The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has just passed a law that will require that all vehicles under five tons have rearview cameras. As of May 2018, all manufactured motor vehicles will have to include this feature.
The rearview camera was first implemented as a luxury feature to be ergonomic for drivers, but has proven to be much more than that. This is in attempt to decrease the amount of accidents and deaths that occur while drivers are moving in reverse. The majority of victims in these types of accidents are children under 5 and seniors over 70. The law does not specifically state that a rearview camera is mandatory, but it does require that the vehicle must allow for the driver to see at least the ten by twenty foot area directly behind the car. The most plausible way to accomplish this is by using a camera.
I am very curious to see how much this law will decrease accidents. Currently, the average number of people injured in back-over accidents is 15,000 and the amount of yearly deaths is just over 200. This number is very disturbing as these deaths are completely avoidable. I think that a big cause of this is recklessness, not necessarily a visibility issue. Currently, there are a few higher end cars that are currently on the market that can detect surroundings and even automatically brake in order to avoid an accident. It’s only a matter of time and technology before those are all standard features in cars. The main cause of car accidents is humans, so the less we can take ourselves out of the equation, the safer we’ll be.