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Cracking the Code: The TREAD Act and Reporting to NHTSA Tracks Cracking the Code:


The TREAD Act and Reporting to NHTSA By Emily Reichard, Kinetic Metrics, LLC


The Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability and Documentation (TREAD) Act was enacted in the fall of 2000. Its intention is to increase consumer safety through mandates assigned to the National Highway Traffi c Safety Administration (NHTSA).


Two major components of the TREAD Act are 1) the requirement of manufacturers to report to NHTSA when they conduct a safety recall or other safety-related campaign, and 2) the need to report information related to defects, especially in cases of injury or death related to the use of products (also referred to as “early warning reporting”(EWR)).


There are many defi nitions, exceptions and interpretations found in the fi nal rule for this regulation. Requirements for


manufacturers may differ depending on what type and how much of a product they produce in a calendar year. The following is a breakdown of what may be required of a trailer manufacturer.


All notices, bulletins, customer satisfaction campaigns, consumer advisories, and other communications must be submitted, regardless of the number of products produced. In the automotive world, these are typically referred to as Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs). So whether you produce one product, or one thousand, if a TSB is created it must be submitted to NHTSA.


All manufacturers must submit quarterly reports with regard to any incident involving a death. So again, no matter the number of products your company makes, if there is a death alleged due to a failure of or during use of the product, it must be reported.


Figure 1: Civil penalties issued by NHTSA. 28 November/December 2015 www.NATM.com


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