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Photo: Nissan

Nissan will introduce a new feature by 2022 to help drivers remember children or pets in the back seat of their car.

Why it matters: The number of children who have died after being left in hot cars has increased — this year is on track to be the deadliest year for children. Nissan's Rear Door Alert (RDA) will use door sensors, a message display, and the horn to remind drivers to check the back seat once the vehicle is parked.

RDA was developed by two engineer moms, according to Nissan. One of the women, Marlene Mendoza, was pregnant when she got the idea for the technology. She said she was inspired "when I accidentally left a pan of lasagna in the back seat of my car overnight...it made me ask myself, 'What if I left something far more important back there?'"

How it works: This technology is already in the 2018 Nissan Pathfinder. It monitors when a back door is opened and closed before and after the car is in motion.

  • If a door was opened before a trip, and then not opened again afterwards, the driver gets alerted.
  • Nissan is the first company "to use a honking horn as an alert for this type of feature."

What next: RDA will be installed in 2019 Rogue and Altima. By 2022, Nissan aims to have the technology in all four-door trucks, sedans, and SUV nameplates, according to the automaker.

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Health

Fauci: COVID vaccine rollout needs to prioritize people of color

Anthony Fauci. Photo: Alex Wong via Getty Images

Infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci highlighted the need to address racial disparities in the COVID-19 vaccination process, per an interview with The New England Journal of Medicine on Wednesday.

What he’s saying: "I think that's the one thing we really got to be careful of. We don't want in the beginning ... most of the people who are getting it are otherwise, well, middle-class white people."

The Mischief Makers

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Several Republican and Democratic lawmakers are emerging as troublemakers within their parties and political thorns for their leadership.

Why it matters: We're calling this group "The Mischief Makers" — members who threaten to upend party unity — the theme eclipsing Washington at the moment — and potentially jeopardize the Democrats' or Republicans' position heading into the 2022 midterms.

5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Obama speechwriter fears Biden unity drive is one-sided

Cody Keenan (right) is shown heading to Marine One in December 2009. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Obama's former speechwriter says he's "preemptively frustrated" with President Biden's effort to find unity with Republicans.

What they're saying: Cody Keenan told Axios that Biden's messaging team has "struck all the right chords," but at some point "they're gonna have to answer questions like, 'Why didn't you achieve unity?' when there's an entire political party that's already acting to stop it."

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