Agency Information Collection Activities; Notice and Request for Comment; Drivers' Use of Camera-Based Rear Visibility Systems Versus Traditional Mirrors, 27952-27956 [2021-10813]

Download as PDF 27952 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 98 / Monday, May 24, 2021 / Notices members of the public joining the meeting. To accommodate as many speakers as possible, the time for each commenter may be limited. Individuals wishing to reserve speaking time during the meeting must submit a request at the time of registration, as well as the name, address, and organizational affiliation of the proposed speaker. If the number of registrants requesting to make statements is greater than can be reasonably accommodated during the meeting, the NHTSA office of EMS may conduct a lottery to determine the speakers. Speakers are requested to submit a written copy of their prepared remarks for inclusion in the meeting records and for circulation to NEMSAC members. All prepared remarks submitted on time will be accepted and considered as part of the record. Any member of the public may present a written statement to the committee at any time. Authority: 42 U.S.C. 300d–4(b); 49 CFR part 1.95(i)(4). Issued in Washington, DC. Nanda Narayanan Srinivasan, Associate Administrator, Research and Program Development. [FR Doc. 2021–10810 Filed 5–21–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–59–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [Docket No. NHTSA–2019–0082] Agency Information Collection Activities; Notice and Request for Comment; Drivers’ Use of CameraBased Rear Visibility Systems Versus Traditional Mirrors National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice and request for comments on a request for approval of a new collection of information. AGENCY: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is reissuing an announcement of our intention to request the Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) approval of a proposed collection of certain information by the Agency. Before a Federal agency can collect certain information from the public, it must receive approval from OMB. Procedures established under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (the PRA) require Federal agencies to publish a notice in the Federal Register concerning each proposed collection of khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:32 May 21, 2021 Jkt 253001 information and to allow 60 days for public comment in response to the notice. The proposed collection of information supports research addressing safety-related aspects of drivers’ use of camera-based rear visibility systems intended to serve as a replacement for traditional mirrors. On August 28, 2019, NHTSA published a notice in the Federal Register Notice soliciting public comments with a 60day comment period. NHTSA received 22 public comments submitted to the docket and one additional comment submitted via email. Given the extended time period since the initial publication of that notice, NHTSA is publishing this new 60-day notice. This new notice addresses comments received on the original 60-day notice relevant to the current study design. DATES: Comments must be received on or before July 23, 2021. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by the docket number in the heading of this document or by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments on the electronic docket site by clicking on ‘‘Help’’ or ‘‘FAQ’’. • Mail or Hand Delivery: Docket Management, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building, Room W12– 140, Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except on Federal holidays. To be sure someone is there to help you, please call (202) 366–9322 before coming. • Fax: 202–493–2251. Instructions: Each submission must include the Agency name and the Docket number for this Notice. Note that all comments received will be posted without change to www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. Please see the Privacy heading below. Privacy Act: Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT’s complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477–78) or you may visit http:// www.dot.gov/privacy.html. Docket: For access to the docket to read comments received, go to http:// www.regulations.gov, or the street address listed above. Follow the online instructions for accessing the dockets. PO 00000 Frm 00128 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Elizabeth Mazzae, Applied Crash Avoidance Research Division, Vehicle Research and Test Center, NHTSA, 10820 State Route 347—Bldg. 60, East Liberty, Ohio 43319; Telephone (937) 666–4511; Facsimile: (937) 666–3590; email address: elizabeth.mazzae@ dot.gov. Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501–3520), before an agency submits a proposed collection of information to OMB for approval, it must first publish a document in the Federal Register providing a 60-day comment period and otherwise consult with members of the public and affected agencies concerning each proposed collection of information. The OMB has promulgated regulations describing what must be included in such a document. Under OMB’s regulation (at 5 CFR 1320.8(d)), an agency must ask for public comment on the following: (i) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (ii) the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (iii) how to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; (iv) how to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. In compliance with these requirements, NHTSA asks for public comments on the following proposed collection of information: Title: Drivers’ Use of Camera-Based Rear Visibility Systems Versus Traditional Mirrors. OMB Control Number: New. Form Numbers: NHTSA forms 1553, 1554, 1555, 1556, 1557, 1558. Type of Request: New collection. Type of Review Requested: Regular. Requested Expiration Date of Approval: Three years from date of approval. Summary of the Collection of Information: NHTSA proposes to perform research involving the collection of information from the public as part of a multi-year effort to learn about drivers’ use of camera-based indirect visibility systems as compared to their use of traditional rearview mirrors. This research is SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: E:\FR\FM\24MYN1.SGM 24MYN1 khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 98 / Monday, May 24, 2021 / Notices focused on examination of passive camera-based rear visibility systems, which are systems intended to perform the same function as traditional mirrors: Displaying areas surrounding the vehicle. Systems performing detection of objects within the system’s field of view and providing visual or other alerts to the driver are not being examined in this research. The research will involve human subjects testing involving driving instrumented vehicles on a test track and public roads. Testing will also be performed with participants seated in a stationary vehicle while detecting nearby objects using a vehicle’s mirrors or a camera-based system. Study participants will be members of the general public and participation will be voluntary and compensated. The goal is to characterize drivers’ eye glance behavior, visual object detection performance, and driving performance while operating a vehicle equipped with traditional outside mirrors versus a vehicle equipped with a camera-based visibility system in place of vehicle mirrors. Stationary examination of drivers’ ability to detect objects near a vehicle will also be conducted. This research will support NHTSA decisions relating to safe implementation of electronic visibility technologies that may be considered for use as alternatives to meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 111 mirror requirements. Research participants will be members of the public, non-visionimpaired, and licensed car drivers and/ or truck drivers.1 Participants will drive a test vehicle equipped with a camerabased system in place of outside rearview mirrors, an original equipment outside rearview mirror system, or a combination of both. The research will involve track-based and on-road, seminaturalistic driving in which participants will drive vehicles in multilane traffic scenarios while using the outside rearview mirrors or alternative system during lane changes and other typical driving situations. A portion of testing will take place in dark (i.e., nighttime or early morning) driving conditions to permit examination of system performance and drivers’ use of systems in those conditions. As noted above, a portion of the testing will also take place with the vehicle stationary. Separate, but similar data collections 1 Should this initial research determine averagesighted drivers perform at least as well driving with camera-based systems as with traditional outside mirrors, NHTSA will consider what remaining issues may warrant research with regard to sightimpaired drivers. