may lead to additional rulemaking 
to reduce or eliminate regulatory burdens imposed 
by Standard No. 209. (Persons interested in the 
recommended changes should consult comments to 
the proposal: Docket 82-15; Notice 1.) 

In addition to the amendments discussed esu-lier, 
this notice also amends 49 CFR Part 571.5, Mat- 
ter Incorporated by Reference, to list the address 
of the American Association of Textile Chemists 
and Colorists (AATCC). This amendment will 
assist interested parties in obtaining copies of the 
AATCC test procedures which are incorporated by 
reference in Standard No. 209. 

The amendments included in this notice are to 
become effective 30 days after the date of this 
publication. The Administrator has determined 
that there is good cause for an effective date sooner 
than 180 days because this amendment only up- 
dates material incorporated by reference and 
makes no real substantive changes in the standard. 
Consequently, the burdens on manufacturers will 
in no way be increased. 
Executive Order 12291 

The agency has evaluated the economic and other 
impacts of this final rule and determined that they 
are neither major as defined by Executive Order 
12291 nor significant as defined by the Department 
of Transportation's regulatory policies and pro- 
cedures. The final rule only updates references to 



recommended practices and test methods already 
incorporated by reference in Standard No. 209. 
Because the economic and other effects of this pro- 
posal are so minimal, a full regulatory evaluation 
has not been prepared. 
Regulatory Flexibility Act 

In accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility 
Act, the agency has evaluated the effects of this 
action on small entities. Based on that evaluation, 
I certify that the final rule will not have a signifi- 
cant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities. Accordingly, no regulatory flexibili- 
ty analysis has been prepared. 

Only a few of the vehicle and parts manufac- 
turers required to comply with Stfindard No. 209 
are small businesses as defined by the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act. Small organizations and govern- 
mental jurisdictions which purchase fleets of motor 
vehicles would not be significantly affected by the 
sunendments. The final rule merely updates 
references to test methods and recommended prac- 
tices incorporated by reference in Standard No. 
209. These updates should not impose any costs or 
other burdens. 

PART 571 -FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY 
STANDARDS 

In consideration of the foregoing, the following 
amendments are made to Title 49, Chapter V, § 
571.209, Seat Belt Assemblies, and § 571.5, Mat- 
ter incorporated by reference: 
§ 571.209 [Amended] 

1. The first sentence of S4.1(f) is revised to read 
as follows: 

S4.1 * * * 

(f) Attachment hardware. A seat belt assembly 
shall include all hardware necessary for installa- 
tion in a motor vehicle in accordance with Society 
of Automotive Engineers Recommended Practice 
J800c, "Motor Vehicle Seat Belt Installation," 
November 1973. * * * 

2. The chart included in S4.1(gX3) is amended so 
that the dimension for hip breadth (sitting) for the 
95th percentile adult male reads as follows: 

S4.1(g) * * * 

(3) * * * 

Hip breadth (sitting) 12.8 in 16.5 in. 

3. The last sentence of S4.1(k) is revised to read 
as follows: 

04 1 * ♦ * 



PART 571; S209-PRE 27 



(k) Installation instructions. * * * The installa- 
tion instructions shall state whether the assembly 
is for universal installation or for installation on- 
ly in specifically stated motor vehicles, and shall 
include at least those items specified in SAE 
Recommended Practice J800c, "Motor Vehicle Seat 
Belt Installations," November 1973. 



orists Test Method 30-81, "Fungicides Evaluation 
on Textiles; Mildew and Rot Resistance of Tex- 
tiles," and then subjected to Test I, "Soil Burial 
Test" of that test method. 

7. Paragraph (g) of S5.1 is revised to read as 
follows: 



4. The second sentence of S4.3(aXl) is revised to 
read as follows: 

S4.3 * * * 

(a) Corrosion resistance, (i) * * * 
Alternatively, such hardware at or near the floor 
shall be protected against corrosion by at least an 
electrodeposited coating of nickel, or copper and 
nickel with at least a service condition number of 
SC2, and other attachment hardware shall be pro- 
tected by an electrodeposited coating of nickel, or 
copper and nickel with a service condition number 
of SCI, in accordance with American Society for 
Testing and Materials B456-79, "Standard 
Specification for Electrodeposited Coatings of Cop- 
per Plus Nickel Plus Chromium and Nickel Plus 
Chromium," but such hardware shall not be racked 
for electroplating in locations subjected to max- 
imum stress. 

***** 

5. The first sentence of SS.lCb) is revised to read 

as follows: 

***** 

S5.1 * * * 

(b) Breaking strength. Webbing from three seat 
belt assemblies shall be conditioned in accordance 
with paragraph (a) of this section and tested for 
breaking strength in a testing machine of capaci- 
ty verified to have an error of not more than one 
percent in the range of the breaking strength of 
the webbing in accordance with American Society 
for Testing and Materials E4-79, "Standard 
Methods of Load Verification of Testing 
Machines." 

***** 

6. The first sentence of S5.1(f) is revised to read 
as follows: 



S5.1 * * * 

(g) Colorfastness to crocking. Webbing from three 
seat belt assemblies shall be tested by the pro- 
cedure specified in American Association of Tex- 
tile Chemists and Colorists Standard Test Method 
8-181, "Colorfastness to Crocking: AATCC 
Crockmeter Method." 

***** 

8. Paragraph (h) of S5.1 is revised to read as 
follows: 

***** 

55.1 * * * 

(h) Colorfastness to staining. Webbing from three 
seat belt assemblies shall be tested by the pro- 
cedure specified in American Association of Tex- 
tile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC) Standard 
Test Method 107-1981, "Colorfastness to Water," 
except that the testing shall use (1) distilled water, 
(2) the AATCC perspiration tester, (3) a drying time 
of four hours, sf)ecified in section 7.4 of the AATCC 
procedure, and (4) section 9 of the AATCC test pro- 
cedures to determine the colorfastness to staining 
on the AATCC Chromatic Transference Scale. 
***** 

9. The first sentence of S5.2(a) is revised and a 
new sentence is added after the first sentence so 
that the two sentences read as follows: 

55.2 Hardware.- 

(a) Corrosion Resistance. Three seat belt 
assemblies shall be tested in accordance with 
American Society for Testing and Materials 
B117-73, "Standard Method of Salt Spray (Fog) 
Testing." Any surface coating or material not in- 
tended for permanent retention on the metal parts 
during service life shall be removed prior to 
preparation of the test specimens for 
testing. * * * 



S5.1 * * * 

(f) Resistance to microorganisms. Webbing at 
least 20 inches or 50 centimeters in length from 
three seat belt assemblies shall first be precondi- 
tioned in accordance with Appendix A(l) and (2) of 
American Association of Textile Chemists and Col- 



10. The first sentence of S5. 2(b) is revised to read 
as follows: 
S5.2 Hardware. 

(b) Temperature resistance. Three seat belt 
assemblies having plastic or nonmetallic hardware 



PART 571; S209-PRE 28 



or having retractors shall be subjected to the con- 
ditions prescribed in Procedure D of American 
Society for Testing and Materials D756-78, "Stan- 
dard Practice for Determination of Weight and 
Shape Changes of Plastics under Accelerated Ser- 
vice Conditions." * * * 

***** 

11. The eighth sentence of S5.2(k) is revised to 

read as follows: 

***** 

S5.2 * * * 

Qj) * * * Then, the retractor and webbing shall 
be subjected to dust in a chamber similar to one 
illustrated in Figure 8 containing about 2 pounds 
or 0.9 kilogram of coarse grade dust conforming to 
the specification given in Society of Automotive 
Engineering Recommended Practice J726, "Air 
Cleaner Test Code" Sept. 1979. * * * 

In § 571.5, paragraph (bX5) is redesignated (bX6) 
and a new paragraph (bX5) is added to read as 
follows: 



§ 571.5 Matter incorporated by reference. 

***** 

(b) * * * 

(5) Test methods of the American Association of 
Textile Chemists and Colorists. They are published 
by the American Association of Textile Chemists 
and Colorists. Information and copies can be ob- 
tained by writing to: American Association of Tex- 
tile Chemists and Colorists, Post Office Box 886, 
Dvu-ham, NC. 

(6) * * * 

Issued on June 22, 1983 



Diane K. Steed, 
Acting Administrator. 

48 F.R. 30138 
June 30, 1983 



PART 571; S209-PRE 29-30 



PREAMBLE TO AN AMENDMENT TO 
FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 209 

Seat Belt Assemblies 
[Docket No. 80-06; Notice 3] 



ACTION: Final rule. 

SUMMARY: This notice amends Safety Standard 
No. 209, Seat Belt Assemblies, to alter the test 
procedure specified under the "resistance to light" 
requirements of the standard. This amendment is 
intended to establish an equivalent strength test 
for both nylon and polyester webbing materials 
used in seat belt assemblies. This amendment 
changes the test apparatus for polyester fibers by 
replacing the currently specified "Corex D" filter 
with a chemically strengthened or tempered soda- 
lime glass filter. The "Corex D" filter would still be 
utilized in testing nylon webbing, since it offers 
the best correlation with actual outdoor results 
when dealing with nylon webbing material. 

EFFECTIVE DATE: September 18, 1985. 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under Safe 
ty Standard No. 209, Seat Belt Assemblies (49 
CFR 571.209), seat belts must pass a "resistance to 
light" test (paragraph S4.2(e)). This test measures 
the strength and durability of the seat belt web- 
bing material after exposure to sunlight. The 
"resistance to light" test represents an ac- 
celerated determination of outdoor exposure or 
aging. A rapid form of testing is needed so that 
webbing may be certified in accordance with Stan- 
dard No. 209 and automotive companies' specifica- 
tions prior to shipment. 

On May 1, 1980, a Notice of Proposed Rule- 
making (45 PR 29102) was issued, proposing an 
amendment to the procedure to be used in "resis- 
tance to light" tests. The original standard called 
for a "Corex D" filter in testing webbing material. 
The "Corex D" filter was an adequate test appa- 



ratus prior to the introduction of polyester web- 
bing material for seat belts. Research had shown 
that although the specified test apparatus of a car- 
bon arc light source combined with a "Corex D" 
filter, in general, was an effective method of simu- 
lating the effects of sunlight, it did result in the 
emission of certain radiations that were unrepre- 
sentative of the actual effects of natural sunlight. 
These peculiar radiations, which destroyed polyes- 
ter but not nylon fibers, made the "Corex D" test 
procedure inappropriate for measuring the "resis- 
tance to light" requirements of seat belts contain- 
ing polyester webbing material. 

The proposed procedure replaced the required 
"Corex D" filter with a plain soda-lime glass filter 
in an attempt to create a similar, adequate testing 
for both nylon and polyester webbing material 
used in seat belt assemblies. Responses to that 
notice indicated that the proposed plain soda-lime 
glass filters were cracking either during the test 
cycle, due to the intense heat emitted during the 
100 hours of test time, or after the test period, 
during the cool down of the equipment. 

The Narrow Fabrics Institute, Inc. requested a 
delay in the rulemaking process in order to locate 
a less heat sensitive substitute. On September 16, 
1980, the agency informed the Narrow Fabrics In- 
stitute, Inc. that the rulemaking process would be 
delayed until the development of a filter more 
resistant to thermal shock. 

Upon completion of a 2-year search and a 1-year 
period of evaluation, the Narrow Fabrics Insti- 
tue submitted a revised test apparatus. The im- 
proved filter was a chemically strengthened or 
tempered soda-lime glass. Testing done by the 
agency under Contract No. DTNH-22-83-P-02016 
confirmed that the new filter maintained the same 



PART 571; S209-PRE 31 



light transmittance characteristics of the un- 
treated soda-lime glass filter originally proposed, 
but was free of the previous thermal shock prob- 
lems. The treated soda-lime glass filter produces 
an excellent correlation with actual outdoor 
results, for the proper accelerated degradation of 
polyester webbing, without the prior breakage dif- 
ficulties. 

A careful evaluation of data compiled over the 
past few years demonstrates that as to nylon web- 
bing material, the "Corex D" filter still affords the 
best correlation with actual outdoor results. In 
light of these various findings, the agency pro- 
posed on November 28, 1983 (48 FR 53583) to 
amend the test procedure to reflect these results. 

Four of the five commenters to the docket sup- 
ported the proposed amendment to Standard No. 
209. The other commenter, Renault, made two ob- 
jections. First, it argued that the carbon arc light 
used in Standard No. 209 is unrepresentative of 
real use conditions. It urges the use of an xenon 
lamp. As stated previously, the use of the carbon 
arc light with the appropriate filters produces ex- 
cellent correlation with actual outdoors test of the 
resistance to light capability of seat belts. The 
agency, therefore, does not believe it is necessary 
to propose an amendment to allow the use of an 
xenon lamp. 

Renault also said that Standard No. 209 should 
not use different test procedures for different 
materials. It recommended that the agency not re- 
quire the use of different filters, but instead 
specify the transmission band and spectral distri- 
bution of the radiation used in the test. Finally, 
Renault said that if the agency decides to require a 
filter, it should provide a more specific definition 
of the filter to be used in the testing. In particular, 
Renault asked that the agency specify the wave 
length of the light being used. 

The agency disagrees with Renault concerning 
the use of different filters in the resistance to light 
test. The carbon arc test equipment used in the re- 
sistance to light test is a well-established test pro- 
cedure that has been long used by the motor vehi- 
cle and seat belt industries. Tests conducted by 
the Narrow Fabrics Institute show that the carbon 
arc test equipment, when used with the appropri- 
ate filters, produces results comparable to actual 
outdoor resistance to light tests. Although the 
agency has decided to retain the use of the filters, 
it agfrees with Renault that the specific charac- 
teristics of the new soda-lime filter need to be 



more precisely defined. The agency has obtained 
information on the transmittance of chemically 
strengthened soda-lime glass from the principal 
manufacturer of that device. Based on that infor- 
mation, the agency is amending the standard to 
specify the transmittance of the soda-lime glass to 
be used in the resistance to light test of polyester 
belts. 

Update References 

In the November 1983 notice, the agency pro- 
posed to update one of the American Society for 
Testing and Materials recommended practices in- 
corporated by reference in the standard. The pro- 
posal to incorporate ASTM G23-81 was not op- 
posed by the commenters and is therefore 
adopted. 

PART 571 -[AMENDED] 

In consideration of the foregoing, paragraph 
S5.1(e) of Safety Standard No. 209, Seat Belt 
Assemblies (49 CFR 571.209), is amended by re- 
vising paragraph (e) to read as follows: 
§571.209 Standard No. 209; seat belt assemblies. 

S5.1 • ♦ * 

(e) Resistance to Light. Webbing at least 20 
inches or 50 centimeters in length from three seat 
belt assemblies shall be suspended vertically on 
the inside of the specimen rack in a Type E carbon- 
arc light-exposure apparatus described in Stan- 
dard Practice for Operating Light-Exposure Appa- 
ratus (Carbon-Arc Type) With and Without Water 
for Exposure of Nonmetallic Materials, ASTM 
Designation: G23-81, published by the American 
Society for Testing and Materials, except that the 
filter used for 100 percent polyester yarns shall be 
chemically strengthened soda-lime glass with a 
transmittance of less than 5 percent for wave 
lengths equal to or less than 305 nanometers and 
90 percent or g^reater transmittance for wave 
lengths of 375 to 800 nanameters. The apparatus 
shall be operated without water spray at an air 
temperature of 60 ± 2 degrees Celsius or 140 ± 
3.6 degrees Fahrenheit measured at a point 1.0 ± 
0.2 inch or 25 ± 5 millimeters outside the speci- 
men rack and midway in height. The temperature 
sensing element shall be shielded from radiation. 
The specimens shall be exposed to light from the 
carbon-arc for 100 hours and then conditioned as 
prescribed in paragraph (a) of this section. The 
colorfastness of the exposed and conditioned speci- 
mens shall be determined on the Geometric Gray 



PART 571; S209-PRE 32 



Scale issued by the American Association of Tex- Issued on August 31, 1984. 

tile Chemists and Colorists. The breaking strength 
of the specimens shall be determined by the pro- 
cedure prescribed in paragraph (b) of this section. Diane K. Steed 
The median values for the breaking strengths de- Administrator 
termined on exposed and unexposed specimens 

shall be used to calculate the percentage of break- 49 pR 36507 

ing strength retained. September 18, 1984 



PART 571; S 209-PRE 33-34 



MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 209 

Seat Belt Assemblies 

(Docket No. 69-23) 



SI. Purpose and Scope. 

This standard specifies requirements for seat 
belt assemblies. 

52. Application. 

This standard applies to seat belt assemblies for 
use in passenger cars, multipurpose passenger 
vehicles, trucks, and buses. 

53. Definitions. 

"Seat belt assembly" means any strap, webbing, 
or similar device designed to secure a person in a 
motor vehicle in order to mitigate the results of 
any accident, including all necessary buckles and 
other fasteners, and all hardware designed for in- 
stalling such seat belt assembly in a motor vehicle. 

"Pelvic restraint" means a seat belt assembly or 
portion thereof intended to restrain movement of 
the pelvis. 

"Upper torso restraint" means a portion of a 
seat belt assembly intended to restrain movement 
of the chest and shoulder regions. 

"Hardware" means any metal or rigid plastic 
part of a seat belt assembly. 

"Buckle" means a quick release connector which 
fastens a person in a seat belt assembly. 

"Attachment hardware" means any or all hard- 
ware designed for securing the webbing of a seat 
belt assembly to a motor vehicle. 

"Adjustment hardware" means any or all hard- 
ware designed for adjusting the size of a seat belt 
assembly to fit the user, including such hardware 
that may be integral with a buckle, attachment 
hardware, or retractor. 

"Retractor" means a device for storing part or 
all of the webbing in a seat belt assembly. 

"Nonlocking retractor" means a retractor from 
which the webbing is extended to essentially its full 
length by a small external force, which provides no 
adjustment for assembly length, and which may or 



may not be capable of sustaining restraint forces at 
maximum webbing extension. 

"Automatic-locking retractor" means a retrac- 
tor incorporating adjustment hardware by means 
of a positive self-locking mechanism which is 
capable when locked of withstanding restraint 
forces. 

"Emergency-locking retractor" means a retrac- 
tor incorporating adjustment hardware by means 
of a locking mechanism that is activated by vehicle 
acceleration, webbing movement relative to the 
vehicle, or other automatic action during an 
emergency and is capable when locked of with- 
standing restraint forces. 

"Seat back retainer" means the portion of some 
seat belt assemblies designed to restrict forward 
movement of a seat back. 

"Webbing" means a narrow fabric woven with 
continuous filling yarns and finished selvages. 

"Strap" means a narrow non-woven material used 
in a seat belt assembly in place of webbing. 

"Type 1 seat belt assembly" is a lap belt for 
pelvic restraint. 

"Type 2 seat belt assembly" is a combination of 
pelvic and upper-torso restraints. 

"Type 2a shoulder belt" is an upper- torso 
restraint for use only in conjunction with a lap belt 
as a Type 2 seat belt assembly. 

"Load-limiter" means a seat belt assembly com- 
ponent or feature that controls tension on the seat 
belt to modulate the forces that are imparted to oc- 
cupants restrained by the belt assembly during a 
crash. 

S4. Requirements. 

S4.1 (a) Single occupancy. A seat belt 
assembly shall be designed for use by one, and only 
one, person at any one time. 

(b) Pelvic restraint. A seat belt assembly shall 
provide pelvic restraint whether or not upper torso 



PART 571; S 209-1 



restraint is provided, and the pelvic restraint shall 
be designed to remain on the pelvis under all condi- 
tions , including collision or roll-over of the motor 
vehicle. Pelvic restraint of a Type 2 seat belt 
assembly that can be used without upper torso 
restraint shall comply with requirements for Type 
1 seat belt assembly in S4.1 to S4.4. 

