NHTSA amends final rule on standards for vehicle head restraints

November 11, 2010

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration published responses (.pdf file) in the Nov. 2 Federal Register to petitions for reconsiderations of a final rule on head restraint standards for passenger vehicles, trucks and buses.

NHTSA officials say changes to the standard, which was issued in May 2007, are expected to reduce a substantial number of cases of whiplash injury suffered during rear-end collisions. NHTSA research shows whiplash can be reduced by limiting the distance between the back of the head and the head restraint.

Officials said they are partially granting and partially denying the petitions for reconsideration. The rule is scheduled to go into effect Jan. 3. Petitions for reconsideration must be received by Dec. 17.