Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard; Air Brake Systems, 9173-9176 [E9-4492]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 40 / Tuesday, March 3, 2009 / Rules and Regulations registered regular-route motor carrier of passengers will continue to be subject to the full safety oversight and enforcement programs of FMCSA and its State and local partners. The effective date of the rule is March 17, 2009, with a compliance date of July 15, 2009. Contemplated Extension of the Effective Date In accordance with January 20, 2009 (74 FR 4435) memorandum from the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, FMCSA is contemplating an extension of the effective date of its January 16, 2009, final rule from March 17, 2009, to June 15, 2009. This will provide us sufficient time to address issues that have been raised about whether the new rule will make it more difficult for us to enforce our requirements concerning safety and access for individuals with disabilities. Although we believe the final rule fully addressed these issues, in light of the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff’s memorandum, we are proposing to delay the effective date of the final rule to allow the Agency the opportunity for further review and consideration of these issues. The Agency solicits comments specifically on the contemplated delay in the effective date. List of Subjects 49 CFR Part 356 Administrative practice and procedure, Routing, Motor carriers. 49 CFR Part 365 Administrative practice and procedure, Brokers, Buses, Freight forwarders, Motor carriers, Moving of household goods, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. 49 CFR Part 374 Aged, Blind, Buses, Civil rights, Freight, Individuals with disabilities, Motor carriers, Smoking. Issued on: February 25, 2009. Rose A. McMurray, Acting Deputy Administrator. [FR Doc. E9–4454 Filed 3–2–09; 8:45 am] rmajette on PRODPC74 with RULES BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P VerDate Nov<24>2008 14:43 Mar 02, 2009 Jkt 217001 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 49 CFR Part 571 [Docket No. NHTSA–2009–0038] RIN 2127–AK44 Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard; Air Brake Systems AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Interim final rule, request for comments. SUMMARY: This document extends for six months a requirement that trailers with antilock brake systems be equipped with an external antilock malfunction indicator lamp. This requirement, which is included in the Federal motor vehicle safety standard that governs vehicles equipped with air brakes, is currently scheduled to sunset on March 1, 2009. As a result of this interim final rule, the sunset date is September 1, 2009. We are taking this action in connection with our consideration of a petition for rulemaking from the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) requesting that the requirement be made permanent. In a separate document, we are proposing a further extension of the requirement, to March 1, 2011. This interim final rule prevents the occurrence of a potential time gap for the vehicles that are subject to the requirement, should the agency ultimately decide to further extend the time period. DATES: Effective Date: The amendment made in this rule is effective February 28, 2009. Comment Period: You should submit your comments early enough to ensure that the Docket receives them not later than April 2, 2009. Comments may be combined with ones on the accompanying notice of proposed rulemaking, which is being published today using the same docket number. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments to the docket number identified in the heading of this document by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. • Mail: Docket Management Facility: U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, Washington, DC 20590–0001. PO 00000 Frm 00015 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 9173 • Hand Delivery or Courier: 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. • Fax: 202–493–2251. Instructions: For detailed instructions on submitting comments and additional information on the rulemaking process, see the Public Participation heading of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document. Note that all comments received will be posted without change to http:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. Please see the Privacy Act heading below. Privacy Act: Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT’s complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477–78) or you may visit http:// DocketsInfo.dot.gov. Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to http:// www.regulations.gov, or the street address listed above. Follow the online instructions for accessing the dockets. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For non-legal issues, you may call Mr. George Soodoo, Office of Crash Avoidance Standards (Phone: 202–366– 4931; FAX: 202–366–7002). For legal issues, you may call Mr. Ari Scott, Office of the Chief Counsel (Phone: 202– 366–2992; FAX: 202–366–3820). You may send mail to these officials at: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Table of Contents I. Background II. Agency Analysis III. Interim Final Rule and Shortened Comment Period IV. Public Participation V. Rulemaking Analyses and Notices I. Background The final rule requiring antilock brake systems (ABS) on truck tractors, other air-braked heavy vehicles including trailers, and hydraulic-braked trucks was published in the Federal Register (60 FR 13216) on March 10, 1995. As amended by that final rule, FMVSS No. 121, Air Brake Systems, required two separate in-cab ABS malfunction indicator lamps for each truck tractor, one for the tractor’s ABS (effective E:\FR\FM\03MRR1.SGM 03MRR1 9174 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 40 / Tuesday, March 3, 2009 / Rules and Regulations rmajette on PRODPC74 with RULES March 1, 1997) and the other for the trailer’s ABS (effective March 1, 2001). The final rule also required air-braked trailers to be equipped with an externally mounted ABS malfunction lamp (effective March 1, 1998) so that the driver of a non-ABS equipped tractor or a pre-2001 ABS-equipped tractor towing an ABS-equipped trailer would be alerted in the event of a malfunction in the trailer ABS. The requirement for the trailermounted ABS malfunction indicator lamp is currently scheduled to expire on March 1, 2009. The agency established this sunset date in light of the fact that, after this eight-year period, many of the pre-2001 tractors