(c) Upper torso restraint. A Type 2 seat belt 
assembly shall provide upper-torso restraint 
without shifting the pelvic restraint into the 
abdominal region. An upper- torso restraint shall 
be designed to minimize vertical forces on the 
shoulders and spine. Hardware for upper-torso 
restraint shall be so designed and located in the 
seat belt assembly that the possibility of injury to 
the occupant is minimized. 

A Type 2a shoulder belt shall comply with 
applicable requirements for a Type 2 seat belt 
assembly in S4.1 to S4.4, inclusive. 

(d) Hardware. All hardware parts which 
contact under normal usage a person, clothing, or 
webbing shall be free from burrs and sharp edges. 

(e) Release. A Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt 
assembly shall be provided with a buckle or buckles 
readily acccessible to the occupant to permit his 
easy and rapid removal from the assembly. Buckle 
release mechanism shall be designed to minimize 
the possibility of accidental release. A buckle with 
release mechanism in the latched position shall 
have only one opening in which the tongue can be 
inserted on the end of the buckle designed to 
receive and latch the tongue. 

(f) Attachment hardware. [A seat belt 
assembly shall include all hardware necessary for 
installation in a motor vehicle in accordance with 
Society of Automotive Engineers Recommended 
Practice J800c, "Motor Vehicle Seat Belt Installa- 
tion," Novemmber 1973. (48 F.R. 30138-June 30, 
1983. Effective: July 30, 1983)1 However, seat belt 
assemblies designed for installation in motor 
vehicles equipped with seat belt assembly 
anchorages that do not require anchorage nuts, 
plates, or washers, need not have such hardware, 
but shall have 7/16-20 UNF-2A or 1/2-13 
UNC-2A attachment bolts or equivalent hard- 
ware. The hardware shall be designed to prevent 
attachment bolts and other parts from becoming 
disengaged from the vehicle while in service. Rein- 
forcing plates or washers furnished for universal 
floor installations shall be of steel, free from burrs 
and sharp edges on the peripheral edges adjacent 
to the vehicle, at least 0.06 inch in thickness and at 



least 4 square inches in projected area. The 
distance between any edge of the plate and the 
edge of the bolt hole shall be at least 0.6 inch. Any 
corner shall be rounded to a radius of not less than 
0.25 inch or cut so that no corner angle is less than 
135° and no side is less than 0.25 inch in length, 
(g) Adjustment. 

(1) A Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt assembly shall 
be capable of adjustment to fit occupants whose 
dimensions and weight range from those of a 
5th-percentile adult female to those of a 95th- 
percentile adult male. The seat belt assembly 
shall have either an automatic-locking retractor, 
an emergency-locking retractor, or an adjusting 
device that is within the reach of the occupant. 

(2) A Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt assembly for 
use in a vehicle having seats that are adjustable 
shall conform to the requirements of S4.1(g) (1) 
regardless of seat position. However, if a seat 
has a back that is separately adjustable, the 
requirements of S4. 1(g) (1) need be met only with 
the seat back in the manufacturer's nominal 
design riding position. 

(3) The adult occupants referred to in S4.1(g) (1) 
shall have the following measurements: 



5th-percentile 
adult female 



95th-percentile 
adult male 



Weight 102 pounds . 

E rect sitting height 30.9 inches _ 

Hip breadth (sitting) 12.8 inches _ 

Hip circumference 

(sitting) 36.4 inches _ 

Waist circumference 

(sitting) 23.6 inches _ 

Chest depth 7.5 inches 

Chest circumference: 

(nipple) 30.5 inches _ 

(upper) 29.8 inches _ 

(lower) 26.6 inches _ 



215 pounds. 
38 inches. 
16.5 inches. 



42.5 inches. 
10.5 inches. 



(h) Webbing. The ends of webbing in a seat belt 
assembly shall be protected or treated to prevent 
raveling. The end of webbing in a seat belt 
assembly having a metal-to-metal buckle that is 
used by the occupant to adjust the size of the 
assembly shall not pull out of the adjustment hard- 
ware at maximum size adjustment. Provision shall 
be made for essentially unimpeded movement of 
webbing routed between a seat back and seat 
cushion and attached to a retractor located behind 
the seat. 



(Rev. 6/30/B3) 



PART 571; S 209-2 



(i) Strap. A strap used in a seat belt assembly 
to sustain restraint forces shall comply with the 
requirements for webbing in S4.2, and if the strap 
is made from a rigid material, it shall comply with 
applicable requirements in S4.2, S4.3 and S4.4. 

(j) Marking. Each seat belt assembly shall be 
permanently and legibly marked or labeled with 
year of manufacture, model, and name or 
trademark of manufacturer or distributor, or of 
importer if manufactured outside the United 
States. A model shall consist of a single combina- 
tion of webbing having a specific type of fiber 
'weave and construction, and hardware having a 
specific design. Webbings of various colors may 
be included under the same model, but webbing of 
each color shall comply with the requirements for 
webbing in S4.2. 

(k) Installation instructions. A seat belt 
assembly or retractor shall be accompanied by an 
instruction sheet providing sufficient information 
for installing the assembly in a motor vehicle 
except for a seat belt assembly installed in a motor 
vehicle by an automobile manufacturer. |The 
installation instructions shall state whether the 
assembly is for universal installation or for installa- 
tion only in specifically stated motor vehicles, and 
shall include at least those items specified in SAE 
Recommended Practice J800c, "Motor Vehicle 
Seat Belt Installations," November 1973. (48 F.R. 
30138-June 30, 1983. Effective: July 30, 1983)1 

(1) Usage and maintenance instructions. A seat 
belt assembly or retractor shall be accompanied by 
written instructions for the proper use of the 
assembly, stressing particularly the importance of 
wearing the assembly snugly and properly located 
on the body, and on the maintenance of the 
assembly and periodic inspection of all com- 
ponents. The instructions shall show the proper 
manner of threading webbing in the hardware of 
seat belt assemblies in which the webbing is not 
permanently fastened. Instructions for a non- 
locking retractor shall include a caution that the 
webbing must be fully extended from the retractor 
during use of the seat belt assembly unless the 
retractor is attached to the free end of webbing 
which is not subjected to any tension during 
restraint of an occupant by the assembly. Instruc- 
tions for Type 2a shoulder belt shall include a 
warning that the shoulder belt is not to be used 
without a lap belt. 



(m) Workmanship. Seat belt assemblies shall 
have good workmanship in accordance with good 
commercial practice. 



S4.2 Requirements for webbing. 

(a) Width. The width of the webbing in a seat 
belt assembly shall be not less than 1.8 inches, 
except for portions that do not touch a 95th- 
percentile adult male with the seat in any adjust- 
ment position and the seat back in the manufac- 
turer's nominal design riding position when 
measured under the conditions prescribed in 
S5.1(a). 

(b) Breaking strength. The webbing in a seat 
belt assembly shall have not less than the following 
breaking strength when tested by the procedures 
specified in S5.1(b): Type 1 seat belt assembly— 
6,000 pounds or 2,720 kilograms; Type 2 seat belt 
assembly— 5,000 pounds or 2,270 kilograms for 
webbing in pelvic restraint and 4,000 pounds or 
1,810 kilograms for webbing in upper-torso 
restraint. 

(c) Elongation. Except as provided in S4.5, the 
webbing in a seat belt assembly shall not be ex- 
tended to more than the following elongations 
when subjected to the specified forces in accord- 
ance with the procedure specified in S5.1(c): Type 1 
seat belt assembly— 20 percent at 2,500 pounds or 
1,130 kilograms; Type 2 seat belt assembly— 30 
percent at 2,500 pounds or 1,130 kilograms for 
webbing in pelvic restraint and 40 percent at 2,500 
pounds or 1,130 kilograms for webbing in upper- 
torso restraint. 

(d) Resistance to abrasion. The webbing of a 
seat belt assembly, after being subjected to abra- 
sion as specified in S5.1(d) or S5.3(c), shall have a 
breaking strength of not less than 75 percent of the 
breaking strength listed in S4.2(b) for that type of 
belt assembly. 

(e) Resistance to light. The webbing in a seat 
belt assembly after exposure to the light of a car- 
bon arc and tested by the procedure specified in 
S5.1(e) shall have a breaking strength not less than 
60 percent of the strength before exposure to the 
carbon arc and shall have a color retention not less 
than No. 2 on the Geometric Gray Scale published 
by the American Association of Textile Chemists 
and Colorists, Post Office Box 886, Durham, N.C. 

(f) Resistance to micro-organisms. The web- 
bing in a seat belt assembly after being subjected 
to micro-organisms and tested by the procedures 



(Rev. 6/30/83) 



PART 571; S 209-3 



specified in S5.1(f) shall have a breaking strength 
not less than 85 percent of the strength before 
subjection to micro-organisms. 

(g) Colorfastness to crocking. The webbing in a 
seat belt assembly shall not transfer color to a 
crock cloth either wet or dry to a greater degree 
than class 3 on the AATCC Chart for Measuring 
Transference of Color published by the American 
Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists, 
when tested by the procedure specified in S5.1(g). 

(h) Colorfastness to staining. The webbing in a 
seat belt assembly shall not stain to a greater 
degree than class 3 on the AATCC. Chart for 
Measuring Transference of Color published by the 
American Association of Textile Chemists and 
Colorists, when tested by the procedure specified 
in S5.1(h). 

S4.3 Requirements (or hardware. 

(a) Corrosion resistance. 

