NHTSA proposal requires back-up cameras in all new cars

By Christy Millweard - bio | email

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration proposes to require back-up cameras in all new cars.

"Families with small children that have run into these scenarios before back up over the bicycle or small children out playing," said Jeremy Mouser, a car sales associate.

Which is exactly what worries NHTSA. The safety group estimates close to 300 people die, and more than 18,000 people are injured from back over crashes each year.

"The back up sensors themselves don't quite give you as much of an indication of what might be behind you," said Mouser.

Friday, the organization proposed requiring car makers to either change the vehicles so it's easier to see or include back-up cameras in each new vehicle.

"A panoramic view from side to side as well as show you where your bumper is and objects directly below you," said Mouser.

The proposed rule says 10 percent of new vehicles must comply by Sept. 2012, 40 percent by Sept. 2013, and 100 percent by Sept. 2014.

"For you to look from the drivers seat all the way to see something behind you, you're talking a good ten twelve feet behind you," said Mouser.

One place you will really see changes is in cars, since most of the cameras are in SUVs and larger vehicles currently.

"Typically because those are the vehicles that its most difficult to see when you're backing out of the drive way," said Chris Brown, an auto sales associate.

"They're more useful for that type of thing, safety issues, than maybe backing into a parking space," said Garry Warner, an auto sales associate.

Right now, the back-up camera comes as part of a package usually including a navigation system. A few dealerships say those packages range from $800 to $2,000. But they also said with this new regulation, it would only add a couple hundred dollars to the price tag of a car without one.

"It's a lot cheaper than hitting the bumper and backing into something and damaging your bumper," said Warner.

Or, damaging something worse.

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