New Car Assessment Program, 38201-38204 [2018-16653]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 150 / Friday, August 3, 2018 / Notices Nevada, Reno campus. The purpose of the project is to increase transit ridership and connectivity, enhance pedestrian safety, and improve accessibility to transit in the Virginia Street corridor. The project includes building five new RAPID stations and replacing three bus shelters with full RAPID stations; acquiring right-of-way; and creating exclusive bus lanes, traffic signal priority at five intersections, offboard fare collection, level boarding, and real-time bus arrival information at stations. The project also includes purchasing two electric buses, constructing two roundabouts at intersections to improve bus turning movements and enhance traffic operations and safety, and improving sidewalk and cross walk infrastructure to enhance the pedestrian and bicycle network and visibility in the corridor. Finally, the project includes parking and access management, utility relocations and drainage improvements. The project was the subject of the Virginia Street Bus RAPID Transit Extension Project Environmental Assessment, dated June 2018. Final agency actions: Section 4(f) determination, dated June 12, 2018; Section 106 of the NHPA finding of No Adverse Effect, dated March 17, 2017; project-level air quality conformity; and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI), dated June 15, 2018. Supporting documentation: The Virginia Street Bus RAPID Transit Extension Project Environmental Assessment in Washoe County, Nevada, dated June 2018. Elizabeth S. Riklin, Deputy Associate Administrator for Planning and Environment. [FR Doc. 2018–16682 Filed 8–2–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [Docket No. NHTSA–2018–0055] New Car Assessment Program National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice of public meeting; request for comments. amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 AGENCY: NHTSA’s New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) provides comparative information on the safety of new vehicles to assist consumers with vehicle purchasing decisions. Significant changes to NCAP have been SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:26 Aug 02, 2018 Jkt 244001 either suggested by NHTSA or mandated by Congress in recent years. In December 2015, Congress mandated that NHTSA conduct a rulemaking requiring that crash avoidance information be placed on the Monroney label of new vehicles. Later that same month, NHTSA published a ‘‘request for comments’’ (RFC) in which it sought public comments on planned changes to NCAP. This notice announces a public meeting to obtain up-to-date stakeholder input on the way forward for NCAP. DATES: NHTSA will hold the public meeting on September 14, 2018, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time. Check-in will begin at 8 a.m. Attendees should arrive by 8 a.m. to allow sufficient time for security clearance. In addition to this meeting, the public will have the opportunity to submit written comments to the docket for this notice concerning matters addressed in this notice. The public meeting will be held at DOT Headquarters, located at 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590–0001 (Green Line Metro station at Navy Yard) in the Oklahoma City Conference Room. This facility is accessible to individuals with disabilities. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: You may contact Ms. Jennifer N. Dang, Division Chief, New Car Assessment Program, Office of Crashworthiness Standards (Telephone: 202–366–1810). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: ADDRESSES: I. Background This notice announces the holding of a public meeting on September 14, 2018, to obtain up-to-date stakeholder input for use in planning the future of NCAP. The impetus for this meeting comes from developments relating to two events in December 2015. On December 4, 2015, the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) 1 Act was signed into law, which includes a mandate that NHTSA conduct a rulemaking to require the incorporation of crash avoidance information on the vehicle price stickers (also known as the Monroney labels) placed on the windows of new vehicles. On December 16, 2015, NHTSA announced in a Federal Register ‘‘request for comments’’ (RFC) 2 its plan to add new tools and techniques to NCAP. NHTSA received nearly 300 sets of written comments on its December 2015 RFC.3 The commenters included vehicle 1 §§ 24321–22, Public Law 114–94. FR 78521, December 16, 2015. 3 The comments are available in Docket No. NHTSA–2015–0119 at www.regulations.gov. 38201 manufacturers, automotive suppliers, associations of vehicle manufacturers and suppliers, consumer advocacy groups, universities, and other individuals and organizations interested in vehicle safety. NHTSA also received oral comments at two public hearings, the first in Detroit, Michigan on January 14, 2016, and the second at DOT Headquarters in Washington, DC on January 29, 2016.4 Commenters across the spectrum raised a number of issues involving both data and procedures. Commenters stated the public comment period was inadequate for purposes of responding because of the complexity of the program upgrade, and that the technical information supporting the RFC was not sufficient to allow a full understanding of the contemplated changes. According to the commenters, this hindered their ability to prepare substantive public comments. In addition, most vehicle manufacturers stated that the significant cost burden due to fitment of the contemplated new technologies and the inclusion of a new crash test and new test devices would increase the price of new vehicles. Manufacturers, along with safety advocates, also expressed the need for data demonstrating that each proposed program change would provide enough safety benefits to warrant its inclusion in NCAP. Safety and consumer advocates recommended that NCAP award credit only if the technologies meet certain human machine interface requirements. In addition, several commenters suggested that NHTSA develop near-term and long-term roadmaps for NCAP and revise NCAP in a more gradual, ‘‘phased’’ approach. Furthermore, commenters suggested that most of the planned NCAP upgrades, including the new rating system, should only be adopted through a process similar in rigor to that of a notice and comment rulemaking conducted under the Administrative Procedure Act. Lastly, certain vehicle manufacturers were concerned that changing future vehicle designs in order to respond to a NCAP upgrade would have an adverse effect on compliance with fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions requirements. In light of the public comments and NHTSA’s FAST Act mandate, NHTSA is requesting oral and written comments from the public to help guide the Agency in planning its next steps for NCAP. The Agency continues to believe that NCAP needs to be modernized to 2 80 PO 00000 Frm 00086 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 4 The transcripts are available in Docket No. NHTSA–2015–0119 at