(1) Attachment hardware of a seat belt 
assembly after being subjected to the conditions 
specified in S5.2(a) shall be free of ferrous cor- 
rosion on significant surfaces except for per- 
missible ferrous corrosion at peripheral edges or 
edges of holes on underfloor reinforcing plates 
and washers. (Alternatively, such hardware at 
or near the floor shall be protected against corro- 
sion by at least an electrodeposited coating of 
nickel, or copper and nickel with at least a serv- 
ice condition number of SC2, and other attach- 
ment hardware shall be protected by an elec- 
trodeposited coating of nickel, or copper and 
nickel with a service condition number of SCI, in 
accordance with American Society for Testing 
and Materials B456-79, "Standard Specification 
for Electrodeposited Coatings of Copper Plus 
Nickel Plus Chromium and Nickel Plus 
Chromium," but such hardware shall not be 
racked for electroplating in locations subjected 
to maximum stress. (48 F.R. 30138-June 30, 
1983. Effective: July 30, 1983)1 

(2) Surfaces of buckles, retractors and 
metallic parts, other than attachment hardware, 
of a seat belt assembly after subjection to the 
conditions specified in S5.2(a) shall be free of 
ferrous or nonferrous corrosion which may be 
transferred, either directly or by means of the 
webbing, to the occupant or his clothing when 
the assembly is worn. After test, buckles shall 
conform to applicable requirements in 
paragraphs (d) to (g) of this section. 



(b) Temperature resistance. Plastic or other 
nonmetallic hardware parts of a seat belt assembly 
when subjected to the conditions specified in 
S5.2(b) shall not warp or otherwise deteriorate to 
cause the assembly to operate improperly or fail to 
comply with applicable requirements in this section 
and S4.4. 

(c) Attachment hardware. 

(1) Eye bolts, shoulder bolts, or other bolts 
used to secure the pelvic restraint of a seat belt 
assembly to a motor vehicle shall withstand a 
force of 9,000 pounds or 4,080 kilograms when 
tested by the procedure specified in S5.2(c) (1), 
except that attachment bolts of a seat belt 
assembly designed for installation in specific 
models of motor vehicles in which the ends of 
two or more seat belt assemblies can not be 
attached to the vehicle by a single bolt shall have 
a breaking strength of not less than 5,000 pounds 
or 2,270 kilograms. 

(2) Other attachment hardware designed to 
receive the ends of two seat belt assemblies shall 
withstand a tensile force of at least 6,000 pounds 
or 2,720 kilograms without fracture of any 
section when tested by the procedure specified in 
S5.2(c) (2). 

(3) A seat belt assembly having single attach- 
ment hooks of the quick-disconnect type for 
connecting webbing to an eye bolt shall be pro- 
vided with a retaining latch or keeper which shall 
not move more than 0.08 inch or 2 millimeters in 
either the vertical or horizontal direction when 
tested by the procedure specified in S5.2(c) (3). 

(d) Buckle release. 

(1) The buckle of a Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt 
assembly shall release when a force of not more 
than 30 pounds or 14 kilograms is applied. 

(2) A buckle designed for pushbutton applica- 
tion of buckle release force shall have a minimum 
area of 0.7 square inch or 4.5 square centimeters 
with a minimum linear dimension of 0.4 inch or 
10 millimeters for applying the release force, or a 
buckle designed for lever application of a buckle 
release force shall permit the insertion of a 
cylinder 0.4 inch or 10 millimeters in diameter 
and 1.5 inches or 38 millimeters in length to at 
least the midpoint of the cylinder along the 
cylinder's entire length in the actuation portion 
of the buckle release. A buckle having other 
design for release shall have adequate access for 
two or more fingers to actuate release. 



(Rev. 7/30^83) 



PART 571; S 209-4 



(3) The buckle of a Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt 
assembly shall not release under a compressive 
force of 400 pounds applied as prescribed in 
paragraph S5.2(d) (3). The buckle shall be 
operable and shall meet the applicable 
requirements of paragraph S4.4 after the 
compressive force has been removed. 

(e) Adjustment force. The force required to 
decrease the size of a seat belt assembly shall not 
exceed 11 pounds or 5 kilograms when measured 
by the procedure specified in S5.2(e). 

(f) Tilt-lock adjustment. The buckle of a seat 
belt assembly having tilt-lock adjustment shall lock 
the webbing when tested by the procedure 
specified in S5.2(f ) at an angle of not less than 30 
degrees between the base of the buckle and the 
anchor webbing. 

(g) Buckle latch. The buckle latch of a seat belt 
assembly when tested by the procedure specified in 
S5.2(g) shall not fail, nor gall or wear to an extent 
that normal latching and unlatching is impaired, 
and a metal-to-metal buckle shall separate when in 
any position of partial engagement by a force of 
not more than 5 pounds or 2.3 kUograms. 

(h) Nonlocking retractor. The webbing of a seat 
belt assembly shall extend from a nonlocking 
retractor within 0.25 inch or 6 millimeters of 
maximum length when a tension is applied as 
prescribed in S5.2(h). A nonlocking retractor on 
upper-torso restraint shall be attached to the 
nonadjustable end of the assembly, the reel of the 
retractor shall be easily visible to an occupant 
while wearing the assembly, and the maximum 
retraction force shall not exceed 1.1 pounds or 0.5 
kilogram in any strap or webbing that contacts the 
shoulder when measured by the procedure 
specified in S5.2(h), unless the retractor is attached 
to the free end of webbing which is not subjected to 
any tension during restraint of an occupant by the 
assembly. 

(i) Automatic-locking retractor. The webbing 
of a seat belt assembly equipped with an automatic- 
locking retractor, when tested by the procedure 
specified in S5.2(i), shall not move more than 1 inch 
or 25 millimeters between locking positions of the 
retractor, and shall be retracted with a force under 
zero acceleration of not less than 0.6 pound or 0.27 
kilogram when attached to pelvic restraint, and 
not less than 0.45 pound or 0.2 kilogram nor more 
than 1.1 pounds or 0.5 kilogram in any strap or 



webbing that contacts the shoulder of an occupant 
when the retractor is attached to upper-torso 
restraint. An automatic-locking retractor attached 
to upper-torso restraint shall not increase the 
restraint on the occupant of the seat belt assembly 
during use in a vehicle traveling over rough roads 
as prescribed in S5.2(i). 

(j) Emergency-locking retractor. An 
emergency-locking retractor of a Type 1 or Type 2 
seat belt assembly, when tested in accordance with 
the procedures specified in paragraph S5.2(j)— 

(1) Shall lock before the webbing extends 1 
inch when the retractor is subjected to an 
acceleration of 0.7g; 

(2) Shall not lock, if the retractor is sensitive 
to webbing withdrawal, before the webbing 
extends 2 inches when the retractor is subjected 
to an acceleration of 0.3g or less; 

(3) Shall not lock, if the retractor is sensitive 
to vehicle acceleration, when the retractor is 
rotated in any direction to any angle of 15° or 
less from its orientation in the vehicle; 

(4) Shall exert a retroactive force of at least 
0.6 pound under zero acceleration when attached 
only to the pelvic restraint; 

(5) Shall exert a retractive force of not less 
than 0.2 pound and not more than 1.1 pounds 
under zero acceleration when attached only to an 
upper- torso restraint; 

(6) Shall exert a retractive force of not less 
than 0.2 pound and not more than 1.5 pounds 
under zero acceleration when attached to a strap 
or webbing that restrains both the upper torso 
and the pelvis. 

(k) Performance of retractor. A retractor used 
on a seat belt assembly after subjection to the tests 
specified in S5.2(k) shall comply with applicable 
requirements in paragraphs (h) to (j) of this section 
and S4.4, except that the retraction force shall be 
not less than 50 percent of its original retraction 
force. 

S4.4 Requirements for assembly perfomiance. 

(a) Type 1 seat belt assembly. Except as pro- 
vided in S4.5, the complete seat belt assembly in- 
cluding webbing, straps, buckles, adjustment and 
attachment hardware, and retractors shall comply 
with the following requirements when tested by 
the procedures specified in S5.3(a): 

(1) The assembly loop shall withstand a force 

of not less than 5,000 pounds or 2,270 kilograms; 



PART 571; S 209-5 



that is, each structural component of the 
assembly shall withstand a force of not less than 
2,500 pounds or 1,1-30 kilograms. 

(2) The assembly loop shall extend not more 
than 7 inches or 18 centimeters when subjected 
to a force of 5,000 pounds or 2,270 kilograms; 
that is, the length of the assembly between 
anchorages shall not increase more than 14 
inches or 36 centimeters. 

(3) Any webbing cut by the hardware during 
test shall have a breaking strength at the cut of 
not less than 4,200 pounds or 1,910 kilograms. 

(4) Complete fracture through any solid 
section of metal attachment hardware shall not 
occur during test. 

(b) Type 2 seat belt assembly. Except as pro- 
vided in S4.5, the components of a Type 2 seat belt 
assembly including webbing, straps, buckles, ad- 
justment and attachment hardware, and retractors 
shall comply with the following requirements when 
tested by the procedure specified in S5.3(b): 

(1) The structural components in the pelvic 
restraint shall withstand a force of not less than 
2,500 pounds or 1,139 kilograms. 

(2) The structural components in the upper 
torso restraint shall withstand a force of not less 
than 1,500 pounds or 680 kOograms. 

(3) The structural components in the assembly 
that are common to pelvic and upper torso 
restraints shall withstand a force of not less than 
3,000 pounds or 1,360 kilograms. 

(4) The length of the pelvic restraint between 
anchorages shall not increase more than 20 
inches or 50 centimeters when subjected to a 
force of 2,500 pounds or 1,130 kilograms. 

(5) The length of the upper torso restraint 
between anchorages shall not increase more 
than 20 inches or 50 centimeters when subjected 
to a force of 1,500 pounds or 680 kilograms. 

(6) Any webbing cut by the hardware during 
test shall have a breaking strength of not less 
than 3,500 pounds or 1,590 kilograms at a cut in 
webbing of the pelvic restraint, or not less than 
2,800 pounds or 1,270 kilograms at a cut in 
webbing of the upper-torso restraint. 

(7) Complete fracture through any solid 
section of metal attachment hardware shall not 
occur during test. 



S4.5 Load-limiter. 

(a) A Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt assembly that in- 
cludes a load-limiter is not required to comply with 
the elongation requirements of S4.2(c), S4.4(a) (2), 
S4.4(b) (4) or S4.4(b) (5). 

