The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that about 300 fatalities and 18,000 injuries occur each year as a result of accidents caused by vehicles backing up, with almost 45% of these fatalities involve children under five. A lawsuit filed in New York today, has the Consumers Union and the advocacy wing of Consumer Reports magazine hoping that it will force the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to take steps in setting rear visibility standards for light vehicles.
The law was first introduced in 2008, and in 2010, the DOT proposed rules that would require backup cameras in all new cars, light trucks, and SUV’s. The final decision was delayed several time after automakers and government officials had concerns about costs. Today, many automakers already install rear view cameras as standard features in their vehicles and almost 80 percent of 2013 models include a rear view camera as either an optional or standard safety feature.
Despite this, the groups hope that today’s lawsuit filing, will encourage the DOT to make backup cameras a standard feature on all new light vehicles immediately.