Policy (Laws & Regulation)

Vehicles and children are safer today due to our passionate pursuit of protecting children in and around vehicles. Below are a few examples of KidsAndCars.org’s successes.

  • KidsAndCars.org (KAC) changed the entire transportation data collection philosophy and structure in this country. KAC is now recognized as the #1 authority about emerging and existing nontraffic incidents that injure or kill children.
  • Internal trunk release mechanisms are now required in all vehicles beginning with model year 2002 and newer. There has not been one fatality in the trunk of a vehicle that contains a glow‐in‐dark release mechanism.
  • KAC influenced the passage of laws in California (1/02), Illinois (8/03), Nevada (10/05), Tennessee (7/07), Oklahoma (5/08) and Hawaii (8/08) making it illegal to leave children alone in vehicles.  There are now 19 states in the US with laws specific to not leaving a child alone in a vehicle. (more on state laws here)
  • Safer power window switches are now required on all vehicles due to the work KAC has done to eliminate the dangerous rocker and toggle switches. Children can no longer inadvertently raise power windows by kneeling or standing on a rocker or toggle power window switch that can strangle children or cut off fingers with 40‐80 pounds of force. (more on power windows here)
  • The fact that you cannot take your vehicle out‐of‐gear unless you have your foot on the brake pedal is due to KAC’s efforts. (more info here)
  • KAC was the force behind the policy change requiring our government to set a rear visibility standard so we no longer have to back up blindly. The proposed standard requires rearview camera systems to be installed in all passenger vehicles. The final rule prescribed by Congress was required by law to be issued by February of 2011. Sadly, after four delays, the government has now set the final rule to be issued in 2015. (more info here)
  • KAC is responsible for two provisions in the most recently passed Federal Transportation bill, MAP-21. Seat belt reminder systems will now be required in all seating positions.  A study about how technology could help prevent children from being inadvertently left alone in vehicles is also required.