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:32 May 21, 2021 Jkt 253001 will be conducted for passenger cars and heavy trucks. Since qualitative feedback or selfreported data is not sufficiently robust for the purpose of investigating driver performance and interaction issues with advanced vehicle technologies, the primary type of information to be collected in this research is objective data consisting of video and engineering data recorded as participants drive instrumented study vehicles. Recorded objective data will include driver eye glance behavior and lane change performance. Eye glance behavior will reveal how drivers’ visual behavior in a vehicle equipped with a camera-based rear visibility system differs from drivers’ visual behavior in a vehicle equipped with traditional outside mirrors. Lane change performance will be characterized based on vehicle speed, inter-vehicle distances during lane changes, and time to complete lane changes. Lane change performance in a vehicle equipped with a camera-based rear visibility system will be compared to lane change performance observed in a vehicle equipped with traditional outside mirrors. Vehicles will be fitted with instrumentation for recording driver eye glance behavior, as well as vehicle speed, position, steering angle, and turn signal status. This research will also involve information collection through participant screening questions and post-drive questionnaires. Questions will be asked during the course of the research to assess individuals’ suitability for study participation, to obtain feedback regarding participants’ use of the camera-based rear visibility systems, and to gauge individuals’ level of comfort with and confidence in the technologies’ performance and safety. Description of the Need for the Information and Proposed Use of the Information: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) mission is to save lives, prevent injuries, and reduce economic costs associated with motor vehicle crashes. As new vehicle technologies are developed, it is prudent to ensure that they do not create any unintended decrease in safety. The safety of passive visibilityrelated technologies depends on both the performance of the systems and on drivers’ ability to effectively and comfortably use the systems. This work seeks to examine and compare drivers’ eye glance behavior and aspects of driving behavior for traditional mirrors and camera-based systems intended to replace rearview mirrors. The collection of information will consist of: (1) Question Set 1, Driving PO 00000 Frm 00129 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 27953 Research Study Interest Response Form, (2) Question Set 2, Candidate Screening, (3) passive observation of driving behavior, and (4) Question Set 3, PostDrive Questionnaire: Drive with Camera-Monitoring System, (5) Question Set 4, Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive with Traditional Mirrors, (6) Question Set 5, Post-Drive Questionnaire Final Opinions. The information to be collected will be used for the following purposes: • Question Set 1, Driving Research Study Interest Response Form will be used to determine individuals’ willingness to participate in the study and whether an individual qualifies for participation in this study based on certain information. For example, participants must: Æ Be 25 to 65 years of age, inclusive Æ For drivers of passenger cars: Hold a valid U.S. driver’s license Æ For drivers of heavy trucks: Hold a valid U.S. commercial driver’s license • Question Set 2, Candidate Screening Questions will be primarily used to ensure that participants meet certain minimum health qualifications, are free of recent criminal convictions, and have reasonable availability to participate in the study. The objective of the health screening questions is to identify candidate participants whose physical and health conditions may be deemed ‘‘average’’ and are compatible with being able to drive continuously for up to 3 hours a vehicle equipped with only original equipment components. • Question Set 3, Post-Drive Questionnaire will be used to get information about the participants’ experiences during the experimental drive, including their degree of comfort in using the camera-based system. There will be different versions of the questionnaire for light vehicle and truck drivers, but both will be designed to require not more than 15 minutes to complete all questions. Participants will complete the Question Set 3 postdrive questionnaire one time for mirrors and one time for the camera-based rear visibility system. Affected Public (Respondents): Research participants will be licensed drivers aged 25 to 65 years of age, inclusive, are in good health, and do not require assistive devices to safely operate a vehicle and drive continuously for a period of approximately 3 hours. Estimated Number of Respondents: The data collection will have two parts: E:\FR\FM\24MYN1.SGM 24MYN1 27954 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 98 / Monday, May 24, 2021 / Notices one involving light vehicles that will begin immediately upon receipt of PRA clearance and a second, subsequent part will involve heavy trucks. The second part of the data collection will have the same general approach involving assessment of eye glance behavior and lane change performance as a function of visibility technology (i.e., camerabased system or traditional rearview mirrors). Information for both parts of the data collection will be obtained in an incremental fashion to permit the determination of which individuals have the necessary characteristics for study participation. All interested candidates will complete Question Set 1, Driving Research Study Interest Response Form. A subset of individuals meeting the criteria for Question Set 1 will be asked to complete Question Set 2, Candidate Screening Questions. From the individuals found to meet the criteria for both Questions Sets 1 and 2, a subset will be chosen with the goal of achieving a sample providing a balance of age and sex to be scheduled for study participation. Both data collection parts together will involve approximately 750 respondents for Question Set 1 and 325 for Question Set 2. Question Sets 3, 4, and 5 will each have 150 respondents of which 110 will be assigned to the light vehicle category and 40 to the heavy vehicle category. A summary of the estimated numbers of individuals that will complete the noted question sets across both the first and second data collection parts is provided in the following table. ESTIMATED NUMBER OF RESPONDENTS Question set No. 1 2 3 4 5 NHTSA form No. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. .............................. 1553 1554 1556 1557 1558 Participants (i.e., respondents) Questions Interest Response Form ......................................................................................... Candidate Screening Questions ............................................................................. Post-drive Questionnaire: Drive with Camera-Monitoring System ......................... Post-drive Questionnaire: Drive with Traditional Mirrors ........................................ Post-Drive Questionnaire Final Opinions ............................................................... Frequency of Collection: The data collection described will be performed once to obtain the target number of 180 valid test participants. Assuming typical data loss rates for instrumented vehicle testing with human subjects, it is anticipated that 200 participants will need to be run in order to obtain 180 valid participant datasets. Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 190 hours. Completion of Question Set 1, Driving Research Study Interest Response Form is estimated to take approximately 5 minutes and completion is estimated to take approximately 7 minutes for Question Set 2, Candidate Screening Questions. Completion of Question Sets 3 and 4, Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive with Traditional Mirrors for light or heavy vehicles, is estimated to take 10 minutes for each survey for a combined total of 20 minutes per participant. Estimated completion time for the final opinions questions for both parts of the data collection is 5 minutes and each participant will compete the questionnaire two times. The estimated annual time and cost burdens across both the first and second 750 375 200 200 200 data collection parts are summarized in the table below. The number of respondents and time to complete each question set are estimated as shown in the table. The time per question set is calculated by multiplying the number of respondents by the time per response and then converting from minutes to hours. The hour value for each question set is multiplied by the latest average hour earning estimate from the Bureau of Labor Statistics 2 to obtain an estimated burden cost per question set. ESTIMATED TIME PER RESPONSE AND TOTAL TIME Question set No. khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES 1 2 3 4 5 ................ ................ ................ ................ ................ NHTSA form No. 1553 1554 1556 1557 1558 Participants (i.e., respondents) Question set titles Time per response (minutes) Total time (minutes) Total burden time (hours) Total cost Interest Response Form ................................................................ Candidate Screening Questions .................................................... Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive with Camera Monitoring System Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive with Traditional Mirrors .............. Post-Drive Questionnaire Final Opinions ....................................... 750 375 200 200 200 5 7 10 10 5 3750 2625 2000 2000 1000 63 44 33 33 17 $1,784.16 1,246.08 934.56 934.56 481.44 Total Estimated Burden ..................................................................................................... ........................ .................... 11,375 190 5,380.80 Estimated Total Annual Burden Cost: NHTSA estimates that there are no additional costs to respondents. Comments Received on the Original 60-Day Notice: On August 28, 2019, NHTSA published a 60-day notice requesting public comment on the proposed collection of information.3 We received comments from 23 entities, including 8 organizations and 15 individuals. Organizations submitting comments included American Bus Association (ABA), Automotive Safety Council, Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), Lotus Cars Ltd., Greyhound Lines, Inc., Stoneridge Inc., Volvo Group, and ZF North America, Inc. Of the 23 commenters, 17 were supportive of the research. No comments addressed the specific questions to be asked of participants. Several suggestions for expanding the research were provided. These suggestions are summarized briefly below, together with NHTSA’s response. 1. Some commenters recommended that the vehicle types to be examined be 2 Bureau of Labor Statistics Feb. 2019 Average Hourly Earnings data for ‘‘Total Private,’’ $27.66 (Accessed 3/8/2019 at https://www.bls.gov/ news.release/empsit.t19.htm.) The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that for private industry workers, wages represent 70.1% of total compensation. Employer Costs for Employee Compensation-March 2019, (Assessed 7/31/2019 at https://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/ecec.pdf). 3 84 FR 45209 (August 28, 2019). VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:32 May 21, 2021 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00130 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\24MYN1.SGM 24MYN1 khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 98 / Monday, May 24, 2021 / Notices expanded. Greyhound Lines, Inc. and Volvo Group requested that NHTSA include over-the-road (coach) buses and transit buses in the heavy vehicle testing. American Bus Association requested that we expand this research to include all types of commercial motor vehicles, including both property- and passenger-carrying light vehicles. While it is not possible to include all vehicle types in the current research effort, NHTSA will consider these other vehicle types for inclusion in subsequent work. 2. The Automotive Safety Council also recommended that we evaluate the impact of different ambient light levels (e.g., day and night conditions). NHTSA notes that the research will involve observation of drivers’ eye glance behavior and use of camera-based visibility systems during daytime and nighttime conditions. 3. The Automotive Safety Council also requested drivers be given enough time to get acclimated to using the camera-based rear visibility systems. In conducting the research NHTSA will consider driver acclimation time to the extent possible. 4. The Automotive Safety Council recommended that this study attempt to understand driver preference for monitor size and position, and the impact of system frame rate or latency. The Automotive Safety Council also suggested we investigate reaction times associated with various monitor layouts (assumed to mean visual display mounting locations). Systems to be involved in the research will be production or industry-developed prototype designs. As such, the system configurations to be tested will be constrained by the particular systems that NHTSA is able to obtain for this research. 5. The Automotive Safety Council suggested the study include measures of eye glance behavior and mental effort, and evaluate the time and effort needed for the driver to refocus from exterior objects to the visual display of a camerabased rear visibility system. NHTSA is interested in learning about whether average drivers are able to refocus and extract information from a camera-based system’s visual display as compared to a traditional mirror. The research will involve at least an initial examination of this issue. 6. Recommendations were made to include vision-impaired research participants The Automotive Safety Council and ZF North America, Inc. requested that NHTSA include visionimpaired participants requiring prescription glasses, including farsighted drivers who do not wear glasses VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:32 May 21, 2021 Jkt 253001 for driving. Additionally, the Automotive Safety Council requested we include blind in one eye, elderly, and limited-mobility drivers. NHTSA’s immediate approach is to gather information to determine whether camera-based rear visibility systems should be allowed as an alternative to current FMVSS No. 108 outside mirror requirements. We anticipate traditional mirror equipment to continue to be available for human-operated vehicles for the foreseeable future. As such, this research will assess how average-sighted drivers are able to use camera-based systems as compared to traditional outside mirrors when driving and determine whether these systems, at a minimum, do not decrease safety for the majority of drivers. Should this initial research determine average-sighted drivers perform at least as well driving with camera-based systems as with traditional outside mirrors, NHTSA will consider what remaining issues may warrant research with regard to sightimpaired drivers. 7. The Automotive Safety Council suggested we identify the benefits of a larger field of view, such as improvements in blind spot detection, especially for limited-mobility drivers. The characteristics of camera-based visibility systems involved in this research will be limited to production or prototype systems available to NHTSA for lease or purchase during the period of performance of the research project. It is unlikely that technology options will be available that would allow for objective testing needed to fully consider these issues. 8. The Automotive Safety Council also suggested examining the use of different cues to determine the most effective way to get the drivers’ attention. However, the type of system to be examined in this research does not involve provision of any type of driver alert. Camera-based rear visibility systems to be examined in this research are those intended to perform a function equivalent to traditional mirrors. Performing detection of objects within the system’s field of view and providing visual or other alerts to the driver, similar to a blind spot monitoring system, is not a function being examined in this research. 9. ZF North America, Inc. suggested we investigate an integrated display view with the side and rear camera systems combined in one display. NHTSA’s primary goal in this initial research is to examine camera-based systems that serve to provide a direct replacement for required outside mirror equipment. Pending the outcome of the initial research, additional research may PO 00000 Frm 00131 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 27955 be undertaken to examine alternative system configurations. 10. Some commenters requested that particular system characteristics be examined in this work. ZF North America suggested that NHTSA consider adding embedded image processing functions and technology to camera-based rear visibility systems to avoid poor visibility issues, including weather and lighting conditions that could deteriorate field of view. Two commenters, including ZF North America, Inc., recommended drivers be offered a level of control over the cameras, such as camera panning and zoom. ZF North America, Inc. also suggested that the camera and visual display be placed at the same height on the vehicle to avoid driver disorientation. As stated above, the systems to be involved in this research will be limited to those available for lease from automotive manufacturers or suppliers during the term of this work. 11. Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) requested that NHTSA consider the non-driving related safety impacts of replacing mirrors with camera-based rear visibility systems in the context of law enforcement and roadside inspections. For example, law enforcement officers use traditional mirrors to enforce safety regulations like seatbelt use and traditional mirrors help ensure inspector safety during roadside inspections. Additionally, CVSA also requested NHTSA consider vehicle width laws before replacing mirrors with camera-based rear visibility systems. NHTSA’s initial research will focus on whether drivers are able to safely use camera-based systems that provide direct replacement for required outside mirror equipment. Should the initial review find camera-based systems to be a reasonable alternative to traditional outside mirrors, additional impacts of allowing such electronic systems will be considered. All of the 15 individuals who submitted comments addressed their preference for or against allowing camera-based rear visibility systems rather than indicating whether they support the conduct of the proposed research and content of the information collection. Three commenters stated camera-based visibility systems should be allowed on vehicles but not required. One individual stated camera-based visibility systems should supplement but never replace traditional mirrors. Seven individuals indicated their belief that camera-based rear visibility systems have inherent disadvantages as compared to traditional mirrors. The disadvantages noted include a requirement for power, lower reliability, E:\FR\FM\24MYN1.SGM 24MYN1 khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES 27956 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 98 / Monday, May 24, 2021 / Notices more limited operating conditions than mirrors, environmental debris on camera lens degrades image quality, higher cost, a higher likelihood of a need for regular maintenance, and more difficult maintenance. Additional concerns noted by commenters about replacing traditional mirrors with camera-based rear visibility systems include: 1. Camera-based rear visibility systems’ displays will make driving unsafe, as compared to traditional mirrors. 2. Drivers will not be able to easily acclimate to using the visual displays of camera-based rear visibility systems and different display locations (if applicable). 3. Camera-based rear visibility systems and new technology will further remove the human from the driving task. 4. Concerns about camera-based rear visibility systems’ ability to function reliably and that cameras requiring power can fail unexpectedly and cause a lack of awareness of the drivers’ surroundings, while traditional mirrors cannot. 5. Concerns camera-based rear visibility systems would be more difficult for law enforcement to determine if they are working correctly, as compared to traditional mirrors for which damage can be easily determined. In summary, the proposed research is intended to gather information to address the question of whether camerabased rear visibility system use is as safe as that of traditional mirrors through examination of drivers’ eye glance behavior and driving performance. However, issues such as reliability and law enforcement impacts are outside of the scope of this initial work. NHTSA appreciates the feedback and many relevant suggestions offered regarding additional experimental conditions to consider. NHTSA will consider the provided suggestions as input for follow-on research programs. Public Comments Invited: You are asked to comment on any aspects of this information collection, including (a) whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Department, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Department’s estimate of the burden of the proposed information collection; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including the use of VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:32 May 21, 2021 Jkt 253001 automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Authority: The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995; 44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, as amended; and 49 CFR 1.95. Issued in Washington, DC. Cem Hatipoglu, Associate Administrator for Vehicle Safety Research. [FR Doc. 2021–10813 Filed 5–21–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–59–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [DOT–NHTSA–2020–0105] National Emergency Medical Services Advisory Council Notice of Public Meeting National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice of public meeting. AGENCY: This notice announces a meeting of the National Emergency Medical Services Advisory Council (NEMSAC). SUMMARY: The meeting will be held November 3–4, 2021, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. EST. Requests to attend the meeting must be received by October 29, 2021. Requests for accommodations to a disability must be received by October 29, 2021. If you wish to speak during the meeting, you must submit a written copy of your remarks to DOT by October 29, 2021. Requests to submit written materials to be reviewed during the meeting must be received no later than October 29, 2021. DATES: The meeting will be held virtually (depending on the status of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID–19) pandemic) or at the U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. Copies of the meeting minutes will be available on the NEMSAC internet website at EMS.gov. The detailed agenda will be posted on the NEMSAC internet website at EMS.gov at least one week in advance of the meeting. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Clary Mole, EMS Specialist, DOT, at Clary.Mole@DOT.gov or 202–366–2795. Any committee related requests should be sent to the person listed in this section. ADDRESSES: SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: PO 00000 Frm 00132 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 I. Background The NEMSAC was established pursuant to Section 31108 of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP–21) Act of 2012, under the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The purpose of NEMSAC is to serve as a nationally recognized council of emergency medical services (EMS) representatives to provide advice and consult with: a. The Federal Interagency Committee on Emergency Medical Services (FICEMS) on matters relating to EMS issues; and b. The Secretary of Transportation on matters relating to EMS issues affecting DOT. The NEMSAC provides an important national forum for the non-Federal deliberation of national EMS issues and serves as a platform for advice on DOT’s national EMS activities. NEMSAC also provides advice and recommendations to the FICEMS. NEMSAC is authorized under Section 31108 of the MAP–21 Act of 2012, codified at 42 U.S.C. 300d–4. II. Agenda At the meeting, the agenda will cover the following topics: • Updates from Federal Emergency Services Liaisons • Emergency Services Personnel Safety and Wellness • Information on FICEMS Initiatives • Update on NHTSA Initiatives • Committee Reports III. Public Participation The meeting will be open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis, as space is limited. Members of the public who wish to attend in person must RSVP to the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section with your name and affiliation. DOT is committed to providing equal access to this meeting for all participants. If you need alternative formats or services because of a disability, such as sign language, interpretation, or other ancillary aids, please contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section no later than the deadline listed in the DATES section. There will be a thirty (30) minute period allotted for comments from members of the public joining the meeting. To accommodate as many speakers as possible, the time for each commenter may be limited. Individuals wishing to reserve speaking time during the meeting must submit a request at the time of registration, as well as the name, address, and organizational affiliation of the proposed speaker. If the number of E:\FR\FM\24MYN1.SGM 24MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 98 (Monday, May 24, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 27952-27956]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-10813]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2019-0082]


