Volume 16, Issue 4 - May/June 2012

IWFA Update
by John Parker

Protection from Skin Cancer

This continues to be a very busy year for the IWFA. We’re working hard to help support your business and we’re proud to share great news for our industry from the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which resulted from our outreach and advocacy on behalf of the window film industry.

The FMCSA recently issued a formal clarification to truck safety regulations and now allows the use of compliant window films on big rigs, weighing more than 26,000 pounds. Historically, the enforcement community and the trucking industry have taken the position that no film is allowed on any commercial vehicle.

The clarification impacts millions of truck drivers who travel many hours at a stretch. The FMCSA has agreed with the IWFA that the use of ‘clear’ window films with a minimum of 70 percent visibility rating, installed on the front side windows is permitted. Sadly long-haul drivers, have faced skin cancer as “one of the hazards of the job” and the IWFA hopes this clarification will lower the instances of UV related skin cancer.

The change in what is permitted follows numerous reports of higher than average rates of skin cancer on the left side of the face and arm, according to a 2011 article in the U.S. National Library of Medicine. That article pointed to driver-side UVA exposure as a likely contributor to the disease.

“We consistently advocate for sensible regulations to ensure our drivers stay healthy and we appreciate the efforts of the IWFA to help our industry take another step in that direction,” said American Trucking Associations President and CEO Bill Graves.

Experts in the window film industry already know that professionally installed window film typically reduces exposure to UV radiation by up to 99 percent, reduces glare, interior fading and hot spots. In non-commercial vehicles many jurisdictions have legislation that specifies, and may limit, what can be applied to the windows. The recent clarification from the FMCSA is a great help in elevating awareness of what even a lightly shaded film can deliver in terms of UV-protection and skin cancer prevention for anyone who spends time in a vehicle.

We are always working on important initiatives to support and drive growth in the window film industry and this progress is gratifying personally and professionally. Additionally, we are striving to share updates and news like this with consumers throughout the country. I hope you’ll see firsthand the positive coverage that has resulted from the many media interviews that have featured the IWFA as an expert resource on how window film can help consumers.

Please visit the media section of the IWFA website, and look out for stories that we’ve worked on that highlight window film benefits in a wide range of consumer and commercial publications. We’re thrilled to get the word out to help every one of our potential customers understand the many benefits that window film delivers.

The IWFA’s goal is to help bring more business to window film manufacturers, distributors, dealers and installers as a result of the awareness that news like this generates. And, it’s even better to know that together with the FMCSA, we can actually help people avoid incidences of skin cancer caused by dangerous UV exposure while driving.

John Parker is the president of the International Window Film Association (IWFA), whose members include window film dealers, distributors and manufacturers. Contact the IWFA at 276.666.4932 or admin@IWFA.com, or visit www.iwfa.com.

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