www.regulations.gov. E:\FR\FM\03AUN1.SGM 03AUN1 amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 38202 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 150 / Friday, August 3, 2018 / Notices incentivize the voluntary adoption of safety features. As part of that effort, the Agency is continuing to explore best methods for selecting and incorporating crash avoidance information on the vehicle price stickers. NHTSA is considering various approaches to enhancing NCAP so that the program continues to serve the American public by providing useful, practical comparative vehicle safety information. For example, NHTSA could consider modifying the way NCAP provides meaningful consumer information about the safety potential of advanced crash avoidance technologies. Another strategy is to package information now available through NCAP in new ways, if they will be particularly effective in communicating vehicle safety information to targeted groups of new vehicle customers. Other NCAP enhancements on which the Agency seeks comment include strengthening the existing program’s testing protocols and possibly creating safety ratings for areas of vehicle performance that are not currently rated. From its inception, NCAP has played a significant role in educating consumers on vehicle safety as a key factor in their vehicle purchasing decisions. The increasing number of advanced crash avoidance technologies and Automated Driving Assistance Systems in vehicles underscores the importance of NCAP’s role in educating consumers about vehicle safety. NCAP plays a vital role in ensuring that the potential benefits of advanced crash avoidance technologies are effectively communicated to the public. For example, NCAP could help standardize nomenclature of crash avoidance technologies by providing detailed descriptions of performance criteria that a technology must satisfy before being incorporated into NCAP testing. NHTSA continues to gather information and conduct research relative to the areas discussed in the December 2015 RFC. Additionally, NHTSA is working to leverage the existing NCAP program to, among other things, improve the information it provides consumers, thereby increasing their awareness and understanding of certain safety improvements and enabling them to make better informed purchasing decisions. The Agency believes that a more thorough examination of which updates to NCAP are sufficiently supported by data and useful to consumers will ultimately lead to a better program that increases safety without unnecessarily increasing vehicle costs or impeding innovation. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:26 Aug 02, 2018 Jkt 244001 II. Public Meeting Details Registration: Registration is necessary for all attendees, due to limited space. Attendees must register online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ NCAP-Public-Meeting by September 7, 2018. Please provide your name, email address, and affiliation. Also, indicate whether you plan to participate actively in the meeting (speaking will be limited to 10 minutes per speaker for each of the four agenda topics, unless the number of registered speakers is such that more time per agenda topic will be available), and whether you require accommodations, such as a sign language interpreter. Written Comments: Docket NHTSA– 2018–0055 is available for written statements and supporting information regarding matters addressed in this notice. All interested persons, regardless of whether they attend or speak at the public meeting, are invited to submit written comments to the docket and are encouraged to do so. The formal docket comment period will close on [60 days from the publication date of this announcement], but NHTSA will continue to accept comments to the docket by any of the following methods: • Federal Rulemaking 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, Washington, DC 20590–0001, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays. • Fax: 202–366–1767. Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and docket number. Note that all comments received will be posted without change to https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. Please see the Privacy Act discussion below. Docket: For access to the docket go to https://www.regulations.gov at any time or to 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building, Ground Floor, Room W12– 140, Washington, DC 20590–0001, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays. Telephone: 202–366–9826. Privacy Act: DOT posts all comments, without edit, to https:// www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice, DOT/ALL– 14 FDMS, accessible through PO 00000 Frm 00087 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 www.transportation.gov/privacy. In order to facilitate comment tracking and response, we encourage commenters to provide their name, or the name of their organization; however, submission of names is completely optional. Whether or not commenters identify themselves, all timely comments will be fully considered. Confidential Business Information: If you wish to submit any written information under a claim of confidentiality, you should submit three copies of your complete written submission, including the information you claim to be confidential business information to the Chief Counsel, NHTSA, at 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590–0001. 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. When you send a comment containing information claimed to be confidential business information, you should submit a cover letter setting forth the information specified in our confidential business information regulation (49 CFR part 512). The public meeting is structured to be a listening session in which NHTSA considers recommendations from the public on how best to improve NCAP. The list of questions below is not intended to limit the discussion or ideas to be presented at the listening session. It reflects areas in which NHTSA is requesting feedback relative to the next steps that could be taken with NCAP. NHTSA hopes these questions stimulate the thinking of those who plan to speak in the public meeting and/or submit written comments. Commenters may wish to use these questions to help organize and present their thoughts and ideas. Suggestions about other approaches to improving NCAP that are not reflected in these questions are encouraged as well. Specific Guiding Questions: To help guide NHTSA gather information and feedback for use in planning the future of NCAP, the Agency seeks comments on the four topics below. NHTSA urges that, where possible, comments be supported by data and analysis to increase their usefulness. Please clearly indicate the source of such data. A. Consumer Information (1) NCAP strives to provide consumers with meaningful, comparative safety information that will assist them in making informed vehicle purchasing decisions. What changes could NHTSA make to the program that would better assist consumers in E:\FR\FM\03AUN1.SGM 03AUN1 amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 150 / Friday, August 3, 2018 / Notices understanding the relative safety of vehicles? (2) NHTSA currently provides crash safety ratings on its website, on vehicle window stickers, on its mobile application, in communication materials, and through distribution (i.e., to the automotive online community). What additional ways can the safety information generated by NCAP be most effectively communicated to today’s consumers? (3) What additional website functionality should NHTSA consider when presenting NCAP safety information to the public (e.g., ranking based on performance, grouping based on vehicle class, comparing vehicles within a class, custom filtering, options to view all vehicles at once, interactive charts and graphics)? (4) What types of safety information, or methods of presenting safety information, should NHTSA’s NCAP 5 consider from other NCAPs 6 or consumer-focused organizations to provide more meaningful information to consumers? How can NCAP better complement other U.S. consumer rating programs, such as that of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)? 