When it comes to new vehicles today, it
seems as though computers are taking
over many aspects of the driving experience. We have electronic
stability programs, laser/radar cruise control, lane guidance, and
automatic parking systems.
On the safety front, it's not uncommon
to found vehicles that are loaded with driver/passenger and side/head
curtain to protect the occupants inside the vehicle. Some auto
manufactures go even further by providing knee and seatbelt
However, new government regulations
could do more to protect people outside the vehicle. According to the
Press, the Department of Transportation wants to help protect
small children that get backed over by vehicles through the use of
cameras and better outward visibility. According to the National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), roughly 300 children are
killed each year from accidental "backovers". The number
injured each year is about 18,000.
Many cars today are being designed with
higher beltlines to enhance styling and to perform better in
side-impact crash tests. As a result, outward visibility through the
side and rear windows is often compromised. Vehicles like SUVs and
pickups have an even great disadvantage as they sit higher off the
ground often making it harder to see small children when the vehicle
is put in reverse.
Many auto manufacturers get around the
visibility problems inherent with today's vehicles by incorporating
backup cameras that transmit an image of what's behind the vehicle to
a dashboard display screen (which is often used for the vehicle's
GPS). While the backup camera systems are usually optional on today's
vehicles, they would be mandatory in all vehicles (up to 10,000
pounds) by 2014.
Auto manufacturers can get around the
requirement by adhering to improved rear visibility requirements
handed down by the DoT, but with current car design trending towards
making outward visibility an afterthought, it's believed that most
car manufacturers will go the backup camera route instead.
"There is no more tragic accident
than for a parent or caregiver to back out of a garage or driveway
and kill or injure an undetected child playing behind the vehicle,"
said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "[Changes would] help
drivers see into those blind zones directly behind vehicles to make
sure it is safe to back up."
Backup cameras will no doubt add to the
cost of new vehicles in the years to come -- this is in addition the
price increases that are sure to come from more stringent
fuel economy requirements being handed down by the government.
quote: How is a backup camera gonna help you with a trailer? Most of them are mounted right above the license plate.
quote: Didn't down rate you but I do slightly disagree. I would say I probably have more common sense than your average driver in America...but if my truck was equiped with one of these, before backing up I would simply look at the screen and make sure no one was behind me, then look over my shoulders as back up as normal. Seems pretty straight forward.
quote: Like I said, a beeping sensor would give the EXACT same benefit, without the visual distraction.
quote: It seems that you need to manufacture increasingly convoluted scenarios to justify your dislike of this idea.
quote: Actually, the justification for the idea is rather convoluted as well.
quote: As noted in the article around 20,000 of these result in injury.
quote: One of the best ways to reduce accidents/increase efficieny is to involve more senses.
quote: If this induces "panic" shouldn't the drive apply the brakes? Which is exactly the response required?
quote: Say the baby was crawling, just outside the wheel base (out of view) and then crawled under your back tire (in view, but after your peek)... same problem.
quote: Backup cameras instill a false sense of security, and I like the idea Jason had of a sensor that beeps if it detects something behind you.
quote: This would force the driver to look if they aren't already
quote: Driving is all about focus
quote: I found that this is actually quite dangerous. During my testing of several vehicles, I crept out using the backup cam and only noticed when cautionarily glancing over my shoulder than someone was walking into the path of my vehicle, just not visible in the backup cam yet.
quote: Driving is all about focus and you basically have to choose to focus on the backup cam or focus on looking over your shoulder.
quote: The backup cam may save you from running over little Timmy who's crawling in the driveway, but it makes it more likely that you'll hit little Jimmy who's riding his bike towards your driveway, but isn't visible in your backup cam's field of view.
quote: I'd go as far as to say the concept of a backup cam is pretty worthless.
quote: I think requiring a sensor that detects obstacles behind the back of the vehicle and beeps would be a MUCH better idea, as you could look over your shoulder and still receive the warning that the backup cam aims to give.
quote: I don't see a disadvantage to having a rear camera. It's just another tool
quote: Totally wrong like every other government mandated safety regulation??
quote: Secure our borders and eliminate threats to my sovereignty. Get these fucking criminals off the street and do something about crime!!
quote: Fix the justice system so people who break laws are actually punished!
quote: Do something about these shitty roads that cause unsafe conditions!! We're sure as hell paying enough taxes to cover all of this!
quote: sensors that detect something behind you...does the same job
quote: I agree that it shouldn't be a requirement to have it STANDARD, but I believe it should be a requirement for ALL vehicles to have the option. That's as fas as the government should go IMO.
quote: In my area, a man with a big SUV didn't know his son was outside and backed over him and thus killing him. I'm all for this. To me, it is the same as requiring us to wear seat belts. Sure it is government intervention, but it will help save lives.
quote: In my area, a man with a big SUV didn't know his son was outside and backed over him and thus killing him.
quote: Automobile event recorders aren't really very expensive. The piece of hardware itself only costs about $10. When they first came out the companies factored the cost of updating the vehicle's computer to provide an output. Once that was done the actual cost of the event recorder is neglible. Adding a little more storage is pretty much a no brainer. Recording the 10 year functional activity of a car might require a $5 memory chip.
quote: Better yet, what if every mandate they put forward is applied to them first for a period of two years and only after that can it be passed on to the public!?
quote: Are you against the requirement to include triggerlocks on all new firearm purchases? It is a similar line of reasoning for both.
quote: I don't have a Mac! How can I be rich then eh? :))) No Lexus, no iPad, not even a single iPod or iPhone
quote: I'm backing out of a parking spot at Target or any random store and some toddler happened to break away from his/her parent and run behind my car, I wouldn't see them.
quote: But when you're out in public and not on your own home turf, it's not always an open and shut case.
quote: And second - do you know how to drive taht big rig??
quote: So when you're backing up INSTEAD of looking to the back, you can watch some video screen on the dash! GOOD IDEA!
quote: A law preventing parents from letting their kids play in the street would cost less and save more lives.
quote: by 91TTZ on December 3, 2010 at 12:15 PMFrom reading many of your posts, you seem to be in favor of a nannystate government in just about every topic.Are you a socialist conservative ?
quote: Why do you think they would NOT rely only on the camera. It obviously gives you a complete view of what's back there!!??!!
quote: a small child can easily slip into your blind spot
quote: you are limited to the tunnel vision the rear camera offers you.
quote: According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), roughly 300 people are killed each year from accidental "backovers".
quote: The NHTSA says that nearly 300 children are backed over and killed in the U.S. each year