Federal officials: High tech can reduce car accidents

The Joplin Globe reports that federal transportation officials are pushing automakers to incorporate new communications technology in vehicles. The tech won’t allow drivers to talk to friends or get directions or receive texts, however.

Instead, it will enable new passenger vehicles to talk to each other. Officials say if the technology were to be employed in all vehicles, we would see a significant drop in car accidents, injuries and fatalities.

Autos would continually transmit radio signals telling nearby vehicles of their position, direction, speed and so on. With the constant exchange of information, the vehicles would then be able to inform their drivers of impending crashes; collisions that could then be avoided.

The Globe reports that some vehicles might have options enabling the car or light truck to brake automatically in order to avoid hitting other vehicles.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that four out of five crashes could be avoided with the technology (the NHTSA does not count drunken drivers and mechanical failures in its estimate).

Proponents of the technology say it’s a game-changer that can prevent crashes rather than minimizing injuries or vehicle damage, as so many technological advances of the past have tried to do.

Although federal officials say they will mandate inclusion of the technology at some point, there is no clear indication of when that point might arrive. It seems certain to take years, but no one knows yet how many years.

For those who have been injured in car accidents caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, a conversation with a personal injury attorney can clarify legal options available for compensation for medical bills, lost income and other damages.

Source: Joplin Globe, “Feds want cars to be able to talk to each other,” Feb. 3, 2014



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