7 (5) In addition to safety ratings, what other safety information would be useful to prominently present on NHTSA’s website, mobile application, and other venues to new vehicle buyers? How much benefit would there be in highlighting specific information to certain new vehicle buying demographics (e.g., older drivers, teen drivers, family vehicles, urban/rural drivers, budget-conscious)? What types of objective criteria should NHTSA consider for this? (6) Many new vehicles are equipped with pedestrian crash avoidance features. What value do vehicle buyers place on pedestrian crash avoidance features when selecting a new vehicle to purchase? Should NCAP consider pedestrian crash avoidance features when making program changes, and if so, how could a pedestrian component best be incorporated (e.g., as part of a rating, or as a separate assessment)? (7) The field of vehicle safety is more dynamic now than ever before because of technological advances. Today’s vehicles undergo more frequent design changes; advanced crash avoidance technologies are being introduced at a rapid rate; and, software updates to program can be viewed at https:// www.nhtsa.gov/ratings. 6 Euro NCAP’s program can be viewed at https:// www.euroncap.com/en/ratings-rewards/. 7 The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s program can be viewed at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ ratings. safety systems can be made over-the-air, improving their existing abilities and even giving them new abilities. Given the accelerating pace of such advancements, should NCAP consider alternative ways of collecting test data and safety information (such as through self-certification or some other means) and how can NCAP collect data/ information from vehicle manufacturers so that it can continue to convey accurate information to consumers in a timely manner (such as via an interactive database)? (8) Other NCAPs have produced longterm roadmaps for their programs. Euro NCAP published program roadmaps to 2020 8 and 2025.9 What value would NHTSA, vehicle manufacturers, suppliers, and the public obtain by developing near-term and long-term roadmaps for U.S. NCAP? B. Rating System (9) What types of ratings are most useful to vehicle manufacturers for communicating safety information to consumers? Are star ratings still the best way to promote meaningful safety information? Are there alternatives that should be considered (e.g., awards, numerical or percentage rankings, performance classifications (good vs. poor), half stars)? What are the advantages and disadvantages of these approaches? (10) For a single, overall rating system covering many areas of safety (such as a 5-star rating), how can NHTSA apportion the testing and criteria to ensure that individual aspects of the rating will be properly weighted and balanced? What other strategies (e.g., half stars, demerits, modifiers) should NHTSA consider for a single, overall rating system? C. Crash Avoidance (11) The FAST Act requires that crash avoidance information be presented next to crashworthiness information on the Monroney label.10 (Implementation of this requirement will be the subject of a separate notice and comment proceeding). What approach should NHTSA consider in fulfilling this requirement that will be most helpful to consumers? Should NHTSA consider a rating (i.e., stars), a list of technologies, an award, or another approach? What strategy can offer flexibility if new 5 NHTSA’s VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:26 Aug 02, 2018 Jkt 244001 8 https://cdn.euroncap.com/media/16472/euro- ncap-2020-roadmap-rev1-march-2015.pdf. 9 https://www.euroncap.com/en/press-media/ press-releases/euro-ncap-launches-road-map-2025in-pursuit-of-vision-zero/. 10 §§ 24321–22, Public Law 114–94. PO 00000 Frm 00088 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 38203 changes to the crash avoidance information is warranted? (12) How can future crash avoidance aspects of NCAP complement other vehicle safety consumer information programs in the U.S.? (13) Consumers are currently presented with a variety of advanced technology features on different vehicle models. Some are for convenience and some are designed for safety. Currently, a new advanced technology must meet four prerequisites to be added to NCAP. These include: (1) There is a known safety need, (2) vehicle and equipment designs that mitigate the safety need exist, or are available as a prototype, (3) a safety benefit can be estimated based on the anticipated performance of the existing or prototype design, and (4) a performance-based, objective test procedure can be developed to measure the ability of the technology to mitigate the safety issue.11 How can NHTSA improve upon these strategies when determining which advanced technology features are appropriate for inclusion in NCAP? Should NHTSA also consider other factors (e.g., effectiveness, fleet penetration, path to automation, consumer acceptance, cost)? (14) NHTSA has been engaging the public on ways to safely integrate Automated Driving Systems on our nation’s roads. What should NCAP’s role be in supporting the safe integration of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems 12 that may lay the groundwork for Automated Driving Systems? Which crash avoidance elements, or aspects of automation, should NHTSA include in NCAP, and how could these be best evaluated (e.g., by assessing the performance of a specific technology or the crash avoidance system during a crash event)? (15) How should NHTSA’s assessment of crash avoidance technology be combined with crashworthiness? If they are communicated in the same way, should there be an overall measure, or separate measures for crashworthiness and crash avoidance? If separate measures are preferred, should the measures be of the same type (e.g., only ratings or only awards, etc.), or should the measures be a combination of different types (e.g., ratings and awards, etc.)? Are there other strategies NHTSA 11 78 FR 20599 (April 5, 2013). Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) are systems developed to automate/enhance vehicle systems for safety and for better driving. For example, the vehicle can help the human driver steer and/or brake, though the human driver must pay full attention at all times and perform the rest of the driving task. 12 Advanced E:\FR\FM\03AUN1.SGM 03AUN1 38204 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 150 / Friday, August 3, 2018 / Notices data.13 However, NHTSA has not conducted any formal reviews or baseline risk adjustments to date. Should NHTSA now consider adjusting the baseline risks used in the ratings calculations to reflect the crash test data from today’s vehicles? Or, would there be a better approach to update the crashworthiness program to better differentiate performance among the vehicle fleet (e.g., new tests, dummies, injury criteria, etc.)? (21) How frequently should NCAP change crashworthiness test requirements and/or update rating requirements to stay relevant with each new model year vehicle fleet? What effect would year-to-year changes have on (a) the credibility and understandability of information provided to consumers and (b) the manufacturers? D. Crashworthiness amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 should consider, and what are their advantages and disadvantages? (16) Currently, many crash avoidance technologies are sold as optional equipment on vehicles, and a variety of different advanced technology features may be available on different trim levels. How can NCAP best communicate whether crash avoidance technologies are standard vs. optional on a vehicle model or trim level to ensure consumers are given accurate information on the safety of the vehicle they are purchasing? How should equipment availability affect the ratings of vehicles? What metric should NHTSA use to determine when it is appropriate to remove an advanced technology from NCAP (e.g., replace a technology once it reaches a high level of fleet penetration and replace it with a technology with a low level of penetration)? E. Meeting Agenda 8–9 a.m. Arrival/Check-in through security 9–9:10 a.m. Welcome remarks from NHTSA 9:10–11:10 a.m. Speakers on consumer information 11:10 a.m.–12:10 p.m. Speakers on rating system 12:10–1:15 p.m. Lunch (not provided) 1:15–3:15 p.m. Speakers on crash avoidance 3:15–4:15 p.m. Speakers on crashworthiness 4:15–4:50 p.m. Speakers on other topics 4:50–5 p.m. Closing remarks from NHTSA Under authority delegated in 49 CFR 1.95 and 501.5. (17) What are the opportunities for crashworthiness safety improvement? How should NHTSA approach consideration of new tests, test protocols or test devices, new injury criteria, risk curves, or additional occupants to be more reflective of realworld crashes? Could meaningful changes to injury criteria and risk curves be made to the current crash test dummies in the existing test configurations? (18) Should NHTSA expand assessments beyond frontal and side crash testing? If so, how? For example, should NHTSA consider inclusion of other strategies, such as credit for enhanced seat belt reminders, or other technologies? (19) How can the crashworthiness aspects of NCAP complement other vehicle safety consumer information programs in the U.S.? For example, are the crash modes, crash test dummies and injury criteria used in NCAP complementary to those used by the IIHS? Do they strike the right balance for the frontal and side impact crash configurations? (20) Most new vehicles rated by NCAP are currently receiving 4- or 5star ratings. These star ratings are based on how a vehicle’s risk of injury reflected in NCAP tests compares to a baseline injury risk for all crash types that was derived from NHTSA crash data for MY 2007 and 2008 vehicles. In its July 11, 2008, Federal Register notice announcing enhancements to NCAP, NHTSA indicated that it would periodically review the crash performance of the vehicle fleet, as reflected by then-current NCAP test VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:26 Aug 02, 2018 Jkt 244001 Issued in Washington, DC on: July 27, 2018. Heidi R. King, Deputy Administrator. [FR Doc. 2018–16653 Filed 8–2–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–59–P DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY Office of the Comptroller of the Currency Agency Information Collection Activities: Information Collection Renewal; Submission for OMB Review; Appraisal Management Companies Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Treasury. ACTION: Notice and request for comment. AGENCY: The OCC, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork SUMMARY: 13 78 PO 00000 FR 20603. Frm 00089 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on a continuing information collection as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA). In accordance with the requirements of the PRA, the OCC may not conduct or sponsor, and the respondent is not required to respond to, an information collection unless it displays a currently valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number. The OCC is soliciting comment concerning the renewal of its information collection titled, ‘‘Appraisal Management Companies.’’ The OCC also is giving notice that it has sent the collection to OMB for review. DATES: You should submit written comments by September 4, 2018. ADDRESSES: Commenters are encouraged to submit comments by email, if possible. You may submit comments by any of the following methods: • Email: prainfo@occ.treas.gov. • Mail: Legislative and Regulatory Activities Division, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Attention: 1557–0324, 400 7th Street SW, suite 3E– 218, Washington, DC 20219. • Hand Delivery/Courier: 400 7th Street, SW, suite 3E–218, Washington, DC 20219. • Fax: (571) 465–4326. Instructions: You must include ‘‘OCC’’ as the agency name and ‘‘1557– 0324’’ in your comment. In general, the OCC will publish them on www.reginfo.gov without change, including any business or personal information that you provide, such as name and address information, email addresses, or phone numbers. Comments received, including attachments and other supporting materials, are part of the public record and subject to public disclosure. Do not include any information in your comment or supporting materials that you consider confidential or inappropriate for public disclosure. Additionally, please send a copy of your comments by mail to: OCC Desk Officer, 1557–0324, U.S. Office of Management and Budget, 725 17th Street NW, #10235, Washington, DC 20503 or by email to oira_submission@ omb.eop.gov. You may review comments and other related materials that pertain to this information collection 1 following the close of the 30-Day comment period for 1 On March 23, 2018, the OCC published a 60-Day notice for this information collection. The comments can be viewed on www.reginfo.gov. Please follow the instructions listed in this notice to view them. E:\FR\FM\03AUN1.SGM 03AUN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 150 (Friday, August 3, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 38201-38204]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-16653]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2018-0055]


