FCA US, LLC, Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance, 12059-12062 [2020-04106]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 40 / Friday, February 28, 2020 / Notices as MARAD–2020–0040 at http:// www.regulations.gov. Interested parties may comment on the effect this action may have on U.S. vessel builders or businesses in the U.S. that use U.S.-flag vessels. If MARAD determines, in accordance with 46 U.S.C. 12121 and MARAD’s regulations at 46 CFR part 388, that the issuance of the waiver will have an unduly adverse effect on a U.S.vessel builder or a business that uses U.S.-flag vessels in that business, a waiver will not be granted. Comments should refer to the vessel name, state the commenter’s interest in the waiver application, and address the waiver criteria given in section 388.4 of MARAD’s regulations at 46 CFR part 388. Public Participation How do I submit comments? Please submit your comments, including the attachments, following the instructions provided under the above heading entitled ADDRESSES. Be advised that it may take a few hours or even days for your comment to be reflected on the docket. In addition, your comments must be written in English. We encourage you to provide concise comments and you may attach additional documents as necessary. There is no limit on the length of the attachments. Where do I go to read public comments, and find supporting information? Go to the docket online at http:// www.regulations.gov., keyword search MARAD–2020–0040 or visit the Docket Management Facility (see ADDRESSES for hours of operation). We recommend that you periodically check the Docket for new submissions and supporting material. Will my comments be made available to the public? Yes. Be aware that your entire comment, including your personal identifying information, will be made publicly available. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES If you wish to submit comments 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 Department of Transportation, Maritime Administration, Office of Legislation and Regulations, MAR–225, W24–220, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. Include a cover letter setting forth with specificity the basis for any such claim and, if possible, 17:27 Feb 27, 2020 Jkt 250001 Privacy Act In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 553(c), DOT solicits comments from the public to better inform its rulemaking process. DOT posts these comments, without edit, to www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice, DOT/ALL–14 FDMS, accessible through www.dot.gov/privacy. 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. If you wish to provide comments containing proprietary or confidential information, please contact the agency for alternate submission instructions. (Authority: 49 CFR 1.93(a), 46 U.S.C. 55103, 46 U.S.C. 12121) * * * * * Dated: February 24, 2020. By Order of the Maritime Administrator. T. Mitchell Hudson, Jr., Secretary, Maritime Administration. [FR Doc. 2020–04050 Filed 2–27–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–81–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [Docket No. NHTSA–2019–0020; Notice 1] FCA US, LLC, Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Receipt of petition. AGENCY: FCA US, LLC, (f/k/a Chrysler Group, LLC) ‘‘FCA US,’’ has determined that certain Mopar headlamp assemblies sold as aftermarket equipment and installed as original equipment in certain model year (MY) 2017–2018 Dodge Journey motor vehicles do not fully comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 108, Lamps, Reflective Devices, and Associated Equipment. FCA US filed a noncompliance report for the replacement equipment dated March 14, 2019, and later amended it on April 9, 2019. FCA US also filed a noncompliance report for the associated vehicles dated March 14, 2019, later amended it on April 9, 2019, and April SUMMARY: May I submit comments confidentially? VerDate Sep<11>2014 a summary of your submission that can be made available to the public. PO 00000 Frm 00114 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 12059 25, 2019. FCA US subsequently petitioned NHTSA on April 5, 2019, and filed a supplemental petition on May 14, 2019, for a decision that the subject noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. This document announces receipt of FCA US’s petition. DATES: The closing date for comments on the petition is February 28, 2020. ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written data, views, and arguments on this petition. Comments must refer to the docket number cited in the title of this notice and may be submitted by any of the following methods: • Mail: Send comments by mail addressed to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M– 30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. • Hand Delivery: Deliver comments by hand to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M– 30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. The Docket Section is open on weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. except for Federal Holidays. • Electronically: Submit comments electronically by logging onto the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) website at https:// www.regulations.gov/. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. • Comments may also be faxed to (202) 493–2251. Comments must be written in the English language, and be no greater than 15 pages in length, although there is no limit to the length of necessary attachments to the comments. If comments are submitted in hard copy form, please ensure that two copies are provided. If you wish to receive confirmation that comments you have submitted by mail were received, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard with the comments. Note that all comments received will be posted without change to https:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. All comments and supporting materials received before the close of business on the closing date indicated above will be filed in the docket and will be considered. All comments and supporting materials received after the closing date will also be filed and will be considered to the fullest extent possible. When the petition is granted or denied, notice of the decision will also be published in the Federal Register E:\FR\FM\28FEN1.SGM 28FEN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES 12060 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 40 / Friday, February 28, 2020 / Notices pursuant to the authority indicated at the end of this notice. All comments, background documentation, and supporting materials submitted to the docket may be viewed by anyone at the address and times given above. The documents may also be viewed on the internet at https:// www.regulations.gov by following the online instructions for accessing the dockets. The docket ID number for this petition is shown in the heading of this notice. DOT’s complete Privacy Act Statement is available for review in a Federal Register notice published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477–78). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Overview: FCA US has determined that certain MY 2017–2018 Dodge Journey motor vehicles and replacement Dodge Journey headlamp assemblies do not fully comply with paragraph S8.1.11 of FMVSS No. 108, Lamps, Reflective Devices, and Associated Equipment (49 CFR 571.108). FCA US filed a noncompliance report for the replacement equipment dated March 14, 2019, and later amended it on April 9, 2019. FCA US also filed a noncompliance report for the associated vehicles dated March 14, 2019, later amended it on April 9, 2019, and April 25, 2019, pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, Defect and Noncompliance Responsibility and Reports. FCA US subsequently petitioned NHTSA on April 5, 2019, and filed a supplemental petition on May 14, 2019, for an exemption from the notification and remedy requirements of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 301 on the basis that this noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety, pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) and 49 CFR part 556, Exemption for Inconsequential Defect or Noncompliance. This notice of receipt, of FCA US’s petition, is published under 49 U.S.C. 30118 and 30120 and does not represent any agency decision or other exercises of judgment concerning the merits of the petition. II. Equipment and Vehicles Involved: Approximately 16,604 Mopar headlamp assemblies sold as aftermarket equipment, manufactured between August 2, 2017, and July 6, 2018, are potentially involved. Approximately 84,908 MY 2017–2018 Dodge Journey motor vehicles, manufactured between August 2, 2017, and July 6, 2018, are potentially involved. III. Noncompliance: FCA US explains that the noncompliance is that the subject headlamp assemblies, sold as aftermarket equipment and equipped in VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:27 Feb 27, 2020 Jkt 250001 certain MY 2017–2018 Dodge Journey motor vehicles contain a front amber side reflex reflector that does not meet the photometric requirements specified in paragraph S8.1.11 of FMVSS No. 108. Specifically, the reflex reflector, in the subject headlamp assemblies, do not meet the minimum photometry requirements at the observation angle of 0.2 degrees. IV. Rule Requirements: Paragraph S8.1.11 of FMVSS No. 108 includes the requirements relevant to this petition. Each reflex reflector must be designed to conform to the photometry requirements of Table XVI–a, when tested according to the procedure in paragraph S14.2.3 of FMVSS No. 108, for the reflex reflector color. V. Summary of FCA US’s Petition: The following views and arguments presented in this section, V. Summary of FCA US’s petition, are the views and arguments provided by FCA US. They have not been evaluated by the Agency and do not reflect the views of the Agency. FCA US described the subject noncompliance and stated that the noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. FCA US submitted the following views and arguments in support of the petition: A. For the purposes of FMVSS No. 108, the primary function of a reflex reflector is to prevent crashes by permitting early detection of an unlighted motor vehicle at an intersection or when parked on or by the side of the road. Because reflex reflectors are not independent light sources, their performance is wholly reliant upon the amount of illumination they receive from vehicle headlamps. Ideally, a reflex reflector would achieve its highest performance when the reflex reflector is mounted at the height of another vehicle’s lower beam ‘hot spot.’ Due to the significant range of permissible mounting heights for headlamps (between 22 and 54 inches), achieving such ideal performance is impractical. FMVSS No. 108, which establishes minimum performance standards for reflex reflectors, specifies a range of acceptable reflector mounting heights (not less than 15 inches or more than 60 inches) to ensure that reflex reflectors are exposed to enough illumination to be effective. The standard also provides allowances in the fore and aft location of reflex reflectors (e.g., as far to the front as practicable). This flexibility provides vehicle manufacturers with sufficient flexibility in mounting locations to ensure that the mounting height remains in the appropriate range to ensure adequate reflex reflector performance PO 00000 Frm 00115 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 relative to headlamps that would illuminate them.’’ Decision on Petition for Inconsequential Noncompliance, 82 FR 24204, May 25, 2017. (emphasis added by FCA US). B. For reasons discussed below, and supported by a demonstration project conducted by FCA US, FCA US submits that the reflex reflectors on the subject vehicles perform adequately to meet the safety purpose of the standard because they permit the early detection of an unlighted motor vehicle at an intersection or when parked, notwithstanding their deviation from certain photometric requirements. 1. FCA US believes that the failure of these reflex reflectors to meet the photometric requirements does not reduce their effectiveness in providing the necessary visibility for oncoming vehicles and that the difference between the reflectivity provided by a compliant reflector is not distinguishable from the reflectivity provided by a noncompliant reflector. To demonstrate this point, FCA US conducted an informal evaluation comparing the performance of a Dodge Journey equipped with a known compliant reflex reflector with a Dodge Journey equipped with a known noncompliant reflex reflector. This evaluation was conducted with two Dodge Journey vehicles parked front end to front end across the road surface, 100 feet (30.5 meters) away from vehicles that used their headlamps as a source of illumination for observers to evaluate the luminous intensity of each front side reflex reflector. The 100 feet (30.5 meters) distance was chosen because that is the distance specified in FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 for testing reflex reflectors using a goniometer in a photometric laboratory. 2. A 2019 Jeep Cherokee with LED projector headlamps and a 2019 Ram 1500 Pickup Truck with LED reflector headlamps were used as sources of illumination. Sixteen volunteer evaluators (who were FCA US or FCA Canada, Inc., employees) stood immediately in front of, and at the centerline of, the vehicles whose headlamps were being used as the source of illumination. Evaluators were asked if they were able to distinguish a difference between the compliant and noncompliant reflex reflectors. None of the evaluators were able to distinguish any luminous intensity differences of the light being reflected in any of the scenarios. 