Agency Information Collection Activities; Notice and Request for 
Comment; Drivers' Use of Camera-Based Rear Visibility Systems Versus 
Traditional Mirrors

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 
Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Notice and request for comments on a request for approval of a 
new collection of information.

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SUMMARY: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is 
re-issuing an announcement of our intention to request the Office of 
Management and Budget's (OMB) approval of a proposed collection of 
certain information by the Agency. Before a Federal agency can collect 
certain information from the public, it must receive approval from OMB. 
Procedures established under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (the 
PRA) require Federal agencies to publish a notice in the Federal 
Register concerning each proposed collection of information and to 
allow 60 days for public comment in response to the notice. The 
proposed collection of information supports research addressing safety-
related aspects of drivers' use of camera-based rear visibility systems 
intended to serve as a replacement for traditional mirrors. On August 
28, 2019, NHTSA published a notice in the Federal Register Notice 
soliciting public comments with a 60-day comment period. NHTSA received 
22 public comments submitted to the docket and one additional comment 
submitted via email. Given the extended time period since the initial 
publication of that notice, NHTSA is publishing this new 60-day notice. 
This new notice addresses comments received on the original 60-day 
notice relevant to the current study design.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before July 23, 2021.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by the docket number in 
the heading of this document or by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments on 
the electronic docket site by clicking on ``Help'' or ``FAQ''.
     Mail or Hand Delivery: Docket Management, U.S. Department 
of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building, Room W12-
140, Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through 
Friday, except on Federal holidays. To be sure someone is there to help 
you, please call (202) 366-9322 before coming.
     Fax: 202-493-2251.
    Instructions: Each submission must include the Agency name and the 
Docket number for this Notice. Note that all comments received will be 
posted without change to www.regulations.gov, including any personal 
information provided. Please see the Privacy heading below.
    Privacy Act: Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all 
comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf 
of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's 
complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on 
April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78) or you may visit http://www.dot.gov/privacy.html.
    Docket: For access to the docket to read comments received, go to 
http://www.regulations.gov, or the street address listed above. Follow 
the online instructions for accessing the dockets.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Elizabeth Mazzae, Applied Crash 
Avoidance Research Division, Vehicle Research and Test Center, NHTSA, 
10820 State Route 347--Bldg. 60, East Liberty, Ohio 43319; Telephone 
(937) 666-4511; Facsimile: (937) 666-3590; email address: 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 
(44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), before an agency submits a proposed collection 
of information to OMB for approval, it must first publish a document in 
the Federal Register providing a 60-day comment period and otherwise 
consult with members of the public and affected agencies concerning 
each proposed collection of information. The OMB has promulgated 
regulations describing what must be included in such a document. Under 
OMB's regulation (at 5 CFR 1320.8(d)), an agency must ask for public 
comment on the following: (i) Whether the proposed collection of 
information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of 
the agency, including whether the information will have practical 
utility; (ii) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of 
the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the 
methodology and assumptions used; (iii) how to enhance the quality, 
utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; (iv) how to 
minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are 
to respond, including the use of appropriate automated, electronic, 
mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms 
of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of 
responses. In compliance with these requirements, NHTSA asks for public 
comments on the following proposed collection of information:
    Title: Drivers' Use of Camera-Based Rear Visibility Systems Versus 
Traditional Mirrors.
    OMB Control Number: New.
    Form Numbers: NHTSA forms 1553, 1554, 1555, 1556, 1557, 1558.
    Type of Request: New collection.
    Type of Review Requested: Regular.
    Requested Expiration Date of Approval: Three years from date of 
approval.
    Summary of the Collection of Information:
    NHTSA proposes to perform research involving the collection of 
information from the public as part of a multi-year effort to learn 
about drivers' use of camera-based indirect visibility systems as 
compared to their use of traditional rearview mirrors. This research is

[[Page 27953]]

