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The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has investigated many highway accidents where onboard video systems recorded critical crash-related information. This safety report discusses two recent crashes where continuous video systems were installed on commercial vehicles. In a 2012 school bus crash in Port St. Lucie, Florida, the video recording system captured all three phases of the crash, including precrash driver and passenger behaviors and vehicle motion; vehicle and occupant motion during the crash; and postcrash events, such as passenger evacuation, short-term injury outcomes, and emergency response. In a 2011 motorcoach crash in Kearney, Nebraska, the video recording system captured critical precrash information but had certain limitations that negated the potential benefits of crash and postcrash event data. This report summarizes the analysis of the onboard video systems from these two crashes in particular. Further, to advance biomechanical and pediatric trauma-based research, it presents the video analysis and subsequent extensive injury documentation from the Port St. Lucie investigation. The NTSB makes recommendations to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; to the American Bus Association, United Motorcoach Association, American Trucking Associations, American Public Transportation Association, National Association for Pupil Transportation, National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services, and National School Transportation Association; and to 15 manufacturers of onboard video systems.
TO THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION: Incorporate into your existing crash database systems, with appropriate access controls, standardized procedures for collecting and using pertinent video recordings, injury information, and crash data from video-equipped buses, consistent with privacy regulations and policies.
Original recommendation transmittal letter:
Closed - Acceptable Action
Port Saint Lucie, FL, United States
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status:
NHTSA (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Safety Recommendation History
We are pleased to note that you incorporated the recommended data into your crash investigation–based programs. Such action satisfies Safety Recommendation H-15-1, which is classified CLOSED--ACCEPTABLE ACTION.
-From Jack Danielson, Acting Deputy Administrator: NHTSA concurs with this NTSB Safety Recommendation. We currently have standard procedures for collecting pertinent injury information, video recordings and crash data recordings in our crash investigation based programs for all crashes (not just those involving buses). The injury information is coded into the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine Abbreviated Injury Scale format and crash data recordings (PDF version of the file) have been included in the data in previous versions of our publication software. As part of NHTSA's Data Modernization project, we added the capability for the publication of sanitized video data, improved the injury coding using the U.S. Army's Visual Anatomical Injury Descriptor system, and added the ability to provide the actual crash data files imaged from our inspected vehicles in the updated database system. We do not plan to limit the addition of video files to just video-equipped buses. But instead, will include the "sanitized" video whenever the information supports a complete investigation. NHTSA will ensure the video fi les posted are compliant with the Federal privacy regulations and policies. For these reasons, NHTSA requests that this Safety Recommendation be reclassified as "Closed - Acceptable Action."
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