without the dedicated trailer ABS malfunction indicator lamp would no longer be in long-haul service. The agency based its decision on the belief that the typical tractor life was five to seven years, and therefore decided on an eight-year period for the external ABS malfunction indicator lamp requirement. We further stated our belief that there would be no need for a redundant ABS malfunction lamp mounted on the trailer after the vast majority of tractors were equipped with an in-cab ABS malfunction indicator lamp for the trailer. As we have moved closer to the March 1, 2009 sunset date, the agency has received two petitions requesting that the requirement for the ABS malfunction indicator lamp be extended or made permanent. These petitions both came from the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), an international not-for-profit organization comprised of local, state, provincial, territorial and federal motor carrier safety officials and industry representatives from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The petitioner raised two main issues in requesting a permanent extension. The first relates to ensuring that a driver or inspector can determine the operational status of a trailer ABS, if the trailer is not equipped with an external ABS lamp or the tractor is a pre-2001 tractor without the trailer in-cab ABS warning lamp. The second relates to the use of the external trailer ABS warning lamp for diagnostic purposes. II. Agency Analysis In a separate notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) published in today’s Federal Register, we are proposing to extend the trailer indicator lamp requirement to March 1, 2011. Such an extension would enable the agency to fully analyze CVSA’s request that the requirement be made permanent. Given the imminence of the March 1, 2009 sunset date, our decision on the VerDate Nov<24>2008 14:43 Mar 02, 2009 Jkt 217001 accompanying NPRM will not be made until after that date. To prevent the requirement from expiring in the meantime, potentially creating a confusing time gap in the trailer regulations should the agency ultimately decide to extend it, we decided to issue this interim final rule providing a six-month extension. Accordingly, NHTSA is extending the sunset date by six months, from March 1, 2009 to September 1, 2009. III. Interim Final Rule and Shortened Comment Period Given the imminence of the March 1, 2009 sunset date for the requirement that trailers with antilock brake systems be equipped with an external antilock malfunction indicator lamp, we find good cause for this interim final rule providing a six-month extension. Without this interim final rule, a confusing time gap in the vehicles subject to the requirement could potentially occur, should the agency ultimately decide to extend the requirement. Further, we find good cause to make it effective on February 28, 2009. We are accepting comments on this interim final rule. Furthermore, given the short timeframe of this interim final rule, we are providing only a 30-day comment period. Because the full duration of the extension is only six months, and due to the fact that NHTSA will be considering the policy issues addressed in the outstanding petitions during this period in the context of the accompanying NPRM, we believe it is appropriate to provide a short comment period. IV. Public Participation How do I prepare and submit comments? Your comments must be written and in English. To ensure that your comments are correctly filed in the Docket, please include the docket number of this document in your comments. Your comments must not be more than 15 pages long. (49 CFR 553.21). We established this limit to encourage you to write your primary comments in a concise fashion. However, you may attach necessary additional documents to your comments. There is no limit on the length of the attachments. Please submit two copies of your comments, including the attachments, to Docket Management at the address given above under ADDRESSES. Comments may also be submitted to the docket electronically by logging onto the Docket Management System Web PO 00000 Frm 00016 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 site at http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Please note that pursuant to the Data Quality Act, in order for substantive data to be relied upon and used by the agency, it must meet the information quality standards set forth in the OMB and DOT Data Quality Act guidelines. Accordingly, we encourage you to consult the guidelines in preparing your comments. OMB’s guidelines may be accessed at http://www.whitehouse.gov/ omb/fedreg/reproducible.html. DOT’s guidelines may be accessed at http:// dms.dot.gov. How can I be sure that my comments were received? If you wish Docket Management to notify you upon its receipt of your comments, enclose a self-addressed, stamped postcard in the envelope containing your comments. Upon receiving your comments, Docket Management will return the postcard by mail. How do I submit confidential business information? If you wish to submit any information under a claim of confidentiality, you should submit three copies of your complete submission, including the information you claim to be confidential business information, to the Chief Counsel, NHTSA, at the address given above under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. In addition, you should submit two copies, from which you have deleted the claimed confidential business information, to Docket Management at the address given above under ADDRESSES. When you send a comment containing information claimed to be confidential business information, you should include a cover letter setting forth the information specified in our confidential business information regulation. (49 CFR Part 512.) Will the agency consider late comments? We will consider all comments that Docket Management receives before the close of business on the comment closing date indicated above under DATES. To the extent possible, we will also consider comments that Docket Management receives after that date. If Docket Management receives a comment too late for us to consider in developing a final rule (assuming that one is issued), we will consider that comment as an informal suggestion for future rulemaking action. E:\FR\FM\03MRR1.SGM 03MRR1 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 40 / Tuesday, March 3, 2009 / Rules and Regulations How can I read the comments submitted by other people? they are already installing for an additional six months. You may read the comments received by Docket Management