(Hartford, CT) – Today, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) issued the following statement after the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) determined that ET-Plus guardrail end terminals successfully passed recent tests:
“FHWA’s unacceptable pattern of inadequate oversight unfortunately continues today. The FHWA has given the ET-Plus a passing grade after allowing the manufacturer to conduct sham tests rife with flaws. The FHWA has allowed the manufacturer to apply older, less rigorous testing standards – and still failed to ensure that the tests were properly conducted. Even with this extremely low bar, one of the tests revealed a shocking situation where the guardrail end terminal did significant damage to the crash test vehicle.
“For more than three years, despite a growing chorus of concerns and regular red flags from dozens of states, a federal court, counties, and potential victims, the agency that attests to the safety of these guardrails – the FHWA – has done little to rid the road of these potentially dangerous devices. Instead, the agency repeatedly deferred to the manufacturer, relying on guesswork, unsupported assumptions, and arbitrary choices, all while insisting the ET-Plus is safe and eligible for purchase using federal taxpayer dollars. The FHWA’s efforts so far have squandered time and resources, and public safety oversight clearly requires a fresh set of eyes.”