A new law intented to protect children from accidents involving motor vehicles was signed by President Bush last week. The Cameron Gulbransen Kids Transportation Safety Act (H.R. 1216) was unanimously approved in the Senate on February 15, 2008, and addresses three of the main safety concerns to children in and around motor vehicles: getting caught in automatic windows, unacceptable blindzones, and uncontrolled roll aways without having to depress the brake.
The law was named after 2-year-old Cameron Gulbransen, who was inadvertantly killed when an SUV backed over him, due to a blindzone blocking the driver’s view of Cameron. Similar fatalities involving children and motor vehicles have occured in Cincinnati, including the death of 2-year-old Drew Campbell.
The new law directs the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to issue new safety standards within specific periods of time. It also requires the DOT to establish a database of non-crash incidents and to provide the public with safety information regarding these types of accidents.
Since 2000, over 1,350 children have died in non-traffic accidents. Further, back-over incidents now account for more than half of fatalities involving children and motor vehicles.