at the address given above under ADDRESSES. The hours of the Docket are indicated above in the same location. You may also see the comments on the Internet. To read the comments on the Internet, go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for accessing the dockets. Please note that even after the comment closing date, we will continue to file relevant information in the Docket as it becomes available. Further, some people may submit late comments. Accordingly, we recommend that you periodically check the Docket for new material. Executive Order 13132 (Federalism) NHTSA has examined today’s interim final rule pursuant to Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999) and concluded that no additional consultation with States, local governments or their representatives is mandated beyond the rulemaking process. The agency has concluded that the rule does not have federalism implications because it does not have ‘‘substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.’’ Further, no consultation is needed to discuss the preemptive effect of today’s rule. NHTSA’s safety standards can have preemptive effect in at least two ways. First, the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act contains an express preemption provision: ‘‘When a motor vehicle safety standard is in effect under this chapter, a State or a political subdivision of a State may prescribe or continue in effect a standard applicable to the same aspect of performance of a motor vehicle or motor vehicle equipment only if the standard is identical to the standard prescribed under this chapter.’’ 49 U.S.C. 30103(b)(1). It is this statutory command that unavoidably preempts State legislative and administrative law, not today’s rulemaking, so consultation would be unnecessary. Second, the Supreme Court has recognized the possibility of implied preemption: State requirements imposed on motor vehicle manufacturers, including sanctions imposed by State tort law, can stand as an obstacle to the accomplishment and execution of a NHTSA safety standard. When such a conflict is discerned, the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution makes the State requirements unenforceable. See Geier v. American Honda Motor Co., 529 U.S. 861 (2000). NHTSA has considered today’s interim final rule and does not currently foresee any potential State requirements that might conflict with it. Without any conflict, there could not be any implied preemption. V. Rulemaking Analyses and Notices Executive Order 12866 and DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures This action was not reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget under E.O. 12866. The agency has considered the impact of this action under the Department of Transportation’s regulatory policies and procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979), and has determined that it is not ‘‘significant’’ under them. This document delays the sunset date of the antilock malfunction indicator lamp requirement from March 1, 2009 to September 1, 2009. Since trailers manufactured after March 1, 1998 have already been complying with the requirement and the agency is merely extending the requirement for an additional six months, the impact on costs is not significant. Not supplying a lamp could result in a trailer that could be made for a few dollars less. We estimate the costs to be so minimal that preparation of a full regulatory evaluation is not required. rmajette on PRODPC74 with RULES Regulatory Flexibility Act Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., NHTSA has evaluated the effects of this action on small entities. I hereby certify that this interim final rule will not have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. This interim final rule merely extends for six months a sunset provision in FMVSS No. 121. No other changes are made in this document. Small organizations and small government units are not significantly affected since this action does not affect the price of new motor vehicles. Trailer manufacturers are not required to install new systems but rather continue to install the systems VerDate Nov<24>2008 14:43 Mar 02, 2009 Jkt 217001 Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform) With respect to the review of the promulgation of a new regulation, section 3(b) of Executive Order 12988, ‘‘Civil Justice Reform’’ (61 FR 4729, February 7, 1996) requires that Executive agencies make every PO 00000 Frm 00017 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 9175 reasonable effort to ensure that the regulation: (1) Clearly specifies the preemptive effect; (2) clearly specifies the effect on existing Federal law or regulation; (3) provides a clear legal standard for affected conduct, while promoting simplification and burden reduction; (4) clearly specifies the retroactive effect, if any; (5) adequately defines key terms; and (6) addresses other important issues affecting clarity and general draftsmanship under any guidelines issued by the Attorney General. This document is consistent with that requirement. Pursuant to this Order, NHTSA notes as follows. The preemptive effect of this rule is discussed above. NHTSA notes further that there is no requirement that individuals submit a petition for reconsideration or pursue other administrative proceeding before they may file suit in court. Protection of Children From Environmental Health and Safety Risks Executive Order 13045, ‘‘Protection of Children from Environmental Health and Safety Risks’’ (62 FR 19855, April 23, 1997), applies to any rule that: (1) Is determined to be ‘‘economically significant’’ as defined under Executive Order 12866, and (2) concerns an environmental, health, or safety risk that the agency has reason to believe may have a disproportionate effect on children. If the regulatory action meets both criteria, the agency must evaluate the environmental health or safety effects of the planned rule on children, and explain why the planned regulation is preferable to other potentially effective and reasonably feasible alternatives considered by the agency. This document is not expected to affect children and it is not an economically significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866. Consequently, no further analysis is required under Executive Order 13045. Paperwork Reduction Act Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), a person is not required to respond to a collection of information by a Federal agency unless the collection displays a valid OMB control number. There is not any information collection requirement associated with this interim final rule. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (NTTAA), Public Law 104– 113, (15 U.S.C. 272) directs the agency to evaluate and use voluntary consensus standards in its regulatory activities E:\FR\FM\03MRR1.SGM 03MRR1 9176 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 40 / Tuesday, March 3, 2009 / Rules and Regulations unless doing so would be inconsistent with applicable law or is otherwise impractical. Voluntary consensus standards are technical standards (e.g., materials specifications, test methods, sampling procedures, and business practices) that are developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies, such as the Society of Automotive Engineers. The NTTAA directs us to provide Congress (through OMB) with explanations when we decide not to use available and applicable voluntary consensus standards. There are no voluntary consensus standards developed by voluntary consensus standards bodies pertaining to this interim final rule. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 requires agencies to prepare a written assessment of the costs, benefits and other effects of proposed or final rules that include a Federal mandate likely to result in the expenditure by State, local or tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of more than $100 million annually (adjusted for inflation with base year of 1995). This interim final rule would not result in expenditures by State, local or tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector in excess of $100 million annually. National Environmental Policy Act NHTSA has analyzed this rulemaking action for the purposes of the National Environmental Policy Act. The agency has determined that implementation of this action will not have any significant impact on the quality of the human environment. rmajette on PRODPC74 with RULES Executive Order 13211 Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 18, 2001) applies to any rulemaking that: (1) Is determined to be economically significant as defined under E.O. 12866, and is likely to have a significantly adverse effect on the supply of, distribution of, or use of energy; or (2) that is designated by the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs as a significant energy action. This rulemaking is not subject to E.O. 13211. Plain Language Executive Order 12866 and the President’s memorandum of June 1, 1998, require each agency to write all rules in plain language. Application of the principles of plain language includes consideration of the following questions: • Have we organized the material to suit the public’s needs? VerDate Nov<24>2008 14:43 Mar 02, 2009 Jkt 217001 • Are the requirements in the rule clearly stated? • Does the rule contain technical language or jargon that isn’t clear? • Would a different format (grouping and order of sections, use of headings, paragraphing) make the rule easier to understand? • Would more (but shorter) sections be better? • Could we improve clarity by adding tables, lists, or diagrams? • What else could we do to make the rule easier to understand? If you have any responses to these questions, please include them in your comments on this proposal. Regulatory Identifier Number (RIN) The Department of Transportation assigns a regulation identifier number (RIN) to each regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of Federal Regulations. The Regulatory Information Service Center publishes the Unified Agenda in April and October of each year. You may use the RIN contained in the heading at the beginning of this document to find this action in the Unified Agenda. Privacy Act Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT’s complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 70; Pages 19477–78) or you may visit http://www.regulations.gov. List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 571 Imports, Motor vehicle safety, Motor vehicles, and Tires. ■ In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA is amending 49 CFR part 571 as set forth below. PART 571—FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS 1. The authority citation for part 571 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 322, 30111, 30115, 30117 and 30166; delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50. 2. Section 571.121 is amended by revising S5.2.3.3(a) to read as follows: ■ § 571.121 systems. Standard No. 121; Air brake * * * * * S5.2.3.3 Antilock malfunction indicator. (a) In addition to the requirements of S5.2.3.2, each trailer and trailer PO 00000 Frm 00018 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 converter dolly manufactured on or after March 1, 1998, and before September 1, 2009, shall be equipped with an external antilock malfunction indicator lamp that meets the requirements of S5.2.3.3(b) through (d). * * * * * Issued: February 26, 2009. Ronald L. Medford, Acting Deputy Administrator. [FR Doc. E9–4492 Filed 2–27–09; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 4910–59–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 0810141351—9087—02] RIN 0648–XN54 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Opening Directed Fishing for Pacific Cod by Catcher Vessels Greater Than or Equal to 60 feet (18.3 m) Length Overall Using Pot Gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Temporary rule; opening. SUMMARY: NMFS is opening directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher vessels greater than or equal to 60 feet (18.3 m) length overall (LOA) using pot gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary to fully use the A season allowance of the 2009 total allowable catch (TAC) of Pacific cod by catcher vessels greater than or equal to 60 feet (18.3 m) LOA using pot gear in the BSAI. DATES: Effective 1200 hrs, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), March 1, 2009, through 1200 hrs, A.l.t., June 10, 2009. Comments must be received at the following address no later than 4:30 p.m., A.l.t., March 13, 2009. ADDRESSES: Send comments to Sue Salveson, Assistant Regional Administrator, Sustainable Fisheries Division, Alaska Region, NMFS, Attn: Ellen Sebastian. You may submit comments, identified by RIN 0648-XN54, by any one of the following methods: • Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal website at http://www.regulations.gov. E:\FR\FM\03MRR1.SGM 03MRR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 40 (Tuesday, March 3, 2009)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 9173-9176]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-4492]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