(b) A Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt assembly that in- 
cludes a load-limiter and that does not comply with 
the elongation requirements of this standard may 
be installed in motor vehicles only in conjunction 
with an automatic restraint system as part of a 
total occupant restraint system. 

(c) In addition to the marking requirements 
specified in S4.1(k), a Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt 
assembly that includes a load-limiter and that does 
not comply with the elongation requirements of 
this standard shall be permanently and legibly 
marked or labeled with the following words: 

"This seat belt assembly may only be installed in 
vehicles in combination with an automatic 
restraint system such as an air cushion or an 
automatic belt." 

S5. Demonstration Procedures. 
S5.1 Webbing. 

(a) Width. The width of webbing from three 
seat belt assemblies shall be measured after con- 
ditioning for at least 24 hours in an atmosphere 
having relative humidity between 48 and 67 per- 
cent and a temperature of 23° ± 2° or 73.4° ± 3.6°. 
The tension during measurement of width shall be 
not more than 5 pounds or 2 kilograms on webbing 
from a Type 1 or Type 3 seat belt assembly, and 
2,200 + 100 pounds or 1,000 ± 50 kilograms on web- 
bing from a Type 2 seat belt assembly. The width 
of webbing from a Type 2 seat belt assembly may 
be measured during the breaking strength test 
described in paragraph (b) of this section. 

(b) Breaking strength. [Webbing from three 
seat belt assemblies shall be conditioned in ac- 
cordance with paragraph (a) of this section and 
tested for breaking strength in a testing machine 
of capacity verified to have an error of not more 
than one percent in the range of the breaking 
strength of the webbing in accordance with 
American Society for Testing and Materials 
E4-79, "Standard Methods of Load Verification of 
Testing Machines." (48 F.R. 30138-June 30, 
1983. Effective: July 30, 1983)1 



(Rev. 7/30/83) 



PART 571; S 209-6 










i -•- WEBBING 



1 TO 2 INCHES OR 2.5 TO 5 CENTIMETERS 
A MINUS 0.06 INCH 0.15 CENTIMETER 



FIGURE 1 



The machine shall be equipped with split drum 
grips illustrated in Figure 1, having a diameter 
between 2 and 4 inches or 5 and 10 centimeters. 
The rate of grip separation shall be between 2 and 
4 inches per minute or 5 and 10 centimeters per 
minute. The distance between the centers of the 
grips at the start of the test shall be between 4 and 
10 inches or 10 and 25 centimeters. After placing 
the specimen in the grips, the webbing shall be 
stretched continuously at a uniform rate to failure. 
Each value shall be not less than the applicable 
breaking strength requirement in S4.2(b), but the 
median value shall be used for determining the 
retention of breaking strength in paragraphs (d), 
(e), and (f ) of this section. 



(c) Elongation. Elongation shall be measured 
during the breaking strength test described in 
paragraph (b) of this section by the following 
procedure: A preload between 44 and 55 pounds or 
20 and 25 kilograms shall be placed on the webbing 
mounted in the grips of the testing machine and 
the needle points of an extensometer, in which the 
points remain parallel during test, are inserted in 
the center of the specimen. Initially the points shall 
be set at a known distance apart between 4 and 8 
inches or 10 and 20 centimeters. When the force on 
the webbing reaches the value specified in S4.2(c), 
the increase in separation of the points of the 
extensometer shall be measured and the percent 
elongation shall be calculated to the nearest 0.5 
percent. Each value shall be not more than the 
appropriate elongation requirement in S4.2(c). 

(d) Resistance to abrasion. The webbing from 
three seat belt assemblies shall be tested for 
resistance to abrasion by rubbing over the hexagon 
bar prescribed in Figiu-e 2 in the following manner: 




A — WEBBING 

B— WEIGHT 

C - HEXAGONAL ROD 

STEEL -SAE 51416 

ROCKWELL HARDNESS- B-97 TO B-101 

SURFACE -COLD DRAWN FINISH 

SIZE — 0.250 ± 0.001 INCH OR 
6.35 ± 0.03 MILLIMETER 

RADIUS ON EDGES -0.020 ± 0.004 INCH OR 
0.5 ± 0.1 MILLIMETER 
D-DRUM DIAMETER -16 INCHES OR 

40 CENTIMETERS 
E- CRANK 
F — CRANK ARM 
G- ANGLE BETWEEN WEBBING - 85 ± 2 PEGS. 



FIGURE 2 



PART 571; S 209-7 



The webbing shall be mounted in the apparatus 
shown schematically in Figure 2. One end of the 
webbing (A) shall be attached to a weight (B) which 
has a mass of 5.2 + 0.1 pounds or 2.35 + 0.05 kilo- 
grams, except that a mass of 3.3 ±0.1 pounds or 
1.50 + 0.05 kilograms shall be used for webbing in 
pelvic and upper-torso restraints of a belt assembly 
used in a child restraint system. The webbing shall 
be passed over the two new abrading edges of the 
hexagon bar (C) and the other end attached to an 
oscillating drum (D) which has a stroke of 13 inches 
or 33 centimeters. Suitable guides shall be used to 
prevent movement of the webbing along the axis of 
hexagonal bar C. Drum D shall be oscillated for 
5,000 strokes or 2,500 cycles at a rate of 60 + 2 
strokes per minute or 30 + 1 cycles per minute. The 
abraded webbing shall be conditioned as prescribed 
in paragraph (a) of this section and tested for 
breaking strength by the procedure described in 
paragraph (b) of this section. The median values 
for the breaking strengths determined on abraded 
and unabraded specimens shall be used to calculate 
the percentage of braking strength retained. 

(e) Resistance to light. [Webbing at least 20 
inches or 50 centimeters in length from three seat 
belt assemblies shall be suspended vertically on the 
inside of the specimen rack in a Type E carbon-arc 
light-exposure apparatus described in Standard 
Practice for Operating Light-Exposure Apparatus 
(Carbon-Arc Type) With and Without Water for 
Exposure of Nonmetallic Materials, ASTM 
Designation: G23-81, published by the American 
Society for Testing and Materials, except that the 
filter used for 100 percent polyester yarns shall be 
chemically strengthened soda-lime glass with a 
transmittance of less than 5 percent for wave 
lengths equal to or less than 305 nanometers and 
90 percent or greater transmittance for wave 
lengths of 375 to 800 nanometers. The apparatus 
shall be operated without water spray at an air 
temperature of 60° + 2 degrees Celsius or 
140° + 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit measured at a point 
1.0 ±0.2 inch or 25 + 5 millimeters outside the 
specimen rack and midway in height. The 
temperature sensing element shall be shielded 
from radiation. The specimens shall be exposed to 
light from the carbon arc for 100 hours and then 
conditioned as prescribed in paragraph (a) of this 
section. The colorfastness of the exposed and con- 
ditioned specimens shall be determined on the 
Geometric Gray Scale issued by the American 
Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists. The 
breaking strength of the specimens shall be deter- 



mined by the procedure prescribed in paragraph (b) 
of this section. The median values for the breaking 
strengths determined on exposed and unexposed 
specimens shall be used to calculate the percentage 
of breaking strength retained. (49 F.R. 
36507-September 18, 1984. Effective: September 
18, 1985)1 

(f) Resistance to micro-organisms. Webbing at 
least 20 inches or 50 centimeters in length from 
three seat belt assemblies shall first be precondi- 
tioned in accordance with Appendix A(l) and (2) of 
American Association of Textile Chemists and Col- 
orists Test Method 30-81, "Fungicides Evaluation 
on Textiles; Mildew and Rot Resistance of Tex- 
tiles," and then subjected to Test I, "Soil Burial 
Test" of that test method. After soil-burial for a 
period of 2 weeks, the specimen shall be washed in 
water, dried and conditioned as prescribed in 
paragraph (a) of this section. The breaking 
strengths of the specimens shall be determined 
by the procedure prescribed in paragraph (b) of 
thissection. The median values for the breaking 
strengths determined on exposed and unexposed 
specimens shall be used to calculate the percentage 
of breaking strength retained. 

Note.— This test shall not be required on webbing 
made from material which is inherently resistant 
to micro-organisms. 

(g) Colorfastness to crocking. Webbing from 
three seat belt assemblies shall be tested by the 
procedure specified in American Association of 
Textile Chemists and Colorists Standard Test 
Method 8—181, "Colorfastness to Crocking: 
AATCC Crockmeter Method." 

(h) Colorfastness to staining. Webbing from 
three seat belt assemblies shall be tested by the 
procedure specified in American Association of 
Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC) Standard 
Test Method 107-1981, "Colorfastness to Water," 
except that the testing shall use (1) distilled water, 
(2) the AATCC perspiration tester, (3) a drying 
time of four hours, specified in section 7.4 of the 
AATCC procedure, and (4) section 9 of the AATCC 
test procedures to determine the colorfastness to 
staining on the AATCC Chromatic Transference 
Scale. 

S5.2 Hardware. 

(a) Corrosion resistance. Three seat belt 
assemblies shall be tested in accordance with 
American Society for Testing and Materials 



(Rev. 9/18/84) 



PART 571; S 209-8 



B117-73, "Standard Method of Salt Spray (Fog) 
Testing." Any surface coating or material not in- 
tended for permanent retention on the metal parts 
during service life shall be removed prior to 
preparation of the test specimens for testing. The 
period of test shall be 50 hours for all attachment 
hardware at or near the floor, consisting of two 
periods of 24 hours exposure to salt spray followed 
by 1 hour drying and 25 hours for all other hard- 
ware, consisting of one period of 24 hours exposure 
to salt spray followed by 1 hour drying. In the salt 
spray test chamber, the parts from the three 
assemblies shall be oriented differently, selecting 
those orientations most likely to develop corrosion 
on the larger areas. At the end of test, the seat belt 
assembly shall be washed thoroughly with water to 
remove the salt. After drying for at least 24 hours 
under standard laboratory conditions specified in 
S5.1(a) attachment hardware shall be examined for 
ferrous corrosion on significant surfaces, that is, 
all surfaces that can be contacted by a sphere 0.75 
inch or 2 centimeters in diameter, and other hard- 
ware shall be examined for ferrous and nonferrous 
corrosion which may be transferred, either directly 
or by means of the webbing, to a person or his 
clothing during use of a seat belt assembly incor- 
porating the hardware. 