focused on examination of passive camera-based rear visibility systems, 
which are systems intended to perform the same function as traditional 
mirrors: Displaying areas surrounding the vehicle. Systems performing 
detection of objects within the system's field of view and providing 
visual or other alerts to the driver are not being examined in this 
research.
    The research will involve human subjects testing involving driving 
instrumented vehicles on a test track and public roads. Testing will 
also be performed with participants seated in a stationary vehicle 
while detecting nearby objects using a vehicle's mirrors or a camera-
based system. Study participants will be members of the general public 
and participation will be voluntary and compensated. The goal is to 
characterize drivers' eye glance behavior, visual object detection 
performance, and driving performance while operating a vehicle equipped 
with traditional outside mirrors versus a vehicle equipped with a 
camera-based visibility system in place of vehicle mirrors. Stationary 
examination of drivers' ability to detect objects near a vehicle will 
also be conducted. This research will support NHTSA decisions relating 
to safe implementation of electronic visibility technologies that may 
be considered for use as alternatives to meet Federal Motor Vehicle 
Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 111 mirror requirements.
    Research participants will be members of the public, non-vision-
impaired, and licensed car drivers and/or truck drivers.\1\ 
Participants will drive a test vehicle equipped with a camera-based 
system in place of outside rearview mirrors, an original equipment 
outside rearview mirror system, or a combination of both. The research 
will involve track-based and on-road, semi-naturalistic driving in 
which participants will drive vehicles in multi-lane traffic scenarios 
while using the outside rearview mirrors or alternative system during 
lane changes and other typical driving situations. A portion of testing 
will take place in dark (i.e., nighttime or early morning) driving 
conditions to permit examination of system performance and drivers' use 
of systems in those conditions. As noted above, a portion of the 
testing will also take place with the vehicle stationary. Separate, but 
similar data collections will be conducted for passenger cars and heavy 
trucks.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Should this initial research determine average-sighted 
drivers perform at least as well driving with camera-based systems 
as with traditional outside mirrors, NHTSA will consider what 
remaining issues may warrant research with regard to sight-impaired 
drivers.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Since qualitative feedback or self-reported data is not 
sufficiently robust for the purpose of investigating driver performance 
and interaction issues with advanced vehicle technologies, the primary 
type of information to be collected in this research is objective data 
consisting of video and engineering data recorded as participants drive 
instrumented study vehicles. Recorded objective data will include 
driver eye glance behavior and lane change performance. Eye glance 
behavior will reveal how drivers' visual behavior in a vehicle equipped 
with a camera-based rear visibility system differs from drivers' visual 
behavior in a vehicle equipped with traditional outside mirrors. Lane 
change performance will be characterized based on vehicle speed, inter-
vehicle distances during lane changes, and time to complete lane 
changes. Lane change performance in a vehicle equipped with a camera-
based rear visibility system will be compared to lane change 
performance observed in a vehicle equipped with traditional outside 
mirrors. Vehicles will be fitted with instrumentation for recording 
driver eye glance behavior, as well as vehicle speed, position, 
steering angle, and turn signal status.
    This research will also involve information collection through 
participant screening questions and post-drive questionnaires. 
Questions will be asked during the course of the research to assess 
individuals' suitability for study participation, to obtain feedback 
regarding participants' use of the camera-based rear visibility 
systems, and to gauge individuals' level of comfort with and confidence 
in the technologies' performance and safety.
    Description of the Need for the Information and Proposed Use of the 
Information:
    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) 
mission is to save lives, prevent injuries, and reduce economic costs 
associated with motor vehicle crashes. As new vehicle technologies are 
developed, it is prudent to ensure that they do not create any 
unintended decrease in safety. The safety of passive visibility-related 
technologies depends on both the performance of the systems and on 
drivers' ability to effectively and comfortably use the systems. This 
work seeks to examine and compare drivers' eye glance behavior and 
aspects of driving behavior for traditional mirrors and camera-based 
systems intended to replace rearview mirrors.
    The collection of information will consist of: (1) Question Set 1, 
Driving Research Study Interest Response Form, (2) Question Set 2, 
Candidate Screening, (3) passive observation of driving behavior, and 
(4) Question Set 3, Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive with Camera-
Monitoring System, (5) Question Set 4, Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive 
with Traditional Mirrors, (6) Question Set 5, Post-Drive Questionnaire 
Final Opinions.
    The information to be collected will be used for the following 
purposes:

 Question Set 1, Driving Research Study Interest Response Form 
will be used to determine individuals' willingness to participate in 
the study and whether an individual qualifies for participation in this 
study based on certain information. For example, participants must:
    [cir] Be 25 to 65 years of age, inclusive
    [cir] For drivers of passenger cars: Hold a valid U.S. driver's 
license
    [cir] For drivers of heavy trucks: Hold a valid U.S. commercial 
driver's license
 Question Set 2, Candidate Screening Questions will 
be primarily used to ensure that participants meet certain minimum 
health qualifications, are free of recent criminal convictions, and 
have reasonable availability to participate in the study. The objective 
of the health screening questions is to identify candidate participants 
whose physical and health conditions may be deemed ``average'' and are 
compatible with being able to drive continuously for up to 3 hours a 
vehicle equipped with only original equipment components.
 Question Set 3, Post-Drive Questionnaire will be 
used to get information about the participants' experiences during the 
experimental drive, including their degree of comfort in using the 
camera-based system. There will be different versions of the 
questionnaire for light vehicle and truck drivers, but both will be 
designed to require not more than 15 minutes to complete all questions. 
Participants will complete the Question Set 3 post-drive questionnaire 
one time for mirrors and one time for the camera-based rear visibility 
system.

    Affected Public (Respondents): Research participants will be 
licensed drivers aged 25 to 65 years of age, inclusive, are in good 
health, and do not require assistive devices to safely operate a 
vehicle and drive continuously for a period of approximately 3 hours.
    Estimated Number of Respondents: The data collection will have two 
parts:

[[Page 27954]]

one involving light vehicles that will begin immediately upon receipt 
of PRA clearance and a second, subsequent part will involve heavy 
trucks. The second part of the data collection will have the same 
general approach involving assessment of eye glance behavior and lane 
change performance as a function of visibility technology (i.e., 
camera-based system or traditional rearview mirrors).
    Information for both parts of the data collection will be obtained 
in an incremental fashion to permit the determination of which 
individuals have the necessary characteristics for study participation. 
All interested candidates will complete Question Set 1, Driving 
Research Study Interest Response Form. A subset of individuals meeting 
the criteria for Question Set 1 will be asked to complete Question Set 
2, Candidate Screening Questions. From the individuals found to meet 
the criteria for both Questions Sets 1 and 2, a subset will be chosen 
with the goal of achieving a sample providing a balance of age and sex 
to be scheduled for study participation. Both data collection parts 
together will involve approximately 750 respondents for Question Set 1 
and 325 for Question Set 2. Question Sets 3, 4, and 5 will each have 
150 respondents of which 110 will be assigned to the light vehicle 
category and 40 to the heavy vehicle category. A summary of the 
estimated numbers of individuals that will complete the noted question 
sets across both the first and second data collection parts is provided 
in the following table.

