Automakers Agree to Add Brake to Shift Interlocks

Washington, D.C. – In an effort to fend off legislation, 19 of the largest automakers have voluntarily entered into an agreement with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to install brake-to-shift interlock (BTSI) systems. BTSI’s require drivers to depress the brake pedal before shifting an automatic transmission out of Park. The feature gained many adherents in the late 1980s following a rise in sudden unintended acceleration events in late 1980s as a way to reduce driver error. The feature also helps to reduce incidents of inadvertent activation of the shift lever by children-a long-standing problem that can result in vehicle roll-away incidents and crashes. Continue reading

NHTSA Rejects Auto-Reverse Petition; New Rule Prohibits Rocker and Toggle Window Switches

Reprinted from The Safety Record, V3, Issue 3, May / June 2006

Washington, D.C. – The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has again denied a petition from safety advocates requesting that the agency require automakers to install an auto-reverse function in their power windows, but has implemented a provision in the latest highway safety bill requiring switches that raise a power window only when the switch is pulled up or out. Continue reading