Back-Over Accident Seriously Injures Child In Bruceville-Eddy
It is a parent’s nightmare: the thought of his or her child being seriously injured in any way or, even worse, killed. However, it happens to approximately four families in the United States each week as a result of a back-over accident. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a back-over crash is defined as occurring when a vehicle backs into a person, often when exiting a driveway or parking spot, usually at low speed.
Pedestrians, bicyclists and children are those most frequently injured by a back-over accident. A recent incident of this type occurred at a school function at Bruceville-Eddy Independent School District gymnasium. The accident injured a three-year-old child. The toddler was flown to Scott & White Children’s Hospital, where the child’s condition was reported as serious on the day after the accident by the Temple Daily News.
The vehicles most commonly involved in back-over accidents are SUVs and pickup trucks. These vehicles have larger blind zones, especially in the rear of the vehicle. Because SUVs and trucks sit higher off the ground than most sedans, it is much more difficult for a person sitting in the driver’s seat to notice if someone small is behind the vehicle.
Technological and legislative fixes
There are technologies available to make it easier for a person to see what is behind the vehicle as the driver prepares to put the vehicle in reverse, including rear-view camera systems. A woman who was kidnapped and placed into the trunk of her car along with her husband created an organization and website, KidsAndCars.org, at first to educate people about the issue of trunk entrapment. After advocating for the passage of legislation that would require auto manufacturers to include an internal trunk release mechanism in all vehicles manufactured or sold in the United States, she became aware of other safety issues involving children and cars, among them the tragedy of back-over accidents.
In 2008, Congress passed legislation known as the Cameron Gulbransen Kids Transportation Safety Act at the urging of the KidsAndCars.org. This law has as one of its purposes the creation of a rear visibility safety standard for motor vehicles. Since the law was passed in 2008, the rules that would implement the law have been put off several times. These rules would require automakers to include a rear-view camera system on all new cars and trucks built after a certain date. The date has been pushed back several times, most recently to 2015. Instead of requiring the inclusion of these cameras for the time being, regulators may offer incentives to car and truck manufacturers who put these cameras in their vehicles, including higher safety ratings.
If you or a family member has been injured in any type of motor vehicle accident, you have options. Contact an experienced attorney to discuss your rights under the law.