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User Rank
Bad Idea
TOP   3/5/2012 10:57:29 AM
This is one of the worst ideas yet.You can't fix stupid with technology.

In any of the accidents involving toddlers being run over was the car at fault? Was it unavoidable? I doubt it.

Backover accidents are the driver's fault which I would attribute to the driver being too hurried to check the area behind the vehicle before getting in or not being trained in how to safely backup.

Vehicles with poor rearward visibility have been around since the inception of automobiles. When I watch the old Untouchables I see 1930's vintage vehicles that had to have very poor rearward visibility. Why is this all of a sudden a big issue? When drivers become accustomed to this "convenience" what will they do when the camera is blocked by ice, snow, dirt, dust, lighting or system failure? Should the vehicle's reverse be locked out if there is not a clear images on the backup screen? And the fact is there is a big blind spot in front of a lot of new vehicles, notably Humvees, pickups and the like. Should there be a blind spot camera there too.

When commercial pilots are trained to operate their aircraft they have to keep current in the type by training in what to do when the various systems fail. Can we expect the average driver to deal properly with failure of the backup camera?

If the backup camera is a necessity, why not mandate backup mirrors if no backup camera is installed on all vehicles, new or old? Shouldn't we all be willing to have our cars look like post office vehicles and school buses with the numerous convex mirrors hanging off various corners?


John E
User Rank
Re: What about better backup lights?
John E   3/5/2012 10:12:28 AM
Thank you david,  this is the best idea yet.  Every time I approach my vehicle to drive, I look around to see what could be  aproblem, and where it is.  If there is sometihng that I don't want to run over (I have both pets and kids), I make sure that I know where it is and can see it.  In addition, I would have a hard time using a backup camera since I turn around and look out of the rear window while I am backing up.  I see no reason to force everyone to pay for a "safety device" that only a few of us need.  Backup cameras may be a cool and useful toy, but they are not a necesary safety device.

User Rank
Re: What about better backup lights?
Stephen   3/5/2012 10:07:13 AM
Checking for things when approaching a vehicle addresses inanimate objects, e.g. trash barrels, balls, bicycles, etc. but does not address animate opjects, or inanimate objects moved by external forces, e.g. pets, children, wind blown objects, etc.

To another's point, brighter back-up lights would be helpful in several resoects, 1. better night visibility outside of the blind spots 2. greater attention of the vehicle/operator's intent to non blind humans (excepting young children) -- as is also done audibly on trucks an dconstruction machinry w/ a backup buzzer/beepr, 3. possibly simplified requirements for backup camera lo light performance, however, if color renditon and fine tonal gradation is sacrificed, sensitivity at very low light levels could be achieved -- esentially night vision mode at low light levels.

Ultrasonic sensors may be another solution for animals/humans/etc. behind vehicles, but may be less effective for bollards, curbs, and other smaller, and/or shorter stationary objects.

User Rank
Cameras are only a tool
DB_Wilson   3/5/2012 9:54:09 AM
Situational awareness will prevent more problems that just cameras.  A backup camera is only a tool that can help.  Knowing the location of a child or pet is more important than having a camera to looking behind the car for the child or pet.  I've stopped more than one to because I could not see the child or pet.

Many deliver and service vehicles avoid back up hazards by not parking where they must first back up.  I see package delivery vehicles stop then back into a parking spot so they may drive forward when leaving.  I see flashers used for brief stops and cones used for longer stops when the vehicle is not in a marked parking space. 

David Cox
User Rank
Re: What about better backup lights?
David Cox   3/5/2012 9:40:58 AM
What about this idea?  Maybe, just maybe we should take the two extra steps it takes as we approach our vehicles to check that there isn't something behind the car before we get into the stupid thing. I have NEVER been so preoccupied that I can't see almost the entire "blind spot" as I approach my car. Take responsibility for your own actions instead of trying to force someone to do it for you.  Come on, people.

Newel Stephens
User Rank
What about better backup lights?
Newel Stephens   3/5/2012 9:27:19 AM
Before we start adding cameras to our vehicles, we really should think about mandating better backup lights. 

I'm sure the backup lights on both of my vehicles meet the minimum requirements, but on a dark night, especially in inclement weather, I am essentially blind when backing up.

Current backup lights are little more than a signal to other drivers that you are moving backwards.  They don't emit enough light to really see what is behind you.  Unless you install night vision cameras, adding a backup camera to your vehicle will only help in the daytime unless the lights are also bright enough to illuminate what is behind you.

User Rank
Battar   3/5/2012 9:19:51 AM
Ultrasonic obstacle sensors can do the same job for about 20% the cost of a vision system. It's also more difficult to ignore the loud beeping.

User Rank
Back view camera in vehicle
Mydesign   3/5/2012 12:17:00 AM
1 saves
Charles, it's a good move from the traffic department. Many accidents are happening in backover and up to an extent it can be avoid, if driver can visualize the back side over the screen. I had installed the camera in my car with alarm warnings, so that it's easy for me to see the backside of the vehicle.

Ozark Sage
User Rank
Re: Video & Audio Warning
Ozark Sage   3/3/2012 6:09:37 PM
Nancy the new system cameras in some vehicles have rear sense warning derived from video scan reflective intensidy interigation.  This works similar to sonar sensors in bumpers common since 2000.  Other safety applications being considered are front ,rear and side, eminent crash interface of warning and air bag control. 

As to free will limitations: Drunks could care less about YOUR safety!

Nancy Golden
User Rank
Re: Just because it's there doesn't mean you'll use it
Nancy Golden   3/3/2012 4:04:24 PM

I see what you are saying, Charles. The only problem is compliance – it's that human free will thing. Limiting ports and not including technology bells and whistles won't prevent aftermarket installs. I think something will have to eventually be done regarding infotainment in vehicles. It's a shame because any reasonably thinking person should be able to acknowledge the dangers these distractions create for themselves and everyone around them. Regarding the cameras – I am thinking proximity sensors with a startling loud audio warning might do more. Although the cameras are a great idea and can help with scenarios like backing into a space as someone else pointed out, that is a time when the driver is focused and using it for a specific task. An audio warning could jar a distracted person back to the task at hand.

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