3. The reflex reflectors in the subject vehicles were mounted 32.31 to 32.62 inches from the ground to the center of the devices. The headlamp mounting heights of the two vehicles used as sources of illumination in the E:\FR\FM\28FEN1.SGM 28FEN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 40 / Friday, February 28, 2020 / Notices evaluation are 34.89 inches for the Jeep Cherokee and 39.59 inches for the Ram 1500. FCA US believes that these vehicles cover the range of typical headlamp mounting heights for vehicles on the road today. Nevertheless, FCA US is undertaking another round of evaluations using a vehicle with a lower headlamp mounting height as a source of illumination to try to demonstrate a ‘‘worst-case’’ scenario. FCA US expects to supplement this petition with the results of that further evaluation in the near future. (See Supplement to FCA US Petition, dated May 14, 2019.) FCA’s Evaluation: A subjective evaluation was conducted on a Dodge Journey with a headlamp assembly containing a front side reflex reflector known not to meet FMVSS No. 108/ CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements compared to a Dodge Journey with a headlamp assembly containing a front side reflex reflector known to meet FMVSS No. 108/CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements. This evaluation was conducted at 6:30 a.m., Friday, March 22, 2019, in the Lighting Tunnel at the FCA Canada Automotive Research and Development Center in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. Sixteen FCA US employees, with various job responsibilities, participated in this subjective evaluation. This evaluation was conducted with two Dodge Journey vehicles parked front end to front end across the road surface, 100 feet (30.5 meters) away from vehicles that used their headlamps as a source of illumination for observers to evaluate the luminous intensity of each front side reflex reflector. The 100 feet (30.5 meters) distance was chosen because that is the distance that is specified in FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 for testing reflex reflectors using a goniometer in a photometric laboratory. A black Dodge Journey was parked across the left side of the pavement with a passenger-side headlamp containing a front side reflex reflector known to not meet FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements. A red Dodge Journey was parked across the right side of the pavement with a driverside headlamp containing a front side reflex reflector known to meet FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements. A 2019 Jeep Cherokee with LED projector headlamps and a 2019 Ram 1500 Pickup Truck with LED reflector headlamps were used as sources of illumination. Evaluators stood immediately in front of, and at the centerline of, the vehicles whose headlamps were being used as the source of illumination. Evaluators were VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:27 Feb 27, 2020 Jkt 250001 asked if they were able to distinguish a difference between the reflex reflectors. Five different scenarios were subjectively evaluated as described below: Subjective Evaluation A: Jeep Cherokee Low beam Headlamps used as light source at center of the pavement shining towards the two Dodge Journey Vehicles. Subjective Evaluation B: Jeep Cherokee High beam Headlamps used as light source at center of the pavement shining towards the two Dodge Journey Vehicles. Subjective Evaluation C: Jeep Cherokee Low beam Headlamps used as light source at the left edge of pavement (146 inches to the left of the centerline of pavement) shining towards the two Dodge Journey vehicles. Subjective Evaluation D: Jeep Cherokee Low beam Headlamps used as light source at the right edge of pavement (150 inches to the right of the centerline of pavement) shining towards the two Dodge Journey vehicles. Subjective Evaluation E: Ram 1500 Pickup Truck Low beam Headlamps used as light source at the center of the pavement shining towards the two Dodge Journey vehicles. Findings: None of the sixteen evaluators were able to distinguish any luminous intensity differences of the light being reflected to their eyes from the Dodge Journey front side reflex reflectors that were being illuminated by the headlamps of the source vehicles in the five subjective evaluations that were conducted. FCA US submitted a supplemental petition dated May 14, 2019, and provided the following supplemental information: Background: Reflex reflectors are devices used on vehicles to give an indication to approaching drivers using reflected light from the lamps of the approaching vehicle. A subjective evaluation of the ‘‘on-vehicle’’ reflective performance of Dodge Journey Front Side Reflex Reflectors was conducted to determine if human eyes are capable of distinguishing between reflex reflectors known to not meet, and known to meet, the photometric requirements of FMVSS 108 and CMVSS 108. The original subjective evaluation was conducted on March 22, 2019, in the Lighting Tunnel at the FCA Canada Automotive Research and Development Center in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, with headlamps of two different vehicles used as sources of illumination. The first vehicle used as a source of illumination was a Jeep Cherokee that had a headlamp mounting height of 34.89 inches above ground (as measured PO 00000 Frm 00116 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 12061 to the center of the device). The second vehicle used as a source of illumination was a Ram 1500 Pickup Truck that had a headlamp mounting height of 39.59 inches above ground (as measured to the center of the device). This follow-up evaluation was conducted using an Alfa Romeo Giulia that had a headlamp mounting height of 26.50 inches above ground (as measured to the center of the device). This vehicle was chosen to demonstrate a scenario of a vehicle with low headlamp mounting heights being used as the source of illumination. (Please note the lettering is sequential to those used in the previous March 22, 2019 report.) FCA’s Follow-up Evaluation: A subjective evaluation was conducted on a Dodge Journey with a headlamp assembly containing a front side reflex reflector known not to meet FMVSS No. 108/CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements compared to a Dodge Journey with a headlamp assembly containing a front side reflex reflector known to meet FMVSS No. 108/CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements. This evaluation was conducted at 9:00 a.m., Friday, April 26, 2019, in the Lighting Tunnel at the FCA Canada Automotive Research and Development Center in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. Eight FCA US employees, with various job responsibilities, participated in this subjective evaluation. This evaluation was conducted with two Dodge Journey vehicles parked front end to front end across the road surface, 100 feet (30.5 meters) away from an Alfa Romeo Giulia vehicle that used its headlamps as a source of illumination for observers to evaluate the luminous intensity of each front side reflex reflector. The 100 feet (30.5 meters) distance was chosen because that is the distance that is specified in FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 for testing reflex reflectors using a goniometer in a photometric laboratory. A red Dodge Journey was parked across the left side of the pavement with a passenger-side headlamp containing a front side reflex reflector known to not meet FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements. Another red Dodge Journey was parked across the right side of the pavement with a driver-side headlamp containing a front side reflex reflector known to meet FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements. These were the same headlamp assemblies and side reflex reflectors that were used for the previous subjective evaluation that occurred on March 22, 2019. A 2019 Alfa Romeo Giulia with BiXenon Projector Headlamps (25 watt D5S light sources) was used as the E:\FR\FM\28FEN1.SGM 28FEN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES 12062 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 40 / Friday, February 28, 2020 / Notices source of illumination. Evaluators stood immediately