Proposed legislation in California may make it the first state to require vehicles to have a device that can limit a driver’s speed.
State Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) introduced a bill requiring that some new cars have an “intelligent speed limiter,” the Hill reported Thursday.
Wiener’s office detailed the bill, along with another in the set of bills, in a recent press release:
Senate Bill 961 requires changes to vehicles directly, including a first-in-the-nation requirement that all new vehicles sold in California install speed governors, smart devices that automatically limit the vehicle’s speed to 10 miles above the legal limit. SB 961 also requires side underride guards on trucks, to reduce the risk of cars and bikes being pulled underneath the truck during a crash.
Senate Bill 960 requires that Caltrans, the state transportation agency, make physical improvements like new crosswalks and curb extensions on state-owned surface streets to better accommodate pedestrians, cyclists, the disability community, and transit users.
During a recent press conference, Wiener told reporters the technology already exists and is being used in different forms in other countries and areas of the United States, per NBC Bay Area.
“There are cars being manufactured right now where you have an option of having a speed limit,” he said. The outlet noted companies such as Volvo and General Motors offer an option for teenage drivers that allows their parents to limit their speed:
A supporter of the proposed changes whose mother was permanently injured while crossing a street in San Francisco said, “Dangerous speeding destroys lives”:
In his press release, Wiener said the issue “demands an urgent response”:
There is no reason for anyone to be going over 100 miles per hour on a public road, yet in 2020, California Highway Patrol issued over 3,000 tickets for just that offense. Preventing reckless speeding is a commonsense approach to prevent these utterly needless and heartbreaking crashes.
ABC 7 noted that emergency vehicles would be exempt if the bill becomes law.