Are Hybrid and Electric Cars Too Quiet?

By dancurranjr On August 25th, 2008

Electric and hybrid vehicles may be good for the environment, but a California lawmaker says they’re bad news for the blind. State Sen. Alan Lowenthal, a Long Beach Democrat, is pushing a bill aimed at ensuring that the vehicles make enough noise to be heard by the blind and visually impaired when they’re about to cross a street.

The state Senate approved the bill Tuesday on a 23-12 vote and sent it to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who has not taken a position.

It would establish a committee to study the issue and recommend ways the vehicles could make more noise. The recommendations would be due by 2010.

The state Department of Motor Vehicles says there are 248,000 gas-electric hybrid vehicles and 89,000 all-electric vehicles on the road in California. State traffic officials say they don’t keep statistics on pedestrian accidents involving hybrid or electric vehicles.

Source: San Jose Mercury News

Leave a Reply