in front of, and at the centerline of, the Alfa Romeo Giulia vehicle while its headlamps were being used as the source of illumination. Evaluators were asked if they were able to distinguish a difference between the reflex reflectors. Four different scenarios were subjectively evaluated as described below: Subjective Evaluation F: Alfa Romeo Giulia Low Beam Headlamps used as a light source at the center of the pavement shining towards the two Dodge Journey vehicles. Subjective Evaluation G: Alfa Romeo Giulia High Beam Headlamps used as a light source at the center of the pavement shining towards the two Dodge Journey vehicles. Subjective Evaluation H: Alfa Romeo Giulia Low Beam Headlamps used as a light source at the left edge of pavement (146 inches to the left of the centerline of pavement) shining towards the two Dodge Journey vehicles. Subjective Evaluation J: Alfa Romeo Giulia Low Beam Headlamps used as a light source at the right edge of pavement (150 inches to the right of the centerline of pavement) shining towards the two Dodge Journey vehicles. Findings: None of the eight evaluators were able to distinguish any luminous intensity differences of the light being reflected to their eyes from the Dodge Journey front side reflex reflectors that were being illuminated by the headlamps of the Alfa Romeo Giulia in the four subjective evaluations that were conducted. FCA US concluded by expressing its belief that the subject noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety, and that its petition to be exempted from providing notification of the noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118, and a remedy for the noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120, should be granted. NHTSA notes that the statutory provisions (49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h)) that permit manufacturers to file petitions for a determination of inconsequentiality allow NHTSA to exempt manufacturers only from the duties found in sections 30118 and 30120, respectively, to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a defect or noncompliance and to remedy the defect or noncompliance. Therefore, any decision on this petition only applies to the subject equipment and vehicles that FCA US no longer controlled at the time it determined that the noncompliance existed. However, any decision on this petition does not relieve equipment and vehicle distributors and dealers of the VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:27 Feb 27, 2020 Jkt 250001 prohibitions on the sale, offer for sale, or introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate commerce of the noncompliant equipment and vehicles under their control after FCA US notified them that the subject noncompliance existed. Authority: (49 U.S.C. 30118, 30120: Delegations of authority at 49 CFR 1.95 and 501.8) Otto G. Matheke III, Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance. [FR Doc. 2020–04106 Filed 2–27–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–59–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Office of the Secretary [Docket No. DOT–OST–2020–0023] Regional Infrastructure Accelerator Program Build America Bureau, U.S. Department of Transportation. ACTION: Request for Information (RFI). AGENCY: The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST),1 enacted in December 2015, authorized the establishment of a Regional Infrastructure Accelerator Demonstration Program (the Program) to assist entities in developing improved infrastructure priorities and financing strategies for the accelerated development of a project that is eligible for funding under the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) Program under Chapter 6 of Title 23, United States Code. The Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 enacted on December 20, 2019 appropriated $5 million for this Program.2 The Build America Bureau (the Bureau) of the U.S. Department of Transportation (Department or DOT) is seeking input from interested parties with the intent to gather as much information as possible before implementing the Program. The Bureau is issuing this RFI on the most effective, transparent and expedient way to implement the Program. Information gleaned from this effort will help inform the development of the Program and approach to designating and funding Regional Infrastructure Accelerators that will: (1) Serve a defined geographic area; and (2) act as a resource to qualified entities in the geographic area in accordance with Section 1441 of the FAST Act. SUMMARY: 1 Public Law 114–94, 129 Stat. 1312, 1435. Law 116–94, div. H, tit. I, H.R. 1865 at 413 (as enrolled December 20, 2019). Responses to this RFI are due no later than 11:59 p.m. 30 days after publication of this notice. The Bureau may hold an RFI information session(s) before the due date. ADDRESSES: All responses MUST be submitted electronically via email to the Bureau at ria@dot.gov. Questions regarding the RFI may be submitted to the Bureau at ria@dot.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For further information regarding this RFI please contact Sam Beydoun via email at sam.beydoun@dot.gov or via telephone at 202–366–2300. A TDD is available at 202–366–3993. DATES: Background The Bureau is responsible for driving transportation infrastructure development projects in the United States through innovative financing programs. Its mission is to provide access to the Bureau’s credit programs in a streamlined, expedient and transparent manner. In accomplishing its mission, the Bureau also provides technical assistance and encourages innovative best practices in project planning, financing, delivery, and monitoring. The Bureau draws upon the full resources of the Department of Transportation to best utilize the expertise of the Department’s Operating Administrations while promoting a culture of innovation and customer service. The Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 1998 3 established a Federal credit program (TIFIA Program) for eligible transportation projects under which the Department may provide three forms of credit assistance—secured (direct) loans, loan guarantees, and standby lines of credit. The TIFIA Program’s fundamental goal is to leverage federal funds by attracting substantial private and other non-Federal co-investment to support critical improvements to the Nation’s surface transportation system. Eligible recipients of TIFIA credit assistance include State departments of transportation, transit operators, special authorities, local governments and private entities. Demonstration Program Section 1441 of the FAST Act (https:// www.transportation.gov/buildamerica/ programs-and-services/regionalinfrastructure-accelerators) authorizes the Program to assist in developing improved infrastructure priorities and financing strategies for the accelerated development of eligible projects. It is envisioned that Regional Infrastructure 2 Public PO 00000 Frm 00117 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 3 Codified E:\FR\FM\28FEN1.SGM as 23 U.S.C. 601–609. 28FEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 40 (Friday, February 28, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 12059-12062]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-04106]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2019-0020; Notice 1]