Note.— When attachment and other hardware are 
permanently fastened, by sewing or other means, to 




FULL THREADED BOLT- 
ATTACHMENT HARDWARE 
OR 
SIMULATED FIXTURE 



SHOULDER BOLT 
EYE BOLT 



BOLT ANCHORAGE 



A- 2 FULL THREADS 
B->0,4 INCH (ICMI 



BELT SECTIONS 



OTHER CONNECTION 



7/16-20 NF OR 
1/2-13 NC 
THREADS 



the same piece of webbing, separate assemblies shall 
be used to test the two types of hardware. The test 
for corrosion resistance shall not be required for at- 
tachment hardware made from corrosion-resistant 
steel containing at least 11.5 percent chromium or 
for attachment hardware protected with an electro- 
deposited coating of nickel, or copper and nickel, as 
prescribed in S4.3(a). The assembly that has been 
used to test the corrosion resistance of the buckle 
shall be used to measure adjustment force, tilt-lock 
adjustment, and buckle latch in paragraphs (e), (f) 
and (g), respectively, of this section, assembly per- 
formance in S5.3 and buckle release force in para- 
graph (d) of this section. 

(b) Temperature resistance. Three seat belt 
assemblies having plastic or nonmetallic hardware 
or having retractors shall be subjected to the condi- 
tions prescribed in Procedure D of American So- 
ciety for Testing and Materials D756-78, "Stand- 
ard Practice for Determination of Weight and 
Shape Changes of Plastics under Accelerated 
Service Conditions." The dimension and weight 
measurement shall be omitted. Buckles shall be 
unlatched and retractors shall be fully retracted 
during conditioning. The hardware parts after con- 
ditioning shall be used for all applicable tests in 
S4.3 and S4.4. 

(c) Attachment hardware. 

(1) Attachment bolts used to secure the pelvic 
restraint of a seat belt assembly to a motor ve- 
hicle shall be tested in a manner similar to that 
shown in Figure 3. The load shall be applied at an 
angle of 45 degrees to the axis of the bolt 
through attachment hardware from the seat belt 
assembly, or through a special fixture which 
simulates the loading applied by the attachment 
hardware. The attachment hardware or simulated 
fixture shall be fastened by the bolt to the anchor- 



FORCE VERTICAL 



HORIZONTAL 




FORCE VERTICAL 



FORCE 
HORIZONTAL 




FIGURE 3 



FIXTURE 



')in»iini>i»n)iii)i)i»>>i>i!>)i> 

FIGURE 4 

SINGLE ATTACHMENT HOOK 



(R«v. 9/18/84) 



PART 571; S 209-9 



age shown in Figure 3, which has a standard II 
16-20 UNF-2B or 1/2-13 UNC-2B threaded 
hole in a hardened steel plate at least 0.4 inch or 
1 centimeter in thicltness. The bolt shall be in- 
stalled with two full threads exposed from the 
fully seated position. The appropriate force re- 
quired by S4.3(c) shall be applied. A bolt from 
each of three seat belt assemblies shall be tested. 

(2) Attachment hardware, other than bolts, 
designed to receive the ends of two seat belt 
assemblies shall be subjected to a tensile force of 
6,000 pounds or 2,720 kilograms in a manner 
simulating use. The hardware shall be examined 
for fracture after the force is released. Attach- 
ment hardware from three seat belt assemblies 
shall be tested. 

(3) Single attachment hook for connecting 
webbing to any eye bolt shall be tested in the 
following manner: The hook shall be held rigidly 
so that the retainer latch or keeper, with cotter 
pin or other locking device in place, is in a 
horizontal position as shown in Figure 4. A force 
of 150 + 2 pounds or 68+ 1 kilograms shall be ap- 
plied vertically as near as possible to the free end 
of the retainer latch, and the movement of the 
latch by this force at the point of application shall 
be measured. The vertical force shall be released, 
and a force of 150 + 2 pounds or 68 + 1 kilograms 
shall be applied horizontally as near as possible 
to the free end of the retainer latch. The move- 
ment of the latch by this force at the point of load 
application shall be measured. Alternatively, the 
hook may be held in other positions, provided the 
forces are applied and the movements of the 
latch are measured at the points indicated in 
Figure 4. A single attachment hook from each of 
three seat belt assemblies shall be tested. 

(d) Buckle release. 

(1) Three seat belt assemblies shall be tested 
to determine compliance with the maximum 
buckle release force requirements, following the 
assembly test in S5.3. After subjection to the 
force applicable for the assembly being tested, 
the force shall be reduced and maintained at 150 
pounds on the assembly loop of a Type 1 seat belt 
assembly, 75 pounds on the components of a 
Type 2 seat belt assembly, or 45 pounds on a 
Type 3 seat belt assembly. The buckle release 
force shall be measured by applying a force on 
the buckle in a manner and direction typical of 
those which would be employed by a seat belt oc- 
cupant. For pushbutton-release buckles, the 



force shall be applied at least 0.125 inch from the 
edge of the push-button access opening of the 
buckle in a direction that produces maximum 
releasing effect. For lever-release buckles, the 
force shall be applied on the centerline of the 
buckle level or finger tab in a direction that pro- 
duces maximum releasing effect. 

(2) The area for application of release force on 
pushbutton actuated buckle shall be measured to 
the nearest 0.05 square inch or 0.3 square cen- 
timeter. The cylinder specified in S4.3(d) shall be 
inserted in the actuation portion of a lever 

• release buckle for determination of compliance 
with the requirement. A buckle with other 
release actuation shall be examined for access of 
release by fingers. 

(3) The buckle of a Type 1 or Type 2 seat belt 
assembly shall be subjected to a compressive 
force of 400 pounds applied anywhere on a test 
line that is coincident with the centerline of the 
belt extended through the buckle or on any line 
that extends over the center of the release 
mechanism and intersects the extended 
centerline of the belt at an angle of 60°. The load 
shall be applied by using a curved cylindrical bar 
having a cross section diameter of 0.75 inch and 
a radius of curvature of 6 inches, placed with its 
longitudinal centerline along the test line and its 
center directly above the point on the buckle to 
which the load will be applied. The buckle shall be 
latched, and a tensile force of 75 pounds shall be 
applied to the connected webbing during the ap- 
plication of the compressive force. Buckles from 
three seat belt assemblies shall be tested to 
determine compliance with paragraph S4.3(d) (3). 

(e) Adjustment force. Three seat belt assemblies 
shall be tested for adjustment force on the webbing 
at the buckle, or other manual adjusting device 
normally used to adjust the size of the assembly. 
With no load on the anchor end, the webbing shall 
be drawn through the adjusting device at a rate of 
20 + 2 inches per minute or 50 + 5 centimeters per 
minute and the maximum force shall be measured 
to the nearest 0.25 pound or 0.1 kilogram after the 
first 1.0 inch or 25 millimeters of webbing move- 
ment. The webbing shall be precycled 10 times 
prior to measurement. 

(f ) Tilt-lock adjustment. This test shall be made 
on buckles or other manual adjusting devices hav- 
ing tilt-lock adjustment normally used to adjust the 
size of the assembly. Three buckles or devices shall 
be tested. The base of the adjustment mechanism 



PART 571; S 209-10 



and the anchor end of the webbing shall be oriented 
in planes normal to each other. The webbing shall be 
drawn through the adjustment mechanism in a direc- 
tion to increase belt length at a rate of 20 ±2 inches 
per minute or 50 ± 5 centimeters per minute while the 
plane of the base is slowly rotated in a direction to 
lock the webbing. Rotation shall be stopped when the 
webbing locks, but the pull on the webbing shall be 
continued until there is a resistance of at least 20 
pounds or 9 kilograms. The locking angle between 
the anchor end of the webbing and the base of the ad- 
justment mechanism shall be measured to the 
nearest degree. The webbing shall be precycled 10 
times prior to measurement. 

(g) Buckle latch. The buckles from three seat belt 
assemblies shall be opened fully and closed at least 
10 times. [Then the buckles shall be clamped or 
firmly held against a flat surface so as to permit 
normal movement of buckle parts, but with the 
metal mating plate (metal-to-metal buckles) or 
webbing end (metal-to-webbing buckles) with- 
drawnfrom the buckle. (45 F.R. 29045-May 1, 
1980. Effective: 5/1/80)1 The release mechanism 
shall be moved 200 times through the maximum 
possible travel against its stop with a force of 30 ± 3 
pounds or 14 ± 1 kilograms at a rate not to exceed 
30 cycles per minute. The buckle shall be examined 
to determine compliance with the performance re- 
quirements of S4.3(g). A metal-to-metal buckle 
shall be examined to determine whether partial 
engagement is possible by means of any technique 
representative of actual use. If partial engagement 
is possible, the maximum force of separation when 
in such partial engagement shall be determined. 

(h) Nonlocking retractor. After the retractor is 
cycled 10 times by full extension and retraction of 
the webbing, the retractor and webbing shall be 
suspended vertically and a force of 4 pounds or 1.8 
kilograms shall be applied to extend the webbing 
from the retractor. The force shall be reduced to 3 
pounds or 1.4 kilograms when attached to a pelvic 
restraint, or to 1.1 pounds or 0.5 kilogram per 
strap or webbing that contacts the shoulder of an 
occupant when retractor is attached to an upper- 
torso restraint. The residual extension of the web- 
bing shall be measured by manual rotation of the 
retractor drum or by disengaging the retraction 
mechanism. Measurements shall be made on three 
retractors. The location of the retractor attached 
to upper-torso restraint shall be examined for 
visibility of reel during use of seat belt assembly in 
a vehicle. 

