(March 29) Some produce companies undoubtedly would like deliveries to get to their docks faster.

The American Trucking Associations, Alexandria, Va., is doing what it can to slow drivers down.

The group’s executive committee endorsed a proposal during its annual meeting in February that would restrict large trucks to a maximum speed of 68 mph.

“This is an initiative that came directly from the carriers, not our safety division,” said spokesman Mike Russell, who added that the proposal passed unanimously. “We need to slow down.”

Speeding is a factor in 32% of fatal motor vehicle crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. A 2005 report by the NHTSA said the number of fatal crashes had increased each year since 2000.

Russell said any delays caused by the change would be negligible.

“We’re talking minutes or seconds,” he said, “not hours.”

The association, which represents more than 37,000 trucking companies, conducted a survey last year, and 75% of the trucks evaluated already had speed governors. Most were set at 70 mph or lower. The association wants to increase that percentage and hopes to meet with manufacturers, including Freightliner, Paccar, Mack, Volvo and International, by the end of the year.

The Canadian Trucking Alliance, which represents 4,500 trucking companies, has endorsed legislation that would require large trucks to be equipped with speed governors that would limit them to 105 kilometers per hour, or about 65 mph. A report on the alliance’s Web site said the proposed law would apply not only to Canadian trucks but to U.S. trucks that cross the border.

In addition to safety concerns, the Canadian association said the law would result in fuel savings of as much as $8,000 per truck per year. It also would reduce greenhouse gas emissions.