Safety call for ‘quiet’ electric cars to be made noisier

MP Jo Swinson has backed the Guide Dogs charity’s call for the installation of safety features on quiet hybrid and electric vehicles to keep pedestrians safe.

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.

She said: “Silent vehicles can pose a real danger to blind or partially sighted pedestrians.

“It is no wonder that Guide Dogs are trying to guarantee that those who can’t see a car coming can at the very least hear it.”

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?”

“Quiet vehicles must be safe for all pedestrians and we urge the Department for Transport to take steps to ensure this happens”