How are we preventing car accidents

carOne of the most important features that new car buyers are looking for when it comes to purchases is a car’s safety. This matters more to some than speed, looks or any other usual aspects of a car. People with a family and children are especially interested in cars putting safety features above entertainment. It’s no wonder then that so many automakers have dedicated so much of their time and resources into creating incredible technology that can and does save lives.

We should remember that a lot of safety features in cars today were not only considered luxuries, but didn’t exist as part of any cars for some time.

In America, for example, sophisticated braking systems, with ABS, only became standard in 2012. As noted in 2011:

“Federal law will require all [2012] cars and light trucks to come with standard electronic stability control. Stability control relies on an antilock braking system to apply the brakes at individual wheels to prevent skids, so all vehicles will need to have ABS as well.”

This means that ABS was not mandatory or expected before. Yet, today, the idea of using cars without this lifesaving device would be as alien as not using seatbelts (which were also not always part of car safety and considered, initially, an infringement on people’s freedom!)

But technology is consistently heading toward improvement and better safety. Writer Clark Howard, for example, discusses some new pieces of car technology that will probably change the landscape of vehicle safety.

The first is, adaptive headlights – this is where headlights turn as the driver turns the steering wheel. This lets the driver see around a curve and corners at night. “Having headlights rotate first before you get there has caused a 10% drop in overall accidents, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety,” he writes.

One of the most obvious focuses must be about head-on collisions. This is where Forward collision systems (FCS) come in. This often happens because, for a split second, drivers don’t realise the cars in front are slowing – whether an accident, stop sign or whatever.

“An FCS uses radar to know that the gap is closing on the vehicle in front of you and automatically takes control of the car to reduce the severity of impact. In cars that have FCS, accident rates are down about 15% across all kinds of accidents, not just rear end collisions.”

There are plenty of other areas automakers are focused on – completely self-driving cars for instance will have to have all of this tech built in to make it safe as possible. This will hopefully mean fewer and fewer incidents will occur that will require towing services. Safety is as essential to driving as any part of a car – if not more so, since it places our lives first.