Michael Fabricant supports Guide Dogs’ call for the installation of a vital safety feature on quiet all-electric and some hybrid vehicles to keep pedestrians safe by backing the charity’s call to install artificial noise generators on quiet vehicles.
“I know it seems crazy to ask for some vehicles to be made louder, but some electric vehicles can be silent killers; a real menace to the partially sighted who are not aware of an oncoming car until it is way too late” says Michael Fabricant.
Research shows that some quiet vehicles cannot be heard until one second before impact and, in certain conditions, are more likely to be involved in a collision with a pedestrian than conventional vehicles. Guide Dogs held a meeting in the House of Commons which Michael attended and where Transport Minister Norman Baker spoke, to highlight the charity’s concerns about the safety implications of vehicles that cannot be heard.
James White, Guide Dogs’ Campaigns Manager, said: "As the number of quiet vehicles increases on our roads, we need to ensure they are safe. Blind and partially sighted people rely on the sound of an engine to cross a road safely. If you can’t see or hear a car then how do you know it is there?”
"We welcome Mr Fabricant’s support for our campaign. Quiet vehicles must be safe for all pedestrians and we urge the Department for Transport to take steps to ensure this happens”
1)The Guide Dogs for the Blind Association is a British charitable organisation founded in 1934. Guide Dogs provides independence and freedom to thousands of blind and partially sighted people across the UK through the provision of guide dogs, mobility and other rehabilitation services. It also campaigns passionately for the rights of those with visual impairments. Guide Dogs is working towards a society in which blind and partially sighted people enjoy the same freedom of movement as everyone else.
Photo shows Dave Kent with his guide dog, Quince, and Michael Fabricant. Dave is a guide dog owner and member of Guide Dogs’ staff – he is the Engagement Officer for London.