US to require hybrid, electric cars to make noise
NEW HYBRID and electric cars are required to make noise when travelling at low speeds so that pedestrians, especially those who are blind or have poor eyesight, will hear them coming, under a new rule released Monday by the Obama administration.
The new rule could help prevent about 2,400 pedestrian injuries a year once all hybrids on the road are equipped to make noise, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in the United States.
Hybrid vehicles use both a gasolene engine and an electric motor. Electric motors, however, make very little noise compared to gasolene and diesel engines.
The rule requires hybrid and electric vehicles to make audible noise when travelling in reverse or forward at speeds up to about 19 miles per hour. The sound alert isn’t required at higher speeds because other factors, In this December 13, 2013 file photo (from left), electric cars from Nissan, Tesla and Toyota are presented at a news conference in Los Angeles. New rules released by the Obama administration on November 14, will require hybrids and electric autos to make noise as a safety measure.
such as tyre and wind noise, provide warning.
“We all depend on our senses to alert us to possible danger,” said US Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “With more, quieter hybrid and electrical cars on
the road, the ability for all pedestrians to hear, as well as see the cars becomes an important factor of reducing the risk of possible crashes and improving safety.”
Manufacturers have until September 1, 2019 to equip all
new hybrid and electric vehicles with sounds that meet the new federal safety standard. Half of new hybrid and electric vehicles must be in compliance one year before the final deadline. comments as United executives outlined their strategy to Wall Street analysts.
On Monday, Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc disclosed in a regulatory filing that it had bought stakes in United, American and Delta. Buffett had famously mocked airlines as a terrible investment years ago.
Airline stocks soared in 2013 and 2014 as consolidation reduced the number of competitors. Since then, however, the stocks have fared less well because of falling fares and, especially recently, concern that fuel and labour costs are both heading higher.