49 CFR Part 571

[Docket No. NHTSA-2009-0038]
RIN 2127-AK44


Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard; Air Brake Systems

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 
Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Interim final rule, request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: This document extends for six months a requirement that 
trailers with antilock brake systems be equipped with an external 
antilock malfunction indicator lamp. This requirement, which is 
included in the Federal motor vehicle safety standard that governs 
vehicles equipped with air brakes, is currently scheduled to sunset on 
March 1, 2009. As a result of this interim final rule, the sunset date 
is September 1, 2009. We are taking this action in connection with our 
consideration of a petition for rulemaking from the Commercial Vehicle 
Safety Alliance (CVSA) requesting that the requirement be made 
permanent. In a separate document, we are proposing a further extension 
of the requirement, to March 1, 2011. This interim final rule prevents 
the occurrence of a potential time gap for the vehicles that are 
subject to the requirement, should the agency ultimately decide to 
further extend the time period.

DATES: Effective Date: The amendment made in this rule is effective 
February 28, 2009.
    Comment Period: You should submit your comments early enough to 
ensure that the Docket receives them not later than April 2, 2009. 
Comments may be combined with ones on the accompanying notice of 
proposed rulemaking, which is being published today using the same 
docket number.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments to the docket number identified in 
the heading of this document by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://
www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting 
comments.
     Mail: Docket Management Facility: U.S. Department of 
Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., West Building Ground 
Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001.
     Hand Delivery or Courier: 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., 
West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET, 
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
     Fax: 202-493-2251.
    Instructions: For detailed instructions on submitting comments and 
additional information on the rulemaking process, see the Public 
Participation heading of the Supplementary Information section of this 
document. Note that all comments received will be posted without change 
to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information 
provided. Please see the Privacy Act heading below.
    Privacy Act: Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all 
comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf 
of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's 
complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on 
April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78) or you may visit http://
DocketsInfo.dot.gov.
    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or 
comments received, go to http://www.regulations.gov, or the street 
address listed above. Follow the online instructions for accessing the 
dockets.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For non-legal issues, you may call Mr. 
George Soodoo, Office of Crash Avoidance Standards (Phone: 202-366-
4931; FAX: 202-366-7002). For legal issues, you may call Mr. Ari Scott, 
Office of the Chief Counsel (Phone: 202-366-2992; FAX: 202-366-3820). 
You may send mail to these officials at: National Highway Traffic 
Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 
20590.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Contents

I. Background
II. Agency Analysis
III. Interim Final Rule and Shortened Comment Period
IV. Public Participation
V. Rulemaking Analyses and Notices

I. Background

    The final rule requiring antilock brake systems (ABS) on truck 
tractors, other air-braked heavy vehicles including trailers, and 
hydraulic-braked trucks was published in the Federal Register (60 FR 
13216) on March 10, 1995. As amended by that final rule, FMVSS No. 121, 
Air Brake Systems, required two separate in-cab ABS malfunction 
indicator lamps for each truck tractor, one for the tractor's ABS 
(effective

[[Page 9174]]