New Car Assessment Program

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

ACTION: Notice of public meeting; request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: NHTSA's New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) provides comparative 
information on the safety of new vehicles to assist consumers with 
vehicle purchasing decisions. Significant changes to NCAP have been 
either suggested by NHTSA or mandated by Congress in recent years. In 
December 2015, Congress mandated that NHTSA conduct a rulemaking 
requiring that crash avoidance information be placed on the Monroney 
label of new vehicles. Later that same month, NHTSA published a 
``request for comments'' (RFC) in which it sought public comments on 
planned changes to NCAP. This notice announces a public meeting to 
obtain up-to-date stakeholder input on the way forward for NCAP.

DATES: NHTSA will hold the public meeting on September 14, 2018, from 9 
a.m. to 5 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time. Check-in will begin at 8 a.m. 
Attendees should arrive by 8 a.m. to allow sufficient time for security 
clearance. In addition to this meeting, the public will have the 
opportunity to submit written comments to the docket for this notice 
concerning matters addressed in this notice.

ADDRESSES: The public meeting will be held at DOT Headquarters, located 
at 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590-0001 (Green Line 
Metro station at Navy Yard) in the Oklahoma City Conference Room. This 
facility is accessible to individuals with disabilities.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: You may contact Ms. Jennifer N. Dang, 
Division Chief, New Car Assessment Program, Office of Crashworthiness 
Standards (Telephone: 202-366-1810).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background

    This notice announces the holding of a public meeting on September 
14, 2018, to obtain up-to-date stakeholder input for use in planning 
the future of NCAP. The impetus for this meeting comes from 
developments relating to two events in December 2015. On December 4, 
2015, the Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) \1\ Act was 
signed into law, which includes a mandate that NHTSA conduct a 
rulemaking to require the incorporation of crash avoidance information 
on the vehicle price stickers (also known as the Monroney labels) 
placed on the windows of new vehicles. On December 16, 2015, NHTSA 
announced in a Federal Register ``request for comments'' (RFC) \2\ its 
plan to add new tools and techniques to NCAP.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Sec. Sec.  24321-22, Public Law 114-94.
    \2\ 80 FR 78521, December 16, 2015.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    NHTSA received nearly 300 sets of written comments on its December 
2015 RFC.\3\ The commenters included vehicle manufacturers, automotive 
suppliers, associations of vehicle manufacturers and suppliers, 
consumer advocacy groups, universities, and other individuals and 
organizations interested in vehicle safety. NHTSA also received oral 
comments at two public hearings, the first in Detroit, Michigan on 
January 14, 2016, and the second at DOT Headquarters in Washington, DC 
on January 29, 2016.\4\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ The comments are available in Docket No. NHTSA-2015-0119 at 
www.regulations.gov.
    \4\ The transcripts are available in Docket No. NHTSA-2015-0119 
at www.regulations.gov.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Commenters across the spectrum raised a number of issues involving 
both data and procedures. Commenters stated the public comment period 
was inadequate for purposes of responding because of the complexity of 
the program upgrade, and that the technical information supporting the 
RFC was not sufficient to allow a full understanding of the 
contemplated changes. According to the commenters, this hindered their 
ability to prepare substantive public comments.
    In addition, most vehicle manufacturers stated that the significant 
cost burden due to fitment of the contemplated new technologies and the 
inclusion of a new crash test and new test devices would increase the 
price of new vehicles. Manufacturers, along with safety advocates, also 
expressed the need for data demonstrating that each proposed program 
change would provide enough safety benefits to warrant its inclusion in 
NCAP. Safety and consumer advocates recommended that NCAP award credit 
only if the technologies meet certain human machine interface 
requirements. In addition, several commenters suggested that NHTSA 
develop near-term and long-term roadmaps for NCAP and revise NCAP in a 
more gradual, ``phased'' approach.
    Furthermore, commenters suggested that most of the planned NCAP 
upgrades, including the new rating system, should only be adopted 
through a process similar in rigor to that of a notice and comment 
rulemaking conducted under the Administrative Procedure Act. Lastly, 
certain vehicle manufacturers were concerned that changing future 
vehicle designs in order to respond to a NCAP upgrade would have an 
adverse effect on compliance with fuel economy and greenhouse gas 
emissions requirements.
    In light of the public comments and NHTSA's FAST Act mandate, NHTSA 
is requesting oral and written comments from the public to help guide 
the Agency in planning its next steps for NCAP. The Agency continues to 
believe that NCAP needs to be modernized to

