49 U.S.C. § 1135 - U.S. Code - Unannotated Title 49. Transportation § 1135. Secretary of Transportation's responses to safety recommendations

(a) General. --When the National Transportation Safety Board submits a recommendation about transportation safety to the Secretary of Transportation, the Secretary shall give to the Board a formal written response to each recommendation not later than 90 days after receiving the recommendation.  The response shall indicate whether the Secretary intends--

(1)  to carry out procedures to adopt the complete recommendation;

(2)  to carry out procedures to adopt a part of the recommendation;  or

(3)  to refuse to carry out procedures to adopt the recommendation.

(b) Timetable for completing procedures and reasons for refusals. --A response under subsection (a)(1) or (2) of this section shall include a copy of a proposed timetable for completing the procedures.  A response under subsection (a)(2) of this section shall detail the reasons for the refusal to carry out procedures on the remainder of the recommendation.  A response under subsection (a)(3) of this section shall detail the reasons for the refusal to carry out procedures.

(c) Public availability. --The Board shall make a copy of each recommendation and response available to the public at reasonable cost.

(d) Annual report on air carrier safety recommendations.--

(1) In general. --The Secretary shall submit to Congress and the Board, on an annual basis, a report on the recommendations made by the Board to the Secretary regarding air carrier operations conducted under part 121 of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations.

(2) Recommendations to be covered. --The report shall cover--

(A)  any recommendation for which the Secretary has developed, or intends to develop, procedures to adopt the recommendation or part of the recommendation, but has yet to complete the procedures;  and

(B)  any recommendation for which the Secretary, in the preceding year, has issued a response under subsection (a)(2) or (a)(3) refusing to carry out all or part of the procedures to adopt the recommendation.

(3) Contents.--

(A) Plans to adopt recommendations. --For each recommendation of the Board described in paragraph (2)(A), the report shall contain--

(i)  a description of the recommendation;

(ii)  a description of the procedures planned for adopting the recommendation or part of the recommendation;

(iii)  the proposed date for completing the procedures;  and

(iv)  if the Secretary has not met a deadline contained in a proposed timeline developed in connection with the recommendation under subsection (b), an explanation for not meeting the deadline.

(B) Refusals to adopt recommendations. --For each recommendation of the Board described in paragraph (2)(B), the report shall contain--

(i)  a description of the recommendation;  and

(ii)  a description of the reasons for the refusal to carry out all or part of the procedures to adopt the recommendation.

(e) Reporting requirements.--

(1) Annual secretarial regulatory status reports. --On February 1 of each year, the Secretary shall submit a report to Congress and the Board containing the regulatory status of each recommendation made by the Board to the Secretary (or to an Administration within the Department of Transportation) that is on the Board's “most wanted list”.  The Secretary shall continue to report on the regulatory status of each such recommendation in the report due on February 1 of subsequent years until final regulatory action is taken on that recommendation or the Secretary (or an Administration within the Department) determines and states in such a report that no action should be taken.

(2) Failure to report. --If on March 1 of each year the Board has not received the Secretary's report required by this subsection, the Board shall notify the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate of the Secretary's failure to submit the required report.

(3) Compliance report with recommendations. --Within 90 days after the date on which the Secretary submits a report under this subsection, the Board shall review the Secretary's report and transmit comments on the report to the Secretary, the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate, and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives.


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