According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), electric vehicles and hybrids have turned a quiet ride into a dangerous situation. The NHTSA is encouraging manufacturers to add sounds to energy efficient cars to prevent auto and pedestrian accidents.
The NHTSA estimates that approximately 2,800 pedestrian and cyclist injuries would be prevented over the life of a vehicle for each model year of an electric or hybrid vehicle with an artificial noisemaker. The Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act of 2010 established the artificial noise rule for hybrids and electric cars.
Consulting a Clayton County attorney after an auto accident or a pedestrian accident enhances a victim's ability to receive a reasonable settlement. If you have been injured in an automobile accident involving a hybrid or electric car you should discuss your case with an accident attorney at Shane Smith Law.
The NHTSA recommends that the noise devices activate whenever a hybrid or electric car travels less than 18 miles per hour. Data indicates that many accidents involving such vehicles occur at low speeds because pedestrians and other automobiles cannot hear the energy efficient cars. The NHTSA recommendations indicate that the vehicles are loud enough to be heard at higher speeds.
The noisemaking suggestion calls for an audible sound that would be loud enough for pedestrians to hear over ambient noises, much as other automobiles can be heard at low speeds. Automakers could choose the artificial sounds from an array of options. It is recommended that similar vehicles (hybrids and electric cars) should make the same sound.
The NHTSA rule is now available for public comment. Public suggestions may be considered when the NHTSA issues the final rule.
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