[[Page 38202]]

incentivize the voluntary adoption of safety features. As part of that 
effort, the Agency is continuing to explore best methods for selecting 
and incorporating crash avoidance information on the vehicle price 
stickers.
    NHTSA is considering various approaches to enhancing NCAP so that 
the program continues to serve the American public by providing useful, 
practical comparative vehicle safety information. For example, NHTSA 
could consider modifying the way NCAP provides meaningful consumer 
information about the safety potential of advanced crash avoidance 
technologies. Another strategy is to package information now available 
through NCAP in new ways, if they will be particularly effective in 
communicating vehicle safety information to targeted groups of new 
vehicle customers. Other NCAP enhancements on which the Agency seeks 
comment include strengthening the existing program's testing protocols 
and possibly creating safety ratings for areas of vehicle performance 
that are not currently rated.
    From its inception, NCAP has played a significant role in educating 
consumers on vehicle safety as a key factor in their vehicle purchasing 
decisions. The increasing number of advanced crash avoidance 
technologies and Automated Driving Assistance Systems in vehicles 
underscores the importance of NCAP's role in educating consumers about 
vehicle safety. NCAP plays a vital role in ensuring that the potential 
benefits of advanced crash avoidance technologies are effectively 
communicated to the public. For example, NCAP could help standardize 
nomenclature of crash avoidance technologies by providing detailed 
descriptions of performance criteria that a technology must satisfy 
before being incorporated into NCAP testing.
    NHTSA continues to gather information and conduct research relative 
to the areas discussed in the December 2015 RFC. Additionally, NHTSA is 
working to leverage the existing NCAP program to, among other things, 
improve the information it provides consumers, thereby increasing their 
awareness and understanding of certain safety improvements and enabling 
them to make better informed purchasing decisions. The Agency believes 
that a more thorough examination of which updates to NCAP are 
sufficiently supported by data and useful to consumers will ultimately 
lead to a better program that increases safety without unnecessarily 
increasing vehicle costs or impeding innovation.

II. Public Meeting Details

    Registration: Registration is necessary for all attendees, due to 
limited space. Attendees must register online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NCAP-Public-Meeting by September 7, 2018. Please 
provide your name, email address, and affiliation. Also, indicate 
whether you plan to participate actively in the meeting (speaking will 
be limited to 10 minutes per speaker for each of the four agenda 
topics, unless the number of registered speakers is such that more time 
per agenda topic will be available), and whether you require 
accommodations, such as a sign language interpreter.
    Written Comments: Docket NHTSA-2018-0055 is available for written 
statements and supporting information regarding matters addressed in 
this notice. All interested persons, regardless of whether they attend 
or speak at the public meeting, are invited to submit written comments 
to the docket and are encouraged to do so. The formal docket comment 
period will close on [60 days from the publication date of this 
announcement], but NHTSA will continue to accept comments to the docket 
by any of the following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking 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, Washington, DC 20590-0001, between 
9 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays.
     Fax: 202-366-1767.
    Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and 
docket number. Note that all comments received will be posted without 
change to https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal 
information provided. Please see the Privacy Act discussion below.
    Docket: For access to the docket go to https://www.regulations.gov 
at any time or to 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building, Ground 
Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001, between 9 a.m. and 5 
p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays. Telephone: 202-
366-9826.
    Privacy Act: DOT posts all comments, without edit, to https://www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice, DOT/
ALL-14 FDMS, accessible through www.transportation.gov/privacy. In 
order to facilitate comment tracking and response, we encourage 
commenters to provide their name, or the name of their organization; 
however, submission of names is completely optional. Whether or not 
commenters identify themselves, all timely comments will be fully 
considered.
    Confidential Business Information: If you wish to submit any 
written information under a claim of confidentiality, you should submit 
three copies of your complete written submission, including the 
information you claim to be confidential business information to the 
Chief Counsel, NHTSA, at 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 
20590-0001. 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. When you send a comment 
containing information claimed to be confidential business information, 
you should submit a cover letter setting forth the information 
specified in our confidential business information regulation (49 CFR 
part 512).
    The public meeting is structured to be a listening session in which 
NHTSA considers recommendations from the public on how best to improve 
NCAP. The list of questions below is not intended to limit the 
discussion or ideas to be presented at the listening session. It 
reflects areas in which NHTSA is requesting feedback relative to the 
next steps that could be taken with NCAP. NHTSA hopes these questions 
stimulate the thinking of those who plan to speak in the public meeting 
and/or submit written comments. Commenters may wish to use these 
questions to help organize and present their thoughts and ideas. 
Suggestions about other approaches to improving NCAP that are not 
reflected in these questions are encouraged as well.
    Specific Guiding Questions: To help guide NHTSA gather information 
and feedback for use in planning the future of NCAP, the Agency seeks 
comments on the four topics below. NHTSA urges that, where possible, 
comments be supported by data and analysis to increase their 
usefulness. Please clearly indicate the source of such data.

