Lowering the number of car accidents on U.S. roads is a major focus of the transportation department, city governments, and automobile manufacturers. Working together, these entities can change the equipment and infrastructure that’s making our roads unsafe, and they can start with these 5 technologies which reduce accidents.
Despite constantly hearing and reading about all the severe t-bone or head-on collisions in the news, the vast majority of automobile accidents occur at low speeds when people are backing up their vehicles. They most frequently happen in parking lots, but they can also occur on streets, driveways, and anywhere that requires a person to put their car in reverse.
Backup cameras allow drivers to have a wider field of vision than they get with just their rearview mirror or when looking over their shoulder. Plus, a backup camera usually has an audible alert that lets the driver know when they’re getting too close to an object. This simple technology of adding a rear-facing camera to every vehicle will significantly reduce the number of car accidents.
Lane Departure Warning Systems
Vehicles drifting into other lanes could be a thing of the past with lane departure warning systems. These systems, when equipped on vehicles, will alert the driver if their vehicle begins to depart their lane and drift into the lane next to them. This alert is usually audible, but some vehicles include a visual warning as well. Keeping people in their lane unless they’re intentionally changing lanes, can prevent collisions on busy highways and multi-lane side streets.
Blind Spot Detection Systems
Even when you look over your shoulder or in your mirrors before changing a lane, you could still not see another vehicle if they’re in your blind spot. For this reason, blind spot detection systems can reduce these common accidents by alerting the driver when there is another vehicle approaching on either side of their car. This is typically done by a visual alert that lets the driver know it’s not safe to change lanes.
Smart Roads are infrastructure technology that will use roadside sensors to detect various dangerous road conditions and relay them to drivers that have yet to reach the area. This information will likely be sent to drivers’ cell phones or in-vehicle communications systems to make them aware of the road conditions before they ever arrive. This will allow the drivers to avoid the area or otherwise take action to make sure they drive safely through the area.
The ultimate traffic safety technology is driverless cars. Eventually, when every car is operated by artificial intelligence, they will be able to prevent most accidents through their communication with other autonomous vehicles and smart roads. While driverless cars are being tested right now, it’s going to be a while before they make up a significant portion of the vehicles on the road. Only then will they have a major impact on the number of accidents. It’s unclear what the future holds for driverless cars in terms of accidents, and everything it affects like auto insurance, so only time will tell.
Technology is advancing every day and every day we get closer to safer roads. These five technologies are already a reality or will soon be and will drastically reduce the number of automobile accidents on U.S. streets.