The Biden administration is demanding advanced safety technology in all new cars and trucks

The Biden administration plans to require all new cars and trucks to come with pedestrian collision avoidance systems that include automatic emergency braking technology by the end of the decade.

In an interview, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said the requirement is designed to reduce the increasing number of pedestrian deaths in the post-Covid-19 era.

“Many Americans [are] lose their lives on our roads,” Buttigieg said. “We feel we really have a responsibility to make this technology standard across the U.S. Navy.”

The new standards will mandate that all cars avoid contact at 62 mph and detect pedestrians in the dark. If a pedestrian is detected, they will need to brake at 45 mph.

The Department of Transportation estimates that the rule could save 360 ​​lives a year and prevent 24,000 injuries.

Automatic emergency braking “prevents collisions. And collisions kill people — it's that simple,” Buttigieg said.

Luminar will demonstrate its system's object detection and collision avoidance capabilities at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on January 5, 2022. Charles Sykes/AP for Luminar Technologies

In a statement, the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, an industry trade group representing automakers, said it had not seen the new rule and therefore could not comment directly.

It said technologies such as automatic emergency braking have proved a “game changer” and automakers have voluntarily committed to installing them in new vehicles.

According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, Drivers kill more than 7,500 pedestrians By 2022, total deaths will have doubled in the last decade – since 1981.

Although beginning to decline in the first half of 2023, the pedestrian fatality rate remains higher than pre-pandemic levels at 2.2 per billion vehicle miles.

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Research shows that due to the coronavirus pandemic, speeding and other risky driving behaviors have increased, while public transport ridership has decreased, leading to an increase in road deaths.

In addition, the pandemic delayed sales of new vehicles, which are safer and have the latest crash-prevention technologies.

At the same time, more customers are buying light trucks, including SUVs, which are less safe.

According to JD Power survey data, consumers are somewhat opposed to the proposed required technology.

“Drivers have reported many issues when it doesn't work,” said Kathleen Risk, JD Power's senior director of user experience benchmarking and technology. They also find that it's more sensitive or it doesn't work the same way they do, he said.

“The idea is that they lose control,” Risk said, referring to technological interventions built into modern passenger vehicles.

One reason the requirement won't go into effect until the end of 2029 — ButiGeek admits the technology is still being perfected.

“We're allowing a few years to develop this technology,” he said, adding that hiccups in some examples of security features won't help.

“We need to make sure these technologies are refined and developed,” he said.

Boutiquee estimates that $82 will be added to the cost of a new vehicle, a cost worth saving a life, he said.

“If there is life-saving technology … we don't want it [it] The bells and whistles are only available to those who can afford them,” he said. “We want to make sure every car that rolls off the line has this capability.”

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