Note.— This test shall not be required on a nonlock- 
ing retractor attached to the free-end of webbing 
which is not subjected to any tension during restraint 
of an occupant by the assembly. 



(i) Automatic-locking retractor. Three retrac- 
tors shall be tested in a manner to permit the re- 
traction force to be determined exclusive of the 
gravitational forces on hardware or webbing being 
retracted. The webbing shall be fully extended 
from the retractor. While the webbing is being re- 
tracted, the average force of retraction within plus 
or minus 2 inches or 5 centimeters of 75 percent 
extension (25-percent retraction) shall be deter- 
mined and the webbing movement between adja- 
cent locking segments shall be measured in the 
same region of extension. A seat belt assembly 
with automatic locking retractor in upper torso 
restraint shall be tested in a vehicle in a manner 
prescribed by the installation and usage instruc- 
tions. The retraction force on the occupant of the 
seat belt assembly shall be determined before and 
after traveling for 10 minutes at a speed of 15 
miles per hour or 24 kilometers per hour or more 
over a rough road (e.g., Belgian block road) where 
the occupant is subjected to displacement with re- 
spect to the vehicle in both horizontal and vertical 
directions. Measurements shall be made with the 
vehicle stopped and the occupant in the normal 
seated position. 

(j) Emergency-locking retractor. A retractor 
shall be tested in a manner that permits the retrac- 
tion force to be determined exclusive of the gravi- 
tational forces on hardware or webbing being re- 
tracted. The webbing shall be fully extended from 
the retractor, passing over or through any hard- 
ware or other material specified in the installation 
instructions. While the webbing is being retracted, 
the lowest force of retraction within plus or minus 
2 inches of 75 percent extension shall be deter- 
mined. A retractor that is sensitive to webbing 
withdrawal shall be subjected to an acceleration of 
0.3g within a period of 50 milliseconds while the 
webbing is at 75-percent extension, to determine 
compliance with S4.3(j) (2). The retractor shall be 
subjected to an acceleration of 0.7g within a period 
of 50 milliseconds, while the webbing is at 
75-percent extension, and the webbing movement 
before locking shall be measured under the follow- 
ing conditions: For a retractor sensitive to web- 
bing withdrawal, the retractor shall be accelerated 
in the direction of webbing retraction while the 
retractor drum's central axis is oriented horizon- 
tally and at angles of 45°, 90°, 135°, and 180° to 
the horizontal plane. For a retractor sensitive to 
vehicle acceleration, the retractor shall be— 



(Rev. 5/1/80) 



PART 571; S 209-11 



(1) accelerated in the horizontal plane in two 
directions normal to each other, while the retrac- 
tor drum's central axis is oriented at the angle at 
which it is installed in the vehicle; and, 

(2) accelerated in three directions normal to 
each other while the retractor drum's central 
axis is oriented at angles of 45°, 90°, 135° and 
180° from the angle at which it is installed in the 
vehicle, unless the retractor locks by gravita- 
tional force when tilted in any direction to any 
angle greater than 45° from the angle at which it 
is installed in the vehicle. 

(k) Performance of retractor. After completion 
of the corrosion-resistance test described in para- 
graph (a) of this section, the webbing shall be fully 
extended and allowed to dry for at least 24 hours 
under standard laboratory conditions specified in 
S5.1(a). (Then, the retractor and webbing shall be 
subjected to dust in a chamber similar to one il- 
lustrated in Figure 8 containing about 2 pounds or 
0.9 kilogram of coarse grade dust conforming to 
the specification given in Society of Automotive 
Engineering Recommended Practice J726, "Air 
Cleaner Test Code" Sept. 1979. (48 F.R. 30138- 
June 30, 1983. Effective: July 30, 1983)1 The web- 
bing shall be withdrawn manually and allowed to 
retract for 25 cycles. The retractor shall be 
mounted in an apparatus capable of extending the 
webbing fully, applying a force of 20 pounds or 9 
kilograms at full extension, and allowing the web- 
bing to retract freely and completely. The webbing 
shall be withdrawn from the retractor and allowed 
to retract repeatedly in this apparatus until 2,500 
cycles are completed. The retractor and webbing 
shall then be subjected to the temperature 
resistance test prescribed in paragraph (b) of this 
section. The retractor shall be subjected to 2,500 
additional cycles of webbing withdrawal and 
retraction. Then, the retractor and webbing shall 
be subjected to dust in a chamber similar to one il- 
lustrated in Figure 6 containing about 2 pounds or 
0.9 kilogram of coarse grade dust conforming to 
the specification given in SAE Recommended 
Practice, Air Cleaner Test Code-SAE J726a, 
published by the Society of Automotive Engineers. 
The dust shall be agitated every 20 minutes for 5 
seconds by compressed air, free of oil and 
moisture, at a gauge pressure of 80 ±8 pounds per 
square inch or 5.6 ±0.6 kilograms per square cen- 
timeter entering through an orifice 0.060 ±0.004 
inch or 1.5 ±0.1 millimeters in diameter. The web- 



bing shall be extended to the top of the cham- 
ber and kept exended at all times except that the 
webbing shall be subjected to 10 cycles of com- 
plete retraction and extension within 1 to 2 
minutes after each agitation of the dust. At the 
end of 5 hours, the assembly shall be removed 
from the chamber. The webbing shall be fully 
withdrawn from the retractor manually and al- 
lowed to retract completely for 25 cycles. An 
automatic-locking retractor or a nonlocking re- 
tractor attached to pelvic restraint shall be sub- 
jected to 5,000 additional cycles of webbing 
withdrawal and retraction. An emergency-locking 
retractor or a nonlocking retractor attached to 
upper-torso restraint shall be subjected to 45,000 
additional cycles of webbing withdrawal and 
retraction between 50 and 100 percent extension. 
The locking mechanism of an emergency-lock- 




-20 INCHES OR 
50 CENTIMETERS 

- 10 INCHES OR 
25 CENTIMETERS 



VALVE a FILTER 
■ — AIR 



(Rev. 7f30/83) 



PART 571; S 209-12 



ing retractor shall be actuated at least 10,000 
times within 50 to 100 percent extension of web- 
bing during the 50,000 cycles. At the end of test, 
compliance of the retractors with applicable re- 
quirements in S4.3(h), (i), and (j) shall be deter- 
mined. Three retractors shall be tested for per- 
formance. 

S5.3 Assembly Performance. 

(a) Type 1 seat belt assembly. Three complete 
seat belt assemblies, including webbing, straps, 
buckles, adjustment and attachment hardware, 
and retractors, arranged in the form of a loop as 
shown in Figure 5, shall be tested in the following 
manner: 

(1) The testing machine shall conform to the 
requirements specified in S5.1(b). A double-roller 
block shall be attached to one head of the testing 
machine. This block shall consist of 2 rollers 4 
inches or 10 centimeters in diameter and suffi- 
ciently long so that no part of the seat belt 
assembly touches parts of the block other than 
the rollers during test. The rollers shall be 
mounted on anti-friction bearings and spaced 12 
inches or 30 centimeters between centers, and 
shall have sufficient capacity so that there is no 
brinelling, bending or other distortion of parts 
which may affect the results. An anchorage bar 
shall be fastened to the other head of the testing 
machine. 

(2) The attachment hardware furnished with 
the seat belt assembly shall be attached to the 
anchorage bar. The anchor points shall be spaced 
so that the webbing is parallel in the two sides of 
the loop. The attaching bolts shall be parallel to, 
or at an angle of 45 or 90 degrees to the webbing, 
whichever results in an angle nearest to 90 de- 
grees between webbing and attachment hard- 
ware except that eye bolts shall be vertical, and 
attaching bolts or nonthreaded anchorages of a 
seat belt assembly designed for use in specific 
models of motor vehicles shall be installed to pro- 
duce the maximum angle in use indicated by the 
installation instructions, utilizing special fixtures 
if nef'essary to simulate installation in the motor 
vehicle. Rigid adapters between anchorage bar 
and attachment hardware shall be used if neces- 
sary to locate and orient the adjustment hard- 
ware. The adapters shall have a flat support face 
perpendicular to the threaded hole for the attach- 
ing bolt and adequate in area to provide full sup- 



port for the base of the attachment hardware 
connected to the webbing. If necessary, a washer 
shall be used under a swivel plate or other attach- 
ment hardware to prevent the webbing from 
being damaged as the attaching bolt is tightened. 
(3) The length of the assembly loop from at- 
taching bolt to attaching bolt shall be adjusted to 
about 51 inches or 130 centimeters, or as near 
thereto as possible. A force of 55 pounds or 25 
kilograms shall be applied to the loop to remove 
any slack in webbing at hardware. The force 
shall be removed and the heads of the testing 
machine shall be adjusted for an assembly loop 
between 48 and 50 inches or 122 and 127 centi- 
meters in length. The length of the assembly loop 
shall then be adjusted by applying a force be- 
tween 20 and 22 pounds or 9 and 10 kilograms to 
the free end of the webbing at the buckle, or by 
the retraction force of an automatic-locking or 
emergency-locking retractor. A seat belt assem- 




ANCHORAGE BAR 



SISTER HOOKS 



^ 



^ 



A-2 INCHES OR 
5 CENTIMETERS 

B- 12 INCHES OR 
30 CENTIMETERS 



FIGURE 5 



PART 571; S 209-13 



bly that cannot be adjusted to this length shall be 
adjusted as closely as possible. An automatic- 
locking or emergency-locking retractor when in- 
cluded in a seat belt assembly shall be locked at 
the start of the test with a tension on the web- 
bing slightly in excess of the retractive force in 
order to keep the retractor locked. The buckle 
shall be in a location so that it does not touch the 
rollers during test, but to facilitate making the 
buckle release test in S5.2(d) the buckle should be 
between the rollers or near a roller in one leg. 

