Sophie’s Choice of Safety Funding
As mosquito season heats up, the buzz is on the Zika virus, which has made its way to the United States. Although the virus causes only mild illness to most infected people, pregnant women face the frightening prospect of infecting their babies, resulting in a severe brain defect called microcephaly. Already Texas has reported 35 cases of Zika infection, a number that is likely to grow without aggressive intervention.
So what does the Zika virus have to do with tractor-trailer safety?
If your first response is absolutely nothing, you are in theory correct. But, unfortunately, once again politics trumps common sense when you’re talking about public safety.
A new spending bill pits Zika intervention against a crucial trucking safety measure. Whether Zika prevention is funded rides directly on whether service of hours rules are relaxed. If Obama signs the legislation, the country will have the money to stop this devastating virus from spreading. However, by signing the bill, rules that keep sleepy drivers off the road will be suspended.