Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Edward Markey (D-Mass.) issued the following statement in response to an announcement today by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety that 20 automakers have committed to make automatic emergency braking standard on all new cars by 2022.
“NHTSA is apparently content braking at the very last second for safety by allowing manufacturers to wait until 2022 to install lifesaving technology that has already been proven to save lives. This safety technology, which could prevent or reduce the consequences of an estimated 80 percent of rear-end collisions, can and needs to be in the car of today, not the car of tomorrow. Today’s announcement by DOT and IIHS adds little to improve safety beyond the status quo, and simply demonstrates the continued culture of informality between automakers and regulators that has led to thousands of deaths. Furthermore, as a voluntary agreement, it holds no force. We urge NHTSA to make automatic emergency braking and forward collision warning technologies standard and mandatory in all new vehicles and will seek measures to ensure these lifesaving technologies are available to all drivers sooner.”