FCA US, LLC, Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential 
Noncompliance

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

ACTION: Receipt of petition.

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

SUMMARY: FCA US, LLC, (f/k/a Chrysler Group, LLC) ``FCA US,'' has 
determined that certain Mopar headlamp assemblies sold as aftermarket 
equipment and installed as original equipment in certain model year 
(MY) 2017-2018 Dodge Journey motor vehicles do not fully comply with 
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 108, Lamps, 
Reflective Devices, and Associated Equipment. FCA US filed a 
noncompliance report for the replacement equipment dated March 14, 
2019, and later amended it on April 9, 2019. FCA US also filed a 
noncompliance report for the associated vehicles dated March 14, 2019, 
later amended it on April 9, 2019, and April 25, 2019. FCA US 
subsequently petitioned NHTSA on April 5, 2019, and filed a 
supplemental petition on May 14, 2019, for a decision that the subject 
noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. 
This document announces receipt of FCA US's petition.

DATES: The closing date for comments on the petition is February 28, 
2020.

ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written data, 
views, and arguments on this petition. Comments must refer to the 
docket number cited in the title of this notice and may be submitted by 
any of the following methods:
     Mail: Send comments by mail addressed to the U.S. 
Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building 
Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 
20590.
     Hand Delivery: Deliver comments by hand to the U.S. 
Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building 
Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 
20590. The Docket Section is open on weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 
except for Federal Holidays.
     Electronically: Submit comments electronically by logging 
onto the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) website at https://www.regulations.gov/. Follow the online instructions for submitting 
comments.
     Comments may also be faxed to (202) 493-2251.
    Comments must be written in the English language, and be no greater 
than 15 pages in length, although there is no limit to the length of 
necessary attachments to the comments. If comments are submitted in 
hard copy form, please ensure that two copies are provided. If you wish 
to receive confirmation that comments you have submitted by mail were 
received, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard with the 
comments. Note that all comments received will be posted without change 
to https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information 
provided.
    All comments and supporting materials received before the close of 
business on the closing date indicated above will be filed in the 
docket and will be considered. All comments and supporting materials 
received after the closing date will also be filed and will be 
considered to the fullest extent possible.
    When the petition is granted or denied, notice of the decision will 
also be published in the Federal Register