March 1, 1997) and the other for the trailer's ABS (effective March 1, 
2001). The final rule also required air-braked trailers to be equipped 
with an externally mounted ABS malfunction lamp (effective March 1, 
1998) so that the driver of a non-ABS equipped tractor or a pre-2001 
ABS-equipped tractor towing an ABS-equipped trailer would be alerted in 
the event of a malfunction in the trailer ABS.
    The requirement for the trailer-mounted ABS malfunction indicator 
lamp is currently scheduled to expire on March 1, 2009. The agency 
established this sunset date in light of the fact that, after this 
eight-year period, many of the pre-2001 tractors without the dedicated 
trailer ABS malfunction indicator lamp would no longer be in long-haul 
service. The agency based its decision on the belief that the typical 
tractor life was five to seven years, and therefore decided on an 
eight-year period for the external ABS malfunction indicator lamp 
requirement. We further stated our belief that there would be no need 
for a redundant ABS malfunction lamp mounted on the trailer after the 
vast majority of tractors were equipped with an in-cab ABS malfunction 
indicator lamp for the trailer.
    As we have moved closer to the March 1, 2009 sunset date, the 
agency has received two petitions requesting that the requirement for 
the ABS malfunction indicator lamp be extended or made permanent. These 
petitions both came from the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), 
an international not-for-profit organization comprised of local, state, 
provincial, territorial and federal motor carrier safety officials and 
industry representatives from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. 
The petitioner raised two main issues in requesting a permanent 
extension. The first relates to ensuring that a driver or inspector can 
determine the operational status of a trailer ABS, if the trailer is 
not equipped with an external ABS lamp or the tractor is a pre-2001 
tractor without the trailer in-cab ABS warning lamp. The second relates 
to the use of the external trailer ABS warning lamp for diagnostic 
purposes.

II. Agency Analysis

    In a separate notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) published in 
today's Federal Register, we are proposing to extend the trailer 
indicator lamp requirement to March 1, 2011. Such an extension would 
enable the agency to fully analyze CVSA's request that the requirement 
be made permanent.
    Given the imminence of the March 1, 2009 sunset date, our decision 
on the accompanying NPRM will not be made until after that date. To 
prevent the requirement from expiring in the meantime, potentially 
creating a confusing time gap in the trailer regulations should the 
agency ultimately decide to extend it, we decided to issue this interim 
final rule providing a six-month extension.
    Accordingly, NHTSA is extending the sunset date by six months, from 
March 1, 2009 to September 1, 2009.

III. Interim Final Rule and Shortened Comment Period

    Given the imminence of the March 1, 2009 sunset date for the 
requirement that trailers with antilock brake systems be equipped with 
an external antilock malfunction indicator lamp, we find good cause for 
this interim final rule providing a six-month extension. Without this 
interim final rule, a confusing time gap in the vehicles subject to the 
requirement could potentially occur, should the agency ultimately 
decide to extend the requirement. Further, we find good cause to make 
it effective on February 28, 2009. We are accepting comments on this 
interim final rule.
    Furthermore, given the short timeframe of this interim final rule, 
we are providing only a 30-day comment period. Because the full 
duration of the extension is only six months, and due to the fact that 
NHTSA will be considering the policy issues addressed in the 
outstanding petitions during this period in the context of the 
accompanying NPRM, we believe it is appropriate to provide a short 
comment period.

IV. Public Participation

How do I prepare and submit comments?

    Your comments must be written and in English. To ensure that your 
comments are correctly filed in the Docket, please include the docket 
number of this document in your comments.
    Your comments must not be more than 15 pages long. (49 CFR 553.21). 
We established this limit to encourage you to write your primary 
comments in a concise fashion. However, you may attach necessary 
additional documents to your comments. There is no limit on the length 
of the attachments.
    Please submit two copies of your comments, including the 
attachments, to Docket Management at the address given above under 
ADDRESSES.
    Comments may also be submitted to the docket electronically by 
logging onto the Docket Management System Web site at http://
www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting 
comments.
    Please note that pursuant to the Data Quality Act, in order for 
substantive data to be relied upon and used by the agency, it must meet 
the information quality standards set forth in the OMB and DOT Data 
Quality Act guidelines. Accordingly, we encourage you to consult the 
guidelines in preparing your comments. OMB's guidelines may be accessed 
at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/fedreg/reproducible.html. DOT's 
guidelines may be accessed at http://dms.dot.gov.

How can I be sure that my comments were received?

    If you wish Docket Management to notify you upon its receipt of 
your comments, enclose a self-addressed, stamped postcard in the 
envelope containing your comments. Upon receiving your comments, Docket 
Management will return the postcard by mail.

How do I submit confidential business information?

    If you wish to submit any information under a claim of 
confidentiality, you should submit three copies of your complete 
submission, including the information you claim to be confidential 
business information, to the Chief Counsel, NHTSA, at the address given 
above under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. In addition, you should 
submit two copies, from which you have deleted the claimed confidential 
business information, to Docket Management at the address given above 
under ADDRESSES. When you send a comment containing information claimed 
to be confidential business information, you should include a cover 
letter setting forth the information specified in our confidential 
business information regulation. (49 CFR Part 512.)

Will the agency consider late comments?

