New York, New York -- In the aftermath of the tragedy that claimed 20 lives, U.S. Senate candidate Chele Farley (R, C, Reform) promised to pursue greater federal oversight of the limousine industry. The crash follows in the wake of a 2015 crash that killed four women who were touring vineyards on Long Island.
As the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) continues to investigate the worst U.S. transportation event since 2009, Farley promised action if elected.
“The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration oversees the regulation of the limousine industry and it is crystal clear much work needs to be done,” said Farley.
Farley continued, “As the NTSB investigation moves forward, it is critical that we understand the factors that contributed to this tragedy, but we already know there are glaring loopholes in the federal safety regulations governing stretch limousines that must be addressed,” said Farley.
While limousines are required to meet strict standards when first manufactured, there’s less regulatory guidance when vehicles are altered after sale. These common alterations can compromise the integrity of the vehicles,
leaving passengers at greater risk. In addition, the ability to exit the car can be fatally compromised by these modifications as well.
Modified limousines, which are banned in some European countries, are actually made from vehicles that are often cut in half, and then have side panels added to elongate the cab. Too often safety features, such as rollover bars, reinforced doors, and side airbags, are removed in the process and not replaced.
“Our hearts go out to the families and friends of those lost. In Schoharie and in Long Island, those lost believed they were making a smart choice -- a safe choice -- that day in hiring a limo, which only deepens this tragedy. We must do everything we can to ensure that catastrophes like this don’t happen in the future,” said Farley.