The field of view portion of the new Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 111 rear visibility regulation - applicable to vehicles with a 10,000-lb. gross vehicle weight rating or less - will be phased in for altered vehicles starting May 1, 2017 with a field of view requirement. Full rear visibility conformance in the U.S. - which also includes requirements for image size, response time, deactivation, durability, default view and linger time - is required by May 1, 2018. Conformance to the equivalent regulation in Canada is not required until 2019, and no phase-in period is included.
These new requirements are part of FMVSS 111: Rear Visibility, which has traditionally been the standard for mirrors and now includes rear camera systems. It will apply to vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 10,000 lbs. or less, including trucks, buses, school buses and multipurpose passenger vehicles. The change to include rear vision systems in the Standard comes from the Cameron Gulbransen Kids Transportation Safety Act of 2007, in which NHTSA was directed to undertake a rulemaking process to expand the required driver field of view in order to reduce backover accidents. This extended area is a 10-ft. by 20-ft. space directly behind a vehicle which traditional mirrors do not enable a driver to fully view. The test used to verify these requirements includes a series of seven specifically sized cylindrical objects with either a horizontal band or vertical stripe applied. They are located in designated positions along the perimeter of this area.