Can crash avoidance systems really prevent an accident?

Auto manufacturers have been working to design technology aimed at lowering the number of motor vehicle accidents that occur each year. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has tested features currently installed in new automobiles to determine their effectiveness and pass the information on to consumers. Las Vegas truck accident lawyers believe that the installation of automatic braking technology and electronic stability control in passenger and commercial vehicles will contribute to lower accident numbers. (article continues below infographic)

MS_03_March 1_Apple_Can Crash Avoidance Systems Prevent Accidents

Automatic braking technology

Automatic braking technology uses sensors to detect obstacles such as cars, people or stationary objects that the vehicle may collide with if action is not taken. Radar, video and GPS are some of the ways these objects are detected. When a collision is imminent, the vehicle does not require driver action to apply the brakes. The primary intent of this type of system is to prevent inattentive drivers from rear-ending a stopped or moving vehicle.

Las Vegas truck accident lawyers may be encouraged to note that this technology has also been installed on many new commercial vehicles. When a tractor-trailer is traveling too quickly toward an object, the driver receives an audible alert. The brakes are automatically applied if the truck driver does not respond quickly enough.

Electronic stability control

Electronic stability control is computerized technology that detects and reduces a vehicle’s loss of traction. When there is an indication that steering control is lost, the system applies the brakes to individual wheels to counteract over- or under-steering. Some systems are also able to reduce the power of the engine until the vehicle is under control again. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that fatal accidents involving passenger vehicles can be reduced by 33 percent with this technology.

Installing electronic stability control on commercial trucks is also expected to reduce loss-of-control accidents each year. In fact, the NHTSA projects that the number of tractor trailer accidents could fall by more than 4,000 per year.

The future of accident statistics

These two braking technologies are reducing injuries and fatalities due to driver error. However, the number of automobiles on the road without these systems means that the roadways will not be significantly less hazardous for some time yet. In spite of the proliferation of accident prevention technology, the NHTSA reports that there were 5,615,000 motor vehicle accidents in 2012, and 330,000 of them involved large trucks. Unless vehicles are one day able to compensate fully for driver negligence, crash rates will probably never reach zero.

Individuals who have sustained injuries because of a careless driver may have legal recourse to receive compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering. Las Vegas truck accident lawyers are available to provide legal advice on the best way to proceed.