Backup Camera Supporters Urge Regulators to Finalize Vehicle Mandate
April 9, 2013 9:56 AM
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Secretary of Transportation repeatedly postponed making a decision on this legislation
Lawmakers in Washington have been considering a mandate that would force automakers to install rear view cameras in most all-new vehicles. Two members of Congress and parents of children injured (or killed) by inattentive drivers backing over them are now calling on regulators to finalize the regulations.
The advocates are urging the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to finalize regulations that have been
delayed four times
since 2011. Congress approved legislation in 2007 that was signed into law by President George W Bush requiring the government to set regulations for rear visibility by February 28, 2011.
However, that date has come and gone many times with Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood repeatedly choosing to delay making a decision on the rule.
The NHTSA has proposed standards that would have required automakers to install backup cameras on all new vehicles by the year 2014. The regulation was expected to be in effect by September of 2014 and was estimated to cost the auto industry in the area of $1.9 billion to $2.7 billion annually. The regulation would also likely increase the purchase price of new vehicles.
NHTSA administrator David Strickland recently said that the ruling would happen "at some point in the near future." He did point out that the rule is still under review, commenting, "We are still working through a number of issues. It's a very important rule for the department… We want to make sure we get it right."
The backup camera regulations are intended to help eliminate the blind spots on vehicles that could obscure pedestrians, particularly the elderly and children, from the driver's view. The NHTSA says that about 100 children age 5 or under die each year in backup accidents and more than half of those are one year old or younger.
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Next up : what do we do about frontovers ?
4/9/2013 9:53:58 PM
For all the concern over backing over a child, it seems that nobody is concerned about the other 50% (min) that are run over when going forward. Yes, according the KidsandCars.org, about 905 kids have been killed by their parents (usually) when backing out of their own driveway in the last decade. BUT ANOTHER 445 were killed when the vehicle went FORWARD out of the driveway.
But wait it's worse ! In the most recent years it appears to me that the number of frontovers is nearly the same as the number of backovers. So that's 70 squashed kids a year that backup cams won't help. We NEED front bumper/grill cams TOO ! And perhaps sideview cams. Personally I want an RFID chip installed in every kid and an auto-detection system to locate any child with 20' of any car (or motorcycle). I mean ... if it saves just 1 life ...
And then I want auto-AC systems mandated for cars. We've all hear stories of kids left in cars who die from heat stroke. Why should that be allowed to happen ? I say if we can remote start cars to heat them or cool them now, why not mandate that ! I suspect it's only another couple hundred of $$s, less if your car has that option already ! If we can mandate airbags because people are too stupid to use seatbelts, tire pressure monitoring because people are too stupid to check your tires (or learn how to drive), backup cams because people are too stupid to check on your kids ... why not this. It's at least 39 kids per year saved.
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