Thursday, April 3, 2014

NHTSA Now Officially Requires Rearview Camera in New Vehicles

In final ruling issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), it now requires all new vehicles under certain weight to have a rear visibility technology installed by May 2018.

The new measure aims to enhance the safety of vehicles by significantly reducing the risk of deaths and injuries caused by back-over accidents.

"Safety is our highest priority, and we are committed to protecting the most vulnerable victims of backover accidents — our children and seniors,” said the U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.

“As a father, I can only imagine how heart wrenching these types of accidents can be for families, but we hope that today's rule will serve as a significant step toward reducing these tragic accidents," Foxx added.

From now on, all vehicles weighing less than 10,000 pounds manufactured on or after May 1, 2018 should come with a rearview camera installed so that drivers of a vehicle would be able to view the blind spot areas of the vehicle, to reduce or even prevent fatalities and injuries as a result of back over accidents.

The agency requires the system to have a 10-foot by 20-foot zone directly behind the vehicle. Also, the agency has set several other requirements of the camera which include the image size, linger time, response time, durability and deactivation.

Moreover, since the agency believes that the new system will save lives following a horrible car accident, it is already recommending the new technology and is encouraging consumers to consider it when buying new cars.

Based on a recent statistic, there are approximately 210 deaths and 15,000 injuries caused by back-over accidents each year. Worst is that 31 percent of the victims are children under 5-year-old, while 26 percent of which are 70-year-old and older.

So far, even before the agency’s recent ruling, several automakers have already been installing the technology in their new vehicles due to consumer demands. Thus, I don’t think the agency would be having a hard time encouraging people to apply the ruling.

Experts have speculated that if the ruling has been implemented, 58 to 69 lives are expected to be saved each year.

In his own viewpoint, our Los Angeles accident attorney is personally pleased to have such device in his car not only because it is the latest trend among car enthusiasts, but also due to its significant role in reducing accident risks.