A bill approved by both houses of Congress that doubles fines on vehicles not recalled in a timely fashion also weighs-in on several additional safety measures. What was once a $17-million penalty has now jumped to $35 million. In spite of these fines, The Detroit News reports that many new safety requirements were left out of the bill. One of the few requirements to make it through is the mandate for rear seat belt buckle chime systems – much like the alert system that is currently in the front seats of cars.

Following the Toyota recall of almost 10 million vehicles, many safety groups advocated for major changes in the legislation of vehicle safety. While the vote makes the penalty for recalls worse, it mostly does away with many safety regulations.

Among those regulations would have been rules regarding vehicle stopping distance, pushbutton start systems, pedal placement, and even mandatory vehicle event data recorder (A.K.A. black box) institution.

But traffic deaths have fallen to their lowest point in over 60 years and public attention has waned since the Toyota recall. Lobbyists have pushed to block new safety proposals in light of the lack of public outcry.

So while many of the proposed safety measures never made it through the vote, it appears the rear seat warning chime, as well as new bus safety regulations, will carry the day.



I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 80 Comments
      BEEEAMMERRR_GUY
      • 2 Years Ago
      Lame, I have a 2 door and I put a lot of stuff in the backseat, that means I'd be hearing a chime each time I place my route bag in the back seat.
        Bill
        • 2 Years Ago
        @BEEEAMMERRR_GUY
        Just keep them clicked all the time and sit on them, that's what we do with the two front seats.
      ehb5150
      • 2 Years Ago
      Once again, the "sky is falling" crowd like Joan Claybrook, who view driving as operating another appliance, are exercising their perceived need to be everybody's safety nag. I suspect that this is the same crowd that takes up the #1 lane at ten mph under the limit, has no clue as to what's going on past four feet from the front bumper of their Prius', and are totally oblivious to posted signs mandating the speed limit, and that slower traffic move right. I truly beleive that one of the sources of what is conveniently termed as "road rage" is frustration from other drivers whose sphere of observation is about the size of a ping pong ball. I do not view flashing headlights in the rear view mirror of car doing 55 in the #1 lane of posted 65 mph highway and not yielding to faster traffic as aggressive, at all. It is customary on roads such as the autobahm and autostrada. Perhaps we should take a long hard look at what is required for driver training in this country. Being able to drive two blocks without hitting anything does not make one a "good or defensivedriver". A truly defensive driver knows what is going on in the 360 degrees around their vehicle and not just in their periphery.
        Bill
        • 2 Years Ago
        @ehb5150
        I totally agree with you on everything you said. Weird, almost like we share the same mind. I've always said, seatbelts are great for those who feel they need the security of being strapped in because they don't feel comfortable with their driving skills. Leave me alone, I'll take care of myself thankyou. The other thing is my new lawn mower. That thing is so full of B.S. safety crap I really wish I had my old one back. I almost traded it in on a large walk behind but the loss was too great. I can't even get off the seat without it shutting down. What a pain that is everytime I need to jump off and move something out of the way. I'm totally fed up.
        AcidTonic
        • 2 Years Ago
        @ehb5150
        But come on, slower is always safer..... right? It's a fallacy. No matter what your doing (fast,proactive,smart) someone else (slow, reactive, dumb) will always have something to hold over your head because slower is safer in our society. If you're doing 90mph, he's safer for doing 80mph. If you go 25mph, he's safer going 23.5mph. If you turn a corner at 2mph, he's still safer making his turn at 1.5 mph. Skill has no meaning to Americans when perceiving safety. Grandma who can barely see and come within 2/10s of her life going 50mph in a 55mph, thinks she's safer than you because she's slower. In American social circles the mentally-slow have an absolute right to slow anything and anyone down to their level of incompetence or else you're "dangerous" and "unsafe" or even worse "cold hearted". You are not allowed to speed anyone up mind you. Even in the face of exceptional ability. Or else you're unsafe. So by the very extension of this thought. We should ban running because people with bad knees who can barely walk think that running would be *totally* unsafe. They have no perception that others may be doing the act safely day-in-day-out. All they can recall are images of running people falling down and getting hurt. But in this circumstance we can clearly see the handicap (bad knees) so we tell that guy to stop slowing us down. We can still all run at will and everyone ignores his jealousy as he can only walk. But in a CAR..... the handicap is the BRAIN and society absolutely will not tolerate someone smart exercising his free and working mind in front of a handicapped person..... Yeah that makes him a jerk trying to live his life at his own pace.... the bastard!
          AcidTonic
          • 2 Years Ago
          @AcidTonic
          Gotta love double posting autoblog!
        AcidTonic
        • 2 Years Ago
        @ehb5150
