Recent Developments Likely to Change CPS Landscape
(Scroll down for “New Rule Will Expand FMVSS 213 Coverage to 80 Pounds, Clarify LA Weights” and “NHTSA Revises Final Rule, But Concedes Little to Petition.)”
This issue of SRN covers some important developments that will have far-ranging effects in the CPS field for years to come.
First, a year after the AAP and NHTSA released updated recommendations for how children should ride, a survey from AAA confirms what we’ve sensed: there has been significant awareness and acceptance of these new guidelines by the public. The 2011 Safe Kids study of CPS use indicated that parents were already trending toward keeping kids in each stage longer, and the AAA survey shows that the efforts of the past year have further contributed to improvement.
Read More from “Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards—Weight Limit Related”
In the past few years, a great amount of research and program energy has turned to the subject of teen driver safety, so there is more support than ever for people who are looking for information and resources to help them protect teens in their community. This article, which focuses on the significant offerings of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the Center for Injury Research and Prevention, and Safe Kids U.S.A., is not meant to be all-inclusive, but it provides a look at three excellent go-to resources.
As most readers have probably noticed, we are going through a particularly complex period with respect to determining LATCH weight limits. Most CPSTs have heard about upcoming changes in FMVSS 213 regarding lower anchor weight limits. NHTSA has ruled that, by next February or sooner, CRs must have instructions and labels limiting use of the lower attachment system to a child weight specific to each CR model. This weight limit is to be calculated based on the formula “65 pounds minus the CR weight.” Keeping things interesting, this final rule is under further review, and NHTSA may or may not announce a modification to it in coming weeks. Though this ruling pertains to CRs only, many vehicle manufacturers indicate in the 2013 LATCH Manual* that they have adopted this same formula to express lower anchor limits (and tether anchor limits, too, in some cases). So this limit now applies to about half of all vehicle brands.
Read More from “The Mental Acrobatics Needed to Apply LATCH Weight Limits”
Although it is always safer to ride in a vehicle’s back seat, the relative benefits today decline for children as they age, particularly after they have transitioned out of a CR. This is the overall finding of a Center for Injury Research and Prevention (CIRP) study of the state of science on the safety of children and youth in the rear seats of vehicles. CIRP, a group that is part of The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, published the findings in its April 2013 CPS Issue Report. “Optimizing the Rear Seat for Children” includes extensive review of the scientific literature relevant to this subject since 2001.
Read More from “Call to Industry and Government: Bring Rear-Seat Safety to Its Full Potential”
A 2006 NHTSA-supported study conducted by Johns Hopkins University found that states with comprehensive graduated driver licensing (GDL) programs experienced a 20 percent drop in fatal crashes involving 16-year-olds (Compton & Ellison-Potter, 2008).
All states have some form of GDL, but most are not considered comprehensive. NHTSA defines a comprehensive GDL program as one that includes at least five of these seven components:
Read More from “How Does Your State’s GDL Law Stack Up?”
The Department of Transportation’s January 2013 Significant Rulemaking Report provides an update on the status of rulemaking for side-impact CR performance requirements, as well as all other significant projects of NHTSA and other agencies.
The update cites the reason for delay of the next action, a public Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), as “additional coordination necessary.” It now indicates a projected NPRM date of February 15, 2013 (after this issue of SRN goes to press). The NPRM will open a public comment period, which is typically 60 to 90 days from the date of posting.
Read More from “Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards—Side-Impact Related”
To mark our 30th anniversary, in each of this year’s issues our editor-from-day-one, Deborah Davis Stewart,* will give us a peek at some of the important headlines, news stories, and/or quotes from sequential periods of CPS history. In this issue, she looks back to the very beginning of the newsletter. Does some of this look familiar?
Read More from “Safe Ride News—30 Years Young!”
At Safe Ride News Publications, our team has been busy researching, editing, and compiling the 2013 LATCH Manual. We are eager for its January publication, which will include many updates and new information.
As part of this process, I’ve spent much of the last few weeks reading CR owner’s manuals (a process that has been aided immeasurably by the SBS USA Child Restraint Manufacturer’s Instructions DVD). As always, this is fascinating reading and never ceases to turn up new insights about specific models.
Read More from “Tossing the Gauntlet: An Open Letter to CR Manufacturers to Improve Tether Advice”
NHTSA and the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) community have taken a step forward by completing a long-awaited set of EMS best practices for transporting children in ground ambulances. A draft was issued in mid-2010, as reported in July/August 2010 issue of SRN, and was followed by a public meeting later that year. The final report varies little from the draft.
Read More from “EMS Child Transport Recommendations Published”
A powerful book about injury prevention, a topic very near to my heart, has inspired me to speak out during this political season when we are hearing a lot of rhetoric about too much regulation, the “nanny state,” individual rights to not buckle up or wear a motorcycle helmet, or even not supporting public funding of essential things such as repair of highway bridges.
While We Were Sleeping: Success Stories in Injury and Violence Prevention, by David Hemenway of the Harvard Injury Control Research Center, presents a highly readable account of many successful efforts to protect people by preventing unintentional injuries and violence. It is his “personal ode to public health,” particularly injury prevention, which has fascinated him since the 1960s, when he worked for Ralph Nader and Consumers Union. He wants to explain the importance of public health because “most people do not recognize, or do not readily recall, when they personally have benefitted from a public health intervention.”
Read More from “New Book a Timely Ode to the Value of Injury Prevention”