New motor vehicles are safer than ever – much of that is due to the latest technology inside them. However, while car makers advertise these features as sophisticated means of keeping people safer, some groups are wary.
A closer look at driver-assistance systems
One particularly popular type of technology is driver-assistance systems. These systems include a range of features, including:
- Adaptive cruise control
- Lane departure warnings
- Anti-lock brakes
- Automatic emergency braking
- Forward-collision warnings
- Vehicle to Vehicle communication systems
These systems can indeed protect people. However, regulators are concerned about the lack of federal standards regarding driver-assist technology.
As such, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is assessing recent crash data to determine whether regulations may be necessary to protect motorists and others on the road.
Is this really a problem?
According to recent statistics, manufacturers reported roughly 400 crashes involving automated vehicles in less than one year. Agencies like the NHTSA see this as a problem worth addressing and are assessing the data to determine if setting regulations might prevent future accidents.
These regulations could include developing objective system performance measurements or standardizing technologies.
What does this mean for Wisconsin drivers?
Wisconsin drivers can take a few important things away from this information.
First, know that driver-assist technology, while effective, is not perfect. Being overly reliant on these features can be a catastrophic and avoidable risk. Instead, think of these features as a tool to help you avoid an accident. The other tools include complying with traffic laws and attentive, sober driving.
If you are hurt in a car crash, consider that these systems may have played a role in causing (or failing to prevent) the accident. Thus, a thorough investigation into the details of the accident can be crucial in identifying any negligence.
Finally, this information can be a reminder that even the safest cars and drivers can crash. Should this happen, getting immediate medical and legal attention can help you protect yourself and minimize the fallout of these accidents.