Because Some People Don't Watch Their Children Very Well
...The rest of us should pay $160 to $200 more per car as of 2014 as the nanny state mandates that automakers put backup cameras in every car. Nick Bunkley writes for The New York Times about the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's new mandate:
On average, two children die and about 50 are injured every week when someone accidentally backs over them in a vehicle, according to KidsAndCars.org, a nonprofit group that pushed the government to begin tracking such tragedies. And more than two-thirds of the time, a parent or other close relative is behind the wheel.
...However, in a preliminary version circulated for public comment, regulators predicted that adding the cameras and viewing screens will cost the auto industry as much as $2.7 billion a year, or $160 to $200 a vehicle. At least some of the cost is expected to be passed on to consumers through higher prices.
But regulators say that 95 to 112 deaths and as many as 8,374 injuries could be avoided each year by eliminating the wide blind spot behind a vehicle. Government statistics indicate that 228 people of all ages -- 44 percent of whom are under age 5 -- die every year in backover accidents involving passenger vehicles. About 17,000 people a year are injured in such accidents.
"In terms of absolute numbers of lives saved, it certainly isn't the highest," Mr. Ditlow said. "But in terms of emotional tragedy, backover deaths are some of the worst imaginable. When you have a parent that kills a child in an incident that's utterly avoidable, they don't ever forget it."
It's terrible that this happens, but I don't have children, don't have a driveway, and parallel park. And I'm an extremely cautious driver -- and parker (I'm one of those who pulls in and out of the space in a whole bunch of tiny increments to avoid touching your car.) And I live in an area where kids have playdates in fenced-in yards and are not allowed to roam the streets -- especially as toddlers. Why should I have to have a backup camera in my car as anything other than optional equipment?