Vol. 150, No. 44 — October 29, 2016

Regulations Amending the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations (Standards 101 and 111)

Statutory authority

Motor Vehicle Safety Act

Sponsoring department

Department of Transport

REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT

(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)

Issues

Section 111 (Mirrors) of Schedule IV of the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations (Canadian safety regulation) regarding rear-view visibility is no longer in alignment with the corresponding United States safety regulation. On April 7, 2014, the United States amended their safety regulation by adding the requirement for vehicle manufacturers and importers to improve rear-view visibility for all new light duty vehicles made after May 1, 2018.

On an unrelated subject, an inadvertent requirement was introduced to the recently published amendment to section 101 (Controls, Tell-tales, Indicators and Sources of Illumination) of Schedule IV of the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations. This introduced an unnecessary requirement, unique to Canada, that may cause a technical hardship for motor vehicle manufacturers, with no added safety benefit.

Background

Back-over crashes

Driver awareness of the immediate vehicle environment while the vehicle is in motion is a very important safety issue. To provide a safe driving environment for all road users, drivers of vehicles that are backing up must be able to see the road, other road users and road hazards that would be directly behind the vehicle. Young children, persons with disabilities, the elderly and other pedestrians or cyclists are vulnerable to injury or death as a result of back-over crashes (i.e. when a vehicle that is backing up strikes a person).

In 2002, while backing out of his driveway, Dr. Greg Gulbransen (an American pediatrician from Long Island) accidentally struck his two-year-old son Cameron. In reaction to this fatality, the United States Congress passed the Cameron Gulbransen Kids Transportation Safety Act of 2007. Among other provisions, this Act directed the United States Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to amend the United States safety regulation on rear-view mirrors to improve the ability of a driver to detect pedestrians in the area immediately behind the vehicle and thereby minimize the likelihood of striking a pedestrian while the vehicle is backing up.

In April 2014, the United States safety regulation regarding rear-view mirrors was amended to improve the safety of vulnerable road users, including small children, by specifying the area behind the vehicle that must be visible to the driver during backing-up manoeuvres. It is anticipated that to meet the requirement of this amendment, vehicle manufacturers will use the technology of rear-view video systems and in-vehicle visual displays, as they are an effective means of addressing the back-over crash safety concern. This new requirement applies to new light duty vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 4 536 kg (10 000 lb) or less (passenger cars, multipurpose passenger vehicles, three-wheeled vehicles, trucks, buses, and low-speed vehicles), manufactured on or after May 1, 2018.

Regulatory alignment with the United States

Transport Canada recognizes the integrated nature of the North American market, and it aims to align the Canadian safety regulation with the United States safety regulation where the United States safety regulation provides the same or greater safety level to road users. The Regulatory Cooperation Council was established in 2011 to facilitate the elimination of regulatory differences between Canadian and United States regulations, and for the two parties to work jointly on new safety regulations so that regulatory misalignment is proactively avoided. Motor vehicle manufacturers support the Regulatory Cooperation Council’s goal of aligning the Canadian and United States vehicle safety regulations.

Objectives

The objective of this proposal is to align the Canadian and United States safety regulations, to provide Canadians with the same level of protection under the law related to back-over crashes offered to residents of the United States and to satisfy vehicle manufacturers’ call to eliminate regulatory differences between Canada and the United States.

This regulatory initiative would also amend section 101 to further align the Canadian safety regulation with the United States and United Nations safety regulations.

Description

This regulatory initiative would amend the Canadian safety regulation by incorporating by reference the provisions in the United States safety regulation that prescribe the enhanced rear visibility area (i.e. the driver must be afforded a view of the 20-foot by 10-foot zone directly behind the vehicle when the vehicle’s transmission is placed into reverse). Further, this initiative gives the basic performance requirements for devices (e.g. back-up cameras) that provide vehicle drivers with this improved visibility. Specifically, if a camera is used, there will be requirements for the size of the display, camera response time (switch on and off) and durability (impact of corrosion, humidity and temperature) of the rear visibility system (lens, camera, and wiring).

It is proposed that, as in the United States, this amendment would take effect on May 1, 2018, and would apply to new light duty vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of less than 4 536 kg (10 000 lb), including passenger cars, trucks, three-wheeled vehicles, multi-purpose passenger vehicles (e.g. Honda CRV, Toyota RAV4), small buses (e.g. Mercedes Sprinter passenger van), and low-speed vehicles.