(4) The heads of the testing machine shall be 
separated at a rate between 2 and 4 inches per 
minute or 5 and 10 centimeters per minute until 
a force of 5,000 ±50 pounds or 2,270 ±20 kilo- 
grams is applied to the assembly loop. The exten- 
sion of the loop shall be determined from meas- 
urements of head separation before and after the 
force is applied. The force shall be decreased to 
150 ±10 pounds or 68 ±4 kilograms and the 
buckle release force measured as prescribed in 
S5.2(d). 

(5) After the buckle is released, the webbing 
shall be examined for cutting by the hardware. If 
the yams are partially or completely severed in a 
line for a distance of 10 percent or more of the 
webbing width, the cut webbing shall be tested 
for breaking strength as specified in S5.1(b) lo- 
cating the cut in the free length between grips. If 
there is insufficient webbing on either side of the 
cut to make such a test for breaking strength, 
another seat belt assembly shall be used with the 
webbing repositioned in the hardware. A tensile 
force of 2,500 ±25 pounds or 1,135± 10 kilograms 
shall be applied to the components or a force of 
5,000 ± 50 pounds or 2,270 ± 20 kilograms shall be 
applied to an assembly loop. After the force is re- 
moved, the breaking strength of the cut webbing 
shall be determined as prescribed above. 

(6) If a Type 1 seat belt assembly includes an 
automatic-locking retractor or an emergency- 
locking retractor, the webbing and retractor 
shall be subjected to a tensile force of 2,500 ±25 
pounds or 1,135± 10 kilograms with the webbing 
fully extended from the retractor. 

(7) If a seat belt assembly has a buckle in 
which the tongue is capable of inverted insertion, 
one of the three assemblies shall be tested with 
the tongue inverted. 



(b) Type 2 seat belt assembly. Components of 
three seat belt assemblies shall be tested in the 
following manner: 

(1) The pelvic restraint between anchorages 
shall be adjusted to a length between 48 and 50 
inches or 122 and 127 centimeters, or as near 
this length as possible if the design of the pelvic 
restraint does not permit its adjustment to this 
length. An automatic-locking or emergency-lock- 
ing retractor when included in a seat belt assem- 
bly shall be locked at the start of the test with a 
tension on the webbing slightly in excess of the 
retractive force in order to keep the retractor 
locked. The attachment hardware shall be ori- 
ented to the webbing as specified in paragraph 
(a) (2) of this section and illustrated in Figure 5. 
A tensile force of 2,500 ±25 pounds or 1,135 ±10 
kilograms shall be applied on the components in 
any convenient manner and the extension be- 
tween anchorages under this force shall be meas- 
ured. The force shall be reduced to 75 ± 5 pounds 



SHORTENING STROKE 



BUCKLE (C) 




NO TENSION 



BUCKLE (C 



WEBBING (A) 




LENGTHENING STROKE 



NO TENSION 



3 LB WEIGHT (B) 



PART 571; S 209-14 



or 34 ± 2 kilograms and the buckle release force 
measured as prescribed in S5.2(d). 

(2) The components of the upper- torso restraint 
shall be subjected to a tensile force of 1,500 ± 15 
pounds or 680 ± 5 kilograms following the proce- 
dure prescribed above for testing pelvic restraint 
and the extension between anchorages under this 
force shall be measured. If the testing apparatus 
permits, the pelvic and upper-torso restraints 
may be tested simultaneously. The force shall be 
reduced to 75 ± 5 pounds or 34 ± 2 kilograms and 
the buckle release force measured as prescribed 
in S5.2(d). 

(3) Any component of the seat belt assembly 
common to both pelvic and upper-torso restraint 
shall be subjected to a tensile force of 3,000 ±30 
pounds or 1,360 ± 15 kilograms. 

(4) After the buckle is released in tests of 
pelvic and upper-torso restraints, the webbing 
shall be examined for cutting by the hardware. If 
the yams are partially or completely severed in a 
line for a distance of 10 percent or more of the 
webbing width, the cut webbing shall be tested 
for breaking strength as specified in S5.1(b) 
locating the cut in the free length between grips. 
If there is insufficient webbing on either side of 
the cut to make such a test for breaking 
strength, another seat belt assembly shall be 
used with the webbing repositioned in the hard- 
ware. The force applied shall be 2,500 ±25 
pounds or 1,135 ±10 kilograms for components 
of pelvic restraint, and 1,500 ±15 pounds or 
680 ± 5 kilograms for components of upper-torso 
restraint. After the force is removed, the break- 
ing strength of the cut webbing shall be deter- 
mined as prescribed above. 



(5) If a Type 2 seat belt assembly includes an 
automatic-locking retractor or an emergency- 
locking retractor, the webbing and retractor 
shall be subjected to a tensile force of 2,500 ±25 
pounds or 1,135± 10 kilograms with the webbing 
fully extended from the retractor, or to a tensile 
force of 1,500 ±15 pounds or 680 ±5 kilograms 
with the webbing fully extended from the retrac- 
tor if the design of the assembly permits only 
upper-torso restraint forces on the retractor. 

(6) If a seat belt assembly has a buckle in 
which the tongue is capable of inverted insertion, 
one of the three assemblies shall be tested with 
the tongue inverted. 

(c) Resistance to buckle abrasion. Seatbelt 
assemblies shall be tested for resistance to abrasion 
by each buckle or manual adjusting device normally 
used to adjust the size of the assembly. The webbing 
of the assembly to be used in this test shall be ex- 
posed for 4 hours to an atmosphere having relative 
humidity of 65 percent and temperature of 70° F. 
The webbing shall be pulled back and forth through 
the buckle or manual adjusting device as shown 
schematically in Figure 7. The anchor end of the 
webbing (A) shall be attached to a weight (B) of 3 
pounds. The webbing shall pass through the buckle 
(C), and the other end (D) shall be attached to a 
reciprocating device so that the webbing forms an 
angle of 8° with the hinge stop (E). The 
reciprocating device shaO be operated for 2,500 
cycles at a rate of 18 cycles per minute with a stroke 
length of 8 inches. The abraded webbing shall be 
tested for breaking strength by the procedure 
described in paragraph S5.1(b). 

44 F.R. 72131 
December 13, 1979 



PART 571; S 209-15-16 



(< 



PREAMBLE TO AMENDMENT TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 210 



Seat Belt Assembly Anchorages — Passenger Cars, Multipurpose 
Passenger Vehicles, Trucks and Buses 

(Docket No. 2-14; Notice No. 4) 



An amendment to Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard No. 210, Seat Belt Assembly Anchor- 
ages, was published on October 1, 1970 (35 F.R. 
15293). Thereafter, pursuant to §553.35 of the 
procedural rules (49 CFR 553.35, 35 F.R. 5119), 
petitions for reconsideration were filed by Rolls 
Royce, Ltd., International Harvester Co., Chrys- 
ler Corp., Ford Motor Co., General Motors 
Corp., the Automobile Manufacturers Associa- 
tion, Toyota Motor Co., Ltd., American Motors, 
Jeep Corp., Chrysler United Kingdom, Ltd., and 
Checker Motors Corp. 

In response to information contained in the 
petitions, and other considerations, certain re- 
quirements of the standard are hereby amended 
and the effective date of the standard with re- 
spect to passenger cars is postponed until Janu- 
ary 1, 1972. The petitions for relief from cer- 
tain other requirements of the standard are 
denied. 

1. The eflFective date of the amended standard 
with respect to passenger cars was to have been 
January 1, 1971. Each petitioner claimed to be 
unable to produce vehicles conforming to the 
amended standard by that date. Those who pro- 
vided lead time information indicated that 
several months would be needed, with estimates 
ranging from March 31, 1971, for Rolls Royce, to 
January 1, 1972, for a number of manufacturers. 
A January 1972 effective date would have the ad- 
vantage of coinciding with the effective date pro- 
posed for the closely related interim standard on 
occupant crash protection (Docket 69-7, Notice 
6, 35 F.R. 14941). Since the amendments with 
respect ro passenger cars are intended primarily 
to enti&nce the enforceability of the standard 
rather than to provide new levels of safety, it 



has been determined that good cause has been 
shown for establishing an effective date for pas- 
senger cars of January 1, 1972. 

AVith a single exception, the requests for post- 
ponement of the effective date of the standard 
with respect to multipurpose passenger vehicles, 
trucks, and buses, are denied. One of the pri- 
mary reasons for amending the standard was to 
extend the protection afforded by seat belts to 
occupants of these types of vehicles. A post- 
ponement of effective date would leave these ve- 
hicles completely without anchorage requirements 
for an additional 6 months. Although manu- 
facturers who have been installing anchorages 
may find it necessary to reexamine the strength 
and location of their anchorages, this is not con- 
sidered a sufficient ground for postponing the 
effective date. 

International Harvester requested a postpone- 
ment until January 1, 1972, in the date on which 
upper torso restraint anchorages will be required 
on seats other than front seats in multipurpose 
passenger vehicles. On consideration of the lead 
time difficulties that have been demonstrated by 
this manufacturer, the Director regards the re- 
quest as reasonable and has decided to grant the 
requested postponement. 

2. A number of petitions requested reconsid- 
eration of the sections dealing with anchorage 
location. Section S4.3.1.4 of the standard states 
that "Anchorages for an individual seat belt as- 
sembly shall be located at least 13.75 inches apart 
laterally for outboard seats and at least 6.75 
mches apart laterally for other seats." 

General Motors stated that several of its ve- 
hicles have anchorages for the center seating 
position that are 6.50 inches apart, that some of 



PART 571; S 210— PRE 1 



Effacllv*: January 1, 1972 



the anchorages for outboard seats are less than 
13.75 inches apart, iind that there is no basis 
either for setting a minimum spacing, or for 
setting different minimum spacings for different 
seating positions. Similar comments were made 
by AMA, Chrysler, Ford and American Motors, 

As originally issued, Standard No. 210 had re 
quired anchorages to be "as near as practicable 
15 inches apart laterally." To make the stand 
ard more precise and more easily enforceable 
the notice of September 20, 1969 (34 F.R. 14658) 
propos