In the past, we have discussed the dangers associated with backovers, which occur when someone is struck by a vehicle traveling in reverse. These automobile accidents are often caused by the driver simply not having a clear line of sight to what is directly behind their vehicle. This hazard could be lessened significantly soon, as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Department of Transportation announced last month that beginning in May 2018, all vehicles manufactured will be required to have “rear visibility technology” in place. This equipment will become standard in automobiles that weight 10,000 pounds or less, which includes new cars, minivans, SUVS, and many trucks and buses. This new regulation will begin phasing in around May of 2016, but will be complete by May 1, 2018.
Perhaps this new standard backup camera technology will prevent unnecessary injuries and deaths associated with backover accidents. There are approximately 15,000 injuries and 210 deaths as a result of backovers each year, according to the NHTSA. A majority of those deaths are children. Backup cameras on vehicles are estimated to save 59-69 of those lives each year. This increased safety can be attributed to drivers being able to clearly see areas behind their vehicles that they previously could not while seated in the driver’s seat. Studies show that in order for a driver to be able to see a 12 to 15 month old child behind their vehicle, that child would need to be outside 27 feet of the rear of the vehicle. Otherwise, mirrors and looking over one’s shoulder could not account for the child behind the car. The worst visibility in vehicles can be found in sports utility vehicles, as they are larger and sit higher than passenger cars.
The attorney and staff members at Jones & Swanson are pleased to learn about this new requirement in vehicles, as it will decrease the number of injuries and deaths related to automobile accidents. Because we work closely with injured victims and family members who have lost loved ones in auto wrecks, these types of safety implementations are important to our cause: creating a safer environment on Georgia roadways. Until May of 2018, there are a variety of things that you can do to prevent a backover accident. Rear vehicle cameras can be purchased after market for most automobiles, so this may be an option for you if purchasing a new vehicle is not. For more information or to schedule a consultation to discuss a car accident that you were injured in, call our Marietta law firm today at (770) 427-5498.