[[Page 12060]]

pursuant to the authority indicated at the end of this notice.
    All comments, background documentation, and supporting materials 
submitted to the docket may be viewed by anyone at the address and 
times given above. The documents may also be viewed on the internet at 
https://www.regulations.gov by following the online instructions for 
accessing the dockets. The docket ID number for this petition is shown 
in the heading of this notice.
    DOT's complete Privacy Act Statement is available for review in a 
Federal Register notice published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    I. Overview: FCA US has determined that certain MY 2017-2018 Dodge 
Journey motor vehicles and replacement Dodge Journey headlamp 
assemblies do not fully comply with paragraph S8.1.11 of FMVSS No. 108, 
Lamps, Reflective Devices, and Associated Equipment (49 CFR 571.108). 
FCA US filed a noncompliance report for the replacement equipment dated 
March 14, 2019, and later amended it on April 9, 2019. FCA US also 
filed a noncompliance report for the associated vehicles dated March 
14, 2019, later amended it on April 9, 2019, and April 25, 2019, 
pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, Defect and Noncompliance Responsibility 
and Reports. FCA US subsequently petitioned NHTSA on April 5, 2019, and 
filed a supplemental petition on May 14, 2019, for an exemption from 
the notification and remedy requirements of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 301 on 
the basis that this noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to 
motor vehicle safety, pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) and 
49 CFR part 556, Exemption for Inconsequential Defect or Noncompliance.
    This notice of receipt, of FCA US's petition, is published under 49 
U.S.C. 30118 and 30120 and does not represent any agency decision or 
other exercises of judgment concerning the merits of the petition.
    II. Equipment and Vehicles Involved: Approximately 16,604 Mopar 
headlamp assemblies sold as aftermarket equipment, manufactured between 
August 2, 2017, and July 6, 2018, are potentially involved. 
Approximately 84,908 MY 2017-2018 Dodge Journey motor vehicles, 
manufactured between August 2, 2017, and July 6, 2018, are potentially 
involved.
    III. Noncompliance: FCA US explains that the noncompliance is that 
the subject headlamp assemblies, sold as aftermarket equipment and 
equipped in certain MY 2017-2018 Dodge Journey motor vehicles contain a 
front amber side reflex reflector that does not meet the photometric 
requirements specified in paragraph S8.1.11 of FMVSS No. 108. 
Specifically, the reflex reflector, in the subject headlamp assemblies, 
do not meet the minimum photometry requirements at the observation 
angle of 0.2 degrees.
    IV. Rule Requirements: Paragraph S8.1.11 of FMVSS No. 108 includes 
the requirements relevant to this petition. Each reflex reflector must 
be designed to conform to the photometry requirements of Table XVI-a, 
when tested according to the procedure in paragraph S14.2.3 of FMVSS 
No. 108, for the reflex reflector color.
    V. Summary of FCA US's Petition:
    The following views and arguments presented in this section, V. 
Summary of FCA US's petition, are the views and arguments provided by 
FCA US. They have not been evaluated by the Agency and do not reflect 
the views of the Agency.
    FCA US described the subject noncompliance and stated that the 
noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. 
FCA US submitted the following views and arguments in support of the 
petition:
    A. For the purposes of FMVSS No. 108, the primary function of a 
reflex reflector is to prevent crashes by permitting early detection of 
an unlighted motor vehicle at an intersection or when parked on or by 
the side of the road. Because reflex reflectors are not independent 
light sources, their performance is wholly reliant upon the amount of 
illumination they receive from vehicle headlamps. Ideally, a reflex 
reflector would achieve its highest performance when the reflex 
reflector is mounted at the height of another vehicle's lower beam `hot 
spot.' Due to the significant range of permissible mounting heights for 
headlamps (between 22 and 54 inches), achieving such ideal performance 
is impractical. FMVSS No. 108, which establishes minimum performance 
standards for reflex reflectors, specifies a range of acceptable 
reflector mounting heights (not less than 15 inches or more than 60 
inches) to ensure that reflex reflectors are exposed to enough 
illumination to be effective. The standard also provides allowances in 
the fore and aft location of reflex reflectors (e.g., as far to the 
front as practicable). This flexibility provides vehicle manufacturers 
with sufficient flexibility in mounting locations to ensure that the 
mounting height remains in the appropriate range to ensure adequate 
reflex reflector performance relative to headlamps that would 
illuminate them.'' Decision on Petition for Inconsequential 
Noncompliance, 82 FR 24204, May 25, 2017. (emphasis added by FCA US).
    B. For reasons discussed below, and supported by a demonstration 
project conducted by FCA US, FCA US submits that the reflex reflectors 
on the subject vehicles perform adequately to meet the safety purpose 
of the standard because they permit the early detection of an unlighted 
motor vehicle at an intersection or when parked, notwithstanding their 
deviation from certain photometric requirements.
    1. FCA US believes that the failure of these reflex reflectors to 
meet the photometric requirements does not reduce their effectiveness 
in providing the necessary visibility for oncoming vehicles and that 
the difference between the reflectivity provided by a compliant 
reflector is not distinguishable from the reflectivity provided by a 
noncompliant reflector. To demonstrate this point, FCA US conducted an 
informal evaluation comparing the performance of a Dodge Journey 
equipped with a known compliant reflex reflector with a Dodge Journey 
equipped with a known noncompliant reflex reflector. This evaluation 
was conducted with two Dodge Journey vehicles parked front end to front 
end across the road surface, 100 feet (30.5 meters) away from vehicles 
that used their headlamps as a source of illumination for observers to 
evaluate the luminous intensity of each front side reflex reflector. 
The 100 feet (30.5 meters) distance was chosen because that is the 
distance specified in FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 for testing 
reflex reflectors using a goniometer in a photometric laboratory.
    2. A 2019 Jeep Cherokee with LED projector headlamps and a 2019 Ram 
1500 Pickup Truck with LED reflector headlamps were used as sources of 
illumination. Sixteen volunteer evaluators (who were FCA US or FCA 
Canada, Inc., employees) stood immediately in front of, and at the 
centerline of, the vehicles whose headlamps were being used as the 
source of illumination. Evaluators were asked if they were able to 
distinguish a difference between the compliant and noncompliant reflex 
reflectors. None of the evaluators were able to distinguish any 
luminous intensity differences of the light being reflected in any of 
the scenarios.
    3. The reflex reflectors in the subject vehicles were mounted 32.31 
to 32.62 inches from the ground to the center of the devices. The 
headlamp mounting heights of the two vehicles used as sources of 
illumination in the

