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What technologies help prevent car accidents?

As technology advances, so do our gadgets. Many vehicles now have back-up cameras to help drivers park–some cars even parallel park by themselves. But these advances now extend well beyond parking assistance.

Technology may help Lehigh Valley drivers feel more comfortable and in control on the road. But what technology could really help reduce the risk of a catastrophic car accident?

1. Driver assist technologies

The majority of car accidents are the result of human error. So, several reports state that driver assist technologies have helped to decrease car accidents, such as:

  • Blind spot alerts
  • Automatic brakes 
  • Forward-collision alerts
  • Lane-departure warnings

All of these driver assist technologies use sensors to help keep drivers alert and aware of their surroundings. For example, if someone looks down at their GPS for a moment, they might not notice the car in front of them stop. Automatic brakes will stop the car if they sense the vehicle in front. And according to Consumer Reports, automatic emergency brakes have helped reduce collisions by 50%. 

2. Apps that hold text messages

Not all of these technologies are in the cars themselves. Cellphone companies are doing their part to prevent accidents as well. Many apps or modes on cellphones prevent them from receiving notifications while someone is driving. 

When people use these technologies, they actively eliminate some of the most dangerous distractions behind the wheel.

3. Eye-tracking devices

This technology is not available in cars on the market yet. However, the Wall Street Journal podcast reports that several car companies are working on adding cameras that actually track a driver’s eyes.

These technologies would alert the driver if their eyes turn away from the road too often or even if their eyes close. Some companies, like Volvo, might even slow the car down and pull it over if the technology detects the driver is drowsy or too distracted.

Since this is one of the most recent technologies that car manufacturers are considering, there is no telling how much this technology might help to keep the roads safe yet. However, it certainly could help prevent drivers from engaging in distractions.

Important note: We cannot rely on technology to keep our roads safe

Although these technologies seem helpful in mitigating human error and increasing safety on the road, drivers cannot depend on technology entirely. Most of these safety measures do not even come standard in vehicles, requiring individuals to pay extra for more safety measures. 

Perhaps in the future, these technologies will be standard. Regardless, it is always critical for drivers to pay attention to the road to reduce the risk of an accident.