With all the attention right now on not forgetting kids and pets in hot cars, Nissan is doing something to help save lives.
It’s come up with a new safety system called Rear Door Alert (RDA). The idea is to remind you to check your back seat before leaving the car. It works by tracking how often the rear doors are open before and after the trip. So if you open it to load something in at the beginning, but then on arrival only open the front door, it alerts you with a special series of honks to check the back.
The system is configurable. You can turn it on and off and opt to only have it alert you in the instrument panel, and not honk at you. For now, the system only comes standard on the 2018 Pathfinder rolling out in September, but other models will start offering it in the following years.
Nissan also assures us that it doesn’t use a standard annoying honk, but rather a series of unique chirps. They don’t start immediately after you get out giving you plenty of time to check the back seat on your own before it starts honking. You can check out the sound in the video below.
Nissan engineer Marlene Mendoza began thinking of the idea not because she’d forgotten one of her three children in the back, but because she’d left a lasagna in the back seat overnight. The stink was annoying, but it left the even bigger question of what if she’d left something back there more important, like a kid.
Nissan’s system follows General Motors’ Rear Seat Reminder that GM recently expanded to more models across its brand lineup.
This is an issue that we’re championing here at Car Pro. Check out Jerry’s write up here.