[[Page 12061]]

evaluation are 34.89 inches for the Jeep Cherokee and 39.59 inches for 
the Ram 1500. FCA US believes that these vehicles cover the range of 
typical headlamp mounting heights for vehicles on the road today. 
Nevertheless, FCA US is undertaking another round of evaluations using 
a vehicle with a lower headlamp mounting height as a source of 
illumination to try to demonstrate a ``worst-case'' scenario. FCA US 
expects to supplement this petition with the results of that further 
evaluation in the near future. (See Supplement to FCA US Petition, 
dated May 14, 2019.)
    FCA's Evaluation: A subjective evaluation was conducted on a Dodge 
Journey with a headlamp assembly containing a front side reflex 
reflector known not to meet FMVSS No. 108/CMVSS No. 108 photometric 
requirements compared to a Dodge Journey with a headlamp assembly 
containing a front side reflex reflector known to meet FMVSS No. 108/
CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements. This evaluation was conducted 
at 6:30 a.m., Friday, March 22, 2019, in the Lighting Tunnel at the FCA 
Canada Automotive Research and Development Center in Windsor, Ontario, 
Canada. Sixteen FCA US employees, with various job responsibilities, 
participated in this subjective evaluation.
    This evaluation was conducted with two Dodge Journey vehicles 
parked front end to front end across the road surface, 100 feet (30.5 
meters) away from vehicles that used their headlamps as a source of 
illumination for observers to evaluate the luminous intensity of each 
front side reflex reflector. The 100 feet (30.5 meters) distance was 
chosen because that is the distance that is specified in FMVSS No. 108 
and CMVSS No. 108 for testing reflex reflectors using a goniometer in a 
photometric laboratory.
    A black Dodge Journey was parked across the left side of the 
pavement with a passenger-side headlamp containing a front side reflex 
reflector known to not meet FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 photometric 
requirements. A red Dodge Journey was parked across the right side of 
the pavement with a driver-side headlamp containing a front side reflex 
reflector known to meet FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 photometric 
requirements.
    A 2019 Jeep Cherokee with LED projector headlamps and a 2019 Ram 
1500 Pickup Truck with LED reflector headlamps were used as sources of 
illumination. Evaluators stood immediately in front of, and at the 
centerline of, the vehicles whose headlamps were being used as the 
source of illumination. Evaluators were asked if they were able to 
distinguish a difference between the reflex reflectors.
    Five different scenarios were subjectively evaluated as described 
below:
    Subjective Evaluation A: Jeep Cherokee Low beam Headlamps used as 
light source at center of the pavement shining towards the two Dodge 
Journey Vehicles.
    Subjective Evaluation B: Jeep Cherokee High beam Headlamps used as 
light source at center of the pavement shining towards the two Dodge 
Journey Vehicles.
    Subjective Evaluation C: Jeep Cherokee Low beam Headlamps used as 
light source at the left edge of pavement (146 inches to the left of 
the centerline of pavement) shining towards the two Dodge Journey 
vehicles.
    Subjective Evaluation D: Jeep Cherokee Low beam Headlamps used as 
light source at the right edge of pavement (150 inches to the right of 
the centerline of pavement) shining towards the two Dodge Journey 
vehicles.
    Subjective Evaluation E: Ram 1500 Pickup Truck Low beam Headlamps 
used as light source at the center of the pavement shining towards the 
two Dodge Journey vehicles.
    Findings: None of the sixteen evaluators were able to distinguish 
any luminous intensity differences of the light being reflected to 
their eyes from the Dodge Journey front side reflex reflectors that 
were being illuminated by the headlamps of the source vehicles in the 
five subjective evaluations that were conducted.
    FCA US submitted a supplemental petition dated May 14, 2019, and 
provided the following supplemental information:
    Background: Reflex reflectors are devices used on vehicles to give 
an indication to approaching drivers using reflected light from the 
lamps of the approaching vehicle. A subjective evaluation of the ``on-
vehicle'' reflective performance of Dodge Journey Front Side Reflex 
Reflectors was conducted to determine if human eyes are capable of 
distinguishing between reflex reflectors known to not meet, and known 
to meet, the photometric requirements of FMVSS 108 and CMVSS 108.
    The original subjective evaluation was conducted on March 22, 2019, 
in the Lighting Tunnel at the FCA Canada Automotive Research and 
Development Center in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, with headlamps of two 
different vehicles used as sources of illumination. The first vehicle 
used as a source of illumination was a Jeep Cherokee that had a 
headlamp mounting height of 34.89 inches above ground (as measured to 
the center of the device). The second vehicle used as a source of 
illumination was a Ram 1500 Pickup Truck that had a headlamp mounting 
height of 39.59 inches above ground (as measured to the center of the 
device).
    This follow-up evaluation was conducted using an Alfa Romeo Giulia 
that had a headlamp mounting height of 26.50 inches above ground (as 
measured to the center of the device). This vehicle was chosen to 
demonstrate a scenario of a vehicle with low headlamp mounting heights 
being used as the source of illumination. (Please note the lettering is 
sequential to those used in the previous March 22, 2019 report.)
    FCA's Follow-up Evaluation: A subjective evaluation was conducted 
on a Dodge Journey with a headlamp assembly containing a front side 
reflex reflector known not to meet FMVSS No. 108/CMVSS No. 108 
photometric requirements compared to a Dodge Journey with a headlamp 
assembly containing a front side reflex reflector known to meet FMVSS 
No. 108/CMVSS No. 108 photometric requirements. This evaluation was 
conducted at 9:00 a.m., Friday, April 26, 2019, in the Lighting Tunnel 
at the FCA Canada Automotive Research and Development Center in 
Windsor, Ontario, Canada. Eight FCA US employees, with various job 
responsibilities, participated in this subjective evaluation.
    This evaluation was conducted with two Dodge Journey vehicles 
parked front end to front end across the road surface, 100 feet (30.5 
meters) away from an Alfa Romeo Giulia vehicle that used its headlamps 
as a source of illumination for observers to evaluate the luminous 
intensity of each front side reflex reflector. The 100 feet (30.5 
meters) distance was chosen because that is the distance that is 
specified in FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 for testing reflex 
reflectors using a goniometer in a photometric laboratory.
    A red Dodge Journey was parked across the left side of the pavement 
with a passenger-side headlamp containing a front side reflex reflector 
known to not meet FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 photometric 
requirements. Another red Dodge Journey was parked across the right 
side of the pavement with a driver-side headlamp containing a front 
side reflex reflector known to meet FMVSS No. 108 and CMVSS No. 108 
photometric requirements. These were the same headlamp assemblies and 
side reflex reflectors that were used for the previous subjective 
evaluation that occurred on March 22, 2019.
    A 2019 Alfa Romeo Giulia with Bi-Xenon Projector Headlamps (25 watt 
D5S light sources) was used as the

