To view the NHTSA “Air Bags & On-O Switches: Information for an Informed Decision” brochure go to: http://www .safercar .gov/airbags/Brochure/ index .html
To download the “Request for Air Bag On-O Switch” form go to: http://www .safercar .gov/ staticfiles/DOT/safercar/pdf/ON-OFF_Switch_ Request .pdf
Otherwise, to receive a copy of the brochure or form by mail call the DOT Vehicle Safety Hotline at 888-327-4236 (TDD 800-424-9153) .
On-o switches are not available for all vehicles. Ensure a switch is available for your vehicle before you request authorization to have it installed.
Push-Down, Pull-Up Window Switches
With a conventional rocker or toggle-type window switch, a child can accidentally lean or kneel on the switch and cause a window to close — trapping hands, arms, or other body parts in the power window, which can cause serious injury or even death . Push-down, pull-up switches help eliminate this safety risk . ese switches work just like their names indicate: You “push” the switch to lower the window and “pull” it to raise the window, making it virtually impossible to close a window by accident . A Federal rule requires that these safer power win- dow switches be installed in all cars, vans, pickup trucks, and sport utility vehicles made for sale in the United States on or aer October 1, 2008 .
Note: Even without the safer switches, power windows in all vehicles are disabled by taking the ignition key out of the car . Never leave the key in the ignition of your vehicle with a child present unless an adult is also present to supervise .
Automatic reversal windows (also called “pinch protection,” “anti-entrapment,” or “bounceback” windows) are designed to stop closing and to reverse direction if they sense that something is in the way . ere are several dierent types of systems available . Check with your dealer about the specic operation of anti-pinch/auto-reversal windows .
Automatic Door Lock
It is important that the rear doors be locked when children are in the rear seat so that they do not inadvertently open them while in transit . Auto- matic door locks are designed to activate when a car is put into gear or reaches a certain speed . Currently 70 to 85 percent of vehicle models have automatic door locks . Some automatic door locks also allow the driver in the front seat to engage or disengage these child safety locks . When child safety locks are engaged, the rear doors cannot be opened from the inside .
Brake Transmission Shift Interlock
A brake transmission shi interlock (BTSI) device helps prevent children from accidentally shiing a car into gear, which would put them — and any children near or around the vehicle — at risk for being run over . As long as the key is in the ignition, it’s relatively easy for a child to shi a vehicle with an automatic transmission into gear . e motor doesn’t even have to be turned on . A child might simply turn the key to accessory mode to listen to the radio, and end up accidentally putting the car in motion . A BTSI device helps prevent this by requiring the driver’s foot be on the brake before a vehicle can be shied out of Park . By September 1, 2010, every car and truck sold in the United States must be equipped with a BTSI mechanism .
Buying A SAfer CAr for Child PASSengerS 2009