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Showing posts from July, 2016

Joan Claybrook and the "Safe Motorcycle"

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If you have been reading my blog for a while, you know that I am an automotive enthusiast. Well prepare yourself for another interesting story about the history of vehicles as we tell the story of Joan Claybrook, a bureaucrat that crusaded for a "safe motorcycle". First of all....who is this Joan Claybrook? Well Joan Claybrook was the head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) during the Carter administration. Claybrook was a disciple of Ralph Nader, the man that killed the Chevrolet Corvair with his 1965 work "Unsafe at any Speed". A decade after Nader, new regulations had made American cars safer with things like padded dashes, impact absorbing steering wheels, dual circuit brake systems, and standard seat belts. However, the bike you bought new off the showroom floor was essentially the same as it was for decades in terms of safety. Some advances in disc brake technology made stopping more efficient, but it was more a market driven need