The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the auto industry are collaborating to accelerate the release of new vehicle safety technologies that might help prevent car accidents. Every year, vehicles become smarter, using a combination of sensors, computers, software, cameras and other gadgets to help motorists avoid accidents. However, many of these technologies are currently optional on high-end vehicles.
NHTSA officials want these technologies to become widely used on all vehicles, and will reward automakers for quickly implementing them into new models. Here are three examples of how these technologies can help save your life.
Automatic braking and forward collision warning: Automatic emergency braking can help motorists avoid rear-end accidents. When used with forward collision warning systems, automatic braking can help motorists avoid car accidents caused by sudden traffic jams.
Lane departure warning systems: Drowsy driving is a major cause for car accidents while on long road trips. However, even short distances can become a safety issue for drowsy drivers. Lane departure warning systems can alert motorists before they depart the road.
Rear-view cameras: Rear-view cameras have been around for a while, but not all vehicles currently use this technology. New regulations could make them standard in most vehicles. These cameras can prevent motorists from backing into objects, such as other cars or pedestrians. When used with auto-parking technology, rear-view cameras present even more safety benefits.
Are Driverless Cars the ‘Ultimate Safety Feature’?
These technologies are exciting, but driverless cars may give motorists the greatest safety benefits of all. Although driverless cars have a long way to go before being safe for use, the technology could be perfected, perhaps greatly reducing the annual number of car accidents. Volvo boldly declared that its driverless cars would become “death proof” by 2020.
Driverless cars are currently being tested in California and Texas, and the majority of crashes during testing have been caused by human error. These examples can show us how automotive safety is receiving a huge boost from emerging technologies. If we are lucky, these technologies can help save thousands of lives every year.
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