STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — A scientific study recently published by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety concluded that today’s safety innovations make driving riskier. A summary of the study’s findings published by silive.com suggests that driver’s over-reliance on the safety measures, coupled with a lack of appreciation for the limitations of the safety devices, places drivers at an increased risk for deadly crashes. Even though safety experts say that autonomous technology has the potential to save lives by preventing auto accidents, failing to understand the safety devices will not eradicate car accidents.
AAA seeks to educate consumers and vehicle owners about the limitations of the safety equipment installed in new cars. AAA conducted this research to show that safety enhancements give motorists a false sense of security and encourage distracted driving. Despite the potential to save 9,000 lives per year, autonomous safety equipment or “Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS)” creates a false sense of security for motorists. Drivers must learn that safety features such as adaptive speed control, blindside warnings, lane departure signals, forward collision warnings, and emergency braking are not a substitute for an attentive driver.
Moreover, operators must learn how these systems will work in conjunction with the manual controls. Some vehicles equipped with emergency braking will bring the car to a complete stop, while others might slow the car down to assist the operator to stop timely and avoid a crash. To prove the point, the research showed that at least 40% of drivers surveyed believed that their cars would stop if the forward collision warning sounded. Those motorists misunderstand the efficacy of the technology. Forward collision warnings do not engage the vehicle’s brakes. The alarm alerts the driver to danger and the location of the threat.
Other drivers reported that lane departure warning technology would detect threats such as speeding cars, bicyclists, and pedestrians. Most technology cannot recognize those threats.
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