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Nov 2022

RFC Issued by NHTSA for Child Passenger Safety in Ridesharing and Autonomous Vehicles

On October 17, 2022, the NHTSA published in the Federal Register (Vol. 87 No. 199; Docket No. NHTSA-2022-0080) information on collection activities for a Notice and Request for Comment regarding Child Passenger Safety Perceptions and Practices in Ridesharing and Autonomous Vehicles.

Under procedures established by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, before seeking the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval, Federal agencies must solicit public comment on proposed collections of information.

The NHTSA is seeking approval for a one-time voluntary information collection from 24 caregivers of children 8 years old or younger and 12 licensed drivers of rideshare vehicles. The NHTSA will use the information to produce a technical report containing descriptive and qualitative assessments of caregivers/parents' and rideshare drivers' attitudes and behaviors related to child passenger safety (CPS) in rideshare vehicles.

This collection will inform the development of behavioural safety countermeasures, particularly in the areas of communications and training related to CPS in rideshare vehicles and potentially future vehicles with Automated Driving Systems (ADS). A study has shown lower rates of child restraint system (CRS) use and higher rates of injuries in crashes involving taxis in New York City. In an online national survey of parents with children under 8, 59% reported that they transported their children differently when traveling in rideshare vehicles compared with private vehicles. Of those, 37% reported holding the child on their lap and 25% allowed the child to ride without a CRS. Several online and in-person surveys with parents and caregivers point to specific circumstances in which non-use of CRS is perceived as more acceptable, including riding in a rideshare or taxi, traveling while on vacation, carpooling, when traveling short distances; and finding there is no CRS available.

Comments must be submitted on or before December 16, 2022.

The Notice/RFC is available on InterRegs.NET for our USA Federal subscribers and is also available at