                                         Estimated Number of Respondents
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                 Participants
            Question set No.               NHTSA form No.               Questions                   (i.e.,
                                                                                                 respondents)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1.......................................              1553  Interest Response Form..........                 750
2.......................................              1554  Candidate Screening Questions...                 375
3.......................................              1556  Post-drive Questionnaire: Drive                  200
                                                             with Camera-Monitoring System.
4.......................................              1557  Post-drive Questionnaire: Drive                  200
                                                             with Traditional Mirrors.
5.......................................              1558  Post-Drive Questionnaire Final                   200
                                                             Opinions.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Frequency of Collection: The data collection described will be 
performed once to obtain the target number of 180 valid test 
participants. Assuming typical data loss rates for instrumented vehicle 
testing with human subjects, it is anticipated that 200 participants 
will need to be run in order to obtain 180 valid participant datasets.
    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 190 hours.
    Completion of Question Set 1, Driving Research Study Interest 
Response Form is estimated to take approximately 5 minutes and 
completion is estimated to take approximately 7 minutes for Question 
Set 2, Candidate Screening Questions. Completion of Question Sets 3 and 
4, Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive with Traditional Mirrors for light 
or heavy vehicles, is estimated to take 10 minutes for each survey for 
a combined total of 20 minutes per participant. Estimated completion 
time for the final opinions questions for both parts of the data 
collection is 5 minutes and each participant will compete the 
questionnaire two times.
    The estimated annual time and cost burdens across both the first 
and second data collection parts are summarized in the table below. The 
number of respondents and time to complete each question set are 
estimated as shown in the table. The time per question set is 
calculated by multiplying the number of respondents by the time per 
response and then converting from minutes to hours. The hour value for 
each question set is multiplied by the latest average hour earning 
estimate from the Bureau of Labor Statistics \2\ to obtain an estimated 
burden cost per question set.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ Bureau of Labor Statistics Feb. 2019 Average Hourly Earnings 
data for ``Total Private,'' $27.66 (Accessed 3/8/2019 at https://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t19.htm.) The Bureau of Labor 
Statistics estimates that for private industry workers, wages 
represent 70.1% of total compensation. Employer Costs for Employee 
Compensation-March 2019, (Assessed 7/31/2019 at https://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/ecec.pdf).

                                                       Estimated Time per Response and Total Time
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                         Participants     Time per                   Total
             Question set No.                NHTSA           Question set titles            (i.e.,        response    Total time  burden time    Total
                                            form No.                                     respondents)    (minutes)    (minutes)     (hours)       cost
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1........................................       1553  Interest Response Form..........             750            5         3750           63  $1,784.16
2........................................       1554  Candidate Screening Questions...             375            7         2625           44   1,246.08
3........................................       1556  Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive              200           10         2000           33     934.56
                                                       with Camera Monitoring System.
4........................................       1557  Post-Drive Questionnaire: Drive              200           10         2000           33     934.56
                                                       with Traditional Mirrors.
5........................................       1558  Post-Drive Questionnaire Final               200            5         1000           17     481.44
                                                       Opinions.
                                                                                       -----------------------------------------------------------------
    Total Estimated Burden............................................................  ..............  ...........       11,375          190   5,380.80
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Cost: NHTSA estimates that there are 
no additional costs to respondents.
    Comments Received on the Original 60-Day Notice: On August 28, 
2019, NHTSA published a 60-day notice requesting public comment on the 
proposed collection of information.\3\ We received comments from 23 
entities, including 8 organizations and 15 individuals. Organizations 
submitting comments included American Bus Association (ABA), Automotive 
Safety Council, Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), Lotus Cars 
Ltd., Greyhound Lines, Inc., Stoneridge Inc., Volvo Group, and ZF North 
America, Inc. Of the 23 commenters, 17 were supportive of the research. 
No comments addressed the specific questions to be asked of 
participants.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ 84 FR 45209 (August 28, 2019).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Several suggestions for expanding the research were provided. These 
suggestions are summarized briefly below, together with NHTSA's 
response.
    1. Some commenters recommended that the vehicle types to be 
examined be

[[Page 27955]]

