Advocates of backup cameras sue DOT to stop rules delay

Advocates of backup cameras sue DOT to stop rules delay

Advocates of mandatory backup cameras on all vehicles have sued the U.S. Department of Transportation to force it to implement the long-delayed rule. The suit was filed in New York by Consumers Union (parent company of Consumer Reports), Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, Kids And Cars, Inc., and two parents who backed over and killed their toddlers.

The rule, required by Congress in 2008, has been mired in controversy over cost and delayed by automaker opposition. Backup cameras are now offered as an option on 80 percent of vehicles, according to automakers, and included on about half of vehicles sold.

NHTSA has estimated the regulation would cost the industry $1.9 billion to $2.7 billion a year. The agency has said that from a cost-benefit analysis, the rule doesnt pay, but further say that safety considerations justify it. The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers frames it as an issue of consumer choice, not government mandate. Before any new rule is implemented, automakers get an 18-month lead time.

NHTSA says about 100 children under age 5 die every year in backup accidents.

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