For your next car, should you buy one with driver-assist technology? Or is it just all hype? According to an Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) study, it’s definitely notmere hype and certain technologies are helpful in reducing car crashes.
There’s good evidence that lane departure warnings and blind spot detection technologies are helpful in reducing car crashes. If we see more cars equipped with these features on our roads, we could very well see fewer Phoenix car accidents.
Let’s take a closer look at what the study showed.
A lane departure warning system helps in reducing car crashes because it gives the driver an alert when the vehicle drifts from the center of the road. In a 2016 study, IIHS researcher Jessica Cicchino analyzed lane departure warningstechnologies by examining data from police-reported crashes.She found that vehicles equipped with this lane-change warning had an 18 percent lower crash rate and injuries decreased by 24 percent. Her analysis also showed that the technology reduced fatal car crashes by 86 percent.
When controlling for age, gender and insurance level, she found that lane departure warnings can reduce the rate of single-vehicle, sideswipe and head-on car accidents by 11 percent, decreasing injury rates in those kinds of car accidents by 21 percent.
While these reductions are significant, other studies suggest that the technology could reduce car crashes even further. A 2015 study of trucks in U.S. fleets found that lane-departure warnings decreased the rate of relevant crashes by nearly 50 percent. In addition, a Swedish study of Volvos equipped with this technology showed a 53 percent reduction in accidents.
Blind spot detection is a technology that gives a visual alert when a vehicle is a driver’s blind spot. Using the same methods of analysis as in the lane-change warning analysis, Cicchino found that blind spot detection reduces the rate of all lane-change car accidents by 14 percent and the rate of lane-change crashes with injuries by 23 percent.
Cicchino noted that: “[I]f every passenger vehicle on the road were equipped with blind spot detection as effective as the systems we studied, about 50,000 police-reported crashes a year could be prevented.”
Although these electronic driver-assist systems are effective at reducing car crashes, many drivers are opting not to use these features. For example, an IIHS study indicated that about two-thirds of driversturn off their lane change warning system, finding it “annoying.”
As car manufacturers work on making the feature less irritating, drivers who are tempted to turn off the feature should keep in mind that this technology very well could save their life and is successful at reducing car crashes in a number of studies. While cars are getting safer, accidents still happen. If you’ve been involved in a car accident in or around Phoenix, contact Zanes Law at (866) 499-8989 to see how we can help you.
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