Janet Lee

Janet Lee
Photo:Janet Lee, injured by a taxi partition.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Then and Now, What changed?


Is a man who has invested all of his passion and talent in trusting the government, the law  and its’ way of administering the law, for 32 years a fool?
Is it foolish to believe the top government attorney for the USDOT when he says (in 1985)  there are no exceptions, that cruisers and cabs are covered by the law?
Or is it foolish to believe Randy Reid of the USDOT Office of Defect Investigations when he says the opposite?
1985 – “You first asked whether our safety standards apply to auxiliary interior equipment installed in motor vehicles.  The answer is yes. (The law) prohibits the sale or manufacture of new vehicles and equipment which do not meet those standards, establishes civil penalties for non-complying vehicles and equipment, and requires manufacturers to recall and remedy any non-compliances.   A copy of the Act is enclosed for your information. In addition, the Act requires certification of compliance with applicable safety standards.  This requirement applies to manufacturers of equipment, with regard to those items of equipment, and to vehicle manufacturers, with regard to the entire vehicle.  Thus, if auxiliary interior equipment is installed in a vehicle prior to first sale, the equipment manufacturer must certify compliance with any safety standards applicable to the item of equipment, and the vehicle manufacturer must certify that the entire vehicle (including items of equipment) complies with all applicable standards.”  Jeffery Miller USDOT Chief Counsel
2012 – “We appreciate the report you provided. Reports from motorists are a very important source of information for us. Your request for NHTSA to restrain manufacturers from producing and selling what you allege are illegal partitions for police vehicles and taxi cab vehicles does not fall under our jurisdiction.”
The performance of these items of motor vehicle equipment is not related to safety standards in effect at the time of production?
“There are no Federal motor vehicle safety standards for the partitions.”
 “In addition, these vehicles are exempt from many of the safety standards such as side airbags due to their equipment and nature of service.”
 “We recommend you contact the respective State, county, city, and municipal motor vehicle departments that have jurisdiction over these vehicles and equipment for further assistance.”
“Sincerely, Randy Reid, Chief Correspondence Research Division, Office of Defects Investigation Enforcement”
I intend to do just that. If he’s lying, his head should roll.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

No Partition Laws?

On May 2nd, 1012 the Office of Defect and Investigations of the USDOT declared, in conflict with expressed written communication from the Chief Counsel, that taxis and police cruisers are exempt from federal auto safety laws. As far as I know, that is a bold faced lie. No statute was cited by ODI.