[[Page 12062]]

source of illumination. Evaluators stood immediately in front of, and 
at the centerline of, the Alfa Romeo Giulia vehicle while its headlamps 
were being used as the source of illumination. Evaluators were asked if 
they were able to distinguish a difference between the reflex 
reflectors.
    Four different scenarios were subjectively evaluated as described 
below:
    Subjective Evaluation F: Alfa Romeo Giulia Low Beam Headlamps used 
as a light source at the center of the pavement shining towards the two 
Dodge Journey vehicles.
    Subjective Evaluation G: Alfa Romeo Giulia High Beam Headlamps used 
as a light source at the center of the pavement shining towards the two 
Dodge Journey vehicles.
    Subjective Evaluation H: Alfa Romeo Giulia Low Beam Headlamps used 
as a light source at the left edge of pavement (146 inches to the left 
of the centerline of pavement) shining towards the two Dodge Journey 
vehicles.
    Subjective Evaluation J: Alfa Romeo Giulia Low Beam Headlamps used 
as a light source at the right edge of pavement (150 inches to the 
right of the centerline of pavement) shining towards the two Dodge 
Journey vehicles.
    Findings: None of the eight evaluators were able to distinguish any 
luminous intensity differences of the light being reflected to their 
eyes from the Dodge Journey front side reflex reflectors that were 
being illuminated by the headlamps of the Alfa Romeo Giulia in the four 
subjective evaluations that were conducted.
    FCA US concluded by expressing its belief that the subject 
noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety, 
and that its petition to be exempted from providing notification of the 
noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118, and a remedy for the 
noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120, should be granted.
    NHTSA notes that the statutory provisions (49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 
30120(h)) that permit manufacturers to file petitions for a 
determination of inconsequentiality allow NHTSA to exempt manufacturers 
only from the duties found in sections 30118 and 30120, respectively, 
to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a defect or noncompliance 
and to remedy the defect or noncompliance. Therefore, any decision on 
this petition only applies to the subject equipment and vehicles that 
FCA US no longer controlled at the time it determined that the 
noncompliance existed. However, any decision on this petition does not 
relieve equipment and vehicle distributors and dealers of the 
prohibitions on the sale, offer for sale, or introduction or delivery 
for introduction into interstate commerce of the noncompliant equipment 
and vehicles under their control after FCA US notified them that the 
subject noncompliance existed.

    Authority: (49 U.S.C. 30118, 30120: Delegations of authority at 
49 CFR 1.95 and 501.8)

Otto G. Matheke III,
Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2020-04106 Filed 2-27-20; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-59-P