According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report, the Vehicle Backover Avoidance Technology Study, there are thousands of injuries and at least 183 deaths each year from vehicle backovers due to the inability of drivers to see objects behind their vehicles. The report was released in response to a Congressional mandate to study technologies to help drivers detect objects behind them adopted in transportation legislation passed in 2005, the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users.
Janette Fennell, founder and president of KIDS AND CARS, maintains a database that currently tracks information about children involved in non-traffic incidents, including backovers. “My own research indicates that the number of childhood deaths and injuries caused by backover[s] are even higher and increasing annually. NHTSA used old data from eight years ago that dramatically understates the magnitude of this horrendous problem. The federal government can no longer ignore this problem. The study supports the concerns of safety groups. Too many children are needlessly dying, some technologies marketed to consumers are better than others, and it is time for NHTSA to establish minimum performance standards,” Fennell added.
For more information regarding this subject, including efforts with regard to the adoption of federal legislation to require rearward visibility standards for all vehicles, please see KIDS AND CARS, Consumers Union and Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety.
If you or a family member has suffered injuries in connection with a backover or other motor vehicle incident, please contact us on-line at Regan Zambri & Long or call us at (202) 463-3030 for a free consultation. If you would like to receive our electronic newsletter, please click here.