Yesterday I mentioned that child safety advocates were urging Congress to propose a bill that would mandate that automakers must implement a warning alarm which would sound if an infant or child is left in a car unattended. Today, I stumbled across this article which claims that another group of consumer safety advocates are pushing for rear-seat belt warning lights. As it stands, the sensors for the seat-belt notification symbol that flashes on your dashboard are located in only the front seats.
Imagine that you’re a busy parent, juggling shuttling your children around with other daily stresses. If your child is seated in the back seat, you may not notice if they’ve forgotten to buckle up, particularly if you’re distracted by a phone call on your blue tooth. The best way to ensure that everyone is safely buckled in is to have a warning light that will notify you. Studies conducted by the NHTSA have found that the more annoying a seat belt warning system is, the more likely people are to buckle up.
According to the Consumer’s Union, “A small visual signal on the console can be easily ignored. An audible signal alerts all occupants of the vehicle that certain passengers have not secured their belts.” The advocate group would prefer that the alert go off if anyone becomes unbuckled during the duration of the drive as well, since it can be difficult for a parent to know if a child has become unbuckled while traveling. As a personal injury lawyer in South Carolina, I think this technology would be incredibly helpful in decreasing car accident fatalities.