NHTSA Wants Stricter Pedestrian Safety Requirements
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety occasionally update their safety testing protocols to keep up with changes in technology and the auto industry. The IIHS recently updated its side-crash tests with greater impact forces, and now, the NHTSA is considering a toughening of its pedestrian crash testing.
The NHTSA said the updates would measure pedestrian protection and detection and has asked for public comment on the matter. More pedestrians are dying on our roads, with 3,434 people killed in the first six months of last year – almost 19 deaths per day. The IIHS already has a test for day- and nighttime pedestrian crash prevention, so it’s not surprising to see the NHTSA add the criteria to its list.
NHTSA officials said that the organization is working on rules to make automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, and other features mandatory for new vehicles. The NHTSA noted that 20 automakers have committed to equipping at least 95 percent of cars and trucks, but more needs to be done.
The IIHS’ recent updates knocked several vehicles out of contention for a Top Safety Pick award, so we’ll likely see a similar shift when the NHTSA implements these proposed changes. Despite their sometimes annoying alerts, advanced driver aids have been proven to save lives, so it’s time for the rules to change.
[Image: Ground Picture via Shutterstock]
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I'm all for more robust pedestrian standards. Coincidentally one way of achieving this is through natural selection via collisions with automobiles.
All valid points, I believe Art said it best, people lost in their phones oblivious to their surroundings.
I've seen plenty of bad behavior by both drivers and pedestrians. It's time to get serious about enforcing traffic and jaywalking laws.
COVID should have been the warning shot to city planners - high-density living spaces for humans carry health risks. Communicable respiratory disease and pedestrian hazards are two hazards of humans living racked and stacked on top of each other.
If you want to save lives, planning boards need to look at capping residential density in very dense urban environments.
Blaming cars for unsustainable increases in residential density is not the solution.