    We will consider all comments that Docket Management receives 
before the close of business on the comment closing date indicated 
above under DATES. To the extent possible, we will also consider 
comments that Docket Management receives after that date. If Docket 
Management receives a comment too late for us to consider in developing 
a final rule (assuming that one is issued), we will consider that 
comment as an informal suggestion for future rulemaking action.

[[Page 9175]]

How can I read the comments submitted by other people?

    You may read the comments received by Docket Management at the 
address given above under ADDRESSES. The hours of the Docket are 
indicated above in the same location. You may also see the comments on 
the Internet. To read the comments on the Internet, go to http://
www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for accessing the 
dockets.
    Please note that even after the comment closing date, we will 
continue to file relevant information in the Docket as it becomes 
available. Further, some people may submit late comments. Accordingly, 
we recommend that you periodically check the Docket for new material.

V. Rulemaking Analyses and Notices

Executive Order 12866 and DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures

    This action was not reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget 
under E.O. 12866. The agency has considered the impact of this action 
under the Department of Transportation's regulatory policies and 
procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979), and has determined that it 
is not ``significant'' under them.
    This document delays the sunset date of the antilock malfunction 
indicator lamp requirement from March 1, 2009 to September 1, 2009. 
Since trailers manufactured after March 1, 1998 have already been 
complying with the requirement and the agency is merely extending the 
requirement for an additional six months, the impact on costs is not 
significant. Not supplying a lamp could result in a trailer that could 
be made for a few dollars less. We estimate the costs to be so minimal 
that preparation of a full regulatory evaluation is not required.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., 
NHTSA has evaluated the effects of this action on small entities. I 
hereby certify that this interim final rule will not have a significant 
impact on a substantial number of small entities. This interim final 
rule merely extends for six months a sunset provision in FMVSS No. 121. 
No other changes are made in this document. Small organizations and 
small government units are not significantly affected since this action 
does not affect the price of new motor vehicles. Trailer manufacturers 
are not required to install new systems but rather continue to install 
the systems they are already installing for an additional six months.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    NHTSA has examined today's interim final rule pursuant to Executive 
Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999) and concluded that no 
additional consultation with States, local governments or their 
representatives is mandated beyond the rulemaking process. The agency 
has concluded that the rule does not have federalism implications 
because it does not have ``substantial direct effects on the States, on 
the relationship between the national government and the States, or on 
the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels 
of government.''
    Further, no consultation is needed to discuss the preemptive effect 
of today's rule. NHTSA's safety standards can have preemptive effect in 
at least two ways. First, the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety 
Act contains an express preemption provision: ``When a motor vehicle 
safety standard is in effect under this chapter, a State or a political 
subdivision of a State may prescribe or continue in effect a standard 
applicable to the same aspect of performance of a motor vehicle or 
motor vehicle equipment only if the standard is identical to the 
standard prescribed under this chapter.'' 49 U.S.C. 30103(b)(1). It is 
this statutory command that unavoidably preempts State legislative and 
administrative law, not today's rulemaking, so consultation would be 
unnecessary.
    Second, the Supreme Court has recognized the possibility of implied 
preemption: State requirements imposed on motor vehicle manufacturers, 
including sanctions imposed by State tort law, can stand as an obstacle 
to the accomplishment and execution of a NHTSA safety standard. When 
such a conflict is discerned, the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution 
makes the State requirements unenforceable. See Geier v. American Honda 
Motor Co., 529 U.S. 861 (2000). NHTSA has considered today's interim 
final rule and does not currently foresee any potential State 
requirements that might conflict with it. Without any conflict, there 
could not be any implied preemption.

Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)

    With respect to the review of the promulgation of a new regulation, 
section 3(b) of Executive Order 12988, ``Civil Justice Reform'' (61 FR 
4729, February 7, 1996) requires that Executive agencies make every 
reasonable effort to ensure that the regulation: (1) Clearly specifies 
the preemptive effect; (2) clearly specifies the effect on existing 
Federal law or regulation; (3) provides a clear legal standard for 
affected conduct, while promoting simplification and burden reduction; 
(4) clearly specifies the retroactive effect, if any; (5) adequately 
defines key terms; and (6) addresses other important issues affecting 
clarity and general draftsmanship under any guidelines issued by the 
Attorney General. This document is consistent with that requirement.
    Pursuant to this Order, NHTSA notes as follows. The preemptive 
effect of this rule is discussed above. NHTSA notes further that there 
is no requirement that individuals submit a petition for 
reconsideration or pursue other administrative proceeding before they 
may file suit in court.