        But come on, slower is always safer..... right? It's a fallacy. No matter what your doing (fast,proactive,smart) someone else (slow, reactive, dumb) will always have something to hold over your head because slower is safer in our society. If you're doing 90mph, he's safer for doing 80mph. If you go 25mph, he's safer going 23.5mph. If you turn a corner at 2mph, he's still safer making his turn at 1.5 mph. Skill has no meaning to Americans when perceiving safety. Grandma who can barely see and come within 2/10s of her life going 50mph in a 55mph, thinks she's safer than you because she's slower. In American social circles the mentally-slow have an absolute right to slow anything and anyone down to their level of incompetence or else you're "dangerous" and "unsafe" or even worse "cold hearted". You are not allowed to speed anyone up mind you. Even in the face of exceptional ability. Or else you're unsafe. So by the very extension of this thought. We should ban running because people with bad knees who can barely walk think that running would be *totally* unsafe. They have no perception that others may be doing the act safely day-in-day-out. All they can recall are images of running people falling down and getting hurt. But in this circumstance we can clearly see the handicap (bad knees) so we tell that guy to stop slowing us down. We can still all run at will and everyone ignores his jealousy as he can only walk. But in a CAR..... the handicap is the BRAIN and society absolutely will not tolerate someone smart exercising his free and working mind in front of a handicapped person..... Yeah that makes him a jerk trying to live his life at his own pace.... the bastard!
      Emily
      • 2 Years Ago
      This is going to be a major aggravation. Many times I use my back seat for carrying a lot more than people. Gonna be a bit more trouble to keep fastening the seat belt to shut the timer off.
        Daniel Watkins
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Emily
        The seats will have sensors to determine what is on them..
          SergeantHop
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Daniel Watkins
          Yes, the same sensors that make the chime in my 2011 car go off when my backpack is on the front seat.
      Bret Frohwein
      • 2 Years Ago
      and again, those of us who can drive (or at least think we can) get to pay for expensive devices to protect, "stupid-people" from hurting themselves or others.
      Duders
      • 2 Years Ago
      Is it illegal for an adult in the rear seat to not wear his seatbelt?
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Duders
        [blocked]
        Serioso
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Duders
        I guess it's not illegal to be nagged half to death by chimes, either.
        Amanda
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Duders
        In Illinois (this was 3 years ago), only children in the backseat had to be restrained. Adults were not required to wear safety belts in the back seat. They could have changed the law by now though.
          Billy Devine
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Amanda
          Now in Illinois everyone in the car must put a belt on, so yes they changed the law. It is not uncommon to see "seat Belt Stops" in the suburbs of Chicago or getting tickets by a Cook County police for the reason alone of the no belt. In Orland Park I was coming up to a stop light (which did turn red pretty sudden) on a dark road when someone with a flashilight standing on the side of the road screamed "seat Belt Check". The cops in the area had really nothing better to do on a late Saturday night i guess. Also I received a ticket years ago for no belt, now I wear a belt every moment I drive so yeah..they're hard in the state and yes it is working.
        Bill
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Duders
        I just keep them clicked all the time. We never use them, we sit on them.
      Nancy
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ding-ding-ding...is that distracting? Watch the road!
      FIDTRO
      • 2 Years Ago
      "Following the Toyota recall of almost 10 million vehicles," which of course could have been avoided if cars came with more unnecessary chimes.
      Chris
      • 2 Years Ago
      Just what we need, more annoying beeps in our cars!! Wearing a seatbelt should be my choice, not the government's. When is the population in this country going to grow a backbone and tell the government to f$%k off?
      Making11s
      • 2 Years Ago
      As a society we've been working to get people to buckle up for quite some time, and we have had great success. At this point we all know that wearing seatbelts is the law and not wearing seatbelts is unsafe. I believe it is time we should say "job well done" and stop focusing so much seatbelts. Investing in technologies that make us safer and might involve seatbelts? Yes. Spending millions on PSAs and creating (and enforcing) new regulations about seatbelt reminders? No.
      avconsumer2
      • 2 Years Ago
      Next up... Ad Council to spend billions on "look both ways before crossing the street" campaign.
      zzzzzz
      • 2 Years Ago
      My Volvo gives me a message on the dash when the rear seat belts are in use, not the other way around.
      moderate fringe
      • 2 Years Ago
      What gets me is there seems to be no standard for braking. Some cars just don't stop very quickly. But they are worried about a buzzer reminding you? I always wear a belt. Since mine is the same buzzer as the one that tells you the key is in the ignition I disconnected it. If not a felony I am sure some nannies want to make it one.
        Car Guy
        • 2 Years Ago
        @moderate fringe
        The standard for braking is FMVSS 135. All light duty vehicles must meet it.
    • Load More Comments