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NHTSA Issues Federal Register Notices on Quiet Cars and Rear Seat Reminders

Date: October 1, 2019

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently issued two notices regarding federal motor vehicle safety standards (FMVSS) related to quiet car sound requirements and to rear seat reminders.

The first notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) would amend and update FMVSS No. 141 “Minimum sound requirements for hybrid and electric vehicles” allowing vehicle manufacturers to install driver-selectable pedestrian alert sounds. NHTSA is responding to a petition for reconsideration of the final rule, which was issued in 2016. The petition seeks to remove the limitation on the number of compliant sounds a manufacturer can make available in the vehicle. This NPRM would also make some technical corrections and changes. Comments are due by Nov. 1, 2019.

The second is an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) to amend FMVSS No. 208, “Occupant crash protection,” requiring a seat belt use warning system for rear seat occupants. NHTSA had initiated a rulemaking proceeding in 2013, and this notice seeks public comment on a variety of issues related to a requirement for a rear seat belt warning system. NHTSA would like to get comment on several items, such as potential requirements for such rear seat reminder systems, the systems’ effectiveness, the likely consumer acceptance, the scope of vehicles to which they should apply, and the associated costs and benefits. Comments are due by Nov. 26, 2019.

For more information about these notices, please contact MEMA’s Leigh Merino.

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