Protection of Children From Environmental Health and Safety Risks

    Executive Order 13045, ``Protection of Children from Environmental 
Health and Safety Risks'' (62 FR 19855, April 23, 1997), applies to any 
rule that: (1) Is determined to be ``economically significant'' as 
defined under Executive Order 12866, and (2) concerns an environmental, 
health, or safety risk that the agency has reason to believe may have a 
disproportionate effect on children. If the regulatory action meets 
both criteria, the agency must evaluate the environmental health or 
safety effects of the planned rule on children, and explain why the 
planned regulation is preferable to other potentially effective and 
reasonably feasible alternatives considered by the agency.
    This document is not expected to affect children and it is not an 
economically significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866. 
Consequently, no further analysis is required under Executive Order 
13045.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), a person is not 
required to respond to a collection of information by a Federal agency 
unless the collection displays a valid OMB control number. There is not 
any information collection requirement associated with this interim 
final rule.

National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act

    Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement 
Act of 1995 (NTTAA), Public Law 104-113, (15 U.S.C. 272) directs the 
agency to evaluate and use voluntary consensus standards in its 
regulatory activities

[[Page 9176]]

unless doing so would be inconsistent with applicable law or is 
otherwise impractical. Voluntary consensus standards are technical 
standards (e.g., materials specifications, test methods, sampling 
procedures, and business practices) that are developed or adopted by 
voluntary consensus standards bodies, such as the Society of Automotive 
Engineers. The NTTAA directs us to provide Congress (through OMB) with 
explanations when we decide not to use available and applicable 
voluntary consensus standards. There are no voluntary consensus 
standards developed by voluntary consensus standards bodies pertaining 
to this interim final rule.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 requires agencies to 
prepare a written assessment of the costs, benefits and other effects 
of proposed or final rules that include a Federal mandate likely to 
result in the expenditure by State, local or tribal governments, in the 
aggregate, or by the private sector, of more than $100 million annually 
(adjusted for inflation with base year of 1995). This interim final 
rule would not result in expenditures by State, local or tribal 
governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector in excess of 
$100 million annually.

National Environmental Policy Act

    NHTSA has analyzed this rulemaking action for the purposes of the 
National Environmental Policy Act. The agency has determined that 
implementation of this action will not have any significant impact on 
the quality of the human environment.

Executive Order 13211

    Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 18, 2001) applies to any 
rulemaking that: (1) Is determined to be economically significant as 
defined under E.O. 12866, and is likely to have a significantly adverse 
effect on the supply of, distribution of, or use of energy; or (2) that 
is designated by the Administrator of the Office of Information and 
Regulatory Affairs as a significant energy action. This rulemaking is 
not subject to E.O. 13211.

Plain Language

    Executive Order 12866 and the President's memorandum of June 1, 
1998, require each agency to write all rules in plain language. 
Application of the principles of plain language includes consideration 
of the following questions:
     Have we organized the material to suit the public's needs?
     Are the requirements in the rule clearly stated?
     Does the rule contain technical language or jargon that 
isn't clear?
     Would a different format (grouping and order of sections, 
use of headings, paragraphing) make the rule easier to understand?

     Would more (but shorter) sections be better?
     Could we improve clarity by adding tables, lists, or 
diagrams?
     What else could we do to make the rule easier to 
understand?

If you have any responses to these questions, please include them in 
your comments on this proposal.

Regulatory Identifier Number (RIN)

    The Department of Transportation assigns a regulation identifier 
number (RIN) to each regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of 
Federal Regulations. The Regulatory Information Service Center 
publishes the Unified Agenda in April and October of each year. You may 
use the RIN contained in the heading at the beginning of this document 
to find this action in the Unified Agenda.

Privacy Act

    Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments 
received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf 
of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's 
complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on 
April 11, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 70; Pages 19477-78) or you may visit 
http://www.regulations.gov.

List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 571

    Imports, Motor vehicle safety, Motor vehicles, and Tires.

0
In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA is amending 49 CFR part 571 as 
set forth below.

PART 571--FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS

0
1. The authority citation for part 571 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 322, 30111, 30115, 30117 and 30166; 
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50.

0
2. Section 571.121 is amended by revising S5.2.3.3(a) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  571.121  Standard No. 121; Air brake systems.

* * * * *
    S5.2.3.3 Antilock malfunction indicator.
    (a) In addition to the requirements of S5.2.3.2, each trailer and 
trailer converter dolly manufactured on or after March 1, 1998, and 
before September 1, 2009, shall be equipped with an external antilock 
malfunction indicator lamp that meets the requirements of S5.2.3.3(b) 
through (d).
* * * * *

    Issued: February 26, 2009.
Ronald L. Medford,
Acting Deputy Administrator.
[FR Doc. E9-4492 Filed 2-27-09; 11:15 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P