Consequential amendments would be made to the title of section 111 in Schedule III and IV, which would now read “Mirrors and Rear Visibility Systems” to properly reflect the content of this Canadian safety regulation. Also, the Technical Standards Document (TSD) 500 — Low-speed Vehicles would be amended, as the enhanced rear visibility requirement would also apply to low-speed vehicles and the corresponding United States safety regulation for these vehicles was also amended. Consequently, Schedule III of the Canadian safety regulation would also be amended, as the requirement for improved rear-view visibility would apply to low-speed vehicles.

With regard to section 101, this regulatory initiative would clarify that the illumination of the speedometer is required only when both the vehicle propulsion system is activated and the headlamps are switched on. Also, the time of mandatory use of a symbol for the passenger airbag off tell-tale would be coordinated with the termination date of the transitional provisions in section 101.

“One-for-One” Rule

The “One-for-One” Rule does not apply to this proposal, as there is no change in administrative costs to business.

Small business lens

The small business lens does not apply to this proposal, as there are no costs to small business.

Consultation

Transport Canada periodically issues the Regulatory Plan, which describes planned regulatory initiatives and changes to the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations. This Plan is distributed to stakeholders (automotive industry, public safety organizations, and interested members of the general public). Stakeholders have the opportunity to comment on these initiatives. Transport Canada also consults regularly, in face-to-face meetings or teleconferences, with the automotive industry, public safety organizations, the provinces, and the territories.

In addition, Transport Canada meets regularly with the federal authorities of other countries. Harmonized regulations are indispensable to trade and to a competitive Canadian automotive industry. Transport Canada and the United States Department of Transportation hold semi-annual meetings to discuss issues of mutual importance and planned regulatory changes. Also, Transport Canada officials participate in, and support the development of, international regulations, which are developed by working parties formed under the auspices of the United Nations World Forum for the Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations.

In the case of this regulatory initiative, Transport Canada announced a proposed update of the Canadian safety regulation regarding mirrors and rear visibility systems in its Regulatory Plan distributed to Canadian stakeholders, including the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association (CVMA), representing Ford, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and General Motors; the Global Automakers of Canada (GAC), representing 15 manufacturers, including the major European and Asian manufacturers; the Motorcycle & Moped Industry Council (MMIC), which represents organizations engaged in the business of manufacturing and/or distributing motorcycles, mopeds and scooters in Canada, including Bombardier Recreational Products (BRP). BRP is a key stakeholder that could potentially be affected in the future by the proposed Regulations should it enter the market of manufacturing or importing low-speed or three-wheeled vehicles. It currently specializes in the manufacturing of off-road vehicles such as snowmobiles and ATVs, which are not captured by this proposal. No opposition to this proposal has been voiced by any of these stakeholders.

With the progress in camera/display technology, the United Nations Working Party on General Standards developed performance-oriented regulatory provisions regarding indirect visibility. United Nations Regulation 46 allows the use of cameras and in-vehicle displays instead of conventional rear-view mirrors. As well, the United States National Highway Transportation Safety Administration issued a limited scope interpretation allowing the use of the inside rear-view mirror as a display for the camera view of the area behind the vehicle.

Transport Canada is reviewing the need for an allowance of new technology rear-view visibility systems on vehicles to be sold in Canada. Moreover, as vehicle manufacturers support the principle of regulatory alignment with the United States, many have noted concerns that rigid alignment reduces consumer choice in the area of new technology. Therefore, as part of this prepublication, Transport Canada is soliciting comments from stakeholders regarding amendments to the Canadian safety standard to allow rear-view cameras and in-vehicle displays to replace conventional rear-view mirrors. Comments must include substantiating evidence to support a stakeholder’s position. Based on comments received and the Department’s review and/or evaluation of these systems, a decision will be made on whether to permit camera-based rear-view visibility systems on Canadian vehicles in lieu of the conventional rear-view mirrors. If permitted, this allowance would be published as part of the final version of the amendments in the Canada Gazette, Part II.

Rationale

In their Final Rule, regarding better rear-view visibility during backing-up manoeuvres, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of the United States Department of Transportation stated that to equip each new vehicle with a rear visibility system compliant with the new requirements will cost significantly more than any expected benefits. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Agency believes that the Final Rule affords significant unquantifiable benefits in the form of reducing a safety risk that disproportionately affects particularly vulnerable population groups (such as young children), and exacts a significant emotional cost on caregivers who back over children in their care. In addition, the United States published rule noted “the rear visibility systems required under today’s rule are the only effective means of addressing the back-over crash safety concern” [Federal Register, Vol. 79, No. 66, Monday, April 7, 2014, Rules and Regulations].

