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Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Seat Belt Assembly Anchorages

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Seat Belt Assembly Anchorages

Patricia P. Breslin
Federal Register
July 13, 1994

[Federal Register: July 13, 1994]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

49 CFR Part 571

[Docket No. 94-57; Notice 01]
RIN 2127-AF33

 
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Seat Belt Assembly 
Anchorages

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of Proposed rulemaking.

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SUMMARY: This notice proposes to amend Standard No. 210 to require the 
installation of anchorages for either a Type 1 or a Type 2 seat belt 
assembly at any seating position for which Standard No. 208 requires 
the installation of a Type 1 or a Type 2 seat belt. Anchorages required 
by Standard No. 210 must meet the strength, location and other 
performance requirements of that standard. Currently, S4.1.2 of 
Standard No. 210 requires the installation of an anchorage for a Type 1 
or a Type 2 seat belt assembly for all designated seating positions, 
except positions already required by section 4.1.1 of Standard No. 210 
to have an anchorage for a Type 2 seat belt assembly and except 
passenger seats in buses. The practical effect of Standard No. 210's 
not requiring anchorages for the bus passenger seats is that the 
anchorages for the Type 1 seat belt assemblies required at passenger 
seats in small buses are not currently required to comply with the 
performance requirements of that Standard. This notice will correct 
this oversight.

DATES: Comment date: Comments must be received by September 12, 1994.
    Proposed effective date: If adopted, the proposed amendments would 
become effective 30 days following publication of the final rule.

ADDRESSES: Comments should refer to the docket and notice number of 
this notice and be submitted to: Docket Section, Room 5109, National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, SW, 
Washington, DC 20590. (Docket Room hours are 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday 
through Friday.)

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Clarke Harper, Office of Vehicle 
Safety Standards, NRM-12, National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, 400 Seventh Street, SW, Washington, DC 20590. 
Telephone: (202) 366-4916.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On November 2, 1989, NHTSA published a final 
rule amending Standard No. 208, Occupant Crash Protection, to require 
the installation of Type 2 (lap/shoulder) seat belts at all forward-
facing rear outboard seating positions in all vehicles with a gross 
vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 10,000 pounds or less, other than 
school buses (54 FR 46257). The final rule also required Type 2 seat 
belts at all front outboard seating positions in small buses and Type 1 
(lap) seat belts at all other seating positions in small buses.
    In the preamble to the final rule, effective September 1, 1991, the 
agency stated that it did not need to amend Standard No. 210, Seat Belt 
Assembly Anchorages, to require the installation of anchorages for Type 
2 seat belt assemblies at the affected seating positions because S4.1.1 
already required the installation of anchorages for a Type 2 seat belt 
assembly whenever Standard No. 208 required the installation of a Type 
2 seat belt.
    In making this statement, the agency overlooked the exceptions in 
S4.1.2 of Standard No. 210. That section requires the installation of 
anchorages for a Type 1 or a Type 2 seat belt assembly for all 
designated seating positions, except positions required to have an 
anchorage for a Type 2 seat belt assembly and except for passenger 
seats in buses. Thus, the anchorages for the Type 1 seat belt 
assemblies required at passenger seats in small buses by the November 
2, 1989 final rule are not currently required to comply with Standard 
No. 210. To correct this oversight, this notice proposes to amend 
Standard No. 210 to require the installation of anchorages for either a 
Type 1 or a Type 2 seat belt assembly at any seating position for which 
Standard No. 208 requires the installation of a Type 1 or a Type 2 seat 
belt.
    Since NHTSA believes that the anchorages currently being installed 
by the manufacturers comply with the requirements of Standard No. 210, 
NHTSA is proposing that if this proposal is adopted as a final rule, it 
would become effective 30 days after publication.
    The agency proposes to simplify the language of S4.1 and to reword 
it to eliminate the possibility of similar oversights in the future. 
The proposed regulatory language in this notice combines the 
requirements of current S4.1.1 and S4.1.2 into one section. Further, it 
makes clear that anchorages for either a Type 1 or a Type 2 seat belt 
assembly are required whenever Standard No. 208 requires either a Type 
1 or a Type 2 seat belt assembly. This change will eliminate the need 
for further amendment of Standard No. 210 if the seat belt requirements 
of Standard No. 208 are amended in the future.

Rulemaking Analyses and Notices

Executive Order 12866 and DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures

    This rulemaking document was not reviewed under E.O. 12866, 
``Regulatory Planning and Review.'' NHTSA has considered the impact of 
this rulemaking action under the Department of Transportation's 
regulatory policies and procedures and determined that the action is 
not ``significant'' under those policies and procedures. While these 
anchorages are not currently required to comply with Standard No. 210, 
NHTSA believes that manufacturers do design these anchorages to comply 
with these requirements. Thus, NHTSA does not expect any impact from 
this proposed rule. Therefore, preparation of a full regulatory 
evaluation is not warranted.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    NHTSA has also considered the impacts of this notice under the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act. I hereby certify that this proposed rule 
would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities. As explained above, NHTSA does not anticipate any 
impact from this proposed rule.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980 (P.L. 96-
511), there are no requirements for information collection associated 
with this proposed rule.

