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Gov't wants electric cars to be noisy

(AP) -- A government safety agency wants electric and hybrid vehicles to make more noise when traveling at low speeds so pedestrians can hear them coming.
The cars and trucks, which are far quieter than conventional gasoline or diesel-powered vehicles, don't make enough noise at low speeds to warn walkers, bicyclists and the visually impaired, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Monday in a statement.
The proposed rule would require the cars to make additional noise at speeds under 18 miles per hour. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says the cars make enough noise to be heard at higher speeds.
Automakers would be able to pick the sounds that the cars make from a range of choices. Similar vehicles would have to make the same sounds. And the government says pedestrians must be able to hear the sounds over background noises.
The public has 60 days to comment on the proposed rule. The agency will use public input to craft a final rule.
The government agency estimates that the new noise would prevent 2,800 pedestrian and cyclist injuries during the life of each model year of electric and hybrid vans, trucks and cars.
The rule is required by the Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act that was passed by Congress in 2010.
©Copyright 2013 Associate

Read more: http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20130107/TRANSPORTATION/130109942#i...

Distraction?

Probably because it may look like brake light from distance in dark making difficult to people distinguish how close the car actually is. Also could be interpreted as emergency vehicle (it's flashing: police).

If you change red to green then it probably would be legal (blue is emergency vehicle, yellow/orange is turning light).

Anyway the sound alone probably is not illegal (barring copyright issues).

Actually the original law was to inhibit the underside lighting, and they just expanded it to include anything that isn't a headlight, brake light, or used to light up a license plate. Idiocy IMHO, but there ya go -.-

I don't want it to be LAW, but I think having a dedicated "button" for sounds would be kind of fun. I mean, yes, we already have the horn, but I don't want to "startle" pedestrians, just make my presence more known. Just think of the possibilities of sounds we could use:

Horse hooves clanking on the ground
Ice Cream truck music (haha, that would make people aware)
Sound of lightning cracking

etc...

Just a couple ideas.


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