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Delays in installing backup cameras result in federal lawsuit

A delay in requiring all vehicles to have backup cameras installed may increase the risk to pedestrians in Georgia walking behind a car. Although a federal law was passed in 2007 requiring the Department of Transportation to have a rule in place by 2011 requiring the cameras on all new cars and light trucks, there have been multiple delays. If the deadline had been met, backup warning devices would have been phased in on all new cars and SUVs by 2014.

Pedestrians don't have to step in front of a car to suffer serious injury or death. There have been multiple instances where drivers accidently ran over someone when they were backing up. According to a 2010 DOT report, 228 people die each year in light-vehicle backup accidents, and 44 percent of them were children under age 5. The second most at-risk group was adults over age 70.

A coalition of parents and car-safety advocates sued the Obama administration to try and speed up the process. The Transportation Department now says it hopes to have the legislation by 2015, but in the meantime there is a two-year gap during which injuries and lawsuits can occur. Newer vehicles have more rear view blind spots, reducing visibility behind the vehicle.

Someone who has been injured in an auto accident may wish to speak to an attorney that has experience in personal injury matters. Such an attorney may be able to determine whether the client is entitled to receive compensation for damages caused by the accident. The attorney may also be able to help determine whether the matter can be appropriately settled without litigation.

Source: USA Today, "Administration sued over backup camera delay", Fred Meier and Chris Woodyard, September 26, 2013

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