The main reason for installing a backup camera is safety. Alarmingly, around fifty children are backed over by vehicles every week in the U.S. Most child victims are aged between 1 and 2 years because their small size makes them hard to see from the driver’s seat. Tragically, in over 70% of these cases, a parent or close relative is behind the wheel.

Roughly 200 people of all ages are killed each year, and another 14,000 are injured in back over accidents. Over 60% of backing up incidents involved a larger size vehicle such as a truck, van or SUV which are harder to see out of when backing up. Particularly vulnerable are children, disabled people, the elderly, and domestic pets.

So, if you’re worried you may hurt or kill someone or a family pet when backing up, a backup camera may stop you from having an accident. This is what the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says, ‘A rear-view video system (RVS), also known as a backup camera, is a safety technology that helps prevent backover crashes and protect our most vulnerable people—children and senior citizens. By providing an image of the area behind the vehicle, backup cameras help drivers see behind the vehicle.’

In response to the statistics, the NHTSA has mandated that all new cars under 10,000 pounds must have a rear-view camera from May 2018. Cameras must show a 10-foot-by-20-foot zone behind the vehicle, something most modern backup cameras can comply with. The NHTSA claims this should save at least 58 lives each year.

This law will be enforced over the border too. Transport Canada says new cars and small trucks must be equipped with rear-view camera systems from May 2018. This will bring Canadian standards in line with those in the United States. The requirement applies to new light vehicles, including passenger cars, light trucks, three-wheelers and small vans and buses.

Backup cameras were beginning to become popular even without NHTSA’s mandate. According to NHTSA, they’re now included on around half of all new cars, and nearly three-quarters of vehicles have them in 2018.

When used with rear and side view mirrors, backup cameras can help to make reversing safer, and parallel parking easier. If your car isn’t new and you don’t want to upgrade to a new car just yet, buying an aftermarket backup camera is the obvious answer.


Many manufacturers are now selling dual systems - backup and dash cameras together to give drivers the best view in front and behind their cars.  Click on the button below for more information

If you need more information on using backup cameras, see our post:

For more information on car safety, see these links below.