Back-up and rear cameras on vehicles are a safety feature that could potentially save lives. NBC 7's Dave Summers reports.
A family in Ramona is dealing with the saddest of tragedies after a 5-year-old girl was killed while playing behind her mother’s minivan. But one vehicle safety feature could help prevent accidents like this, according to automotive experts.
Back-up or rear vehicle cameras could prevent help curb such accidents, but the Federal government has not yet made them mandatory for motorists.
These days, sensors and cameras are so sophisticated that images and motion can be detected in the rear of a vehicle and on the sides – and even what a motorist may not see right in front of them.
Customers may not ask for such safety options by name, but when they see them they are usually very impressed, according to Mossy Nissan General Manager Sean Hogan.
“We usually get a big ‘Wow, now I understand,’” Hogan said.
Mossy Nissan says all of its models come with a back-up camera and sonar sensor options, while standards are still being worked out by the government.
“As a father of five, I really do rely on those backup sensors and a camera in my SUV,” said Hogan.
On Thursday night, 5-year-old Bella Noble jumped from the bumper of her mother’s minivan just as her mother has put the vehicle into reverse. Her mother had no idea Bella was there, playing behind the vehicle.
Bella was crushed by the car and died.
“She was beautiful. She was the most beautiful girl,” Bella’s father, Bill Noble, told NBC 7. “She was just the sweetest spirit in the whole world.”
On Friday, Hogan demonstrated how such an accident could be prevented using rear and back-up cameras and sensors.
Rearview cameras and sensors are available for older model vehicles at auto accessory retailers. They cost between $200 and $400.
“There are some inexpensive options that just go on your license plate frame. It depends on what kind of vehicle and wiring they have to do,” explained Hogan.
Car camera mandates were first suggested five years ago but because it would cost automakers $2.5 billion, legislators continue to push back the deadline.
The Federal government's new target date for the feature is sometime in 2015.