Several back-over warning systems were considered by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; however, testing reportedly showed that the performance of sensor-based (ultrasonic and radar) parking aids was typically poor, sporadic and limited in range in detecting child pedestrians behind the vehicle. Based on calculations of the distance required to stop from a typical backing speed, detection ranges exhibited by the systems tested were not sufficient to prevent collisions with pedestrians or other objects. Camera-based systems offered the greatest potential to provide drivers with reliable assistance in identifying people in the path of the vehicle when backing. Moreover, the cost of other back-over warning systems based on radar, infrared or ultrasound is comparable to the rear-view camera system.

In 2010, when the enhanced rear visibility system was evaluated, the cost per vehicle was estimated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Agency to be between US$43 (on vehicles featuring screens capable of displaying camera images) and US$142 (on vehicles that would have to be fitted with screens). As the cost was expected to drop as a result of mass production and adoption of new and improved technologies, the price for increased rear-view visibility was considered negligible, and acceptable to a customer who would receive a valuable tool in providing better visibility behind the vehicle while backing up.

Putting it into Canadian context

Transport Canada has not conducted market research on this issue and therefore has no data on what proportion of the vehicles available on the Canadian market already feature a rear visibility system. Given the highly integrated nature of the North American market, Transport Canada anticipates that by the time all new light duty vehicles sold in the United States are equipped with the enhanced rear-view visibility systems, virtually all vehicles destined for Canada, whether built in Canadian or in foreign assembly plants, will also have such system installed. Subsequently, the costs associated with the alignment of the Canadian safety regulation with that of the United States would be minimal to industry, and the changes are not expected to have a negative effect on market efficiency and competition, regional balance, technological change, inflation, employment or the environment, and should not hinder trade with other countries.

While the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration was considering amending the United States safety regulation to require better rear-view visibility during backing-up manoeuvres, Transport Canada conducted data research to determine the number of back-over collisions in Canada. The research reviewed back-over events in Canada between 2004 and 2009. Due to the fact that a significant proportion of back-over collisions occur off-road (i.e. parking lots, driveways and private roads) and that off-road collisions are not part of the National Collision Database, it was difficult to get exact number of casualties that result from such collisions. All provinces and territories were contacted to provide off-road data — only three replied. Consequently, back-over casualties were estimated. The following table provides the findings of the research.

Average Annual Back-Over Pedestrian and Pedal Cyclist Casualties in Light-Duty Vehicle Collisions in Canada, Estimated Annual Average from 2004 to 2009

Casualty

Minimum estimates

Maximum estimates

Percent off-road

Fatality — all

24

27

34%

Fatality < 14 years old

3

3

61%

Injury — all

1 492

1 558

31%

Injury < 14 years old

121

145

25–27%

Sources: Transport Canada calculations, National Collision Database, communication with provinces and territories.

Note: “Minimum estimates” for children under 14 years of age are based on explicitly revealed ages less than 14 years old. “Maximum estimates” for children under 14 years of age include a proportion of victims of “unknown age” similar to the proportion of children versus adults of known ages.

Transport Canada is of the view that the improved rear-view visibility enhances safety for road users behind backing-up vehicles and this regulatory initiative supports Canada’s commitment to align Canadian safety regulation with the United States safety regulation where the United States safety regulations provide the same or greater safety level to road users.

Finally, following the Transport Canada Strategic Environmental Assessment Policy Statement, a preliminary evaluation of the possible environmental effects of this amendment was carried out. It was determined that the proposed changes would have no impact on the environment.

Consequences of not proceeding with this regulatory initiative

If the Canadian safety regulation is not amended, manufacturers could decide in the future not to provide Canadian vehicles with the enhanced rear visibility systems or could choose to equip Canadian vehicles with substandard equipment, or could offer these systems as an option at an additional cost. Moreover, Transport Canada would have no regulatory authority to monitor the performance of the enhanced rear visibility systems in Canada or to enforce regulatory requirements related to notices of defect or non-compliance and product recalls.

Finally, not requiring Canadian vehicles to be equipped with the safety equipment regulated by the United States may result in a potential burden to Canadians who desire to sell Canadian model vehicles in the United States, as they could be asked to provide a manufacturer’s certificate to prove that the rear visibility system conforms to the United States safety regulation.

Implementation, enforcement and service standards

Motor vehicle manufacturers and importers are responsible for ensuring compliance with the requirements of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act and its regulations. Transport Canada monitors the self-certification programs of manufacturers and importers by reviewing their test documentation, inspecting vehicles, and testing vehicles obtained in the open market. In addition, when a manufacturer or importer identifies a defect in a vehicle or equipment, it must issue a Notice of Defect to the owners and to the Minister of Transport. Any person or company that contravenes a provision of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act or its regulations is guilty of an offence, and liable to the applicable penalty set out in the Act.

