EVs, hybrids required to make sound at low speed under new rule
All new hybrids and light-duty electric vehicles will be required to make an audible sound at lower speeds under a new rule from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The rule, which had been anticipated for years, is intended to help pedestrians who are blind or have low vision.
With more, quieter hybrid and electrical cars on the road, the ability for all pedestrians to hear as well as see the cars becomes an important factor of reducing the risk of possible crashes and improving safety, said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. NHTSA estimates that 2,400 pedestrians are injured a year because they do not see or hear the quiet cars.
The sound will be required for EVs and hybrids traveling up to 30 km per hour (about 19 mph) At higher speeds, tire and wind noise will provide adequate warning, NHTSA said.
Automakers have until September 1, 2019, to meet the new standard, with half of EVs and hybrids required to comply before that date.Download Bulletin PDF