Saturday, August 20, 2005

Hey Ambulance Chasers

From the New Hours of Service Final Rule, Section H

FMCSA carried out a costhenefit analysis of a 10- and 1 1-hour driving limit and other
aspects of this final rule. The results are described hlly in section K.l and in the
Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) filed separately in the docket. Motor carrier
operations were modeled very elaborately. As discussed above, the Agency used a timeon-
task multiplier based on the TIFA data. The model assumed that the risk of the 1 lth
versus the 10th hour of driving increased, as based on the TIFA data. FMCSA estimated
that a 10-hour driving limit would save no more than 9.3 lives per year compared to an
1 1-hour limit, but at an annualized net cost of $526 million ($586 million in gross costs
minus $60 million in safety benefits), relative to an 1 1 -hour limit. In other words, a 10-
hour driving limit would cost more than $63 million per life saved.

I recall a few years ago a jury figured the damages in a case against GM based on how much the automaker saved by using a more dangerous design. The comparison breaks down a bit since this is the savings for society as a whole. But I wouldn't be surprised to hear this number thrown about in a wrongful death suit down the line.

No comments: