December 3, 2014 6:00 PM, EST

NHTSA Nominee Mark Rosekind Tells Senators He Brings ‘Fresh Set of Eyes’

Mark Rosekind, the Obama administration’s pick to lead the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, told a Senate panel Dec. 3 his tenure as an investigator of national accidents has prepared him to tackle major safety issues.

“I recognize my nomination to lead NHTSA comes at a pivotal juncture,” Rosekind told the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. “If confirmed, you have my commitment that I will maintain an aggressive focus on continuing to improve NHTSA's safety record and ensuring that NHTSA’s regulatory regime is current for today's safety environment.

“To this task, I will bring a fresh set of eyes and a different perspective honed over the years as a safety professional and manager at NTSB [National Transportation Safety Board] and in the private sector.”

NHTSA has come under fire for its response to General Motors Co.’s defective ignition switches and the reports of unsafe Takata airbags.

An expert on driver fatigue, Rosekind has been an NTSB member since 2010. He was nominated Nov. 19. Key senators have indicated it is unlikely the chamber will vote on his nomination during the post-election lame duck that resumes at the end of the month.

NHTSA proposes guidance pertaining to stability control systems on truck tractors and motor coaches to address rollover and loss-of-control crashes. It also conducts long-term research aimed at improving the overall safety performance of heavy trucks by focusing on braking issues, tires and other systems.