expanded. Greyhound Lines, Inc. and Volvo Group requested that NHTSA 
include over-the-road (coach) buses and transit buses in the heavy 
vehicle testing. American Bus Association requested that we expand this 
research to include all types of commercial motor vehicles, including 
both property- and passenger-carrying light vehicles. While it is not 
possible to include all vehicle types in the current research effort, 
NHTSA will consider these other vehicle types for inclusion in 
subsequent work.
    2. The Automotive Safety Council also recommended that we evaluate 
the impact of different ambient light levels (e.g., day and night 
conditions). NHTSA notes that the research will involve observation of 
drivers' eye glance behavior and use of camera-based visibility systems 
during daytime and nighttime conditions.
    3. The Automotive Safety Council also requested drivers be given 
enough time to get acclimated to using the camera-based rear visibility 
systems. In conducting the research NHTSA will consider driver 
acclimation time to the extent possible.
    4. The Automotive Safety Council recommended that this study 
attempt to understand driver preference for monitor size and position, 
and the impact of system frame rate or latency. The Automotive Safety 
Council also suggested we investigate reaction times associated with 
various monitor layouts (assumed to mean visual display mounting 
locations). Systems to be involved in the research will be production 
or industry-developed prototype designs. As such, the system 
configurations to be tested will be constrained by the particular 
systems that NHTSA is able to obtain for this research.
    5. The Automotive Safety Council suggested the study include 
measures of eye glance behavior and mental effort, and evaluate the 
time and effort needed for the driver to refocus from exterior objects 
to the visual display of a camera-based rear visibility system. NHTSA 
is interested in learning about whether average drivers are able to 
refocus and extract information from a camera-based system's visual 
display as compared to a traditional mirror. The research will involve 
at least an initial examination of this issue.
    6. Recommendations were made to include vision-impaired research 
participants The Automotive Safety Council and ZF North America, Inc. 
requested that NHTSA include vision-impaired participants requiring 
prescription glasses, including far-sighted drivers who do not wear 
glasses for driving. Additionally, the Automotive Safety Council 
requested we include blind in one eye, elderly, and limited-mobility 
drivers. NHTSA's immediate approach is to gather information to 
determine whether camera-based rear visibility systems should be 
allowed as an alternative to current FMVSS No. 108 outside mirror 
requirements. We anticipate traditional mirror equipment to continue to 
be available for human-operated vehicles for the foreseeable future. As 
such, this research will assess how average-sighted drivers are able to 
use camera-based systems as compared to traditional outside mirrors 
when driving and determine whether these systems, at a minimum, do not 
decrease safety for the majority of drivers. Should this initial 
research determine average-sighted drivers perform at least as well 
driving with camera-based systems as with traditional outside mirrors, 
NHTSA will consider what remaining issues may warrant research with 
regard to sight-impaired drivers.
    7. The Automotive Safety Council suggested we identify the benefits 
of a larger field of view, such as improvements in blind spot 
detection, especially for limited-mobility drivers. The characteristics 
of camera-based visibility systems involved in this research will be 
limited to production or prototype systems available to NHTSA for lease 
or purchase during the period of performance of the research project. 
It is unlikely that technology options will be available that would 
allow for objective testing needed to fully consider these issues.
    8. The Automotive Safety Council also suggested examining the use 
of different cues to determine the most effective way to get the 
drivers' attention. However, the type of system to be examined in this 
research does not involve provision of any type of driver alert. 
Camera-based rear visibility systems to be examined in this research 
are those intended to perform a function equivalent to traditional 
mirrors. Performing detection of objects within the system's field of 
view and providing visual or other alerts to the driver, similar to a 
blind spot monitoring system, is not a function being examined in this 
research.
    9. ZF North America, Inc. suggested we investigate an integrated 
display view with the side and rear camera systems combined in one 
display. NHTSA's primary goal in this initial research is to examine 
camera-based systems that serve to provide a direct replacement for 
required outside mirror equipment. Pending the outcome of the initial 
research, additional research may be undertaken to examine alternative 
system configurations.
    10. Some commenters requested that particular system 
characteristics be examined in this work. ZF North America suggested 
that NHTSA consider adding embedded image processing functions and 
technology to camera-based rear visibility systems to avoid poor 
visibility issues, including weather and lighting conditions that could 
deteriorate field of view. Two commenters, including ZF North America, 
Inc., recommended drivers be offered a level of control over the 
cameras, such as camera panning and zoom. ZF North America, Inc. also 
suggested that the camera and visual display be placed at the same 
height on the vehicle to avoid driver disorientation. As stated above, 
the systems to be involved in this research will be limited to those 
available for lease from automotive manufacturers or suppliers during 
the term of this work.
    11. Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) requested that NHTSA 
consider the non-driving related safety impacts of replacing mirrors 
with camera-based rear visibility systems in the context of law 
enforcement and roadside inspections. For example, law enforcement 
officers use traditional mirrors to enforce safety regulations like 
seatbelt use and traditional mirrors help ensure inspector safety 
during roadside inspections. Additionally, CVSA also requested NHTSA 
consider vehicle width laws before replacing mirrors with camera-based 
rear visibility systems. NHTSA's initial research will focus on whether 
drivers are able to safely use camera-based systems that provide direct 
replacement for required outside mirror equipment. Should the initial 
review find camera-based systems to be a reasonable alternative to 
traditional outside mirrors, additional impacts of allowing such 
electronic systems will be considered.
    All of the 15 individuals who submitted comments addressed their 
preference for or against allowing camera-based rear visibility systems 
rather than indicating whether they support the conduct of the proposed 
research and content of the information collection. Three commenters 
stated camera-based visibility systems should be allowed on vehicles 
but not required. One individual stated camera-based visibility systems 
should supplement but never replace traditional mirrors.
    Seven individuals indicated their belief that camera-based rear 
visibility systems have inherent disadvantages as compared to 
traditional mirrors. The disadvantages noted include a requirement for 
power, lower reliability,

[[Page 27956]]

more limited operating conditions than mirrors, environmental debris on 
camera lens degrades image quality, higher cost, a higher likelihood of 
a need for regular maintenance, and more difficult maintenance. 
Additional concerns noted by commenters about replacing traditional 
mirrors with camera-based rear visibility systems include:
    1. Camera-based rear visibility systems' displays will make driving 
unsafe, as compared to traditional mirrors.
    2. Drivers will not be able to easily acclimate to using the visual 
displays of camera-based rear visibility systems and different display 
locations (if applicable).
    3. Camera-based rear visibility systems and new technology will 
further remove the human from the driving task.
    4. Concerns about camera-based rear visibility systems' ability to 
function reliably and that cameras requiring power can fail 
unexpectedly and cause a lack of awareness of the drivers' 
surroundings, while traditional mirrors cannot.
    5. Concerns camera-based rear visibility systems would be more 
difficult for law enforcement to determine if they are working 
correctly, as compared to traditional mirrors for which damage can be 
easily determined.
    In summary, the proposed research is intended to gather information 
to address the question of whether camera-based rear visibility system 
use is as safe as that of traditional mirrors through examination of 
drivers' eye glance behavior and driving performance. However, issues 
such as reliability and law enforcement impacts are outside of the 
scope of this initial work. NHTSA appreciates the feedback and many 
relevant suggestions offered regarding additional experimental 
conditions to consider. NHTSA will consider the provided suggestions as 
input for follow-on research programs.
    Public Comments Invited: You are asked to comment on any aspects of 
this information collection, including (a) whether the proposed 
collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of 
the functions of the Department, including whether the information will 
have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Department's estimate 
of the burden of the proposed information collection; (c) ways to 
enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be 
collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of 
information on respondents, including the use of automated collection 
techniques or other forms of information technology.

    Authority: The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995; 44 U.S.C. 
Chapter 35, as amended; and 49 CFR 1.95.

    Issued in Washington, DC.
Cem Hatipoglu,
Associate Administrator for Vehicle Safety Research.
[FR Doc. 2021-10813 Filed 5-21-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P