A. Consumer Information

    (1) NCAP strives to provide consumers with meaningful, comparative 
safety information that will assist them in making informed vehicle 
purchasing decisions. What changes could NHTSA make to the program that 
would better assist consumers in

[[Page 38203]]

understanding the relative safety of vehicles?
    (2) NHTSA currently provides crash safety ratings on its website, 
on vehicle window stickers, on its mobile application, in communication 
materials, and through distribution (i.e., to the automotive online 
community). What additional ways can the safety information generated 
by NCAP be most effectively communicated to today's consumers?
    (3) What additional website functionality should NHTSA consider 
when presenting NCAP safety information to the public (e.g., ranking 
based on performance, grouping based on vehicle class, comparing 
vehicles within a class, custom filtering, options to view all vehicles 
at once, interactive charts and graphics)?
    (4) What types of safety information, or methods of presenting 
safety information, should NHTSA's NCAP \5\ consider from other NCAPs 
\6\ or consumer-focused organizations to provide more meaningful 
information to consumers? How can NCAP better complement other U.S. 
consumer rating programs, such as that of the Insurance Institute for 
Highway Safety (IIHS)? \7\
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    \5\ NHTSA's program can be viewed at https://www.nhtsa.gov/ratings.
    \6\ Euro NCAP's program can be viewed at https://www.euroncap.com/en/ratings-rewards/.
    \7\ The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's program can be 
viewed at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings.
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    (5) In addition to safety ratings, what other safety information 
would be useful to prominently present on NHTSA's website, mobile 
application, and other venues to new vehicle buyers? How much benefit 
would there be in highlighting specific information to certain new 
vehicle buying demographics (e.g., older drivers, teen drivers, family 
vehicles, urban/rural drivers, budget-conscious)? What types of 
objective criteria should NHTSA consider for this?
    (6) Many new vehicles are equipped with pedestrian crash avoidance 
features. What value do vehicle buyers place on pedestrian crash 
avoidance features when selecting a new vehicle to purchase? Should 
NCAP consider pedestrian crash avoidance features when making program 
changes, and if so, how could a pedestrian component best be 
incorporated (e.g., as part of a rating, or as a separate assessment)?
    (7) The field of vehicle safety is more dynamic now than ever 
before because of technological advances. Today's vehicles undergo more 
frequent design changes; advanced crash avoidance technologies are 
being introduced at a rapid rate; and, software updates to safety 
systems can be made over-the-air, improving their existing abilities 
and even giving them new abilities. Given the accelerating pace of such 
advancements, should NCAP consider alternative ways of collecting test 
data and safety information (such as through self-certification or some 
other means) and how can NCAP collect data/information from vehicle 
manufacturers so that it can continue to convey accurate information to 
consumers in a timely manner (such as via an interactive database)?
    (8) Other NCAPs have produced long-term roadmaps for their 
programs. Euro NCAP published program roadmaps to 2020 \8\ and 2025.\9\ 
What value would NHTSA, vehicle manufacturers, suppliers, and the 
public obtain by developing near-term and long-term roadmaps for U.S. 
NCAP?
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    \8\ https://cdn.euroncap.com/media/16472/euro-ncap-2020-roadmap-rev1-march-2015.pdf.
    \9\ https://www.euroncap.com/en/press-media/press-releases/euro-ncap-launches-road-map-2025-in-pursuit-of-vision-zero/.
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B. Rating System

    (9) What types of ratings are most useful to vehicle manufacturers 
for communicating safety information to consumers? Are star ratings 
still the best way to promote meaningful safety information? Are there 
alternatives that should be considered (e.g., awards, numerical or 
percentage rankings, performance classifications (good vs. poor), half 
stars)? What are the advantages and disadvantages of these approaches?
    (10) For a single, overall rating system covering many areas of 
safety (such as a 5-star rating), how can NHTSA apportion the testing 
and criteria to ensure that individual aspects of the rating will be 
properly weighted and balanced? What other strategies (e.g., half 
stars, demerits, modifiers) should NHTSA consider for a single, overall 
rating system?