For the purposes of voluntary compliance by vehicle manufacturers, it is proposed that this amendment come into effect upon publication in the Canada Gazette, Part II. It is also proposed that for the enhanced rear-view visibility system requirements, all vehicles covered by this proposed amendment and manufactured on or after May 1, 2018, be required to fully comply with the Regulations. This time frame would provide adequate lead time for manufacturers to modify any unique Canadian market models not already complying with the United States safety regulation.

Contact

Anthony Jaz
Senior Regulatory Development Engineer
Motor Vehicle Safety Directorate
Transport Canada
330 Sparks Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0N5

Please note: It is important that your comments be provided to the attention of the person noted above before the closing date. Submissions not sent directly to the person noted may not be considered as part of this regulatory proposal. An individual response to your submission will not be provided. The Canada Gazette, Part II, will contain any changes that are made resulting from comments received, along with a summary of relevant comments. Please indicate in your submission if you do not wish to be identified or if you do not wish to have your comments published in the Canada Gazette, Part II.

PROPOSED REGULATORY TEXT

Notice is given that the Governor in Council, pursuant to subsections 5(1) (see footnote a) and 11(1) (see footnote b) of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act (see footnote c), proposes to make the annexed Regulations Amending the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations (Standards 101 and 111).

Interested persons may make representations with respect to the proposed Regulations within 75 days after the date of publication of this notice. All such representations must be in writing and cite the Canada Gazette, Part I, and the date of publication of this notice, and be sent to Anthony Jaz, Senior Regulatory Development Engineer, Road Safety and Motor Vehicle Regulation Directorate, Department of Transport, 330 Sparks Street, Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0N5 (email: anthony.jaz@tc.gc.ca).

Ottawa, October 20, 2016

Jurica Čapkun
Assistant Clerk of the Privy Council

Regulations Amending the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations (Standards 101 and 111)

Amendments

1 Item 111 of Schedule III to the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations (see footnote 1) is replaced by the following:

Column I

Column II

Column III

Classes of Vehicles

Item (CMVSS)

Description

Bus

Motorcycle

Restricted-use Motorcycle

Multi-purpose Passenger Vehicle

Passenger Car

Snow-mobile

Snow-mobile Cutter

Trailer

Trailer Converter Dolly

Truck

Vehicle Imported Temporarily for Special Purposes

Low-speed Vehicle

Three-wheeled Vehicle

Enclosed Motorcycle

Open Motorcycle

Limited-speed Motorcycle

Motor Tricycle

111

Mirrors and Rear Visibility Systems

X

X

X

X

X

 

X

X

       

X

 

X

X

2 (1) Paragraph 101(3)(k) of Part II of Schedule IV to the Regulations is replaced by the following:

(2) Subsection 101(5) of Part II of Schedule IV to the Regulations is replaced by the following:

(5) A speedometer shall be illuminated whenever the vehicle’s propulsion system and headlamps are activated, unless the headlamps are being flashed for signalling purposes or are being operated as daytime running lamps.

3 The headings before section 111 of Part II of Schedule IV to the Regulations are replaced by the following:

Mirrors and Rear Visibility Systems

Mirrors

General

4 The headings before subsections 111(7), (13), (14), (16), (25), (26) and (28) of Part II of Schedule IV to the Regulations are converted to the appropriate levels to conform to the addition of the headings before section 111 of Part II of Schedule IV, as enacted by section 3.

5 Section 111 of Part II of Schedule IV to the Regulations is amended by adding the following after subsection (28):

Rear Visibility Systems

(29) Every passenger car and three-wheeled vehicle with a GVWR of 4 536 kg or less that is manufactured on or after May 1, 2018, shall be equipped with a rear visibility system that conforms to the requirements for rear visibility set out in S5.5, other than S5.5(a) and (b), of section 571.111, chapter V, Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations of the United States, as amended from time to time, and that is tested in accordance with the rear visibility test procedure set out in S14 of that section, as amended from time to time.

(30) Every multi-purpose passenger vehicle, low-speed vehicle, truck and bus with a GVWR of 4 536 kg or less that is manufactured on or after May 1, 2018, shall be equipped with a rear visibility system that conforms to the requirements for rear visibility set out in S6.2, other than S6.2(a) and (b), of section 571.111, chapter V, Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations of the United States, as amended from time to time, and that is tested in accordance with the rear visibility test procedure set out in S14 of that section, as amended from time to time.

(31) For the purposes of subsections (29) and (30),

Coming into Force

6 These Regulations come into force on the day on which they are published in the Canada Gazette, Part II.

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