U.S. Proposes Sound Level Rule for EVs

Bloomberg News - January 8, 2013

Qui­et cars are twice as like­ly as vehi­cles with inter­nal- com­bus­tion engines to be involved in pedes­tri­an acci­dents, accord­ing to an NHTSA 2011 study.

Find out what the gov­ern­ment pro­pos­es for elec­tric vehi­cles.

Qui­et cars are twice as like­ly as vehi­cles with inter­nal- com­bus­tion engines to be involved in pedes­tri­an acci­dents when back­ing up, slow­ing or stop­ping, start­ing in traf­fic or enter­ing or leav­ing a park­ing space or dri­ve­way, NHTSA said in a 2011 study.

Elec­tric cars, which have sound­less engines, would need to make nois­es to let pedes­tri­ans know they’re near, under a U.S. pro­posed rule released yes­ter­day.

Sounds would need to be detectable when vehi­cles are trav­el­ing slow­er than 18 miles per hour (29 kilo­me­ters) so elec­tric and hybrid-elec­tric cars can be heard by bicy­clists and pedes­tri­ans, par­tic­u­lar­ly the visu­al­ly impaired, under the U.S. Nation­al High­way Traf­fic Safe­ty Admin­is­tra­tion rule.

The so-called qui­et-car rule, which would have to be made final before it takes effect, would save 35 lives over each mod­el year of hybrid vehi­cles and pre­vent 2,800 injuries, the agency said in an emailed state­ment.

 

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