C. Crash Avoidance

    (11) The FAST Act requires that crash avoidance information be 
presented next to crashworthiness information on the Monroney 
label.\10\ (Implementation of this requirement will be the subject of a 
separate notice and comment proceeding). What approach should NHTSA 
consider in fulfilling this requirement that will be most helpful to 
consumers? Should NHTSA consider a rating (i.e., stars), a list of 
technologies, an award, or another approach? What strategy can offer 
flexibility if new changes to the crash avoidance information is 
warranted?
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    \10\ Sec. Sec.  24321-22, Public Law 114-94.
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    (12) How can future crash avoidance aspects of NCAP complement 
other vehicle safety consumer information programs in the U.S.?
    (13) Consumers are currently presented with a variety of advanced 
technology features on different vehicle models. Some are for 
convenience and some are designed for safety. Currently, a new advanced 
technology must meet four prerequisites to be added to NCAP. These 
include: (1) There is a known safety need, (2) vehicle and equipment 
designs that mitigate the safety need exist, or are available as a 
prototype, (3) a safety benefit can be estimated based on the 
anticipated performance of the existing or prototype design, and (4) a 
performance-based, objective test procedure can be developed to measure 
the ability of the technology to mitigate the safety issue.\11\ How can 
NHTSA improve upon these strategies when determining which advanced 
technology features are appropriate for inclusion in NCAP? Should NHTSA 
also consider other factors (e.g., effectiveness, fleet penetration, 
path to automation, consumer acceptance, cost)?
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    \11\ 78 FR 20599 (April 5, 2013).
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    (14) NHTSA has been engaging the public on ways to safely integrate 
Automated Driving Systems on our nation's roads. What should NCAP's 
role be in supporting the safe integration of Advanced Driver 
Assistance Systems \12\ that may lay the groundwork for Automated 
Driving Systems? Which crash avoidance elements, or aspects of 
automation, should NHTSA include in NCAP, and how could these be best 
evaluated (e.g., by assessing the performance of a specific technology 
or the crash avoidance system during a crash event)?
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    \12\ Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) are systems 
developed to automate/enhance vehicle systems for safety and for 
better driving. For example, the vehicle can help the human driver 
steer and/or brake, though the human driver must pay full attention 
at all times and perform the rest of the driving task.
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    (15) How should NHTSA's assessment of crash avoidance technology be 
combined with crashworthiness? If they are communicated in the same 
way, should there be an overall measure, or separate measures for 
crashworthiness and crash avoidance? If separate measures are 
preferred, should the measures be of the same type (e.g., only ratings 
or only awards, etc.), or should the measures be a combination of 
different types (e.g., ratings and awards, etc.)? Are there other 
strategies NHTSA

[[Page 38204]]

should consider, and what are their advantages and disadvantages?
    (16) Currently, many crash avoidance technologies are sold as 
optional equipment on vehicles, and a variety of different advanced 
technology features may be available on different trim levels. How can 
NCAP best communicate whether crash avoidance technologies are standard 
vs. optional on a vehicle model or trim level to ensure consumers are 
given accurate information on the safety of the vehicle they are 
purchasing? How should equipment availability affect the ratings of 
vehicles? What metric should NHTSA use to determine when it is 
appropriate to remove an advanced technology from NCAP (e.g., replace a 
technology once it reaches a high level of fleet penetration and 
replace it with a technology with a low level of penetration)?

D. Crashworthiness

    (17) What are the opportunities for crashworthiness safety 
improvement? How should NHTSA approach consideration of new tests, test 
protocols or test devices, new injury criteria, risk curves, or 
additional occupants to be more reflective of real-world crashes? Could 
meaningful changes to injury criteria and risk curves be made to the 
current crash test dummies in the existing test configurations?
    (18) Should NHTSA expand assessments beyond frontal and side crash 
testing? If so, how? For example, should NHTSA consider inclusion of 
other strategies, such as credit for enhanced seat belt reminders, or 
other technologies?
    (19) How can the crashworthiness aspects of NCAP complement other 
vehicle safety consumer information programs in the U.S.? For example, 
are the crash modes, crash test dummies and injury criteria used in 
NCAP complementary to those used by the IIHS? Do they strike the right 
balance for the frontal and side impact crash configurations?
    (20) Most new vehicles rated by NCAP are currently receiving 4- or 
5-star ratings. These star ratings are based on how a vehicle's risk of 
injury reflected in NCAP tests compares to a baseline injury risk for 
all crash types that was derived from NHTSA crash data for MY 2007 and 
2008 vehicles. In its July 11, 2008, Federal Register notice announcing 
enhancements to NCAP, NHTSA indicated that it would periodically review 
the crash performance of the vehicle fleet, as reflected by then-
current NCAP test data.\13\ However, NHTSA has not conducted any formal 
reviews or baseline risk adjustments to date. Should NHTSA now consider 
adjusting the baseline risks used in the ratings calculations to 
reflect the crash test data from today's vehicles? Or, would there be a 
better approach to update the crashworthiness program to better 
differentiate performance among the vehicle fleet (e.g., new tests, 
dummies, injury criteria, etc.)?
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    \13\ 78 FR 20603.
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    (21) How frequently should NCAP change crashworthiness test 
requirements and/or update rating requirements to stay relevant with 
each new model year vehicle fleet? What effect would year-to-year 
changes have on (a) the credibility and understandability of 
information provided to consumers and (b) the manufacturers?

E. Meeting Agenda

8-9 a.m. Arrival/Check-in through security
9-9:10 a.m. Welcome remarks from NHTSA
9:10-11:10 a.m. Speakers on consumer information
11:10 a.m.-12:10 p.m. Speakers on rating system
12:10-1:15 p.m. Lunch (not provided)
1:15-3:15 p.m. Speakers on crash avoidance
3:15-4:15 p.m. Speakers on crashworthiness
4:15-4:50 p.m. Speakers on other topics
4:50-5 p.m. Closing remarks from NHTSA

    Under authority delegated in 49 CFR 1.95 and 501.5.

    Issued in Washington, DC on: July 27, 2018.
Heidi R. King,
Deputy Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2018-16653 Filed 8-2-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-59-P