National Environmental Policy Act

    NHTSA has also analyzed this proposed rule under the National 
Environmental Policy Act and determined that it would not have a 
significant impact on the human environment.

Executive Order 12612 (Federalism)

    NHTSA has analyzed this proposal in accordance with the principles 
and criteria contained in E.O. 12612, and has determined that this 
proposed rule would not have significant federalism implications to 
warrant the preparation of a Federalism Assessment.

Civil Justice Reform

    This proposed rule would not have any retroactive effect. Under 49 
U.S.C. 30103, whenever a Federal motor vehicle safety standard is in 
effect, a State may not adopt or maintain a safety standard applicable 
to the same aspect of performance which is not identical to the Federal 
standard, except to the extent that the state requirement imposes a 
higher level of performance and applies only to vehicles procured for 
the State's use. 49 U.S.C. 30161 sets forth a procedure for judicial 
review of final rules establishing, amending or revoking Federal motor 
vehicle safety standards. This section does not require submission of a 
petition for reconsideration or other administrative proceedings before 
parties may file suit in court.

Submission of Comments

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on the proposal. 
It is requested but not required that 10 copies be submitted.
    All comments must not exceed 15 pages in length. (49 CFR 553.21). 
Necessary attachments may be appended to these submissions without 
regard to the 15-page limit. This limitation is intended to encourage 
commenters to detail their primary arguments in a concise fashion.
    If a commenter wishes to submit certain information under a claim 
of confidentiality, three copies of the complete submission, including 
purportedly confidential business information, should be submitted to 
the Chief Counsel, NHTSA, at the street address given above, and seven 
copies from which the purportedly confidential information has been 
deleted should be submitted to the Docket Section. A request for 
confidentiality should be accompanied by a cover letter setting forth 
the information specified in the agency's confidential business 
information regulation. 49 CFR Part 512.
    All comments received before the close of business on the comment 
closing date indicated above for the proposal will be considered, and 
will be available for examination in the docket at the above address 
both before and after that date. To the extent possible, comments filed 
after the closing date will also be considered. Comments received too 
late for consideration in regard to the final rule will be considered 
as suggestions for further rulemaking action. Comments on the proposal 
will be available for inspection in the docket. The NHTSA will continue 
to file relevant information as it becomes available in the docket 
after the closing date, and it is recommended that interested persons 
continue to examine the docket for new material.
    Those persons desiring to be notified upon receipt of their 
comments in the rules docket should enclose a self-addressed, stamped 
postcard in the envelope with their comments. Upon receiving the 
comments, the docket supervisor will return the postcard by mail.

List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 571

    Imports, Motor vehicle safety, Motor vehicles.

    In consideration of the foregoing, it is proposed that 49 CFR Part 
571 be amended as follows:

PART 571--FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS

    1. The authority citation for Part 571 of Title 49 would be revised 
to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 322, 30111, 30115, 30117, and 30166; 
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50.


Sec. 571.210  [Amended]

    2. Section 571.210 would be amended by revising S4.1.1, removing 
existing S4.1.2, redesignating existing S4.1.3(a) as S4.1.2(a) and 
redesignating existing S4.1.3(b) as S4.1.2(b) and revising it, to read 
as follows:


Sec. 571.210  Standard No. 210; Seat belt assembly anchorages.

* * * * *
    S4.1.1 Seat belt anchorages for a Type 1 or a Type 2 seat belt 
assembly shall be installed for each designated seating position for 
which a Type 1 or a Type 2 seat belt assembly is required by Standard 
No. 208 (49 CFR 571.208). Seat belt anchorages for a Type 2 seat belt 
assembly shall be installed for each designated seating position for 
which a Type 2 seat belt assembly is required by Standard No. 208 (49 
CFR 571.208).
    S4.1.2(a) * * *
    (b) The requirement in S4.1.1 of this standard that seat belt 
anchorages for a Type 1 or a Type 2 seat belt assembly shall be 
installed for certain designated seating positions does not apply to 
any such seating positions that are equipped with a seat belt assembly 
that meets the frontal crash protection requirements of S5.1 of 
Standard No. 208 (49 CFR 571.208).
* * * * *
    Issued on July 7, 1994.
Patricia P. Breslin,
Acting Associate Administrator for Rulemaking.
[FR Doc. 94-16912 Filed 7-12-94; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P

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